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Ch.4 adds 4:30 a.m. show, Ch.7 news director and reporter; NBA rating drops

Here is some good news for insomniacs.

Channel 4 is following Channel 2’s lead and adding a 4:30 a.m. newscast.

The early version of “Wake Up!” arrived Monday without much fanfare or promotion, anchored by Jordan Williams and prominently featuring meteorologist Mike Cejka.

“With an increase of viewers waking up earlier, we felt this was a great opportunity to expand “Wake Up!” a half hour,” said Channel 4 News Director Scott Levy.

He added that Channel 4 had been one of only eight CBS affiliates in the 56 metered markets not to have a 4:30 a.m. newscast.

Channel 2 started a 4:30 a.m. version of “Daybreak” in 2012 and hasn’t exactly experienced a big demand for it by viewers waking up earlier. It averaged a 1.1 rating in May, a small fraction of the rating it receives at 6 a.m.

"The CBS Morning News" had been airing at 4:30 a.m. on Channel 4. It averaged a 1.3 rating in May. Channel 7 is airing an ABC morning program at the time. It averaged a 0.8 in May.

The first day of Channel 4’s 4:30 a.m. version of “Wake Up!” wasn’t exactly must-see TV. It averaged a 0.4 rating. Channel 2’s “Daybreak” had a 1.1 rating, as did ABC’s program on Channel 7.

On Tuesday, Channel 2 won with a 1.3 rating, with Channel 4 and ABC’s program close with a 1.1 rating.

Of course, Channel 4 has to hope its ratings improve with some promotion.

Trading Places: Channel 7 News Director Lisa Polster has left the station to become the executive producer of “Wake Up!” at Channel 4. Aaron Mason, who left Channel 4 to become assistant news director at Channel 7, now is Channel 7’s interim news director while the station starts a search for her permanent replacement. In announcing Polster’s hiring, Channel 4 News Director Scott Levy told his staff that Polster’s “15 years of news experience and knowledge of Western New York makes her a perfect fit to lead our morning show into the future.”

Channel 7’s morning show has been a disaster, which may have added to the stress that Polster has been under at her former station. New owner E.W. Scripps Co. certainly is expecting to see ratings improvements soon after all its investments in the news department since it took over the station a year ago.

Business Closing: Business First and Channel 7 are ending their 15-year relationship, which means that business reporter Elizabeth Carey will be off the air by the end of the month.

Business First president and publisher Jack Connors said the decision to end the relationship was based on newsroom needs. Carey was paid by Business First for her Channel 7 appearances, which were designed to promote the business newspaper.

“We didn’t see it as a priority any longer,” said Connors. “I felt bad. Elizabeth is a great person and did a great job. We’re just going in a different direction.”

The publisher added that the chain of business journals that owns Business First has been eliminating the television reporters at most of its newspapers for a number of years.

Carey, who recently started a business, said she was “looking for a more challenging opportunity. I know it is time for me to do something else.”

Channel 4 has hired another new reporter. Ali Ingersoll arrives from a small station in Pennsylvania, WTAJ, on June 29. She is scheduled to work weekends, with newcomer Jenn Schanz moving to weekdays.

Inquiring minds want to know: Who was the new meteorologist that recently appeared on Channel 7? Kaylee Wendt is a freelancer and not a full-time staffer. She has worked at WHAM in Rochester, according to Channel 7.

Golden State’s 105-97 victory over Cleveland and LeBron James Tuesday night to win the NBA title had a 7.8 rating on Channel 7, the local ABC affiliate. That was right about the series’ average for the six-game series. Ratings  usually increase the longer series last so the ratings drop from Game 5 is a mild surprise. However, the Warriors appeared to be in control for much of the fourth quarter, which may have sent viewers to bed. The game peaked with an 8.8 rating at 11:30 p.m. Game 5, which started an hour earlier on Sunday, had a higher local rating -- a 9.0. The earlier start most likely helped. The local rating for Game 6 was less than half the national overnight rating of 15.9, which made it the highest-rated Game 6 ever on ABC.

The six-game Stanley Cup Final series won by Chicago had a 7.2 average rating on NBC and the NBCSN locally. The Blackhawks clinching victory in game six had a 10.5 rating on Channel 2. CBC’s coverage isn’t rated in Western New York but a local researcher said viewership is believed to be minimal here based on when ratings were available.

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