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Sunday, Oct. 8, 2017: Touhey, Chmiel score quality race victories

   Leading off today: Queensbury took a pair of team championships Saturday at the 79th Grout Cross Country Invitational in a meet highlighted by yet another sizzling time by Katelyn Touhey of North Rockland.

   Senior Emily Atamanchuk took individual honors in girls Division I by about two seconds with a time of 16:14.41 for 2.75 miles, helping Queensbury edge four-time defending champion Colonie 52-53. The Queensbury boys team won Division II with the help of senior Kevin Bouyea's second straight Grout win. Bouyea finished in 13:54.44, 14 seconds ahead of Schenectady's Maazin Ahmed.

   As reported by The Times Union, Ahmed had to scramble just to get to the meet. The SAT exam he was taking ran long, forcing the senior to run 1.4-miles from Schenectady High with just 24 minutes before the start of the race.

   As so often happens on race day, Touhey was the big news. Running in Division II, she set a course record in 14:06.88, winning by nearly 600 meters and obliterating her own mark of 14:37.59 set last year.

   "That is a record that will never be broken, unless she breaks it herself," meet director Ed Menis predicted.

   More cross country: Saratoga junior Kelsey Chmiel won the girls Nike Race of Champions at the Great American Cross Country Festival in Cary, N.C., completing the 5K course in 16:50.3. She won by 36 seconds and was within striking distance of the meet record of 16:40.9 by Aisling Cuffe in 2010.

   Her effort helped Saratoga to a ninth-place showing in a deep field.

   "I just wanted to get out fast and see what happens," the Chmiel told Milesplit.com.

   The Iona Prep boys and Ursuline girls won their divisions in Florida at the Disney Cross Country Classic, which was delayed three hours because of poor weather.

   Coaching milestone: Argyle won its own girls volleyball tournament Saturday and in the process notched career win No. 500 for 27th-year coach Peggy Seese.

   The milestone moment came in the Scots' 32-30, 25-20 win over Broadalbin-Perth in the semifinals. In the final, Argyle downed Lake George 25-20, 25-27, 25-18.

   Seese told The Post-Star she'd opted to go with the win-by-two-points rule rather than capping scores at 25 or 30, but she wasn't expecting the marathon game against B-P.

   "Late in that game I was thinking, 'Geez, maybe I should have capped it,'" Seese said.

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   Following up, part 1: We mentioned Saturday that Whitney Point quarterback Andy Davis tied a state record Friday by throwing eight touchdown passes in a 68-56 win over Watkins Glen/Odessa-Montour.

   For all the fireworks, his passing stats were relatively modest. Davis finished 21-for-31 for 328 yards. Dig a little bit deeper, though, and it turns out Davis also rushed 26 times for 202 yards.

   By the way, Zach Elliot finished with 27 carries for 274 yards and three TDs in a losing effort.

  
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   Following up, part 2: You may recall the story from Week 1 of the football season about Greece Athena beating University Prep in a game played without goal posts at Capelli Sport Stadium because someone had stolen the uprights.

   Somewhat literally, the solution to the predicament has turned out to be half-assed. I saw video of this weekend's game between Batavia and Rochester Wilson at the same facility, and the "new" uprights appear to be slightly less than half the regulation height.

   That would be par for the course for the formerly prosperous city of Rochester.

   Mixed competition, mixed verdicts: Two Long Island boys were denied turned down in bids to compete in high school gymnastics this season because the they are considered too good to compete on the girls teams.

   Newsday reported sophomores Liam Summers of Connetquot and Christian Berbert of Commack were turned down under the state's mixed competition rules prohibiting a boy from competing in a girls sport if he has too great a competitive advantage, according to Section 11 Executive Director Tom Combs.

   Boys gymnastics was discontinued on Long Island in 2003 because of declining participation. Summers competed on the varsity team last season and qualified for the state championships as an alternate; Berbert did not compete as a freshman due to an injury.

   If a boy or girl wants to play a sport that is not available to them, they can apply to compete in the comparable sport for the other gender under the mixed competition rules, but only after being approved by their school, league and section.

   The issue most commonly arises in volleyball and field hockey, and approvals for boys have been rare in the past five years. However, Section 11 approved gymnasts Michael Minichini of Lindenhurst and Sean Fitzpatrick of West Babylon this year, and a male gymnast in Section 5 is in at least his second year of being allowed to compete.

   "We have to follow the guidelines, which requires us to examine adverse effect on the opposite sex," Combs told the paper. "When you qualify for a state tournament, your skill level is greater than other girls and you are displacing another girl from competing in the states."


  
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