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Riverside makes history with back-to-back titles City Honors, Bennett share girls' top spot

Riverside's Frontiers got what they wanted Wednesday -- sole possession of the Yale Cup in Buffalo Public Schools boys basketball.

The Frontiers, ranked No. 3 among Western New York large schools, got all they could handle before turning back McKinley, 66-57, to complete a 12-0 Yale Cup campaign.

There have been repeat champions in the Yale Cup before -- Traditional in 2000 and 2001 is the most recent -- but Riverside claims to be the first to win back-to-back titles with unbeaten league records. The Frontiers extended their unbeaten streak to 30 in Cup games.

"The team accomplished something that's really never been done," said Riverside coach Ron Killinger. "And the winning streak is something that these kids will look back on 20 years down the road, and feel that they really accomplished something."

The Macks (10-2) made Killinger's team work for it. McKinley opened a 25-13 lead in the second and forced Riverside out of its man-for-man defense.

After seeing the McKinley guards slash to the basket on drives, Killinger's team switched to a 1-2-2 zone and stayed with it the rest of the way, and it helped swing the momentum to the Frontiers.

McKinley led by only one, 30-29, at the half. In the fourth quarter Riverside stars Mike Williams and Anthony Thomas came to the fore. Williams scored 11 of his 24 points in the final quarter while Thomas had eight of his 20.

In victory, Williams set a Riverside career scoring record. He now has 1,418 points, topping the total of Mike Price (1,398), who graduated in 1998.

Williams also had 14 rebounds and five assists, while Thomas had 12 boards. D.J. Young had 12 points and five steals for Riverside.

Dmitrian Knight led McKinley with 13 points while Chandler Williams and Tamere Shannon scored 11 each.

A McKinley victory would have produced a three-way tie at the top of the standings; instead the Macks fell to third place in the final standings.

Cantrel Parrish scored a career-high 45 points in his final Cup game to lead Grover Cleveland (11-1) over Lafayette, 85-84. That win clinched second place for the Presidents.

Parrish led the scoring but it was Anthony Greene who saved the game for Grover as he blocked a final shot by Lafayette. Grover led, 84-77, but the Violets rallied to tie the game with 1:57 left. Parrish was fouled with 9 seconds left and made 1 of 2 to put Grover back in front. Greene had 15 points while Tony Allen scored 10 for Grover.

John Whitlock scored 26 to lead Lafayette. Rondy Bulls had 21 while Jamal Garner had 17 and Eric McMillan 10.

Burgard grabbed a share of fourth place with an 86-38 win over Emerson. Charles Brown led the Bulldogs with 19 points while Jose Salmeron (14), Leon Nelson (12) and Marquis Ware (11) also hit double figures.

In other games on the final day of the Yale Cup season: Julius Bryant had 20 points and 10 boards to lead Hutch-Tech over City Honors, 60-47. Randy Muldrow's 17 points led the Centaurs. . . Ivan Davis scored 24 points and pulled in 18 boards as Bennett defeated Seneca, 78-68. Horace Morris of the Indians had 31 points. . . . Sophomore Jamal Webb scored 31 points for East in an 88-32 rout of Buffalo Arts. Webb also had 10 rebounds, eight steals and eight assists. Tommy Lee had 12 for Arts, which was winless in league play.

Niagara-Orleans Tourney: Medina's Blaine Nottingham and Casey Tuohey scored layups after steals in the final 1:32 for a 52-48 win over Newfane in the championship game. The teams had finished 11-1 and split two games during the regular league schedule.

The Mustangs came from behind for the victory, outscoring Newfane, 14-3, in the fourth quarter.

"This was a real grudge match," said Medina coach Tom Forrestell.

Tuohey finished with 24 points, and Alex Misiti had 13 for Medina. Bob Zehler had 15 and Mike Jett 13 for Newfane.

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Girls basketball

City Honors and Bennett will have to share the Canisius Cup as city girls champions.

The Centaurs defeated Hutch-Tech, 56-35, while Bennett was disposing of Seneca, 96-36, to leave the teams tied at 11-1 in Cup play. Honors can claim bragging rights, though, having beaten Bennett, 48-47, in their only meeting.

April Villacrusis had 19 points to lead the City Honors.

"April just came on as the season went on," said Dave Curry, the Centaurs' first-year head coach. "I refer to her as my rock. She's so solid.

Curry was not totally surprised by his team's success. "I knew the girls were a good team. . . . We've had a lot of injuries but somebody always steps up," he said.

Sarah Bellnier had 14 points for Honors. Brianna Lee and Gina Moss scored 11 each to lead Hutch.

Sharea Alsqqaf had a huge game in Bennett's rout of Seneca as she passed the 1,000-point mark for her career. Alsqqaf scored 34 points and had 15 rebounds and 16 steals. Jackee Thompson contributed 23 points, eight steals and seven assists while Jasmine Ball had 13 points and 11 boards. Meagan Johnson-White had 14 to lead Seneca.

Sarah Soroka of East Aurora is 18 points shy of 1,000. The Blue Devils end the regular season tonight at JFK.

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Boys hockey

Josh Malthaner scored a pair of goals and Nick Augustyniak had a goal and an assist as No. 10 seed Frontier upset No. 7 Williamsville South, 7-2, in the Western New York Federation playoffs at Amherst Pepsi Center. . . . Josh Shamrock of No. 9 Canisius made 23 saves in a 4-0 shutout of No. 8 St. Joe's. Anthony Gregory scored twice for the Crusaders.

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Boys bowling

St. Joe's won the All-Catholic team title at Thruway Lanes and qualified Jeff Wells and Steve Persico for the State Catholic Championships on March 4 in Queens. The Marauders had a team total of 2,105, 95 pins better than second-place St. Francis.

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