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Saturday, Dec. 23, 2017: Kennedy Catholic girls knock off No. 2 Msgr. Scanlan

   Leading off today: Vanessa Duarte scored 35 points and helped rally Kennedy Catholic past Monsignor Scanlan 72-69 in girls basketball Friday.

   Scanlan began the week ranked second in the state in Class A.

   Duarte made 10 3-pointers for Kennedy, which rallied from a 40-25 halftime deficit. She also had four steals.

   Alexis Suarez added 20 points and nine rebounds, and Lisa Cristiano has 13 points and 10 rebounds for the winners.

   Monster numbers: Gowanda guard Nate Brawdy rolled up 43 points, 31 rebounds and eight assists in a 74-53 victory against Royalton-Hartland.

   "It blew my mind when I got the numbers after the game," coach Andy Bobseine told The Buffalo News. "It was incredible and it was consistent for 32 minutes."

   On the move: Junior Phil Joseph, a 6-foot-7 wing who's apparently getting some Division I interest, has left the Christ the King boys basketball team and resurfaced at South Shore in the PSAL, where former Royals teammate Chris Brizan, a senior, has also recently landed.

   Earlier this month, Christ the King lost junior Jaylen Davis to Cardozo, another PSAL school.

   More basketball: I was out of commission for part of the week, so I don't get the opportunity to mention some noteworthy developments on and off the court:

    • Sidney boys coach Mike Brazee collected his 400th career win with a 69-25 victory against Harpursville.

    • Joe Girard III scored 46 points in a 74-73 loss to Scotia-Glenville, moving him past Jimmer Fredette on the all-time boys scoring list at Glens Falls. Girard has 2,449 career points through six games of his junior season and is averaging 48.7 points per game this season.

    • Lake George junior center Graceann Bennett had 22 points and 31 rebounds in a 67-39 girls victory over North Warren.

    • Phoenix upset Class B No. 10 Bishop Grimes 48-43 on Thursday behind guard Samantha Doupe's 18 points.

    • Iona Prep senior guard Bryce Wills committed to Stanford on Wednesday, a day after posting a triple-double (11 points, 10 rebounds, 10 assists) against St. Raymond's.

    • Her dad, then an assistant coach, famously broke off a job interview at the University of Rochester in 1976 upon learning Roy Danforth had just resigned as the Syracuse men's basketball coach. On Friday, daughter and Jamesville-DeWitt senior Jamie Boeheim, fifth-team all-state a season ago, said on social media she will enroll at UR in the fall.

   More reading: My weekly column on recaps the most significant big-picture developments in New York high school sports for 2017.

   New Jersey rumblings: Two bills winding their way through the New Jersey state legislature would allow public high schools in the same district to enter into cooperative programs if the schools are unable to field individual varsity teams.


   This issue surfaced last spring with an inquiry about combining the football teams at West Windsor-Plainsboro North and South. At the time, the New Jersey State Interscholastic Athletic Association had a rule prohibiting schools that were a Group 3 or Group 4 from combining for football.

   That bylaw was recently modified in an NJSIAA vote to allow larger schools to combine for football, but with certain restrictions, including playoff ineligibility and a limitation on duration.

   Not surprisingly, there is resistance to the idea of allowing big schools to join forces.

   Also under consideration:

    • Allowing students at a non-public school to compete at the public school in their district if that sport is not offered.

    • Allowing home-schooled students to compete for their local school, as long as they provide proof of residency.

   The leadership of the NJSIAA is opposed to all of the proposed changes.

   "The legislature needs to slow this down and discuss this matter with high school athletic directors and superintendents," Northern Highlands AD Bob Williams said. “The unintended consequences could have a significant negative impact on New Jersey high school sports. There is no need to rush these proposals through."

   Opinion: I'm pretty sure New Jersey's elected statewide officials suck every bit as much as their New York counterparts, whom I wouldn't trust with any decision more important than picking the flavor of pudding served in their own cafeteria.

   The idea of elected officials micro-managing high school sports is horrifying. About the only good idea in the proposals noted above is the one that would set an expiration date on combined teams.

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