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Friday, Oct. 20, 2017: Center Moriches soccer team gets a reprieve

   Leading off today: Center Moriches' girls soccer team has been cleared to play in the postseason following a successful appeal to Section 11, Newsday reported Thursday.

   The section had disqualified the Red Devils last week because they had scheduled 17 regular-season games, one over the maximum allowed by the NYSPHSAA. The appeal was heard by school administrators from Section 11, and no grounds were given for the reversal, the paper reported.

   Playoff pairings were announced Friday, with Center Moriches seeded third and scheduled to take on Mattituck for the right to meet Babylon in the title game. Center Moriches plays in Class B.

   No way to appeal: While Center Moriches got an unfavorable ruling overturned, the suspension of General Brown junior running back and linebacker Tre Coney for this weekend's football quarterfinals will have to stand because there's no way to appeal his ejection from a game last weekend.

   Coney was ejected for targeting the kick returner on a punt during the 54-21 win at Holland Patent. The trouble is that video clearly shows Coney was hit from behind, in effect launching him into the Holland Patent player.

   However, as Section 3 Executive Director John Rathbun pointed out, there is no provision in state rules for appealing the call.

   "The only appeal that we would entertain is if a player is misidentified on an ejection," he told "So if, say, No. 85 is kicked out of a game and it should have been No. 86, then the school district can correct that. But all other ejections are final and not appealable. It's a state rule. We're just following the rules that are set in place."

   Big night: Ryan Gernatt rushed for 428 yards and five touchdowns as Gowanda scored a 47-26 win over Eden/North Collins in a Section 6 consolation-pool football game.

   Football features: Here are a couple of stories you don't stumble across very often in the world of high school football:

    • Jake LaFountain is in the running for two Section 2 team championships in the coming weeks. The Mechanicville sophomore plays for the soccer and football teams. The soccer team is ranked 19th in the state in Class B this week and the football squad is 13th in Class C.

   "We can use every guy we can get out here. Sharing him, it works," football coach Craig Cavotta told The Times Union.

   LaFountain has made all seven of his field-goal attempts this season with a long of 41 yards. He's a reserve of the soccer team. This weekend, the football team takes on Chatham on Friday and the soccer team plays Catskill.

    • Girls playing football isn't new to New York, but you don't get many of them playing offensive line.

   Junior Gina Deleonardis is a reserve on the Longwood varsity and gets on the field for the occasional play. She was awarded the team's "hard hat" award for her work two weeks ago.


   "My first play in, I pancaked a kid right into the ground,” Deleonardis told Newsday. "I'm probably the most nervous person on this team, honestly. I get judged and some people love me, but I don't always know what my coaches think or what the players think, so I just don't want to disappoint my family or myself. I just want to do the best I can."

   Deleonardis started in the sport at the age of 7 and played two JV seasons for Longwood.

   "Her work ethic is second to none," Longwood coach Jeff football site

Cipp said. "She's a great person to have, she's great in the locker room, she's always positive, she's always upbeat. She's a pleasure to have on the team."

   Soccer developments: Lackawanna, ranked seventh the state in boys Class B soccer, remains alive in the Section 6 tournament, but it took a pair of successful penalty kicks -- including one in overtime -- by Ali Alomari for the Steelers to knock off Tonawanda.

   Notes from earlier in the week:

    • On Wednesday, Kenmore West elimi- nated Class A No. 11 Williamsville East 2-1 on two goals by Alex Fusani.

    • Camden made program history by beating Chittenango 2-0 in Class B for its first boys Section 3 soccer tournament victory ever. Goalie Josh Leos made 12 saves, including a stop on a penalty kick.

   Meanwhile, Beaver River, which has been playing boys soccer since 2000, won its first home sectional game by downing Bishop Grimes 3-1.

   Milestone: Fillmore boys soccer coach Jamie Mullen picked up career win No. 400 this week when the Eagles blanked Kendall 4-0 in the Section 5 tournament. Ethan Valentine scored twice and Johan Rust made four saves for the shutout.

   College commitments: Shenendehowa senior Hannah Reale, a NYSPHSAA champion in the 800 meters last spring, has committed to the University of Wisconsin. Reale has already qualified for Nike Cross Nationals twice and was seventh in the Federation cross country championships in 2016.

    • Emily Engstler of St. Francis Prep, a sixth-team all-state pick in Class AA as a junior forward, will continue her college basketball career at Syracuse after also considering Miami and Ohio State.

   Coaching change: Fifth-year Wellsville football coach Wayne Stonemetz resigned for personal reasons Wednesday night and will be replaced by defensive coordinator Frank Brown for the Lions' games in the Section 5 consolation pool.

   Brown was 24-24 as the head coach from 2008-12, leading the team to a sectional championship in 2011.

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