Fulton Bantams win 2; beat Oswego

The Fulton Bantam hockey team, sponsored by Comfort Windows and Doors and Pathfinder Bank, celebrated a 4-2 win over Center State and a 4-0 shutout over Oswego in recent minor hockey action.

On home ice against Center State, Evan Beckwith got scoring started early when he skated the puck in and sent it over the goalie’s shoulder.

Soon after, Nate Shaw gained control of a loose puck and tallied another goal for Fulton on a breakaway.  Nick Dingman netted a top shelf shot thanks to a behind the net passing play between Tyler Samson and Will Rattray.

In the final seconds of the period, Beckwith took a feed from Caleb Clarke and sent the puck in off the post.

After a scoreless second period, Center State narrowed the gap by two in the third, but could not close in further on the Raider’s lead.

Fulton goalie Adam Bleiweiss stopped 17 shots in net.

In Fulton’s game against Oswego, Dingman took a feed in front of the net from Samson early in the game to score his second goal of the weekend. Rattray tipped in Raider team captain Nolan Bonnie’s shot from the point to close the first period.

Mid-period two, Samson picked up a rebound from Rattray to make it a three-point game. Soon after, Shaw accepted a pass from Clarke at the face off, stormed through the Buc defense and netted the final goal of the game.

Bleiweiss made 9 saves and earned his first shutout of the season.

The Fulton Bantams are lead by head coach Paul Clarke and assistants Jeff Tulowiecki, Paul Bleiweiss and Bill Beckwith.

Fulton PeeWees shut out Thousand Islands

The Fulton PeeWees hockey team recently shut out Thousand Islands at home.

The PeeWees started the contest with some strong defensive and offensive play by #48 Andrew Hyde, #25 Sidney Bradshaw and #2 Jarred Willis, Jr. Despite the strong effort, the first period of play remained scoreless by both teams.

In the second period, Fulton scored its first goal with a back of the netter from #35 Eric Shear, assisted by #88 Calexander Connolly and #20 Nathaniel Lindsey. The Raiders #71 Chayton Sykes sunk the teams second goal unassisted. On Sykes heels, #10 Madison Lewis placed one in on a rebound with assists from #88 Calexander Connolly and #71 Chayton Sykes.

The third period saw two more goals from #35 Eric Shear, assisted by #88 Calexander Connolly and #20 Nathaniel Lindsey.

The PeeWees took the game 5-0. Fulton’s goalie #00 Jadon Lee saved 21 shots on goal. The Fulton Pee Wees are sponsored by Cargill, Inc., Foster Funeral Home and Pathfinder Bank.

More deer hunting available near Ithaca

A special deer hunting season to help control the deer population in and around the city of Ithaca, Tompkins County, will be open until Jan. 31, 2014, state Department of Environmental Conservation (DEC) Regional Director Ken Lynch said.

The Deer Management Focus Area program was initiated in 2012 in the Ithaca area to expand the use of hunting to assist local communities burdened with overabundant deer populations. The focus area encompasses 60,000 acres of land in and around the city of Ithaca, including the city and town of Ithaca, the villages of Cayuga Heights and Lansing, and parts of the towns of Danby, Caroline, Dryden, Lansing, Enfield, Newfield and Ulysses.

During the special January season, registered hunters are authorized to shoot two antlerless deer per day using a shotgun, muzzleloader, handgun, or bow (if they have bowhunting eligibility). Hunters must still comply with all state trespassing laws, as well as all applicable local ordinances governing the discharge of firearms.

To participate, hunters must register with the DMFA program and download a permit, carcass tags and a hunting activity log. Both the DMFA permit and carcass tags must be carried while hunting in the DMFA and are valid only within the DMFA.

All DMFA hunters must record their deer hunting activity and harvests on the hunting activity log regardless of their success or hunting activity level, and are required to submit the log form to DEC by Feb. 7.  Instructions are provided on the permit and log form.

For more information, including a map of the DFMA that includes boundaries, a description of available hunting lands, or to register and download a permit, carcass tags and a hunting activity log at www.dec.ny.gov/outdoor/82382.html.

Fulton PeeWees hold Auburn scoreless

The Fulton PeeWees hockey team recently shut out Auburn at home 5-0.

The PeeWees started the contest with some strong defensive and offensive play by #87 Kaleb Calkins, #2 Jarred Willis, Jr  and #25 Sidney Bradshaw. The Raiders fought off the consistent goal attempts of Auburn and ended the first period of play with a 2-0 lead with the backing of 2 goals scored by #35 Eric Shear, with one assisted by #32 Lane Phillips.

In the second period, Fulton repeated their strong defensive and offensive playing. Another goal from #35 Eric Shear, assisted by #86 Jonathan McCann Fulton, ended the period with a 3-0 lead.

Building off the first two periods momentum, the Raiders swept through the third period with more solid passing and shooting skills. Two more goals from #35 Eric Shear, with one assisted by #88 Calexander Connolly, gave the Fulton PeeWees the win over Auburn.

Goalie Nathaniel Lindsey saved 22 shots on goal. The Fulton PeeWees are sponsored by Cargill, Inc., Foster Funeral Home and Pathfinder Bank.

Phoenix boys’ hoops boost record to 7-4

By Rob Tetro

The Phoenix boys’ varsity basketball team has won 2 out of its last 3 games and now has an overall record of 7-4.

On Jan. 10, the Firebirds came away with an exciting win over Marcellus 53-52. Phoenix rolled past Solvay Jan. 13 by a score of 62-37 but the fell to Syracuse-ITC 60-54 on Jan. 14.

Against Marcellus, the first period was competitive and Phoenix led by just 1 at the end. In the second, Marcellus stormed ahead, outscoring Phoenix by 11 points for a 31-21 lead at the half.

The Firebirds answered back during the third quarter, outscoring Marcellus by 10 points to tie the game at 42 going into the fourth quarter. Then the Firebirds got it done during the fourth quarter, outscored Marcellus down the stretch to escape with a 53-52 win.

Phoenix was led by Dylan Doupe with 13 points, followed by Bryce Plante with 11, Brian Sawyer and Zach Sisera scored 7 points, Connor Haney added 6 and Walker Connoly chipped in 5.

Phoenix cruised past Solvay, even though Solvay outscored the Firebirds by 4 in the first quarter.

Phoenix cut into the deficit during the second quarter and Solvay led by only 2 — 23-21 — at the half.

Phoenix took over in the second half. They outscored Solvay by 12 points during the third quarter to take a 10-point lead and then didn’t let up in the fourth, outscoring Solvay 41-14 during the third and fourth quarters.

Leading the way for Phoenix was Zach Sisera with 14 points, followed by Walker Connoly with 11, Dylan Doupe and Brian Sawyer scored 10 each, Connor Haney chipped in 7 and Bryce Plante added 6 points.

In their loss to Syracuse-ITC, the first quarter was tight with Syracuse-ITC having only a 1-point lead after the first quater. Syracuse-ITC added to its lead during the second quarter and took a 35-28 lead into halftime.

The Firebirds cut into the deficit during the third quarter, bringing Syracuse-ITC’s lead to 5 points. But Phoenix couldn’t get any closer.

Phoenix was led by Dylan Doupe with 17 points, followed by Connor Haney with 13, Brian Sawyer and Zach Sisera scored 7 each, Bryce Plante had 6 and Walker Connoly added 4 points for The Firebirds.

Hannibal boys’ hoops suffer two losses

By Rob Tetro

The Hannibal boys’ varsity basketball team lost its last 2 games, falling to Cazenovia 49-27 and the Syracuse Academy of Science 77-52.

Hannibal now has a 3-6 overall record.

Cazenovia cruised past the Warriors Jan. 9. Cazenovia got off to an impressive start, outscoring Hannibal by 12 points in the first quarter.

After an evenly played second quarter, Cazenovia took a 21-9 lead into halftime. Cazenovia wasn’t about to let up during the second half. They outscored the Warriors during the third quarter to expand their lead to 13 points. Caz put the game out of reach in the fourth quarter, outscoring the Warriors by 9 points.

Leading the way for Hannibal was Trevor Alton with 9 points, followed by Billy Skipper with 7, Sam McCraith scored 5 and Charlie McCraith and Austin Mattison chipped in 3 points each.

Syracuse Academy of Science topped Hannibal Jan. 14. Syracuse Academy Of Science got off to a decent start, outscoring the Warriors by 6 points during the first quarter. Syracuse Academy Of Science kept it going during the second quarter, again outscoring Hannibal by 6 to take a 38-26 halftime lead.

Syracuse Academy of Science put the game out of reach during the third quarter, outscoring Hannibal by 10. Hannibal tried to come back in the fourth quarter, but Syracuse Academy of Science still outscored Hannibal to cap off a 77-52 win.

The Warriors were led by Trevor Alton with 27 points, followed by Billy Skipper with 13 and Charlie McCraith and Sam McCraith scored 4 points each.

A Sportsman’s World — Smelt Fishing, by Leon Archer

By Leon Archer

I have many fond memories of smelt fishing with my father and additional memories of doing the same with some of my children.

I am confident many of my readers remember the great spring smelt runs with the same relish that I do, their thoughts very likely mixed with the same despondency that comes to me as I mourn the collapse of the smelt population.

There are still rainbow smelt in Lake Ontario, but their numbers have fallen to a level where very few hardy souls still search for them on cold spring nights, at least in the streams of the Eastern Ontario basin.

In the 1950s and 60s, when the lake’s water temperature hit 42 degrees, the smelt would move onshore for their annual spawning run. Fishermen by the hundreds would be waiting for them dressed in warm clothes and waders, holding their long handled nets.

The catching was easy, the cleaning arduous the next day. The delicious aroma of frying smelt could be detected escaping from homes on every block. The smelt was a fish for the common man, but all good things come to an end.

The decline of smelt populations has occurred over much of their range, not just in Lake Ontario, and there is no one reason that fisheries biologists have been able to single out as the culprit. It appears smelt have been negatively affected by a combination of factors. Among them are: the huge increase of major predators due to stocking of trout and salmon, the invasion of the zebra mussel, alewives and overfishing.

Probably the greatest factor at work in their decline in Ontario has been the decrease in the food they eat, both as fry and as young adults. A high percentage of the microorganisms needed for smelt fry survival are filtered out of the water by zebra mussels, and alewives, causing a great loss of baby smelt due to starvation.

Alewives (mooneyes to some) prey on the slightly larger organisms that the tiny surviving smelt need to continue growing, plus they also consume large numbers of smelt fry. It is a tough life for smelt right from the beginning, and the survival rate is extremely low during the first year of their lives.

As soon as the remaining smelt are large enough to migrate to the open lake away from the near shore (one to two years depending on growth rate), they join whatever smelt school they encounter and spend the rest of their life searching for food and trying to avoid trout and salmon.

Overfishing was not a significant factor on smelt while there were huge shoals of them throughout Ontario. They could absorb man’s overenthusiastic harvests and still grow their numbers back in the 50s and 60s. There was no creel limit on Ontario’s smelt in those days.

Things began changing in the 1970s and 80s, and smelt runs began their decline, almost unnoticed at first. Catches of washtubs full of smelt slowly gave way to a few five gallon buckets full of smelt and then to small buckets partly full.

The day finally came when men no longer swarmed onto the beach in the night at Selkirk State Park and Port Ontario in April and May in search of smelt. The runs had become only a memory.

As I said, there are still smelt in Lake Ontario. They are smaller and far less numerous, but they are there. I’ve heard rumors that a few are still caught in Oswego Harbor each spring, but it’s been at least 25 years since I’ve taken my Coleman lantern and gone smelting.

I do miss it, but I’m not sure I would go again even if they made a comeback here in the Oswego County area. I miss the excitement and camaraderie, but I’m not crazy about late nights and cold, plus the occasional dunking.

Should you have a hankering to try to regain a bit of those smelt fishing days of yesteryear, you could give it a try on the western end of the lake. They still get a pretty good run on the Niagara River.

It’s sort of a long drive for little fish, and the daily limit is eight quarts of smelt. The place to go, if you are so inclined, is Lewiston. There is plenty of parking by the dock area, and it’s open to dipping for smelt. The run can be as early as late March, but usually comes in April.

Lewiston is a little too far to run to just take a chance or to see if they are running, but you can find out when the run is on if you would like to take the trip.

It’s possible to stay abreast of the smelt run by checking www.outdoorsniagara.com. There is a regular fishing update on the site all year long, and it will make it easy for you to zero in on the best time to go.

Could be fun to get some of your fishing buddies together to share the expenses and catch some smelt once more in memory of the old days. If you go, let me know.

Valentine’s Day at CNY Arts Center

Valentine’s Day falls on a romantic Friday this year, so come celebrate with CNY Arts Center as we host a dinner theater Feb. 14 followed by two nights of desserts.

Tickets for Friday night are $25/person and are available on line or at ARTs in the HeART Gallery, South First Street, Fulton.

The dinner will feature a pasta bar with various sauces, pastas and toppings, including vegetarian and gluten-free selections. Joshua Lamb, our cook from the December Cabaret dinner, will prepare the meal.

The production is “Searching for Eden:  the Diaries of Adam and Eve,” a romantic comedy by James Still. CNY Arts Center will offer hand-made valentines available for pick up at the door or at the gallery. Customize your valentines by ordering on-line at www.cnyartscenter.com.

CNY Arts Center continues its capital campaign to raise money to acquire the former Rite Aid building on Route 481 in Fulton.

Classes in various art forms and writing are offered regularly at the CNY Art Center in the basement of the Methodist Church on the corner of State and Park Streets.

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