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Saturday, Sept. 28, 2019: Southwestern's Caulcrick to exit after Friday's game

   Leading off today: We've become accustomed to high school coaches departing in mid-season for a variety of reasons, usually related to illness, losing records or disgruntled parents involving their team.

   You don't often see it happen with a team ranked third in the state in Class C with a 4-0 record and a 173-16 scoring margin on the football field because the coach has landed a new job outside the education field.

   But that's what has happened at Southwestern in Section 6, where coach Jehuu Caulcrick has resigned to take a position with a Michigan manufacturer.

   Jehuu Caulcrick, who took over the program in 2015, will step down after Friday's homecoming game vs. Lackawanna, the school district announced Saturday. He has accepted a job with the National Football League/Xenith in Detroit to research and develop the safety of player equipment.

   Assistant coach Jake Burkholder will replace him on an interim basis.

   "It's definitely tough. It's emotional," Caulcrick told The Post-Journal on Saturday after breaking the news to his players. "The timing definitely (stinks). We have something special going here and we're going to continue to have something going. We have a great staff who is going to pick up the slack. It's rough right now, but we'll get through this."

   The Trojans were coming off a 42-0 win over Fredonia on Friday, improving the former all-state running back's record on the sideline to 31-11 with three straight appearances in the Section 6 finals.

   "We appreciate the commitment Coach Caulcrick has given to our students, school and community," district Superintendent Maureen Donahue said in a statement. "We have full confidence that Coach Burkholder will continue a strong program."

   After his stellar career at Clymer that included 6,559 rushing yards and 100 touchdowns, Caulcrick went on to play at Michigan State. He signed with the NFL's New York Jets as an undrafted free agent in 2008. He inherited the Southwestern job after Jay Sirianni stepped down with a 101-26 record and two NYSPHSAA titles.

   Boys soccer: Hamburg goalkeeper Nate Neudeck earned his 27th career shutout in an 8-0 win over East Aurora. Brady Reinagel paced the offense with two goals and three assists as Hamburg improved to 9-1-0 overall.

    • Ali Alomari scored his 31st and 32nd goals of the season for Lackawanna in a 4-0 victory over Springville. Lackawanna improved to 10-1-0.

   Merger possibility back in play: The schools already combine forces in several sports, and now the Clymer school board has submitted letters of interest to Sherman and Panama regarding the possibility of sharing services and potentially merging. A merger study was previously held between Clymer and Panama in 2017.

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   "After a number of studies and internal analysis, we are not financially sustainable," Clymer board President Ed Mulkearn said at a special meeting Sept. 17. "Without program and staff cuts we cannot go for more than three years without another large tax increase."

   District voters approved a 9 percent tax levy increase last spring for the 2019-20 school budget. Voters previously rejected proposed budgets calling for a 13 percent increase a month prior.

   Clymer Superintendent Ed Bailey has announced his last day will by Monday. Principal Corey Markham and board member Amanda Stapels have also recently announced their departures.

   Not enough players: Honeoye and Naples in Section 5's Finger Lakes League will not field girls varsity basketball teams in the upcoming season because of a lack of available players, The Daily Messenger reported.

   There are just 10 girls in Honeoye's senior class of 37 students. The news is a bit more encouraging in subsequent graduating classes.

   Extra points: St. Francis has introduced alumnus Kevin Rautenstrauch as its new boys lacrosse coach. The former All-WNY midfielder was a member of two Monsignor Martin champion teams and went on to captain the football and lacrosse squads at Union College.

   He inherits a team that finished 3-14 last season.

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