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Friday, June 3, 2016: Binghamton's Daniels breaks state shot put record

   Leading off today: Binghamton senior Alexis Daniels broke the girls state shot put record during Thursday's Section 4 qualifier for the NYSPHSAA championships.

   On her second of six throws, Daniels registered a mark of 50 feet, 7½ inches. Melissa Kurzdorfer of Lancaster held the previous mark of 49-9½ since 2010.

   Daniels capped her day with a throw of 160-4 in the discus to win by more than 40 feet. She hadn't cracked the 47-foot barrier in the shot put this spring until the epic throw at Vestal.

   "To be honest, I'm speechless," she told the Press & Sun-Bulletin. "My goal this year was to break the state record but I think I was thinking too hard, I wasn't really thinking technique. Today was just a really wonderful day. I was thinking of technique and I just threw it."

   State tennis tournament: Two-time defending champion Matt Gamble was one of two Webster Schroeder standouts to advance to the semifinals of the NYSPHSAA championships at the Billie Jean King National Tennis Center in Flushing on Thursday.

   Schroeder's Jon Speicher, who plays frequently in USTA events, is in the state semifinals for the first time.

   "It's been a lot of fun, I've never played in (a state) high school tournament before, and it's fun to be with them as a team," Speicher told the Democrat and Chronicle.

   The Schroeder teammates could meet in the final.

   "We're taking it day by day, we both know it's a possibility but we won't think about it until we get there," Speicher said.

   Excessive? Senior left-hander Chris Hamilton finished with a three-hitter as Schalmont beat Plattsburgh 5-2 in the NYSPHSAA Class B baseball tournament.

   Hamilton, 5-1 with a 0.53 ERA, threw a season-high 138 pitches in the first-round game and was supported by junior shortstop Matt Rash's two-out, two-run double to right in the fifth inning.

   When informed of his pitch total, Hamilton said jokingly, "Not bad. That's all right. I am pitching Saturday."

   If Hamilton is able to laugh about throwing 138 pitches -- including 93 through four innings -- others are not.    Writing on the Radio 104.5 FM website, Brady Farkas offered up this thought: "Great win for Schalmont, but they got it the wrong way."

   Farkas referenced a quote from renowned surgeon Dr. James Andrews: "High school pitchers should not throw more than 90 pitches in a game and they should have to take at least five days rest before they pitch again anywhere. No way should they throw more than 100. The elbow isn't ready for that workload."

   Community comes together for coach: At about 2 a.m. Monday, Ward Melville baseball coach Lou Petrucci and his wife, Ann Marie, were awakened by the smell of smoke and the sound of fire alarms in their Port Jefferson condo.

   Petrucci looked out the first-floor bedroom and saw the upstairs was engulfed by the flames that destroyed multiple units in the complex. The Petruccis escaped with their two


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  • pet rabbits and just a handful of possessions. According to Newsday, he has been told he might not be able to enter the condo for two to three months. He fears all of their possessions might have been destroyed.

       On Thursday, Petrucci went online via his phone and broke down crying: A GoFundMe page set up by JV coach Matt Marsh on Monday with a goal of $10,000 in donations had already hit $29,000.

       "It's humbling and very emotional," Petrucci told the paper. "Something like this makes you realize that the kids, the people, the community, they treasure everything. I've been lucky enough to witness the love and support of my friends, the baseball community and the people of Three Village."

       Petrucci, who has been the coach at Ward Melville for 10 years, received phone calls from dozens of former players after the fire. The first call, he said, came from Mets pitcher Steven Matz, a Ward Melville alum. “He said, 'Hey, Coach. How you doing? Can I do anything?'" Petrucci recalled. "I told him just go out and pitch a good game tomorrow, that's it."

       Said junior outfielder Joe Rosselli: "He does so much for our community and so much for our team. He donates so much of his time to making us better kids and better players. He deserves every dollar that's getting funded toward him."

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