> Pioneer girls win $5,000
The Pioneer girls basketball team has won a national contest for the best video of a pregame ritual from Maxpreps.com. Pioneer was judged the winner of the "Signatures fueled by G Series" program for its inspiring video submission: "For The Stripe."
The team submitted a video telling about their stripe ritual that honors the late Janet Payne. Payne was the wife of former girls basketball coach, Max Payne. Janet lost her 9 1/2 -year battle with breast cancer on Jan. 12, 2007. She was 54.
The video was judged the best for its creativity, originality of ritual and appropriateness of ritual.
"They took off with it," said current coach Bill Connelly. "This has been very important to them. There are seniors on the team who were playing varsity basketball three, four years ago. Even as younger players everyone connected to Mr. and Mrs. Payne.
The team plans to use the prize money to buy itself pink T-shirts. What about the rest? "When we won it as a team it wasn't 30 seconds when they said they wanted to donate it. Right now we're thinking Roswell, but we're not sure," said Connelly.
The video is at: www.youtube.com/watch?v=CQRrcc55Ujw.
On Friday night, the Panthers moved to 9-1, 6-0 with a 75-19 drubbing of Amherst. Everyone on the roster scored led by Jenna Crabb with 20. Kiley Titus had 10 points and 11 rebounds.
> Immaculata nets upset win
The Immaculata girls basketball team picked up its biggest win of the season, knocking off visiting V-Aquinas, the No. 3 ranked school in the state in Class B, 66-65. Taylor Heinhold blocked a last-second shot at the end to preserve the win. Chelsey Rogowski had 20 points while Lindsay Nowak added 19 points and 14 rebounds as the Bears improved to 11-5. Aquinas drops to 9-2.
The Niagara Frontier League contest between two ranked teams looked good on paper, but on the court it was a lopsided contest with No. 1 Grand Island beating No. 7 Kenmore East, 56-27.
Kallie Banker had 16 points and five assists while Brooke DeMarco added 13. for the undefeated Vikings (8-0, 6-0). Jordyn Broas led the Bulldogs with 16 points.
Samantha Wozniak (14), Brittany Delano (12) and Kim Siresi (10) scored in double figures as Lancaster pulled out a 48-43 win over Clarence in ECIC I.
> Eden swimmers are 7-1
Eden made it seven wins in eight starts with a 128-54 win over host Cheektowaga in an ECIC IV boys swimming meet. Sophomore Jamie Miller won the 200 individual medley, the 100 breaststroke and swam the fly on the winning medley relay. Kyle Zittel won the 100 butterfly and 100 backstroke. Freshman Chase Klawon won the diving.
The meet was the Raiders' first since its first loss of the season to East Aurora. The team's next meet is at home against Starpoint at Tuesday at 4:30 p.m.
> NT names new lax coach
North Tonawanda has named Todd Faddoul its varsity boys lacrosse coach for the upcoming spring season. Faddoul, 40, previously was the varsity coach at Niagara-Wheatfield from 1997 to 2002, compiling an 88-43 career record. Since 2003 he has been a police officer in Niagara Falls, involved in crime scene investigation.
Faddoul will be taking over a program that finished 0-16 last year, 0-10 in Class A.
"I wanted to get back into coaching, I missed it and this is a nice opportunity for me," said Faddoul, who is an 1989 graduate of Niagara-Wheatfield. "It's a newer program and I'd like to get in there and put the best players forward so we can be as competitive as possible."
Practice begins on March 1.
> Wmsv. East hockey wins
Matt Notaro had a hat trick as the Williamsville East hockey team beat Hilton, 8-5, to advance in the Gates-Chili Tournament at the Genesee Valley Park Ice Arena in Rochester. The Flames (9-3-1) will play Gates-Chili for the championship today at 3 p.m.
East came out a little flat trailing 4-1 after the first period. They beat Williamsville South the night before, 5-2, in a game that started at 9.
"We got scoring from three lines tonight, which is great, had a couple power-play goals," said coach Mike Torrillo. "It was a long day, I don't want to make any excuses, Gates-Chili played us tough. We ended up outshooting them, 45-15. Over the second and third periods we kind of got the better of them."
> Rock 'N' Roll Throw Offs
The third annual Rock 'N' Roll Throw Off are next Saturday at the Lancaster Field House. This is a throws-only meet featuring men and women of high school, collegiate, open, and masters competition in the shot put and weight throw.
Lancaster provides a state of the art field house as well as an NCAA official cage. The meet is USATF certified and features USATF officials. All marks are deemed eligible by high school standards as well as IAAF sanctioned.
The meet will start at 2 p.m. and lead into an elite competition. Entries are now being accepted, $10 for Open and Masters, free for all high school competition. Call George Rak 716-998-7783 or: firstname.lastname@example.org.
> Busy Saturday tips off
* The Buffalo Public Schools' Martin Luther King Boys Basketball Classic is today in City Honors' new gymnasium. The four-game lineup is divided into two sessions: Lafayette faces Lackawanna at 11 a.m. followed by St. Joe's meeting OTC Middle College at 12:30 p.m.; in the second session, McKinley faces Sweet Home at 3 p.m. followed by a 4:30 p.m. matchup of the No. 1 small school in International Prep at Grover Cleveland against No. 4 large school Canisius.
* Four wrestling invitationals will conclude today including the 17th Lockport Boosters/Sunrise Optimists Tournament, the Williamsville North Invitational, the Alden Duals and the 11th Patrick Morales Invitational at Falconer.
* There are six games in boys Federation hockey including Williamsville North versus rival Williamsville South and St. Joe's takes on Niagara-Wheatfield.
* The girls Federation hockey schedule is highlighted by Frontier/Orchard Park against West Seneca at 10 a.m. at the Time Warner Classic Rink in East Aurora.
* The No. 4 large school Jamestown girls basketball team is at Frontier at 1:30 p.m.