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Wellsville boys win, take on State Final Four Allegany-Limestone tonight (weekend roundup)


By CHRIS BROOKS, sports editor,

WELLSVILLE — The end is near. Wednesday’s tussle with Section VI, Class B State Finalist, Allegany-Limestone is right around the corner for the Lions of Wellsville to close out their regular season. If there was ever a time to build a big burst of momentum to go into Sectionals with, it was on Tuesday to start off the season-ending homestand against New Life Christian.

It was a bit of a slow start on both sides to open the festivities in the Lion’s Den, with New Life Christian weaving their way forward with a tight, early advantage against Wellsville. But the Lions kicked it into hyperspeed a short time later behind a strong first quarter finish which led to bigger and better things.

Just how much? — Try a mammoth second quarter run for size.

Five different Lions all had a hand in contributing to the cause to close out the first half, with Logan Dunbar finding his stroke from outside, while the inside game surpassed big heights down low, as the team held New Life Christian to just a single basket’s worth of points on the other end in return, as Wellsville strolled towards victory by a 64-34 count to use towards their regular season finale against the powerhouse Gators.

“It’s been the story all season. To go on a run, you need stops,” said Lions coach Tom Muska. “We held them to two points in that second quarter, which allowed us to go on a big run. The better our defense, the bigger our run. We need to bring that type of defense into Sectional play next week. Hopefully we still have just enough energy left for another game tomorrow. Our thin bench had to step up today, and they’ll have to do it again.”

Giant in Cuba and Wellsville support our athletes!

A narrow 5-3 lead was garnered by New Life Christian to open the first minutes of the game, but it was one that Wellsville (11-8) was able to shake off and build considerably as time advanced forward, as the Lions accounted for nine of the last 11 points to close out the frame with a five-point lead.

The quarter-ending positive was used as fuel for the second quarter to conduct a run of epic proportions to close out the half, as Wellsville saw many different shooters all contribute to the offense’s cause with their biggest run of the night — a 23-2 jaunt of New Life Christian that they controlled from all angles on the floor. A run that gave them all the room they needed to remain out front to ultimately secure the victory in the end.

Logan Dunbar was a piece to the team’s puzzle of success, as he tallied a game-high 16 points. JJ Howard provided a big presence downlow to help the cause, bucketing 12 points. Cody Costello was Wellsville’s third scorer to eclipse double figures, sinking 10 points on the nose.

The Lions will put a wrap on their regular season tonight back on their home floor, now looking to avenge a 50-42 defeat to the Allegany-Limestone Gators from just a couple weeks ago, as they come to town for a 7:30 p.m. visit.

New Life Christian 7 2 14 11 – 34

Wellsville 12 23 18 11 – 64

NEW LIFE: Niinoi Hanson-Norley 7 0-0 14, Jefferson Isaah 2 4-6 8, Niinashu Hanson-Norley 2 0-0 6, Emmanuel L. Botchuag 2 0-0 6. Totals: 13 4-6 34.
WELLSVILLE: Cody Costello 4 0-0 10, Aidan Riley 3 0-0 7, Cooper Brockway 1 2-2 5, Asher Billings 3 0-0 8, Ethan Bailey 2 0-0 6, Logan Dunbar 5 3-4 16, JJ Howard 6 0-0 12. Totals: 24 5-6 64.

3-point goals: New Life 4 (Niinashu 2, Botchuag 2), Wellsville 11 (Dunbar 3, Costello 2, Billings 2, Bailey 2, Riley, Brockway).
Total Fouls: New Life 7, Wellsville 6. Fouled out: None.

Friday Basketball: Gananda stymies Lady Lions in regular season home finale in behind offensive consistency in 72-44 win; Lady Eagles hold off C-R with late 4th quarter rush at home  

WELLSVILLE — The final day of the regular season had arrived for the Lady Lions of Wellsville, Friday night. To close up shop, it was another gauntlet they had to hurdle past on their way into the Sectional Tournament. The opposition? — Class C power, Gananda, who continues to fight their way to the top of the ranks in a crowded Class C1 picture.

To ensure that they remained in the conversation for one of the top seeds in the tournament, the Lady Panthers went to work from the start, using a vast amount of consistency on both ends of the floor to build their lead, while thwarting the Lady Lions off the transition back down the court, as they put together a strong start and ended dominantly with a 72-44 win over the Lady Lions.

“I knew Gananda was a good team. We needed a game like this to go into Sectionals with,” Lady Lions coach Michelle Alvord said. “It’s not a bad thing to play a tough team right at the end of the season. We started to make a run late in the second half, but they responded just as quickly as we tried to cut down. I told the girls that we have two weeks now to prepare. We can’t let this game kill the momentum going into the playoffs.”

The Lady Panthers traded back and forth barbs with Wellsville (11-9) in the early stages of the battle, garnering a lead as big as seven and holding it steady across the entire first quarter. The Lady Lions would find a way to rebound with some help from Sara Reitz downtown, as she hit one of her three triples to cut the deficit down to four to get back within reach.

But Gananda connected two scoreless runs in the second quarter to branch out the advantage across double digits, where it would remain for the rest of the night, going into the break on a high note off a buzzer-beating basket that transformed into a 36-22 lead of the Lady Lions.

Wellsville attempted to claw back later in the third quarter with their three-point game flaring up, with Reitz and Makenna Dunbar going back-to-back to trim the deficit down. But Gananda kept finding the responses to match their baskets, maintaining their position in the driver’s seat to end the night with the victory, pulling away with a 20-7 run in the fourth quarter.

Dunbar and Lindsay Stuck led Wellsville on the offensive with a team-high 12 points, with Dunbar grabbing six boards to pair with three steals. Reitz finished with her three triples, for nine points. On special teams, Averee Palmatier grabbed five more boards off the glass, while Natalie Adams had four of her own to pitch in along with four steals.

The regular season for the Lady Lions is now over, as they now begin preparations for the Class B2 Sectional Tournament, which is set to begin in just under two weeks.

Gananda 17 19 16 20 – 72

Wellsville 10 12 15 7 – 44
GANANDA: Nyah Cruz 5 0-0 10, Lyndsey Valletta 1 0-0 2, Eva Jenny 3 4-4 10, Ella Lathrop 2 1-2 5, Katie Rothwell 2 0-0 4, Nicole Cruz 8 2-2 18, Madi Dohse 2 0-0 5, Kaylee Marvin 8 2-2 18. Totals: 31 9-10 72.
WELLSVILLE: Lindsay Stuck 5 1-2 12, Natalie Adams 1 2-2 4, Sara Reitz 3 0-0 9, Averee Palmatier 3 1-1 7, Makenna Dunbar 5 1-2 12. Totals: 17 5-7 44.

3-point goals: Gananda 1 (Dohse), Wellsville 5 (Reitz 3, Stuck, Dunbar).

Total Fouls: Gananda 10, Wellsville 9. Fouled out: None.

NY Land Quest congratulates all student athletes

More sports from over the weekend:

Fillmore 47, Cuba-Rushford 35

FILLMORE — Cuba-Rushford and Fillmore got down to brass tax on Friday in their final matchup this season in The Rock. It was as competitive of a battle as advertised, with each team trying to figure one another out throughout the course of time, but neither of them would budge.

With the Lady Eagles outscoring the Lady Rebels narrowly across the first three quarters of play, it would all come down to the last eight minutes. A session where for the first time, the door was open.

Entering through were the hosts in white and green, as they found the right edge at the most opportune time of the game, using some stout defense to propel their ascension towards victory while holding Cuba-Rushford to just five points in the process to pull away with a triumphant 47-35 decision to collect their fifth straight win.

“This was a very competitive game tonight. I thought C-R played exceptionally well, and we never really could find a way to figure them out,” Lady Eagles coach Tom Parks said. “They had balanced scoring and got some big time support around Taylor (Searle), who is a headache to defend. Our girls played a pretty solid game on the offensive end with some good movement and some balance of our own with three scorers in double figures. Finally in the fourth, we were able to get some stops on defense to stretch out a lead that was closer than the final score indicated.”

No outscoring eclipsed more than two points across the first three quarters between the Lady Eagles (14-5) and Lady Rebels, with Cuba-Rushford starting the opening quarter off with six of the first eight points before the hosts were able to catch on quickly, making it a back-and-forth affair until they found their way out on top with a 12-10 lead.

The back and forth battle would continue on between both teams to close out the first half, with Fillmore netting as big of a lead as six over the Lady Rebels (9-10) at one point during battle before an inside basket by Taylor Searle cut the team’s deficit back down to three with five seconds remaining.

As much as Cuba-Rushford attempted to keep cutting away, Fillmore remained one step ahead each time. With another narrow affair through the third quarter now in the rearview mirror, the Lady Eagles finally created an opening against the Lady Rebels to break open the floodgates, scoring the first six points to branch their lead out to 11 — the largest lead at the point by either side, which would give them all the room they required to lock down the victory behind their late breakthrough.

Parks credits some key components for giving the Lady Eagles a big lift, especially in the last eight minutes.

“We got a huge lift off the bench from Mattie McCumiskey. She played big minutes and secured a double-double because of it. She was a major factor. Rachel (Hatch) got the bulk of the work on Searle along with Madi (Geertman) and Amelia (Rose), and I thought she did as good of a job as one person could do on a player like that.”

The Lady Eagles saw three different scorers eclipse double digits on offense, with Hope Russell paving the lane towards big success once again with her game-high 15 points. Grace Russell and Mattie McCumiskey each followed behind with 12 points each, including 11 rebounds for McCumiskey which completed a massive double-double performance.

The Lady Rebels were led by Emma Retz and Brynn Lavery, as each tallied nine team-high points. Aubrey Williams had seven points.

Before the contest, the Lady Eagles took the time to honor their lone senior on the squad — Madi Geertman, on Senior Night. Parks says that “She’s played Varsity for me for the last two years, and she has filled whatever role we have asked of her. It was really nice to give her a moment of recognition for everything she has done for us.”

Both teams are back in action Monday night in a pair of 7:30 p.m. contests, with Fillmore hitting the road for a visit to Bolivar-Richburg, while Cuba-Rushford heads back home to welcome in Genesee Valley/Belfast for a colossal County League showdown to help close out the regular season.

Cuba-Rushford 10 10 10 5 – 35

Fillmore 12 11 12 12 – 47

CUBA-RUSHFORD: Cloey Larabee 1 0-0 2, Kendall Tompkins 1 0-0 2, Aubrey Williams 3 0-0 7, Emma Retz 4 1-2 9, Brynn Lavery 4 0-0 9, Taylor Searle 2 1-2 6. Totals: 15 2-4 35.

FILLMORE: Hope Russell 4 7-10 15, Grace Russell 6 0-4 12, Rachel Hatch 2 0-0 4, Mattie McCumiskey 4 4-5 12, Preslee Miller 2 0-1 4. Totals: 18 11-20 47.
3-point goals: C-R 3 (Searle, Lavery, Williams).
Total Fouls: C-R 14, Fillmore 11. Fouled out: None.

Genesee Valley/Belfast 57, Bolivar-Richburg 44

BOLIVAR — The Lady Wolverines gave it their all coming down the homestretch Friday night.

Despite a massive night from their senior leader in Malayna Ayers, visiting Genesee Valley/Belfast was able to strike while the iron was hot in the opening eight minutes of play with a lead they were able to hang onto, warding off Bolivar-Richburg along the way to secure a 57-44 win.

The battle would wind up working its way towards an early 6-6 tie between the two foes, with three minutes and change remaining in the first quarter. Soon after, the doors would open up even further for Genesee Valley/Belfast (11-8), as they went on to close out the frame with 12 of the last 13 points. Adison Grusendorf and Anna Drozdowski were the root cause behind the jaunt, as they joined forces to post 16 of the team’s 18 points, the majority of which came behind four three-pointers from long range.

The lead for the visitors in black would grow to as much as 17 come the second quarter, as they picked up where they left off by continuing their first quarter run with six more points in a row. The Lady Wolverines (7-12) would find a way to end the first half on a positive note however, by wrapping up with eight of the last 11 points themselves, stemming from a three-point game fueled by Nadia Baldwin and Malayna Ayers, as they came together to record three of them to pair with two freebies at the line by Carmen Crowley.

The Lady Wolverines would continue to fight all the way to the end to try and keep pace with Genesee Valley/Belfast until the end, but the visitors would remain one step ahead with some key responses to Bolivar-Richburg, pulling away behind some late stage free throws to secure the victory.

Three different scorers eclipsed double figures for Genesee Valley/Belfast to lead the charge, as Mary Hamer posted a team-high 17 points at the front of the pack. Anna Drozdowski concluded with 14 points, while Adison Grusendorf had 13 points.

Despite the hard-fought defeat, the Lady Wolverines were able to see Malayna Ayers record one of her best nights of the season, as she led a fourth quarter resurgence behind a game-high 27-point effort, one that saw her knock down five of the team’s eight triples from downtown. Crowley finished with seven points, while Nadia Baldwin concluded with two more threes, for six points.

Both teams are back on the floor Monday night in a pair of 7:30 p.m. tip-offs, as Genesee Valley/Belfast hits the road one more time for Cuba-Rushford, while Bolivar-Richburg stands pat at home to welcome in Fillmore.

Genesee Valley/Belfast 18 9 11 19 – 57

Bolivar-Richburg 7 11 9 17 – 44

GV/BELFAST: Anna Drozdowski 4 4-9 14, Abby Sullivan 1 0-0 2, Harley Proctor 3 3-5 9, Kendra Bigelow 0 0-2 0, Adison Grusendorf 5 0-0 13, Mary Hamer 7 3-8 17. Totals: 20 10-24 57.
BOLIVAR-RICHBURG: Nadia Baldwin 2 0-0 6, Emma Sisson 1 0-0 2, Raegan Giardini 0 2-4 2, Carmen Crowley 2 2-2 7, Malayna Ayers 10 2-4 27. Totals: 15 6-10 44.

3-point goals: GVB 5 (Grusendorf 3, Drozdowski 2), B-R 8 (Ayers 5, Baldwin 2, Crowley).
Total Fouls: GVB 13, B-R 21. Fouled out: Ayers (B-R).

Friendship/Scio 43, Hinsdale 23

FRIENDSHIP — It was not easy by any means, but the Friendship/Scio ladies were able to get the job done on Friday to close out the week, as they started fast against visiting Hinsdale with a strong first half and never looked back on their 43-23 home win over the Lady Bobcats in Friendship.

Friendship/Scio (11-8) set the pace through the course of the first half against the Lady Bobcats, as they posted a pair of 14-point quarters while holding their opposition to below 10 points in each frame along the way.

The Ross siblings — Nevaeh and Morghyn, provided the most damage for the hosts in white, as the two combined to record 29 of the team’s 43 points in the victory, with Nevaeh leading the way behind 15 game-high points. Morghyn followed with 14 of her own, while Claire Calhoun had five points to go with seven rebounds. Grace Drumm grabbed an additional six rebounds off the glass to further the cause.

Sarah Tuttle recorded a team-high eight points to pace Hinsdale (0-19). Jaylee Jimerson had six points. The Lady Bobcats are back home Monday, hosting Andover/Whitesville at 6 p.m.

Friendship/Scio will close out their regular season with a 6 p.m. tip-off against Houghton Academy on Wednesday, in Scio.

Hinsdale 3 6 5 9 – 23

Friendship/Scio 14 14 9 6 – 43

HINSDALE: Hannah Sutton 0 2-6 2, Jaylee Jimerson 2 1-2 6, Jenna Sutton 1 0-0 2, Sarah Tuttle 4 0-2 8, Felisha Veno 1 0-0 2, Gabby Phearsdorf 1 0-0 2, Jen Tuttle 0 1-2 1. Totals: 9 2-6 23.

FRIENDSHIP/SCIO: Nevaeh Ross 7 1-1 15, Grace Drumm 1 1-2 3, Claire Calhoun 2 1-1 5, Kadence Donohue 0 0-2 0, Morghyn Ross 5 3-4 14, Lexi Crossley 1 0-2 2, Jenn Dickens 1 0-2 2, Kiara Grover 1 0-2 2. Totals: 18 6-16 43.

3-point goals: Hinsdale 1 (Jimerson), F/S 1 (M. Ross).
Total Fouls: Hinsdale 12, F/S 14. Fouled out: None.

Andover/Whitesville 55, Houghton Academy 25

HOUGHTON — Jess Prentice got Houghton Academy going early with her strong presence down low against Andover/Whitesville. But on Friday, the visitors in black responded with perfect symmetry up and down the court, as they went on to outscore the Lady Panthers in the remaining three quarters of play to find their way ahead, en route to a 55-25 road win.

Prentice gave the Lady Panthers the early upper hand in the midst of a back-and-forth trade alongside Andover/Whitesville (14-4) in the opening eight minutes, as she accounted for eight of the team’s 11 points straight to the rim to start up a 11-9 advantage to carry forward.

But Houghton Academy (5-14) would see Andover/Whitesville extinguish their hot start in favor of a strong end to the first half, holding the Lady Panthers to just five points while an even balance of offense led by Vanessa Hall paved the way towards a 23-16 lead at the break.

From the second half until the end of time, Andover/Whitesville would go on to build onto their lead while the defense remained fortified, holding the hosts in white and blue to just nine more points in the last 16 minute span, securing the victory permanently.

Hall led all scorers on the floor with a game-high 24 points. Following behind was Kennedy Bledsoe and her 14 points, eight of them stemmed from the charity stripe. Gabbi Hall had seven points.

Prentice concluded with 15 team-high points to lead Houghton Academy. Jessica Adenuga recorded eight points, while Laura Maya rounded off the scoring with the last two points inside. The Lady Panthers will remain at home on Monday, as they host New Life Christian at 6 p.m.

Andover/Whitesville will also return to the bus on Monday and travel to Hinsdale for a 6 p.m. contest of their own.

Andover/Whitesville 9 14 13 19 – 55

Houghton Academy 11 5 6 3 – 25

ANDOVER/WHITESVILLE: Lexy Palmatier 1 0-0 2, Vanessa Hall 9 4-5 24, Graci Lewis-Ellison 1 0-0 3, Makaila Brewster 1 0-0 2, Zoe Baert 2 0-0 4, Gabbi Hall 2 2-2 7, Kennedy Bledsoe 2 8-14 13. Totals: 18 14-21 55.
HOUGHTON ACADEMY: Jess Prentice 6 3-6 15, Jessica Adenuga 3 2-3 8, Laura Maya 1 0-0 2. Totals: 10 5-9 25.

3-point goals: A/W 5 (V. Hall 2, Lewis-Ellison, G. Hall, Bledsoe).
Total Fouls: A/W 10, HA 15. Fouled out: None.


Friendship/Scio 61, Hinsdale 25

FRIENDSHIP — After the Friendship/Scio ladies took care of business with the first win of the evening over Hinsdale, it was the boys team’s turn to close out Friday night’s doubleheader in Friendship on Senior Night.

With a packed crowd taking in the sights, and the noise level hitting maximum overdrive, Friendship/Scio would go on to provide a sweep of the night with ease, starting fast and never looking back on a first half that saw them grab all the room they needed to send their seniors out in style, taking the 61-25 victory over the Bobcats.

“It was Senior Night tonight, and the boys came out ready to play,” said Friendship/Scio co-coach Cory Hills. “It’s been an honor to have coached all of them. This was a great way to send them out, and it was nice to have the pep band in the stands and the crowd got into the game too. It was a great atmosphere to take in.”

Ethan Davenport was fired up from start to finish for Friendship/Scio (6-12), as he put together one of his best performances of the season to set the pace for the team, recording a game-high 33 points. The hosts took complete and full advantage of the opening sequences against the Bobcats, putting together two powerful frames of play in the first half to establish a lead they would never lose going into the break, strolling their way towards victory at the end of the night.

Following behind Davenport was Brenden Loucks, who had 12 points to pair with his eight rebounds. Taylor Moore recorded nine points to couple with 10 steals, seven rebounds and five assists. Adding more special teams help was Cam Blouvet and Hunter Hill, as they tallied six rebounds, and four steals respectively.

Hinsdale (1-17) was led by Cody Barton and his team-high 14 points. Xander Pascucci chipped in with five points. The Bobcats will host Keshequa on Monday at 6 p.m.

Friendship/Scio will close out their regular season back home, this time in Scio, as they welcome in Houghton Academy for a 7:30 p.m. tip-off on Wednesday.

Hinsdale 7 4 10 4 – 25

Friendship/Scio 17 16 13 15 – 61

HINSDALE: Cody Barton 5 4-6 14, Xander Pascucci 2 0-0 5, Henry Schwartz 2 0-1 4, Damion Brown 0 2-2 2. Totals: 9 6-9 25.

FRIENDSHIP/SCIO: Ethan Davenport 12 5-6 33, Brenden Loucks 3 6-12 12, Taylor Moore 3 1-2 9, Hunter Hill 2 0-0 5, Cam Blouvet 1 0-2 2. Totals: 21 12-22 65.

3-point goals: Hinsdale 1 (Pascucci), F/S 7 (Davenport 4, Moore 2, Hill).
Total Fouls: Hinsdale 20, F/S 13. Fouled out: Pascucci (HIN).


Fillmore downs C-R

Cuba-Rushford 12 10 12 9 – 43

Fillmore 12 17 18 16 – 63

CUBA-RUSHFORD: Jacob Smith 5 0-0 13, Kaden Bell 3 0-2 7, Luke Brooks 2 1-2 5, Jack Frank 2 1-3 5, Dom Bello 2 0-0 4, Finn Ricketts 2 2-2 7, Peyton Joy 1 0-0 2. Totals: 17 4-9 43.
FILLMORE: Eben Schilke 1 1-2 4, Jair Bialek 6 3-4 18, Mitch Ward 1 0-2 2, Zach Sisson 7 13-13 28, Jonah Bialek 3 0-0 8, Layton Sanasith 1 0-0 3, Jack Cool 0 0-1 0. Totals: 19 17-22 63.
3-point goals: C-R 5 (Smith 3, Bell, Ricketts), Fillmore 8 (Ja. Bialek 3, Jo. Bialek 2, Schilke, Sisson, Sanasith)
Total Fouls: C-R 19, Fillmore 15. Fouled out: None.

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