SULLIVAN COUNTY, NY — As winter sports approach their midway point, certain athletes and teams are surging to the forefront. With the exception of Division IV boys basketball, which has already been clinched by James I. O’Neill (9-0, 4-0 OCIAA) by dint of their season-sweeping 62-40 win over Sullivan West, the other division races and bids for sectional contention in boys basketball are still up for grabs. A number of Sullivan County teams still have their hats in the ring as they continue to evince records of at least .500 overall in league play.
Sullivan West (4-2, 2-2 OCIAA) can clinch a sectional berth with a league win over Liberty (2-7, 0-3 OCIAA). In Division III, Monticello (5-5, 2-2 OCIAA) is on track to return to sectionals with either two more league wins or three more overall. The Monties rode the heroics of senior Latique Liles, who hit a half-court buzzer beater to ice a 51-48 win over league rival Goshen. Meanwhile in Division V, Tri-Valley (6-3, 3-1 OCIAA) needs just one more league win to make it to the postseason dance. They downed Tuxedo 72-63 before losing an overtime cliffhanger to S.S. Seward in a battle of league unbeatens by the score of 54-49. Fallsburg (5-2, 2-2) also bested Tuxedo 58-46 in a league encounter. The Comets need three more wins to claim a sectional berth.
In Division VI, Eldred is still in the mix for a sectional berth despite a 2-8 overall record, as their 51-41 win over Roscoe brought their league mark to 2-2. Livingston Manor (3-4, 3-1) downed Family School 70-46 to clinch a berth in the Class D dance. Roscoe (4-4, 2-2) needs one more league win to make the grade. They downed Manor this past week by the score of 56-43.
In girls basketball, Tri-Valley (7-3, 3-1 OCIAA) downed Division V foes Tuxedo and S.S. Seward by the scores of 53-35 and 60-39 respectively. T-V junior Katlynn Greffrath broke Amanda Krom’s 2004 school record of six three-point shots with seven from downtown, including four in a row in the fourth quarter. Greffrath posted 26 points in the win and earned the nickname of KGVII from this writer, making her as famous locally as Robert Griffin III (RGIII), who was playing for the Washington Redskins this season. Monticello (5-3, 1-2 OCIAA) won’t win the Division III title but is just three wins shy of a sectional berth. The Lady Monties lost to Goshen 48-36, and fell to Cornwall 56-30 in league clashes this past week. Eldred (3-5, 2-2 OCIAA) needs another league win to qualify for sectionals. The Lady Yellow Jackets downed Chapel Field 35-22 to help their cause. They lost a non-league game to S.S. Seward by the score of 45-42. Sadly, Sullivan West (1-8, 0-3) won’t be invited to this year’s ball as it continued its struggles losing to Liberty 40-34. Livingston Manor (1-4, 1-0 OCIAA) defeated Chapel Field 37-18 to keep their bid for a berth alive.
In indoor track, a number of Sullivan County athletes are in the vanguard in Section IX in their respective events. They include the following. (This writer’s sojourn to West Point this week should provide a bevy of great action photos and the latest times, distances, records etc.)
Boys leaders (number in parenthesis signifies current rank in Section IX): 55H—Mitch Paciga, (10) Sullivan West, Jr., 8.64; 1600—Reed Scott, (8) Sullivan West, Sr., 4:46.84; 3200—Alex Campanella, (1) Eldred, Sr., 9:56.54; Reed Scott, (2) Sullivan West, Sr., 10:00.24; 1600 Relay—Port Jervis, (7) 3:52.94; Tri-Valley (9) 3:55:74; High jump—Paciga (5) 6-1; Shot put—Aric Boyes (2) Tri-Valley, Sr., 47-0; Kyle Burkey (10) Tri-Valley, Sr., 40-8.25; Weight throw—Boyes (2) 58-5.
Girls leaders: 55H—Mareena Dimilia (3) Tri-Valley, Sr., 9.04; 1500—Autumn Bender (9) Tri-Valley, Fr., 5:10.25; 3000—Bender (7) 10:57.87; 1500 racewalk—Brooke Gillette (3) Tri-Valley, Jr., 8:23.74; Mary Alongi (8) Tri-Valley, Jr., 8:40.54; 3200 Relay—Tri-Valley (10) 11:07.67; High jump—Katlynn Greffath (8) Tri-Valley, Jr., 4-8; Long jump—Greffrath (9) 15-1.5; Dimilia (10) 14-11.5; Triple jump—Hannah Feinman (11) Sullivan West, Sr., 30-4.5; Shot put—DiMilia (2) 37-3; Claire Tierney (9) Tri-Valley, Jr., 28-6.5; Weight throw—DiMilia (2) 41-0.5; Shannon Smith (2) Tri-Valley, Sr., 37-4.5; Sarah Coney (5) Tri-Valley, Sr., 31-9.5; Claire Tierney (7) Tri-Valley, Jr., 28-8.75.