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High School Extra (Dec. 1): O’Hara, Hutch girls win openers; Williamsville icers win

O’Hara girls off to flying start

With all five starters back from last season’s Monsignor Martin championship team, expectations are understandably high for the Cardinal O’Hara girls basketball team.

The Hawks got the new season off to an impressive start in a 74-43 victory over Williamsville South, the defending New York State Public Schools Class A champion, in the third game of the Pastor-Cooper Showcase at Daemen College.

O’Hara outscored South, 27-7, in the second period to turn the game into a blowout. Defensive pressure led to 33 steals by O’Hara.

Summer Hemphill, a 6-foot-1 senior, led the Hawks with 18 points, five rebounds and five steals.

In the Pastor-Cooper opener, Hutch-Tech, the defending Canisius Cup champion among Buffalo Public Schools girls basketball teams, got its season off to a suspenseful start, edging North Tonawanda, 33-32.

Senior Sylvia Felton scored the game-winner for coach Dave Sardo’s team with 18 seconds left. Felton had 10 points while junior Amani Watson had seven rebounds for the winners.

“We have a pretty veteran team,” said Sardo.

Felton and Imani Lewis are senior returnees from the Engineers team that went 10-1 in Canisius Cup play last season.

Wilson, the defending Niagara-Orleans League champion, got 21 points, six assists and six rebounds from junior Rachel Senek and overwhelmed Olmsted, 45-18, in the middle game of the tripleheader.

Williamsville icers win

Sophomore Amanda Gaffney scored her second goal of the game on a 3-on-2 rush in the second period, and it was the game-winner for Williamsville in a 5-3 Western New York Federation girls hockey victory over Amherst/Sweet Home/Clarence at Amherst Northtown Center.

Coach Rick Hopkins’ team took a 3-0 lead in the first period but got into penalty trouble and was outshot, 21-3, in the middle period.

After A-SH-C closed to 3-2, Gaffney scored off a drop pass from Holly Schmelzer to make it 4-2 with 6:21 left in the period. McKenna Rushford scored for A-SH-C with 6:05 left in the game before Williamsville scored an empty-net goal.

Flames win ECIC II opener

In an ECIC league opener, Michael Shanahan scored 18 to lead Williamsville East to a 59-53 ECIC II victory over Iroquois. … Grand Island’s Joe Kulikowski made a three-pointer with 20 seconds left in overtime to ensure a 49-44 win over Wilson.