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High School Extra: Pioneer wins ECIC title; O’Hara falls in Erie; Section VI wins challenge; Debose delivers

Pioneer wins ECIC title

Tyler Smith at 195 pounds took Pioneer’s only first place but the Panthers scored well with eight top-six finishes and won the team title on Saturday in the ECIC wrestling championships at Clarence. Pioneer edged Iroquois, 150-147.5. Lancaster (144) and Lake Shore (140.5) were not that far behind.

The Panthers were led by Smith’s first place earned by medical forfeit over Brian Morreale of Williamsville East.

Iroquois had five top-six finishes in addition to a win by Tristan Almeter at 152.

Two-time state champion Kellen Devlin of Amherst at 132 pounds was among the winners. He defeated Phil Calandra of Depew, 15-0, on a technical fall.

Tonawanda had two winners, Sam Sparacino at 99 pounds and Zach Braddel at 106. Isaiah Johnson at 113 and Eric Bartnik at 145 won for Cheektowaga. Lake Shore had first-place finishers in Freddie Eckles at 138 and Shaerod Rodgers at 220.

Other champions were:

120 pounds, Johnny Putney (East Aurora); 126, Jacob Page (Eden); 160, Jacob Smeader (Hamburg); 170, Lyle Grant (Alden); 182, Brandyn Whitacre (Jamestown); and 285, Joe Ramunno (West Seneca East).

Victor dominates at Lake

Victor of Section V dominated the all-tournament team with 11 selections in the six-school competition at the Thunderbird Duals at Chautauqua Lake. All-Tournament from Section VI were: 99 pounds, Steve Bachman (Grand Island), Rowe, 145 Kale Gilbert (Chautauqua Lake) and 182 Zach Breedman (Grand Island).

O’Hara falls in Erie

Cardinal O’Hara got a taste of nationally ranked competition against Villa Maria Academy and lost, 44-27, to the Erie, Pa., opponent at the $10 million Cathedral Prep and Villa Events Center.

The visiting Hawks shot only 21 percent (10 of 48) in suffering their second loss of the season in 17 games. Villa, ranked 21st in the nation in the Max Preps poll, is 17-0.

“They were averaging 57 points a game. We held them to 44 so we didn’t do a bad job defensively,” said O’Hara assistant coach Dan McDermott. “They exposed some things we need to work on.”

Shilah Parker, who made all three of O’Hara’s three-point baskets, led the Hawks with 11 points.

Section VI wins challenge

Colin Blair of Lancaster doubled in the weight throws and Cody Sikora of North Tonawanda and the Lumberjacks’ 4x400 relay helped Section VI male athletes outscore Rochester area’s Section V in the challenge indoor track and field meet between the sections at Houghton College.

Blair won the shot put with a toss of 58 feet, 6 inches and the weight throw at 62-9 and was the only individual double winner among the boys.

In all, Section VI boys won seven of the events while Section V took 10 firsts.

Section VI also prevailed in the girls meet, 368-340, as Alyssa Oviasogie of Williamsville South won the 55 hurdles in 8.74 seconds and the triple jump at 36-2, and Orchard Park’s Jenna Crean won the 55 dash (7.38 seconds) and 300 meters (40.52).

Holland had a pair of winners in Riley Jones in the 1,000 meters (3:02.54) and Megan Caltagirone in the 3,000 (10:44.0).

Lancaster’s Brianna McKenzie won the weight throw (43-5.5) and Olivia Gervan took the high jump (5-6). The Legends’ 4x400 relay also won.

Katrina Patterson of Clarence won the 1,500 run and the Red Devils’ distance medley also triumphed.

Debose delivers

Charles Debose is the lone senior on a very young Cardinal O’Hara boys basketball team. Saturday, Debose played a large part in delivering a 57-55 victory for the Hawks over Cleveland Hill in a nonleague game.

Debose drove to the basket for a score with 40 seconds left then made the free throw to put the Hawks in front by one.

Earlier, he scored 10 points in a row during a 13-2 O’Hara run in the second quarter that led to a 29-25 lead after Cleveland Hill had taken a 16-11 first quarter advantage.

Coming off a loss to Niagara Catholic, “we’re trying to find some consistency. You know how a young team is,” said O’Hara coach Tony Pulvirenti, who team is 7-8 overall with three tough games coming up this week on successive nights starting on Wednesday – University Prep of Rochester, St. Mary’s of Lancaster and Walsh of Olean.