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Grand Island to honor the late Julie Roth Neville

Grand Island will retire the No. 24 jersey worn by the late Julie Roth Neville in a special ceremony at about 6:15 p.m. Friday between the junior varsity and varsity basketball games against Charter School for Applied Technology (CASt) at the school.

"Hoopin' for Julie" is being planned to honor Neville, a teacher, coach and athlete at Grand Island who died of breast cancer last October. She was the first female player in Grand Island history to score 1,000 career points. She was also a tennis standout and shortstop on the Vikings' softball team.

Besides the dedication ceremony retiring No. 24, there will be a sale of t-shirts, rally towns, beads and cookies and  raffles will be held. All proceed will go to the Neville Boys Education Fund to benefit Julie's four surviving sons.

Event planners are expecting a standing-room-only crowd for the tribute.

Vandenberg kicks 51-yard FG in All-Star game

Canisius High kicker Tristian Vandenberg kicked a 51-yard field goal for the winning East team on Tuesday in the Blue-Grey All-American Bowl at Dallas Cowboys AT*T Stadium in Arlington, Texas.

Vandenberg made All-Western New York first team after a senior season when he made all six field goal tries, all 22 extra-point kiks and had 24 of 36 kickoffs go for touchbacks. His 51-yarder came in the second quarter and gave the East a 16-0 lead on the way to a 26-7 victory over the West.
Vandenberg verbally committed to Ohio University last June and is expected to sign his National Letter of Intent with the Bobcats on National Signing Day, Wednesday, Feb. 6.

Olean home streak at 75

Olean’s 99-34 boys basketball win over Maple Grove on Monday night in CCAA West I extended the Huskies’ home-court win streak to 75 games. Coach Jeff Anastasia’s Huskies have not lost a home game since the 2010-11 season. They are 15-0 overall this season and 8-0 in CCAA West I with four division games left, including a showdown with second place Fredonia (7-1) at Fredonia on Feb. 14.

The Huskies’ closest game this season was a 10-point victory over Wellsville of Section V. Olean’s average margin of victory is 29.6 points.

Last season, Olean was runner-up to Health Sciences in the Section VI Class B final. It was the seventh straight season Olean either won or appeared in a sectional final game. Since 1952, Oleans has won 18 sectional boys basketball titles.

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