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Wednesday, April 6, 2016: Schedule announced for Kickoff Classic

   Leading off today: The annual Kickoff Classic football weekend will be heavily geared toward Section 3 teams this fall.

   Section 3 released its full football schedule Wednesday, and reported that 19 of the 20 teams playing at the Carrier Dome on Sept. 1-4 will be from Central New York. The exception is Gates Chili, which will travel from the Rochester area for a Saturday night game vs. Fayetteville-Manlius.

   The full schedule:

Thursday, Sept. 1
   Henninger vs. Cicero-North Syracuse, 5 p.m.
   Marcellus vs. Westhill, 8 p.m.

Saturday, Sept. 3
   Clinton vs. Pulaski, 11 a.m.
   Cazenovia vs. Mexico, 2 p.m.
   Utica Notre Dame vs. Vernon-Verona-Sherrill, 5 p.m.
   Fayetteville-Manlius vs. Gates Chili, 8 p.m.

Sunday, Sept. 4
   LaFayette/Fabius-Pompey vs. Onondaga, 11 a.m.
   Canastota vs. Holland Patent, 2 p.m.
   Watertown IHC/Sackets Harbor vs. Bishop Ludden, 5 p.m.
   South Lewis vs. Port Byron/Union Springs, 8 p.m.

   Section 3 football co-chairman Keith Kempney said the heavy dose of local teams has to do with scheduling logistics -- namely fewer Central New York teams in need on non-league, intersectional games.

   On the move: Chinonso Obokoh, a little-used low-post player this season as a Syracuse University junior, will be transferring according to his guardian.

   Obokoh, a three-time all-state player at Bishop Kearney in Rochester after arriving from Nigeria and a seventh-team pick in 2013, will graduate in May (a year earlier than his class) and can transfer to another program as a grad transfer without having to sit out a season, Kevin Sheppard told SU will petition the NCAA in an attempt to regain a season of eligibility that was taken away from Obokoh as a Syracuse freshman, Sheppard said.

   Obokoh confirmed his decision in a statement that thanked his coaches and Orange supporters.

   Quite the mess: As I noted in the early stages of the Ray Rice mess, I typically don't use police-blotter material here regarding professional athletes from New York on the theory that the details are already widely reported and readily available through many media outlets.

   This would be one of the exceptions, however, because all-time soccer great Abby Wambach compounded a lapse in judgment with a lapse in common sense that falls under the heading of "too much information."

   Wambach, the former Rochester Our Lady of Mercy star who was Gatorade's New York player of the year in 1997 and recently retired from the U.S. Women's National Team, was arrested early Sunday in Portland, Ore., and charged with driving under the influence of intoxicants.

   That indisputably dinged the image of the world's all-time leading scorer in international competition. And what she reportedly told police while being booked only made in worse. According to court papers released Tuesday after a not guilty plea on her behalf in Multnomah County Circuit Court to a misdemeanor charge, Wambach, 35, told police that she tried cocaine and marijuana at least 10 years ago.

   Wambach's statement to police said she'd not used drugs in several years and had never used heroin or meth. Still, the unnecessary admission of past cocaine use in-

flicted even more damage to her image at a time when endorsements and public appearances have become her primary income source. Mini USA, a car company that has featured her in ads, said it was re-evaluating its relationship with the 2012 FIFA World Player of the Year.

   Wambach apologized Sunday afternoon in a Facebook post, saying she took "full responsibility" for her actions. She went onto Twitter on Tuesday to say the not guilty plea was solely a legal move. "This is standard procedure. I am owning this. Nothing has changed," she wrote.

   Getting together: With a combined BEDS figure of just 107, Bolton and Schroon Lake have merged their baseball and softball teams at all levels and are playing in the Mountain Valley Athletic Conference this spring.

   Schroon Lake was unable to field a baseball team at any level last season.

   "So far, it's been real positive -- the kids are getting along great, and the schools' athletic directors and transportation employees are making it all work," Bolton Superintendent Michael Graney said.

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