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Friday, Feb. 22, 2019: Pelham pulls out win with two goals in final minute

   Leading off today: Pelham scored two power-play goals in the final 26.5 seconds -- the winning goal coming with less than a second to play -- and defeated Rye 4-3 in the Section 1 Division II boys hockey semifinals Thursday.

   Sophomore Michael Mitrione's second goal of the game tied the score with :26.5 to go, then freshman Henry Smith shoved the winner home through the pads of goalie Anabelle Thomas just before time expired. Both tallies came off turnovers deep in Rye territory after Rye had missed an open net that could have sealed the game.

   "It's probably the toughest loss I've ever been part of," Rye coach Peter Thomas said.

   Chris Myers put the Garnets up 3-2 with 6:01 to play, but the Garnets took a four-minute major for boarding with 3:17 left to put Pelham on the power play for the rest of the game.

   "That penalty gave us momentum," Smith said. "Obviously, it was up and down for both sides. But we capitalized on (the penalty) and we're still standing."

   What a doubleheader: For pure entertainment value in boys basketball, I'm not sure anything else that happens this season will be a match for the Monsignor Martin semifinals Thursday.

   After trailing throughout all of regulation, Park School pulled out a 62-55 win over St. Joseph's in overtime. That was followed by Canisius going three overtimes against St. Francis before walking away with a 70-66 win to advance to Tuesday's title game.

   Keonjay Carter scored half of his 12 points in overtime, while sophomore classmate Caleb Hutchins hit Park's only 3-pointer for the game during extra period. Seniors Noah Hutchins (24 points) and Quentin Nnagbo combined for 42 points in the win.

   "We really had to and did step up," Pioneers coach Rich Jacob said. "St. Joe's came out on fire and got us in a hole. We dug out of that hole and now we have a chance to play for the championship."

   In the nightcap at the Koessler Athletic Center, Dewayne Vass led Canisius with 28 points.

   The Crusaders trailed by 11 at halftime but forced overtime. Lucas Theisen (22 points) gave the Raiders a 54-53 lead with :03.9 left in the first OT. Teammate Jack Bickerstaff then stole the inbounds pass, and was fouled with :01.6 to go, but St. Francis was hit with a technical foul when a reserve player celebrated on the floor.    Bickerstaff missed both of his free throws before Canisius' Vass went 1-for-2 to tie.

   Theisen's basket late in the second overtime tied the game at 62 but Canisius took the lead for good on Joe Ingrando's 3-pointer with 3:09 left in the third overtime.


   More basketball: Xaverian pulled out a 59-57 win over Christ the King in the Brooklyn/Queens sectional semifinals behind a balanced scoring attack. Isaiah Amazon scored 12 points and Michael Graham added 10 in the win.

   Mousa Cisse, Christ the King's 6-foot-11 sophomore, scored 19 points in his return from an injury.

   Half a hundred for Pfeiffer: Sara Pfeiffer went off for 21 second-quarter points on her way to 50 for the night as Olean rolled past Dunkirk 84-54 in the Section 6 girls Class B-1 quarterfinals.

   The senior guard's huge quarter stretched a 22-16 lead to a 47-29 advantage at the half.

   It was the eighth 40-plus-point game this season for Pfeiffer, who is averaging 35.8-points per game.

   Girls basketball notes: Highland point guard Brianna Rozzi recently broke a 35-year-old record when she became the leading scorer in the history of the Ulster County Athletic League and Mid-Hudson Athletic League.

   Rozzi is at 1,842 career points heading into Tuesday's Section 9 Class B quarterfinals against Marlboro.

   Court sides with wrestler: A State Supreme Court ruling Wednesday has allowed Rocky Point senior Kristopher Ketchum to continue his pursuit of a state wrestling champ- ionship.

   State Supreme Court Justice Michael Gajdos made his ruling affirming an appellate panel's decision Wednesday during an emergency hearing in Riverhead.

   Ketchum was penalized for flagrant misconduct during a Jan. 17 match and was given a state-mandated one-match suspension that would have prevented him from participating in the Suffolk County qualifier for the state tournament on Feb. 2. But a court granted a stay that allowed Ketchum to continue competing, and he eventually earned an at-large berth in the NYSPHSAA Division I tournament's 145-pound class.

   Ketchum was subsequently declared ineligible for the tournament by New York State Public High School Athletic Association Executive Director Robert Zayas, who said Ketchum "has not served the prescribed penalty" for his disqualification, Newsday reported.

   Gajdos' decision derailed that, and the NYSPHSAA tournament committee re-seeded the bracket Thursday to add Ketchum as the No. 6 seed. The development changed all of the first-round pairings for the start of competition Friday in Albany.

   Zayas told the paper the NYSPHSAA will appeal Gajdos' decision even though that could take months to decide and will have no effect on Ketchum's participation this weekend. Zayas said it's important to protect against a potential courtroom precedent that encourages other suspended athletes to go to court.

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