By Keith McShea
In today's Prep Talk column, I mentioned how pleased our committee was with the third annual Buffalo News/BCANY Awards banquet for boys basketball.
To reiterate, we were able to honor not only the top players and coaches from this season, as well as some contributors to the game, but we also paid tribute to 50th anniversary 1964 All-Western New York first-teamers Tom Balen (Lackawanna), Jack Hassett (Timon) and Greg Hudecki (St. Joe’s) as well as George Mayer of Williamsville, who was a member of the very first All-WNY team in 1959.
Also honored were the fathers of two All-WNY first teamers who were also first-teamers themselves: Rickey Williams (Bishop Timon, 1974), father of Donte; and Brian Brown (Emerson, 1986), father of Bri'an.
Damone Brown, a first-teamer in 1997 for Seneca, was on hand to present the Allen Wilson Player of the Year Award. Brown was one of the players who Wilson, who died of lukemia in 2011, covered during his time on the boys basketball beat at The News.
Here is a complete list of honorees from the banquet, held April 7 at Ilio DiPaolo's in Blasdell and supported by ADPRO Sports and UNYTS:
Players are seniors unless otherwise noted.
Awarded by the Western New York chapter of the basketball Coaches Association of New York. For players to be eligible for awards, their coach must be a BCANY member.
BEST OF BCANY (Players of the Year) -- Large schools: Zack Panebianco-11 (Jamestown). Small schools: Wil Bathurst (Olean).
ALL-BCANY LARGE SCHOOLS: TC Brown, Amherst-10; Donte Williams, Bishop Timon-St. Jude; Ryan Funk, Clarence; Quinn Lee Yaw, Jamestown; Phil Bowen, Iroquois; Noah Whalen, Kenmore West; Cort Williams, Williamsville East-11; Sterling Taplin, Williamsville North.
ALL-BCANY SMALL SCHOOLS: Jake Haight, Barker; Percy Bryant, East; Johnathon Lewis, East; Dylan Meyer, Fredonia; Lester Diaz, Lafayette; Bri’an Brown, Middle Early College; Kevin Briggs, Middle Early College; Sam Eckstrom, Olean; Tyler English, St. Mary’s.
BCANY ALL-ACADEMIC SCHOLARSHIP WINNER: Derrick Sekuterski, Depew.
BCANY COACHES OF THE YEAR (coaches must be a member of BCANY): Class AA: Ben Drake, Jamestown. A: Pat Cullinan, Cheektowaga (also ECIC overall and ECIC III-IV). B: Jeff Anastasia, Olean. C: Randall Rich, Middle Early College (also Yale Cup I). Monsignor Martin: Paul Rath, St. Mary’s. Yale Cup II: Rich Skrabucha, Olmsted. ECIC I-II: Sean Lauber, Iroquois. NFL: Mike Meetze, Kenmore West. Niagara-Orleans: Dave Carson, Barker. CCAA I: Greg Lauer, Fredonia. CCAA II: Kevin Hind, Randolph.
CENTERCOURT COACH OF THE YEAR: Jeff Anastasia, Olean.
BUFFALO NEWS/BCANY CONTRIBUTOR AWARD: Lancaster-Depew Boys & Girls Club (Dave Hoch and Jeff Kupka).
BUFFALO NEWS/BCANY LIFETIME ACHIEVEMENT AWARD: Dave Thomas, Buffalo Public Schools.
BCANY/IAABO BOARD 53 OFFICIAL OF THE YEAR: Dave Hoch
BUFFALO NEWS PRESS ROW AWARD: Mike Petro, Hamburg Sun
A'ARON MUNGRO HUSTLE TEAM: Preston Summers, Cheektowaga; Cody Cunningham, Fredonia; Tarron Scott, Middle Early College; Greg White, Nichols; Nehemiah Stone, North Tonawanda-11; Matt Wrobel, St. Mary's.
GLUE GUY: Ryan Richards, Canisius.
CHAMPIONSHIP WEEK BEST DUNK: Dominick Welch, Cheektowaga-9 (full-speed one-handed jam in traffic vs. McKinley in Class A final).
CHAMPIONSHIP WEEK BEST SHOT: Zak Ciezki, Cheektowaga-11 (game-winning ‘Thud-Three’ vs. Amherst in A-2 final).
CHAMPIONSHIP WEEK BEST MOMENT: Luke Hennessy, Olean and Jonathon Lewis, East (Great sportsmanship after terrific Class B final)
ALL-CHAMPIONSHIP WEEK TEAM: Allen Wright Jr., Health Sciences; Colin Dougherty, Lockport; Varin Lenard, McKinley; Bryce Morrison, Randolph-11.
ALL-WESTERN NEW YORK HIGH HONORABLE MENTION: LaTerrance Reed, Canisius-11; Aaron Phillips, Cleveland Hill; Justin Hollins, St. Joe's; Jared Fish, Salamanca-11.
SIXTH MAN AWARD: Josh Huffman, Canisius-11.
ALL-WESTERN NEW YORK FOURTH TEAM: Jake Haight, Barker; Dylan Meyer, Fredonia; Phil Bowen, Iroquois; Lester Diaz, Lafayette; Bill Brooks, Silver Creek 11.
ALL-WESTERN NEW YORK THIRD TEAM: Stafford Trueheart, Canisius 10; Ryan Funk, Clarence; Kevin Briggs, Middle Early College; Chris Miner, Nichols 11; Nick Schmidt, Olean.
ALL-WESTERN NEW YORK SECOND TEAM: Howard Washington, Canisius 10: Johnathon Lewis, East; Quinn Lee Yaw, Jamestown; Cam Lewis, Nichols 11; Sam Eckstrom, Olean.
ALL-WESTERN NEW YORK FIRST TEAM: Donte Williams, Bishop Timon-St. Jude; Zack Panebianco, Jamestown 11; Bri’an Brown, Middle Early College; Wil Bathurst, Olean; Sterling Taplin, Williamsville North.
THE BUFFALO NEWS LARGE SCHOOL CHAMPION: Jamestown Red Raiders; Ben Drake, coach
THE BUFFALO NEWS SMALL SCHOOL CHAMPION: Olean Huskies; Jeff Anastasia, coach
ALLEN WILSON PLAYER OF THE YEAR: Sterling Taplin, Williamsville North