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Saturday, Dec. 5, 2015: F-M girls capture another Nike Cross Nationals title

   Leading off today: The Fayetteville-Manlius girls cross country team wired the field Saturday on a rain-soaked course and won its ninth Nike Cross Nationals championship in 10 years in Portland, Ore.

   The Hornets scored 55 points to breeze home ahead of Davis, Calif., (144), Temecula, Calif., Great Oak (171) and Saratoga (207). North Rockland placed 10th.

   Fayetteville-Manlius was the defending champion.

   Kaitlyn Neal paced the winners with a 15-place finish overall in 17:25.8 for 3.1 miles after charging through two miles in 10:54.9. F-M's Claire Walters (17:40.7) and Palmer Madsen (17:59.0) finished 24th and 37th, respectively. Samantha Levy (48th) and Sophia Ryan (53rd) completed the scoring.

   In the boys race, Liverpool placed 10th and defending champion Fayetteville-Manlius 21st. F-M ran without season-long leader Peter Ryan, hampered recently by injuries.

   Great Oak High from California won the boys team title.

   Boys hockey: After opening its season with a pair of one-goal wins, defending NYSPHSAA Division I champion McQuaid suffered a 5-1 loss to Pelham on Friday. Nat Heintz scored twice, Stefano Miklakos registered three assists and A.J. Gugliara made 21 saves in the victory.

   Pelham plays Greece Athena/Odyssey on Saturday, with McQuaid facing off against defending Division 2 champion Skaneateles.

   Jerome dazzles: Virginia-bound senior Ty Jerome scored 37 points to go with seven rebounds in Iona Prep's 69-64 boys basketball win over Christ the King. Jerome scored 32 points over the final three quarters, including a three-point play that put foul-riddled Iona Prep in front down the stretch.

   Royals guard Jose Alvarado (18 points) scored for a 62-60 lead but then fouled out at the other end of the court as part of Jerome's go-ahead three-point play. Jerome finished 9-for-9 at the free-throw line.

   Lighter load for Quirolo: Iona Prep football coach Vic Quirolo resigned that position this week following a 2-7 season but will remain in charge of the basketball program.

   Quirolo, 49, joined the program as an assistant in 1988. He had served in various roles since and has been the varsity basketball coach since 1998.

   "That was never the plan to go this long," Quirolo told The Journal News. "It's just too much. It was always too much."

   Quirolo told AD Bernie Mahoney of the decision Wednesday. He said he chose basketball over football because it was the less demanding of the two sports.

   Under Quirolo, Iona Prep advanced to four CHSFL Class AAA championship games. The Gaels won their first league title in 41 years in 2008 when they finished 12-0.

   The basketball team advanced to the CHSAA Class AA semifinals and won the first Archdiocesan championship in program history last season.

   PSAL controversy: A running back arrested on two sets of serious changes less than a year and a half apart is expected to be in the Grand Street Campus lineup Sunday for the PSAL football championship at Yankee Stadium, The New York Post reported.

   Rahmel Ashby, 17, was arrested in Brooklyn in April 2014 on an attempted murder charge for allegedly firing several gunshots that ended up wounding three people. The paper reported Ashby was also arrested this past Oct. 30 for alleged criminal possession of a firearm. Police said he had a loaded .380 semi-automatic handgun. reported Ashby's trial on the attempted murder charge is set for next month.


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  •    Brooklyn District Attorney Ken Thompson sought to remand Ashby to jail, but was unsuccessful.

       "We intend to make sure that justice is done in this case, and we will hold this man accountable for what he did," he said.

       Ashby is able to play because the City Department of Education determines eligibility based on grades, attendance and the building principal's determination according to The Advance.

       After missing three consecutive games, Ashby rushed for 129 yards on 17 carries in the Wolves' 28-22 win over Curtis, advancing the Brooklyn school to the PSAL final vs. Erasmus Hall. The senior has run for 974 yards this season.

       Status quo for now: This one slipped past me Friday but the idea of expanding the NYSPHSAA football playoffs to six classes appears to be somewhere between seriously wounded and dead for now based on the recommendation of the Championships Philosophy Committee.

       The committee was reactivated this fall after the football committee proposed expanding from five classes and the Executive Committee tabled the idea pending further study.

       The six-class proposal, or a re-worked version, could be brought back before the Executive Committee at any point, but it would be difficult to envision it being OK'd in time for the 2016 or '17 seasons.

       Extra points: Old Forge, which hadn't won a boys basketball game since Jan. 30, 2013, defeated Dolgeville 71-37 this week to open its season. Old Forge did not put a team on the court in the 2013-14 season and went 0-19 last winter.

       The excitement was so real by the end of the game that students prepared to storm the court before first-year coach Tom Greco waved them off, Syracuse,com reported.

       "Are you kidding me?" Greco said to himself. "Act like you've been here before, which we haven't (laughs)."

       Greco played on the 2003 team, the only Eskimos squad in the past three decades to finish with a winning record.

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