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Thursday, April 16, 2020: All-state boys basketball for Classes B, C, D

   Leading off today: Three senior guards have earned player of the year honors on the New York State Sportswriters Association all-state team for boys basketball's small-school classes.

   Ahkee Anderson of Center Moriches was selected the top player in Class B, Tyler Hind of Randolph took the honor in Class C and Jonah McDonald of Chateaugay was selected in Class D.

   Anderson was a first-team selection in Class C last season when he played for Greenport. The rest of the 2020 Class B first team consists of Aidan Macauley (Lowville), Brett Rumpel (Binghamton Seton Catholic), Scott Woodring (Waverly), Ahzariah Douglas (Uncommon Charter), and Max Ragusa (Poly Prep).

   Randolph's Hind is a repeat selection on the Class C first team. He's joined on the 2020 first team by Jourdan Belcher (Alexander Hamilton), Jordyn Lanaux (Herkimer), Vin Molisani (Caledonia-Mumford), Jarmond Jones (Buffalo Middle College), and Braden Swan (Moriah).

   Isaiah Wilson (Lyme), Cameron Barmore (Panama), and Diego Castellot are repeat first-team picks in Class D. They're joined by Mason Putnam (Prattsburgh) and Andrew Pelkey (Schroon Lake).

   The full all-state team for Classes B, C, and D have been posted online.

   The boys all-state teams in Classes AA and A will be released next week, and the girls all-state basketball team will be announced later this month.

   It's not looking good: Gov. Andrew Cuomo has already closed schools in New York until April 29. It's hard to look at the daily death tolls, particularly downstate, and be optimistic that any schools will be opening before mid-May -- if at all this spring.

   Still, there is the possibility that we could have some sort of spring sports season, even if the competition doesn't culminate in state championships. That became a bit more plausible with an announcement last week.

School, sectional and state administrators have always been reluctant to even consider the possibility of playing games or conducting meets after the state of final exams. The announcement last week that June's Regents exams were being canceled takes some of that concern off the table. There's no flexibility in Regents exams -- every school administers each exam at the exact same time -- but school exams can be made up if extenuating circumstances exist.

   With that in mind, people have been asking just how far the spring sports season could be extended to allow teams to play a reasonable number of regular-season games and hopefully participate in a sectional championship -- even a limited one.

   The Journal News tackled the topic in a recent story., looking at the issue through the eyes of athletes.


   More deaths to report: Last week's blog noted the deaths of several coaches and other athletic figures, some due to the coronavirus pandemic. This week brought news of more deaths.

   Former Iona Prep baseball coach Fred Gallo died Friday at the age of 79 due to complications from COVID-19.

   "No matter how many stories and people he touched, he was even bigger than that," said Bob Caputo, his longtime assistant coach. "He had a persona that carried a room, carried a field, and carried a league. ... Even those who coached against him. There's very few people who have anything bad to say. They all loved him."

   Gallo retired from coaching in 2012 after 30 seasons on the job. The CHSAA Hall of Famer compiled a 537-263 record and guided Iona Prep to a pair of CHSAA titles.

    • Longtime Wantagh football defensive coordinator Tony Carter died Tuesday from complications of COVID-19, his family said. He was 57.

   "I can't help but think about a beautiful Jackie Robinson quote that sums up Tony's life perfectly," Roosevelt coach Joe Vito said. "'A life is not important except in the impact it has on other lives.' That will be Tony's legacy."

   Carter, who was hospitalized March 28, was the Wantagh defensive coordinator for 18 seasons.

   An interesting change: The Stony Brook School will accept post-grad applications for the first time in the school's 98-year history for the upcoming school year, Newsday reported.

   The decision was influenced by the NCAA's ruling that granted spring athletes an additional year of eligibility after the COVID-19 outbreak. Stony Brook officials said that decision is throwing off recruiting cycles for high school upperclassmen.

   "Futures that were so clear a month ago are murkier now as student-athletes are faced with lost roster spots and diminished scholarship offers due to the current crisis," said Dan Hickey, AD of the Suffolk County school.

   Hickey said the idea of accepting post-grads had already been discussed in recent years.

   "We want to provide another option for Long Island and New York City families, who have an uncertain landing spot after graduation. Our robust academic program and flexible league affiliations afford us the agility to pivot quickly to accepting post-graduate students," he said.

   Stony Brook played in Section 11 and the NYSPHSAA from 1974-2018, at which time the school affiliated with the Private Schools Athletic Association. It competes statewide in the NYSAIS.

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