WHAT A YEAR IT WAS FOR AREA SPORTS, AND HOPEFULLY NEXT YEAR IS JUST AS SUCCESSFUL
The school year is in the book, and what a school year it was for area sports teams.
Five individual state titles, a relay winning a state title and a team winning a state title were among the achievements of the year.
There were state medals, All-American honors, and league and sectional titles one after another.
It really was a magical year for area sports teams. Corning became the City of Champions this year with all their state titles, while Horseheads was collecting enough trophies to fill an up a room.
Notre Dame baseball and softball both gave their school IAC crowns this year, and Edison had a doubles tennis team win a sectional crown, while Elmira had two basketball teams reach sectional finals and they had individuals bringing home gold medals throughout the school year.
Let’s see if we can break down the year’s worth of success for area teams, and hopefully we don’t leave anyone out.
In the fall Jack Gregorski won the individual state title in cross country and the Hawks won the team title with the second best score in state history. Ashton Bange, Matt Gensel and Sarah Lawson all earned state medals. Corning also won the STAC and Section 4 titles on their way to the crown.
The Corning football team brought home a sectional title while the Corning boys’ soccer team and the Elmira girls’ soccer team each brought home titles. While falling in a sectional final, the Corning girls won a STAC title this year.
Notre Dame’s girls’ soccer team won an IAC title, a Section 4 title and a regional title, getting to the State Final Four. Junior goalie Shannon Maloney was a first-team all-state pick in goal.
Horseheads captured the volleyball sectional title and Corning’s boys’ golf team won their first STAC title this year.
Ella Perry and Jillian Austin each qualified for states for Corning as a doubles team in tennis in the fall.
Angie McKane became the first Corning Hawks swimmer to win a state title in the fall and she earned two state medals, while Brooke Terwilliger earned a state medal in diving. Horseheads girls won the STAC and Section 4 class sectional tiles in swimming.
In the winter Corning had a magical run all within 24 hours. Corning’s boys and girls’ basketball teams each won sectional titles in Ithaca and int he same city Ryan McNutt won a Federation title and had a pair of state medals on the day. At the same time Jack Gregorski and Ellie DeRosa were winning state track and field titles, while Ashton Bange was earning a runner-up finish.
There were state medals on top of state medals throughout swimming and track and field, and along with the gold medal by McNutt, another highlight of the day was Cullin Cole of Horseheads winning four state medals at the meet.
Horseheads won the STAC and Section 4 Class titles on the year, while Corning’s track and field team won the sectional crown.
Horseheads wrestling won the STAC title and sectionals, while Corning’s Ethan Hart brought home a state medal.
Corning’s girls’ basketball team went on to win a regional title and Corning’s boys and girls bowling teams each earned trips to states.
The Corning boys’ bowlers finished third at states, while Cameron Kennedy was third overall and Joseph Enderle was seventh.
The Corning girls took sixth at states and Meghan Sturdevant was 13th, while Emily Huntley of Horseheads took ninth at states.
Edison’s girls’ basketball team won their first sectional hoops game in 20 years in the winter. Elmira’s girls won the STAC title and Elmira’s boys reached a sectional final as well.
There was even an alpine skiing sectional champion as Corning’s Teagan Walsh brought home a title as a team of one this year.
This spring Horseheads baseball team won a sectional title, while the Horseheads softball team rallied to stun Corning for the sectional title. Corning had won a STAC title this year, while Horseheads boys went to Myrtle Beach, faced some top teams in the country, came home and never lost again until the regional finals inning the STAC division title, then taking two games in one day to win the STAC Tourney title, and then winning sectionals.
Corning’s Jack Gregorski made it 3-for-3 this year, winning state titles in all three sports season as he took the 3200 NYSPHSAA title. He broke the Section 4 records in the 3200 both indoor and outdoor this year.
Notre Dame’s Leila Vargas, Piper Young, Amanda Simpson and Rachael Simpson won a 4x400 relay state medal and Lauren Gerow, Faithe Ketchum, Sophia ReSue and Megan Kirk medaled in the 1600 relay, while Ketchum, Gerow, Julia Hluck and Cristina Gaskievicz medaled in the 3200 relay for Corning.
Corning’s Gregorski teamed with Bange, Tevin McLaren and Gabe Cornfield to win the 3200 relay state title and Bange earned a state medal in the 1600 meters and Sarah Lawson medaled in the 3000 meters. Elmira’s Ana (Vicky) Mordvinova broke the Express school record in the 1500 to win the state qualifiers and she made states in the 800 and 1500.
Edison’s Maren Lutz and Abe Johnson earned a sectional doubles title in tennis and Matt Printup of Horseheads made it to states in boys’ golf, while for girls golf Horseheads went unbeaten in the regular season and won a sectional title, going to states, while Corning had two state qualifiers, including Lucia Chen, who won a sectional title, shooting three under-par. Brooklyn Moffe of Horseheads and Hannah Masaki of Corning tied for second in sectionals.
Corning’s track and field team won the girls and boys STAC and Section 4 class titles. Corning’s boys and girls lacrosse teams each won sectionals and the Horseheads girls won sectionals. Corning’s Ashlee Volpe and Ethan Hart and Notre Dame’s Grant Crossley all earned All-American honors in lacrosse.
Even in college things were beyond successful for area athletes. Corning’s Logan McNaney won a national title for Maryland lacrosse, and he was the NCAA Tournament’s Most Outstanding player and Seth Grottenthaler won his second straight national title at the D3 level with RIT.
Corning’s Lindsey Butler won the indoor national title in D1 for Virginia Tech in the 800 meters and Ben Terwilliger reached the super regional with the East Carolina baseball team.
There was just so many big time performances throughout the college level by area athletes.
Notre Dame’s baseball and softball team each won IAC division titles, softball won the overall IAC title, and both reached sectional finals. Owen Stewart had a year to remember, throwing four no hitters on the season.
Overall it was the type of year that doesn’t come around very often. But, the crazy thing is, it’s a year that could be equaled, or even topped next year.
McKane is just a sophomore in the poole. Lawson is only a sophomore runner and Bange is a junior. The Hawks return a number of runners from their state title cross country team.
Look across the area and you’ll see more and more bright spots for the future. Megan Wolf was a dominant softball and basketball player for Horseheads as a freshman and Makenna Keough was a force for Notre Dame as a freshman in track and field. MK Young of Notre Dame had a huge soccer season and she’s not even in high school yet, while Will Kiibler intercepted nine passes for Corning football in his first year at the school and Amir Williams of Elmira had a huge football season as a freshman.
Edison’s basketball team is led in scoring by Payton Littlefield, who is just a sophomore, and many of the other keys on the team, like Gianna McGee and Harper Hoffman, will return next year.
This year was a year to remember, and next year hopefully might be just as much fun.
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