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Monday, Dec. 7, 2015: Binghamton 'zeros in' on basketball tournament

   Leading off today: What was once nearly unthinkable in the world of New York high school basketball is now a realistic possibility.

   A split decision Monday morning by the New York State Public High School Athletic Association administrative staff and the organization's boys basketball tournament has created the possibility that the boys basketball semifinals and finals will leave Glens Falls after next March's tournament.

   The basketball committee voted 7-4 in favor of staying in the Glens Falls Civic Center after reviewing submissions by three bidders seeking to host the 2017-19 tournament. But NYSPHSAA administrators recommended moving the three-day, 20-team event to Binghamton's Floyd L. Maines Veterans Memorial Arena.

   The Glens Falls Civic Center has hosted the NYSPHSAA's most lucrative championship event since 1981.

   The NYSPHSAA Championship Advisory Committee will chime in Friday, and then the final vote belongs to the 22-member Executive Committee, which will conduct a teleconference Dec. 18 to complete the second go-round of the selection process.

   A change in the financial details made by Glens Falls when it made its presentation to the basketball committee Sept. 25 kept that venue virtually even with Binghamton in a side-by-side comparison that day and resulted in a favorable 8-3 vote by the basketball committee.

   The recommendations made that day were thrown out over concerns that over the process that allowed Glens Falls to shave $15,000 per year off its bid, and the Executive Committee voted Oct. 23 to start from scratch.

   This time, though, Binghamton lowered its bid by what amounts to $50,000 per year by submitting a "zero bid" -- free use of the arena -- and also pledging up to $30,000 to be used for other expenses. The revised Glens Falls bid came in at $12,500 for use of the Civic Center, to be more than offset by an estimated $25,000 in hotel tax revenue handed over for expenses.

   "With zero rental cost, they must have a big corporate sponsor this time," Glens Falls tournament director Doug Kenyon told The Post-Star.

   The net effect is that Binghamton's bid looks to be more than $50,000 better over the course of the three-year contract. That quite possibly looms larger than the basketball committee's 7-4 vote in favor of Glens Falls, which may have to root for the Executive Committee to make a heavy nod toward history and tradition.

   "Glens Falls has done an incredible job for 35 years, but you have to look at the bids," NYSPHSAA Executive Director Robert Zayas said. "Not that the price is the sole criteria, but it has to be considered."

   More meeting notes: Sections 3, 4, 5 and 6 voted in favor of Binghamton in the basketball committee vote.

   The third bid reviewed Monday came from the OnCenter in Syracuse, which faced an insurmountable financial obstacle in the form of a ticket surcharge. The Times Union Center in Albany, which presented a bid Sept. 25, did not submit a proposal this time around.

   Hudson Valley Community College, which faced no competing bids, was awarded the 2017-19 girls basketball tournaments earlier this year.

   The track and field committee meets Tuesday to award its 2017 and '19 championships. Bids from Sections 2, 4 and 5 are expected to compete, but sources indicated recently that St. John Fisher College outside Rochester had put together a proposal that was going to be difficult to beat.

  

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  •    PSAL title game: Grand Street Campus defeated Erasmus Hall 28-26 for the PSAL Championship Division football title Sunday at Yankee Stadium.

       "I have a great group of guys," Wolves coach Bruce Eugene, the first black coach to win the city championship at the PSAL's highest level, told The Daily News. "They have worked hard all year and they have earned the right to call themselves champions."

       Star running back Rahmel Ashby carried 24 times for 116 yards in the win. He did not speak to reporters after the game.

       Ashby was arrested in Brooklyn for attempted murder on April 29, 2014, numerous media outlets reported last week. He was arrested again on gun possession charges on October 30, 2015. He was allowed to continue playing because the Department of Education and PSAL do not have any eligibility guidelines relating to criminal matters.

       "We never think about negativity at Grand Street Campus," quarterback Sharif Harris-Legree said. "He's a great kid, he's qualified, and he's our brother."

       All-state soccer team: The New York State Sportswriters and Coaches Organization for Girls Sports has announced its 2015 girls soccer all-state team.

       Three seniors and two juniors were selected as players of the year in their respective classes:

    • Class AA -- Massapequa junior forward Hope Breslin.
    • Class A -- Islip senior midfielder Mary O'Hara.
    • Class B -- Dryden senior forward Taylor Bennett.
    • Class C -- Port Jefferson junior forward Jillian Colucci.
    • Class D -- Copenhagen senior midfielder Claire Stackel.
       The complete all-state team is available in our reference section.


      
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