February 05, 2008


CHS buzzer beater tops Trojans

Freshman Shaw delivers game-winner

Cortland Homer

Bob Ellis/staff photographer
Battling for this rebound are, left to right, Kane Hartnett of Homer, Levi Walrath of Cortland and Mike Carboine of Homer during Monday’s basketball matchup. Visiting CHS pulled out 45-43 victory.

Sports Writer

Kevin Shaw experienced all the highs and lows of basketball in one game Monday night.
Playing in his first Cortland-Homer varsity contest, the Purple Tiger freshman hit the biggest shot of the night — a buzzer-beating 3-pointer — to lift visiting Cortland High to a 45-43 win at Homer _Central.
Shaw netted 22 points for the game as the Purple Tigers improve to 7-11 while the Trojans fall to 2-16 after rallying from a 12-point halftime deficit.
Shaw in-bounded the ball to Derek Allen from under the Homer basket with 6.8 seconds left. Allen drove the down court, looked for an opening and started to drive, but was cut off. He kicked the ball out to Shaw, who was trailing the play. Shaw never hesitated and buried the 3-pointer from the left elbow, releasing the ball just before the buzzer sounded.
“Coach told us this was a very important game,” Shaw said. “He just told us to be calm on the last play of the game. I was able to step up and make the shot to win the game.”
From a big first half to the final winning shot, Shaw also found out everything that is a Cortland-Homer game as he was knocked to the floor a couple of times, left the game and returned to be the hero.
“It was an exciting game, that’s really what it was,” said Shaw, who downplayed everything except the fact that his team needed to win.
“The game was exciting for the fans,” chuckled Cortland coach Mick Lowie. “I am happy that we won. We are not in the position to begrudge any win, but I just do not understand what we do in the second half. Every single game is like this. We still execute, but we do not score points. I don’t get it.
“We seem to bring out the best in every team we play,” Lowie added. “Homer started making some shots and they really put themselves in a position to win this game.”
As for Shaw’s performance?
“Kevin did have a tough night shooting the ball,” said Lowie. “There was some poor judgment handling the ball at times, but Kevin can shoot the ball. I told him that I will be the first one to tell him when he is shooting the ball too much.
“That last play was what we wanted to do,” Lowie continued. “There was no set play. Derek was going to penetrate or look to a corner and Kevin was the trailer. We would drive or look to a wing for the shot. Kevin was right in front of me when he got the ball and I went yeah. He went up, released the shot and it was right on target. It was fitting that he hit that final shot.”
FOR HOMER COACH Jim Luchsinger, his team responded in the second half and did what was needed to get a shot at the win.
“We talked at halftime that we wanted to cut the deficit in half by the end of the third quarter,” Luchsinger said. “We did that.
“At the end of the third quarter, we talked about putting ourselves in position to win the game and we did that,” Luchsinger continued. “We turned the ball over a couple of times near the end, but Cortland gave us the ball right back. We missed some free throws down the stretch that could have help to pad our lead a little. All in all, I thought it was a pretty good basketball game. It was an exciting high school basketball game.”
Homer only led three times, twice in the opening two minutes of the game and the final time coming with 1:18 remaining when Talon Sprouse buried a trey from the wing for a 43-41 advantage.
Shaw hit a free throw with 54.4 seconds left to narrow the gap to 43-42, but neither team could deliver the clutch shot until the end.
Both teams tried, but either missed the shot or turned the ball over.
Shaw held the hot hand in the first half netting 15 points, six in the first quarter and nine more in the second. In fact, it was the long-range shooting of the Purple Tigers in the opening eight minutes that led to an 18-9 advantage in the quarter.
Paul Armideo gave Homer a 3-0 lead, but Chad Abbey answered 16 seconds later to tie the game at 3-3. A tip-in by Kane Hartnett (17 points) put the Trojans in front 5-3.
Shaw capped a 6-0 run with a 3-pointer as Cortland took a 9-5 lead. The Purple Tigers added treys by Shaw, Derek Allen and Jeff Brown to increase the lead to 18-9.
A jumper by Shaw with 3:42 left in the first half gave Cortland its biggest lead, 26-13, of the night.
Homer battled back as Mike Carboine made one free throw and later a short jumper. Hartnett then netted two more points as the Trojans trailed 26-18 with 1:41 left in the half.
A driving lay-up by Allen and an offensive put-back by Justin Guerin gave Cortland a 30-18 halftime lead.
The Purple Tigers hit 12-for-26 shots (46 percent) in the first half while Homer took 25 shots, but scored just seven times (28 percent).
THE TROJANS GOT the kind of start they needed to start the second half. A 7-0 run that included a lay-up by Sprouse and a 3-pointer from Harnett got the home team top within 30-24 with 3:26 left in the third quarter. the two teams traded points the remainder of the quarter as Cortland clung to a 37-31 advantage with one quarter remaining. Homer shot 5-for-15 during the quarter while Cortland made just three-of-12 shots.
In the fourth quarter, Hartnett opened the scoring with a 3-pointer as Homer closed to within 37-34, but Shaw answered with his first points of the second half on a jumper and a couple of free throws that allowed Cortland to hold a 41-36 lead with 6:41 remaining.
The Purple Tigers were looking to increase their lead when DerrickMcCall stole the ball and scored with 5:20 left to pull Homer to within three at 41-38. The Purple Tigers missed again and Armideo came up with the loose ball. The Trojan junior drove the length of the court and hit the lay-up with 4:59 left and Homer trailed 41-40.
Both teams went ice cold until Sprouse put the Trojans on top 43-41. Cortland shot two-for-10 from the field in the final quarter while Homer was four-for-eight. Ironically, the Purple Tigers finished 17-for-48 on the night and the Trojans were 16-for-48. From the free throw line, Cortland was five-for-13 while Homer was 5-for-16.
Cortland will return to OHSL Freedom Division action Wednesday at Jamesville-Dewitt before closing out the regular season by hosting Phoenix.
Homer will travel to Skaneateles today for a make-up contest with the Lakers before closing out the regular season Wednesday at home against Westhill.
CORTLAND HIGH JVs used its speed and quickness to race to a 32-5 lead in the first quarter and coast to a 72-39 triumph over Homer in the prelim.
Jordan Prior led the Purple Tigers (13-3) with 15 points with Walter alexander adding 14 points as everyone saw playing time.
Zach Hatfield scored 13 points to lead Homer (3-13) with Joe Marchetti netting eight points.




Late hoop hands CHS first setback

Rebounding was a problem for the Cortland High girls’ basketball team against visiting non-league foe West Genesee Monday night, and ultimately ended up costing the Purple Tigers their first loss of the season.
Wildcats guard Alyssa Sutherland put back the rebound of a missed shot with five seconds left to score what proved to be the winning points as the visitors prevailed 61-59 at Shafer Gymnasium.
CHS had won its first 17 games of the season coming into the contest. West Gensee, a Class AA school, is now 13-5.
“They out-rebounded us,” said Cortland coach Dick Penoyer, whose team pulled down 30 boards, with no totals available for the Wildcats. “We didn’t have an answer for Sutherland, who’s 6-1. They’re a big team that takes up a lot of space and has very, very good athletes.
“I told the girls after the game that we needed to do a little bit better job rebounding and needed to be more patient on offense,” he added. “We had our chances to win, but made a few mistakes down the stretch. We were also missing some players at the end. Amanda Lawlor fouled out with 4:30 left, Deanna Bishop sprained her ankle midway through the fourth, Shannon Finucane fouled out with two minutes left and Alena Turturro is still ill and didn’t play much. So they were all out down the stretch for us.”
Cortland started strong, taking an 11-point lead in the first quarter, which ended up with the hosts on top 16-11. The Purple Tigers took a 30-27 lead into halftime, and trailed by one, 45-44, heading into the fourth.
After the game-winner by Sutherland, who ended up with a game-high 23 points, the hosts missed a shot in the waning moments.
Finucane led CHS with 21 points and added seven rebounds and three assists. Lawlor had 13 points, five rebounds and five assists, while Courtney Tennant had 12 points and eight rebounds, Deanna Bishop nine points and four rebounds and Fawn Lolar five boards.
“It’s good to play games like this going into sectionals,” Penoyer said. “If you keep blowing people out like we have been, when you get into a tough game you won’t know how to react. It’s disappointing to have lost, but it’s tough to go through a season undefeated.”
Cortland has already wrapped up the OHSL Freedom American Division championship, and hosts second-place Jamesville-DeWitt Wednesday before closing out the regular season at Chittenango on Friday.




Playoff spot within CHS-Homer reach

CICERO — Tuesday’s game against host Central Square started differently than last Tuesday’s 11-1 home romp over the RedHawks for the Cortland-Homer hockey team.
The end result, a victory and another two points, was the same, however, this time by an 8-3 score, and nearing sectionals, that’s what counts.
The win improved the Golden Eagles CNYSHL Division II West record to 9-5, good for the fourth and final sectionals spot four points ahead of Syracuse CBA/Jamesville-DeWitt (6-4-2) and one behind Corcoran (9-3-1). Cortland-Homer visits the Brothers Wednesday at the Onondaga Nation Arena, and can wrap up a post-season berth by winning.
“We led this one 2-1 at the end of the first, but it was tied until the final minute,” Golden Eagles coach Don Armstrong, his team now 10-12 overall, said of Monday’s victory. “We skated a little better in the second and scored three goals to make it 5-1. We alternated goals in the third, starting with our goal four minutes in, and scored three to their two.
“Though we didn’t play particularly well we had a good spread in scoring,” he added.
Steve Stowell netted three goals for the Golden Eagles on a first line that was productive, Matt Porter adding a goal and an assist and Paul Zimmerman picking up a pair of assists. Connor Ferrito tallied twice and had an assist, while Carl Zimmerman picked up a goal and an assist.
“It was good to get out of the Cicero rink with two points and no injuries,” said Armstrong. “A couple of guys are sick, but we should be 100 percent for the CBA game, which will go a long way toward determining which team qualifies for sectionals.”
C-H had a 40-27 shot advantage in the contest, getting 21 saves from starting goalie Brett Kash and 2 1/3 periods and three stops from Nicolo Baldarotta the rest of the way. Kelly Fisk turned aside 32 shots for Central Square, now 1-12-1 in league play and 2-17-1 overall.
After Wednesday’s game, Cortland-Homer closes out the regular season by visiting first-place Skaneateles Friday in a makeup game from last week. CBA/Jamesville-DeWitt, meanwhile, opens a busy stretch of its own by hosting Fulton tonight.
After Wednesday’s game, the Brothers are home against Ontario Bay Friday and then visit Corcoran this Monday in their regular-season finale.




Rockets roll in CCL finale

The DeRuyter Central basketball team closed out its Central Counties League season in style Monday, cruising to an 83-32 win over host Madison.
The Rockets wound up 10-2 in league play, good for second place by themselves, and are 11-7 overall heading into Wednesday’s regular-season finale, a non-leaguer at Cazenovia.
In another boys’ game on Monday, host McGraw edged George Junior Republic 61-57 in a non-leaguer. In a Center State Conference Division 4 girls’ contest, host New York Mills trounced Cincinnatus 75-24.
DeRuyter 83, Madison 32: Dan Raymond scored 14 points to pace the Rockets, while Dustin McClure added 13 and Brandon Meacham and Ethan Grimes chipped in with 10 apiece. Brett Perry and Brandon Neff led Madison with six point apiece.
The outcome was settled early, as DeRuyter roared to a 27-7 lead after one quarter behind eight points from Grime, seven from Meacham and six from McClure. “It was nice to see the guys assert themselves right away,” Rockets coach Kim Brown said. “we held then to one field goal in the first half (which ended with the visitors up 40-10), a first-quarter lay-in by Neff.
McClure and Cody Tiffany scored seven points each and Dave Revette added six for the winners in the third, in which DeRuyter outscored the blue Devils 28-9 for a 68-19 lead going into the last eight minutes. “Dustin did a nice job of finishing in limited minutes,” Brown said. “He has made a concerted effort to finish on the strong side in the past few weeks, and it has shown.”
DeRuyter won the JV game, no score reported, to finish the league portion of its slate at 10-2.
McGraw 61, George Junior 57: The Eagles led by 12 points in the third quarter before the visitors came back to make a game of it, though they got no closer than the final four-point margin thereafter.
“They out-rebounded us,” said McGraw coach Ben Albright, his team having collected 34 rebounds, 13 by Brad MacLean to go with a game-high 25 points. “We tried to limit them on the offensive end, but they had three big guys and were able to get lots of rebounds, They scored at least 25 points on second-chance opportunities. Our guys worked extremely hard to get the rebounds they did.”
Anthony Powell added 14 points for the winners, while Pecham had 21 points, Hoffman 14 and Foster 11 for George Junior Republic.
The visitors won the JV game 45-44, the Eagles (now 2-14) led by Doug Medler’s 12 points.