Category Archives: Sports

Hannibal girls’ hoops close season strongly

By Rob Tetro

The Hannibal girls’ varsity basketball team won 3 out of its last 4 games of the regular season, finishing a 11-6 campaign.

On Feb. 1, Hannibal knocked off Solvay, 44-35. The Lady Warriors rolled past Jordan-Elbridge, 60-27 on Feb. 3.

On Feb. 7, Hannibal fell to county rival, Altmar-Parish-Williamstown, 50-38. The wrapped up  the year with a win over Cazenovia, 46-41 on Feb. 11.

Hannibal and Solvay were tied at 9 after the first quarter of their game. Solvay pulled ahead in the second and took a 4-point lead at the half.

The Lady Warriors then took control of the game in the third quarter, outscoring  Solvay by 15 points to take an 11-point lead. Solvay couldn’t overtake the lead Hannibal had put on the board so the Lady Warriors won by 9 points.

Leading the way for the Lady Warriors was Devin Sorell with 20 points, followed by Spencer Kenney with 9, Sydney Alton with 7, McKenzie Mattison with 5 and Rachel Shute with 3.

The Lady Warriors pounded Jordan-Elbridge Feb. 3, with Devin Sorell scoring 22 points. Gabby Griffin scored 13, followed by McKenzie Mattison with 11 and Sarah Otis with 6.

A-P-W was trailing Hannibal after the first quarter of its game and then Hannibal doubled its lead for a score of 22-16 at the half.

But then, A-P-W began pouring it on, outscoring he Lady Warriors by 8 points in the third quarter and 10 points in the fourth quarter for the 50-38 win.

Leading the way for A-P-W were Devin Jones and Kylee Bartlett, who scored 11 points each against Hannibal. Following Jones and Bartlett was Katie Palmer with 9, Alexis Stevens with 8 and Erin Stever with 7.

Hannibal was led by Devin Sorell with 17 points, followed by Sydney Alton, Spencer Kenney and McKenzie Mattison with 5 points each. Gabby Griffin added 4 points.

Hannibal stormed past Cazenovia in the season finale, but the two teams were tied at 13 after the first quarter.

Caz pulled ahead during the second quarter, outscoring the Lady Warriors by 2 points to take a 24-22 lead into halftime.

Hannibal took care of business during the second half, outscoring Caz by 4 points in the third quarter and 3 points in the fourth quarter to win 46-41.

Leading the way for Hannibal was Devin Sorell with 24 points, followed by Spencer Kenney with 9, McKenzie Mattison with 6, Sydney Alton with 3 and Gabby Griffin added 3.

The Sportsman’s World — The Crossbow War

By Leon Archer

In July, 1863, when the armed forces of the Confederacy lost Vicksburg, their last stronghold on the Mississippi, and suffered the punishing defeat of Lee’s Army of Northern Virginia at Gettysburg, the South would have been wise to have sued for peace, but they soldiered on for nearly two more years before the civil war finally drew to a close.

The opponents in the Crossbow War could take a lesson from the misfortunes of Old Dixie.

Just as the Confederacy lost the war, imperceptibly at first, battlefield by battlefield, while the invading Yankees became stronger and more numerous, so the forces resisting the coming of the crossbow are facing defeat.

It may not be this year in New York state, but the results from battlefield to battlefield across this country leave little doubt who the winners will be in the end.

Gov. Andrew Cuomo announced his support for the legalization of the crossbow for hunting purposes in New York state during his State of the State message.

And just as importantly, he would give regulation authority for its use to the state Department of Environmental Conservation.

I don’t agree with a lot of what our governor has said and done, but I’m with him 100 percent on this.

Of course, we will need both houses of our legislature to produce legislation which the majority will support and pass in order for the governor’s proposal to become reality.

That legislation should include the final battlefield, which is that the classification of the crossbow would be as a legal bow for use in any season and any area where archery is allowed, including archery only areas.

If that final victory doesn’t come this year, it will come soon. The hand writing is on the wall, and further resistance can only damage both sides, not change the final outcome.

Since the early 1970s, when only Arkansas and Ohio allowed hunting with a crossbow, the number of states accepting its use has grown steadily. Today, a total of 34 states have loosened or dropped their restrictions on crossbows since the year 2000.

At present, the battle is completely over in 24 states which now allow the crossbow to be used during any hunting season where archery is allowed, a movement that is gaining popularity in other open-minded states.

This is a civil war, sportsmen fighting sportsmen, both sides believing they are right, but only one side can win, and the empirical evidence is clear, crossbows are in our future.

The strongest resistance comes from a sportsman’s group, The New York Bow Hunters. They argue the crossbow is some sort of superior weapon, a silent super weapon that will allow poachers to decimate the deer herd.

While they claim the crossbow has an effective range of nearly seventy yards, at the same time they suggest more deer will be wounded and run off if crossbows are allowed, because they claim the crossbow is not as efficient as the bow they use.

They say the crossbow is so easy to use that a novice can be slaughtering deer on the same day they buy it. They say the crossbow does not require the same amount of dedication and commitment that is necessary to become a good archer.

A lot of other things they say about the crossbow were used by opponents of the compound bow and releases back in the 70s. Those arguments don’t hold any more water today when applied to the crossbow than they did back when they were applied to the compound bow.

I have to admit that I have never hunted with a crossbow, but I have shot them at targets quite a bit. I can tell you one thing from my own experience. The crossbow is very accurate at close range out to 30 yards or so, but at 70 yards it leaves a great deal to be desired. I would hardly call it effective at that range. At the longer ranges, the compound is much better, but even then, few archers will chance shooting at a deer 70 yards away.

As far as a tool for poaching, it is too cumbersome and why use it when a 22 caliber rifle would do the job far better.

I have never been a poacher, but I knew an old fellow years ago who lived up on the Tug Hill east of Sandy Creek, and my father told me that man fed his family on venison year round that he took with a single shot 22 rifle. It is quiet, doesn’t draw attention, and it is lethal well beyond the effective range of the crossbow or compound.

As far as wounding more deer, think about this. There is no reason why a bolt from a crossbow should cause the loss of any more deer than one might expect from an arrow from a compound bow.

They both work exactly the same way, causing reasonably quick death from massive bleeding due to the razor sharp blades. To put down the crossbow on this account is to damn the compound bow as well.

When I bought my first compound bow, I was able to hit the bullseye at 30 yards after just a couple of shots to adjust my aiming pin. After that I was pretty consistent.

Later that week, I was shooting from the roof on my shed, putting arrows through styrofoam cups on the ground. It didn’t require any great amount of dedication and commitment to use the compound bow well enough to hit any deer that wandered by my tree stand.

The dedication and commitment has little to do with the ease of use of either the crossbow or the modern compound bow. It is learning to hunt successfully and consistently that requires dedication and commitment, and that is true whether you hunt with a rifle, shotgun, crossbow, compound bow or black powder rifle.

I truly believe that bow hunters just don’t want to share their archery season with anyone carrying a crossbow. They deny that, but the denial has a false ring to it in my ears.

I believe it is time to end the war. It is time for bow hunters and crossbow hunters to learn to live together. I’m pretty sure, in a few years, everyone will be wondering what all the fuss was about.

That’s what has happened in the 24 states that have led the way.

States Allowing Crossbow Hunting

Arkansas 

Ohio

Michigan

Florida

Kansas

Delaware

Indiana

Alabama

Maryland

Texas

Pennsylvania

Nebraska

Mississippi

Rhode Island

North Dakota

Virginia

New Jersey

Georgia

Kentucky

South Carolina

North Carolina

Tennessee

Oklahoma

Wyoming

 

Fulton varsity hockey finishes season on a sour note

By Rob Tetro

The Fulton varsity hockey team went 1-4 during its last 5 games of the season.

The team finished the season with a 2-18-1 overall record.

On Jan. 26, Lake Placid rolled past Fulton, 6-2. The Red Raiders knocked off Ontario Bay, 6-4 on Jan. 29. On Jan. 30, Watertown-IHC held off Fulton, 4-3. Watertown-IHC also won the Feb. 3 rematch with the Red Raiders, 5-1.

Syracuse (a team consisting of several Syracuse-area players) cruised past Fulton, 5-1 on Feb. 4.

Lake Placid jumped out to an early 3-0 lead over Fulton in th first period and carried the 3-goal advantage into the half.

The Red Raiders were unable to get any closer during the game, as Lake Placid outscored Fulton by a goal during the third period en route to the 6-2 win.

The Red Raiders were led by Bryce Knight and Austin Vashaw with a goal each. Following Knight and Vashaw were Seth DeLisle and Stan Kubis with an assist each. Goalies Spencer Evans and Brandon Ladd combined to save 35 shots.

After a hard-fought first period in the Ontario Bay game, the teams were tied at 1-1.

Fulton stormed ahead during the second period, outscoring Ontario Bay by 2 goals to take a 4-2 lead. Both teams scored 2 goals during the third period as the Red Raiders came away with a 6-4 win.

Leading for Fulton was Bryce Knight with 4 goals and an assist. Trae Sheldon had a goal and an assist. Seth DeLisle is credited with 3 assists and Ross Ryan tallied an assist. Goalie Brandon Ladd saved 21 shots Ontario Bay sent his way.

Watertown-IHC escaped with a hard fought win over the Red Raiders. the game was tied at 1-1 following the first period and then Fulton built a lead in the second to take a 3-2 lead into intermission.

Watertown-IHC made the most of the third period, putting the puck in the net to tie the game at 3 and force overtime. Watertown-IHC then scored the game winning goal in overtime.

Fulton was led by Bryce Knight wiht a goal and an assist. Seth DeLisle and Rocco Cannata had a goal each while Trae Sheldon is credited with 2 assists. Matt Billion also tallied an assist. Goalie Brandon Ladd saved 41 shots.

In the rematch with Watertown-IHC, Watertown jumped out to an early 3-0 lead in the first period. Both teams scored a goal in the second period and then Watertown-IHC scored again in the third period and held Fulton scoreless to win 5-1.

Leading the way for Fulton was Seth DeLisle with a goal assisted by Trae Sheldon. Goalie Brandon Ladd is credited with 31 saves.

In the Syracuse game, the Red Raiders trailed 1-0 after the first period. In the second, both teams scored one goal as Syracuse took a 2-1 lead into intermission.

Syracuse pulled away during the third period, outscoring Fulton by 3 goals to secure a 5-1 win.

The Red Raiders were led by Seth Cooney with one goal. Eric Forderkonz and Kris Grow had an assist each. Goalies Brandon Ladd and Landon VanAlstine combined to save 40 shots.

Fulton boys’ basketball goes 1-1 in last 2 games

By Rob Tetro

The Fulton boys’ varsity basketball team went 1-1 in its last 2 games and now have a 5-9 overall record.

On Jan. 24, Fowler knocked off Fulton, 76-71, but then the Red Raiders bounced back with an exciting 53-49 win over Chittenango on Jan. 29.

The first quarter of the Fowler game was pretty event, with Fulton leading by 1 point at its conclusion. The second quarter was even more competitive, with both teams scoring 24 points as Fulton took a 38-37 lead into halftime.

Fowler pulled ahead during the third quarter, outscoring the Red Raiders by 4 points to take a 3-point lead and then Fowler outcored Fulton by 2 points in the fourth quartr to pull out a 5-point win.

Leading the way for Fulton was Chris Jones with 20 points, followed by Cody Green with 17, Josh Hudson with 12, Jon Cummins added 9 and Mark Pollock and Dallas Bradley chipped in 5 points each.

Fulton had a 2-point lead over Chittenango after the first quarter of its Jan. 29 contest. But Chittenango stormed ahead during the second quarter, outscoring Fulton by 7 points to take a 30-25 halftime lead.

The Red Raiders answered right back during the third quarter, outscoring Chittenango by 7 points to take a 2-point lead. Chittenango still had plenty in the tank and following a hard fought fourth quarter, Chittenango forced overtime after tying the game at 49.

The Red Raiders stepped up their defensive play down the stretch. While scoring only 4 points during the overtime session, Fulton kept Chittenango off the scoreboard en route to a 53-49 win.

The Red Raiders were led by Chris Jones with 20 points, followed by Cody Green with 13 and Jon Cummins with 11 points.

Fulton Speed Demons strong as swim season begins

The Fulton YMCA Speed Demons team has begun its season and already turned in some strong performances.

The team consists of swimmers ages 5 to 18 and is part of the CNY YMCA Competitive Swim League that includes Auburn, Norwich, Watertown, Oneida, Oneonta and Cortland.

Swimmers can compete in the freestyle, breaststroke, backstroke, butterfly and individual medley (IM, one of each stroke).

Events are categorized by age group: Seniors Class A (age 15-18) , B( 13-14) & C (11-12), Juniors Class D (9-10) & E (8 & under).

Coaches enter swimmers in three individual events each meet plus a relay. Practices and home competitions take place at Granby Elementary School in a 25-yard pool and swimmers push themselves at each dual meet to achieve a personal best swim time in the event swimming.

Taking a few seconds off an event time is often a challenge. The team is coached by Head Coach Cassandra Izyk and Assistant Coaches Cameron Lanich, and Ashley LaDue.

The Speed Demons started their season with an away meet in Auburn followed by a home meet against Cortland.

Starting the season strong against Auburn with first place finishes were first-year swimmer Joely LaPage (25 free), Ryan Morehouse (100 back) and Casey Jones (100 back).

Swimming personal best times were:

Naomi Roberts (50 free, 100 free, 50 back)

Angel Croci (50 free)

Alexis Loomis (50 free, 100 free)

Annaliese Archer (50 free, 50 fly)

Swimmers saw their hard work at practice pay off at the second meet of the season against Cortland.

Junior  swimmers Molly Williams and Courtney Pierce were 2 of 26 Fulton swimmers entered in the 100 Free and had the greatest time reductions of all events, crushing their previous times by 15 and 16 seconds.

Senior swimmer Anna Guernsey achieved the same improvement in her 200 IM. Junior teammate Hailey Coady posted a best time in the 25 back, taking 1st place.

Additional swimmers recording improvement in their events were:

Caleb Trepasso (50 free, 100 free)

Braeden Dempsey (50 free, 100 free, 50 back)

Tyler LaDue (50 free, 100 free, 50 back)

Zachary Loomis (50 free, 100 free, 50 back)

Firebirds beat Solvay, crushed by Westhill

By Rob Tetro

The Phoenix boys’ varsity basketball team beat Solvay, 52-46 on Feb. 4, but were crushed by Westhill 78-48 on Jan. 29.

The Firebirds now have a 9-6 overall record.

Westhill proved why its ranked number 1 in the New York State Sports Writers Association state rankings in Class B when the Warriors jumped out to a 14-point lead over Phoenix during the first quarter.

Westhill then didn’t let up during the second quarter, outscoring the Firebirds by another 12 points for a 46-20 lead at the half.

The Firebirds proved to be far more competitive during the third quarter and were outscored by only 4 points as Westhill. Phoenix remained competitive in the fourth quarter but could not make up Westhill’s huge lead and the Warriors won by 30 points.

Leading the way for the Firebirds was Dylan Doupe with 17 points, followed by Zach Sisera with 10, Connor Haney with 9, Walker Connoly with 5 and Shaun Turner chipped in 4 points.

Against Solvay, the Firebirds jumped out to an 8-point lead, but then Solvay roared back to pull ahead during the second quarter, taking a 25-24 lead into the half.

Both teams scored 13 points each during a hard fought third quarter as Solvay maintained its 1-point lead at 38-37. But Phoenix pulled ahead down the stretch, outscoring Solvay by 7 points during the fourth quarter en route to a 52-46 win.

The Firebirds were led by Zach Sisera with 16 points, followed by Bryce Plante with 13, Dylan Doupe with 11, Brian Sawyer chipped in 7 and Connor Haney added 5 points.

Oswego Little League registration Feb. 11

The 2014 baseball season for Oswego Little League will kick off with the annual Spaghetti Dinner and Player Registration from 5 to 9 p.m. Tuesday Feb. 11 at the Oswego Elks Lodge.

The season will be highlighted by Little League Baseball’s 75th Anniversary, which was established in 1939 in Williamsport, Pennsylvania.

It will be the 59th season for Oswego Little League.

“It’s great to think about the nice weather and the start of Oswego Little League baseball this upcoming spring,” said Tim Murphy, president of Oswego Little League.

“We are equally excited about our traditional spaghetti dinner and player registration on February 11th. We hope to have a great night out with new and returning players and their families,” he said.

Murphy said Oswego Little League offers six divisions of organized youth baseball for all boys and girls, ages 5 through 16, including the Challenger Division, for players with special needs.

Registration fees vary by age and can be found on the league’s website.

Children residing within the boundaries of the Oswego City School District are eligible to register with Oswego Little League.

Registrants are required to provide proof of age, verification of residence inside the League’s boundary, and provide a signed copy of the Medical Release form.

Volunteer forms are also available. Oswego Little League has a need for many new volunteers, to fill several positions of need. Managers, coaches and team parents are needed. League volunteers are also needed for concession, field maintenance, scorekeepers and umpires.

The required forms and instructions are available now at www.oswegolittleleague.com, and may be filled out in advance, or at the registration tables Feb. 11.

Spaghetti dinners will be available for eat in or take out. Delivery of dinners may be arranged for groups that have to work that evening.

Pre-sale tickets are available from the league’s board of directors and at Oswego Printing at 412 W. First St. and Murphy’s Automotive Solutions at 21 Fred Haynes Boulevard in Oswego.

There will be an additional opportunity to register in person from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. Saturday, March 1 at the Oswego YMCA Armory Building.

Oswego Little League is a fun and safe environment for your children to learn and play baseball. Register by March 1st to reserve a roster spot.

Further information and assistance is available by e-mailing coach@oswegolittleleague.com.

Little League, founded in 1939 in Williamsport, Pa., is the world’s largest youth sports program with more than 2.4 million children and 1 million volunteers in more than 83 countries and all 50 states.

The Sportsman’s World — Of Flounder and Sheepheads

By Leon Archer

I was just this week talking with a friend in Florida about fishing.

I was interested specifically in the fishing in the Indian River Lagoon, because it had been so poor the past couple of years. He told me it was still nothing to get excited about in the Sebastian area, but it was a little better than last year.

Apparently some sea grass has started to grow here and there on the sand flats. He said it is a red grass, but it must be better than nothing. Grass makes all the difference in the river fishing.

I can’t begin to remember the number of times I’ve grumbled about the grass back when it was thick, and I had to keep removing it from my lures or bait. How I wish it were that way again.

Most of the grass then was some shade of pale green depending on the species and area it was growing in. There were patches of the red grass even then, but not any great amount of it.

When I fished in and around the grassy patches, I caught fish and grass. When I avoided grassy areas, I came up with less grass, but I also caught a lot fewer fish.

The reasons are simple. The grass acts as a nursery for small fish and crabs, providing food and cover. Most people would not believe the huge number of organisms that can inhabit a relatively small patch of grass, many of them are the microscopic creatures that baby fish and crabs capture for their early meals.

Just as the grass provides food and cover for the smaller inhabitants, at the same time it provides cover for larger fish who prey on the smaller, and so it goes right up the old food chain. But without that first link made of grass, the chain never forms.

I sure hope the grass makes a strong comeback. Even though I am not in Florida this winter, I certainly plan to be back there next winter, and I’d like to find the fishing better than I did the last two years.

My friend was telling me that it had been a good winter for sheepshead and flounder. They aren’t the kind of fish that prowl the grass beds.

The sheepies hang around docks and pilings. They seldom eat fish. Their teeth are made for nipping barnacles and small oysters off pilings. They are also fond of crabs, shrimp and sand fleas. They aren’t the easiest things to hook, being probably the most proficient bait stealers I’ve ever had the pleasure of meeting.

They are well worth pursuing, because they rival snappers for their table qualities. They are yummy.

The flounder are occasionally found in the grass, but more likely, if they are there at all, they will lurk just outside the beds waiting for an unwary small fish to wander out to see what the big world outside the grass looks like.

Flounder are fast predators when they strike, and a small fish seldom gets a do-over. Flounder are more often found on the flats at the edge of channels and in inlets where the current constantly brings them small fish struggling to hold their place in the fast tide water.

Flounder are fun to fish for, and the greatest challenge is to keep from getting hung up on bottom as one fishes. Most fishing is done with mud minnows or finger mullet kept near the bottom with a sinker weighing two to four ounces.

The bait needs to move back with the current until it is right in front of the waiting flounder. If everything goes right, and one has a bit of luck, a tap and then a feeling of weight almost like being hung up, will be transmitted up the line to the rod. Sometimes it is a false signal and one is actually hung up on bottom, but when the rod responds with a throbbing bend when the hook is set, it becomes worth all the time and effort.

Flounder are wonderful table fare, and one that weighs seven or eight pounds will feed a family with some left over for a snack later. They are mild and do not have the delicate flavor of the sheepshead or snapper.

I have never caught a lot of southern flounder, but I have caught enough to appreciate everything about them. They are a great fish, and the lack of grass has not had as negative an effect on them as it has with fish like the spotted sea trout.

I have enjoyed my time in Washington with our grandson, but I sure have missed Florida. I haven’t missed the weather Fulton has been getting, however.

Stay warm. Spring is coming.