Leading off today:
Only two seniors are among the seven girls selected as state softball players of the year by the New York State Sportswriters and Coaches Organization for Girls Sports.
The organization released its 29th annual all-state team on Monday.
The senior is Ichabod Crane pitcher Calista Phippen, who led her team to the NYSPHSAA Class B championship this month and was selected as Gatorade's New York player of the year for the second season in a row. Phippen finished the year with a 22-1 record and 0.09 earned-run average, allowing 23 hits and striking out 357 batters in 148 innings.
She made the NYSSCOGS first team for the fourth consecutive season.
Senior Emily Hess of Maine-Endwell pulled down her second straight Class A player of the year award. Hess led the Spartans to a third straight NYSPHSAA title, throwing a three-hitter and hitting a go-ahead two-run homer in M-E's 8-0 victory over Iroquois in the final. She finished 2017 with 34 consecutive scoreless innings.
The Class AA player of the year is Victor sophomore pitcher Katie Sidare, who completed a stellar season with a pair of wins on the final day of the season as the Blue Devils won the New York State Public High School Class AA championship.
The only non-pitcher selected as player of the year is Lancaster St. Mary's sophomore catcher Maggie Kellner, who shared the Class C recognition with Chautauqua Lake junior pitcher Olivia Anderson.
Anderson, a fifth-year varsity player struck out 179 batters and posted a 1.50 ERA. At the plate, she hit for a .458 batting average.
Class D also has co-recipients -- junior pitchers Kayla Bailey of Fort Ann and Makenzie Stiles of Deposit.
Bailey outdueled Stiles in the NYSPHSAA championship game, pulling out a 4-3 win to cap a day in which she threw 289 pitches over 17 innings of work. Stiles has been the Class D player of the year, outright or as a co-recipient, four consecutive seasons.
The complete NYSSCOGS all-state team is available in our reference section.
More postseason honors news: Perry Novak has agreed to take on the chore of assembling the all-state baseball team and has begun reaching out to his network of helpers.
I will be emailing a separate set of helpers tonight to begin work on the second annual boys lacrosse all-state team and also inquire as to whether we can get enough cooperation to finally start up a girls all-state team in the sport.
Whatever we come up with for baseball and lacrosse should be announced by mid-July. By popular demand, we will be moving up the announcement date of the 10th annual Kerr Cup All-Sport Championship by around three weeks in order to get that out the door by the end of this month.