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Phil Blackwell

Stories by Phil

McKenney offers statement on J-D dismissal

Former Red Rams basketball coach said he was given no reason for firing

Three days after being told that he would no longer coach the Jamesville-DeWitt boys basketball team, Bob McKenney offered up his side of the story and said he was given no reason for his dismissal after a 19-year tenure that included five state championships.

CBA releases spring sports schedule

Boys, girls lacrosse teams open next week

Christian Brothers Academy’s 2015 spring sports schedule, with all dates and times subject to change.

J-D announces spring sports schedule

Boys lacrosse team looks to return to state Class B final

Jamesville-DeWitt High School’s 2015 spring sports schedule, with all dates and times subject to change.

ESM releases spring sports schedule

Lacrosse starts pushed back by field issues

East Syracuse Minoa High School’s 2015 spring sports varsity schedule, with all dates and times subject to change.

F-M announces spring sports schedule

Hornets defend sectional Class A boys lacrosse title

Having reached the state Class A final a year ago, Fayetteville-Manlius begins its boys lacrosse season March 31 against Auburn and will face West Genesee April 7 and May 5. Here is the F-M varsity sports 2015 spring schedule, with all dates and times subject to change.

West Genesee announces spring sports schedule

Girls lacrosse team defends state Class A title

West Genesee High School’s 2015 spring sports schedule, with all dates and times subject to change.

Marcellus announces spring sports schedule

Boys, girls lacrosse Mustangs open this weekend

Marcellus High School’s 2015 spring sports schedule, with all dates and times subject to change.

Jordan-Elbridge releases spring sports schedule

Boys lacrosse Eagles open April 11 at General Brown

Jordan-Elbridge High School’s 2015 spring sports schedule, with all dates and times subject to change.

Bishop Ludden releases spring sports schedule

Baseball team moves into OHSL Liberty division

Bishop Ludden Junior/Senior High School’s 2015 spring sports schedule, with all dates and times subject to change.

Cazenovia announces spring sports schedule

Boys lacrosse Lakers face string of marquee opponents in 2015

Trying to return to the state Class C championship game, Cazenovia’s boys lacrosse team has ordered up a tough schedule that includes non-league games against long-time powers like West Genesee, Fayetteville-Manlius, Jamesville-DeWitt and Baldwinsville. Here is the 2015 spring sports varsity schedule, with all dates and times subject to change.

C-NS announces spring sports schedule

Lacrosse teams set to open late this week

Cicero-North Syracuse High School’s 2015 spring sports schedule, with all dates and times subject to change.

Liverpool announces spring sports schedule

Softball Warriors try to follow run to 2014 state AA final

Liverpool will try and see its softball team repeat its run to last year’s state Class AA championship game as its season starts April 1 against Fayetteville-Manlius, weather and conditions permitting. Here is the 2015 spring sports varsity schedule, with all dates and times subject to change.

B’ville announces spring sports schedule

Wilcox takes over as varsity boys lacrosse coach

After the exciting run of Baldwinsville’s ice hockey team to the state championship game, attention turns to spring sports, where the stories include Matt Wilcox taking over as boys varsity lacrosse coach after Jerry Fiorini’s retirement. Here is the 2015 spring sports varsity schedule, with all dates and times subject to change.

Skaneateles announces spring sports schedule

Girls lacrosse Lakers defend state Class C title

On March 31, the Skaneateles girls lacrosse team begins the defense of its state Class C title when it hosts Webster Thomas, the start of a schedule that includes 10 road games and plenty of top-flight opponents such as West Genesee, CBA, Cicero-North Syracuse, Garden City and Manhasset. Here is the 2015 varsity sports schedule, with all dates and times subject to change.

McKenney officially out as J-D basketball coach

Red Rams won five state Class A titles in McKenney's tenure

Bob McKenney, who coached Jamesville-DeWitt's boys basketball team to five state Class A championships and sent a steady stream of top players to Syracuse University and other destinations, will not return to the Red Rams for the 2015-16 season.

Red Rams fall again in state Class A final

Turnovers doom J-D in 48-39 defeat to Williamsville South

Twelve months later, the Jamesville-DeWitt girls basketball team again stood at the brink of history, poised to grab the first state championship in the program’s history. And once more, despite an all-out effort, the Red Rams’ dreams were dashed at the final hurdle.

Westhill boys basketball repeats as state Class B champs

Third-quarter surge pushes Warriors past Woodlands

Once again on a March Saturday evening in Glens Falls Civic Center, the Westhill boys basketball team lay claim to a state Class B championship - and make no mistake, the whole team won this.

Westhill boys blaze back to state title game

Roland scores 38 as Warriors beat rochester Leadership Academy

Few opponents have pushed the Westhill boys basketball team in the dominant two-year run it has put together. And whenever it has happened, Jordan Roland and his colleagues have shown that they know how to answer.

J-D girls roar back to state Class A final

Red Rams rout unbeaten Albertus Magnus in state semifinal

For the most part, defense is the main reason the Jamesville-DeWitt girls basketball team has strung together a run of Section III and regional Class A titles. So it's little surprise that defense was the main reason why the Red Rams have earned a second consecutive appearance in the state championship game.

Sindoni out as C-NS football coach

Northstars decide to make change at top after two seasons

An off-season full of coaching turnover in Section III football has spread to Cicero-North Syracuse, who again is searching for a new head coach. The district announced on Tuesday that it was not retaining Joe Sindoni, who had coached the Northstars in 2013 and 2014 and brought the program back to the sectional playoffs after a long absence.

Bees fall to McQuaid in state hockey final

Big second period pushes Knights to 6-2 win

Just as it had a decade earlier, the Baldwinsville ice hockey team had a single opponent in the way of an historic first state Division I championship. Just like in 2005, that foe was Rochester McQuaid. And just like that long-ago state final, the Knights dashed the Bees’ dreams, doing so this time by a 6-2 margin in Sunday’s state title game at Utica Memorial Auditorium, a game where, right from the opening whistle, McQuaid proved faster and more skilled than its B’ville counterparts.

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Skaneateles wins first state hockey title since 1989

Lakers rally past Williamsville East, 5-2, in state final

At approximately 2:18 p.m., the Lakers’ wait for a state title that dated back to 1989 officially ended. Helmets, gloves and sticks flew all over the ice, players piled on each other and a large contingent that had traveled from Skaneateles roared at a celebration long awaited.

Brothers reach regional final, fall to Scotia-Glenville

Albany-bound Cremo scores 39 against CBA

Ending a six-year Section III title drought was a task the Christian Brothers Academy boys basketball team could handle – but stopping a defending state champion sporting a 50-game win streak with a superstar having the most productive game of his high school career proved too much.

Roland, Reynolds lead Westhill to state final four

Warriors inch closer to third state title in six years

Passing through the regional portion of the state Class B tournament Saturday at Colgate University's Cotterell Court, perhaps the Westhill boys basketball team remembered how close it came to seeing its perfect 2013-14 season end in this same round in a tense overtime win over Walton, and wanted no part of any kind of tension this time around.

CBA/J-D hockey drops state semifinal to Sknaeateles

Penalties, late surge by Lakers leads to 4-3 defeat

A long, exhilarating odyssey that the CBA/Jamesville-DeWitt ice hockey team hoped would lead to a second state championship in three years ended on Saturday, and it came at the expense of an opponent it had spent the entire winter trying to subdue - but could not in their last and most important encounter.

Girls Warriors lose close Class B regional

Susquehanna Valley overcomes long drought, beats Westhill

Somewhere, the unlikely journey of the Westhill girls basketball team from young upstart to no. 8 seed to a first Section III Class B championship in 12 years was going to end. The Warriors just wished it had a few more chapters to author.

C-NS girls drop regional final to Bethlehem

Hot shooting from field, line end Northstars' season

It would take something exceptional to end Cicero-North Syracuse's run of Class AA girls basketball state final four appearances in Troy - and Bethlehem provided it. Hitting all kinds of big shots from the field and at the free-throw line down the stretch, the Section II champion Eagles defeated the Northstars 59-54 in Saturday's AA regional final at Colgate University's Cotterell Court.

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OT goal sends Bees into state hockey final

Pompo delivers game-winner in 2-1 win over Saratoga

Isaiah Pompo delivered one of the brightest moments in Baldwinsville ice hockey history and pushed his team to the brink of a state championship. With his goal just 33 seconds into overtime of Saturday night's Division I state semifinal at Utica Memorial Auditorium, Pompo pushed the Bees past Saratoga Springs 2-1 and set up Sunday's title game against Rochester McQuaid.

Hockey Lakers top CBA/J-D in state semis

Three goals in third period produce 4-3 win over Brothers

On the fourth try, and when it counted the most, the Skaneateles boys ice hockey team broke through against CBA/Jamesville-DeWitt and earned a chance a its first state championship since 1989. In Saturday morning’s state Division II semifinal at Utica Memorial Auditorium, the Lakers’ trio of third-period goals, two of them 31 seconds apart, was enough to beat the Brothers 4-3.

J-D girls basketball returns to state final four

Red Rams sweep Averill Park, Peru in regional round

Two wins this weekend at Hudson Valley Community College would earn the Jamesville-DeWitt girls basketball team a return ticket to Troy for a second consecutive crack at the state Class A final four - and it got both of them.

J-D's McKenney subject of possible ouster

Coach has led Red Rams to five state Class A championships

As of Wednesday night, the future of Jamesville-DeWitt’s well-regarded and highly-decorated boys basketball coach, Bob McKenney, remained up in the air.

Smith rises to third at state bowling tournament

Chittenango star puts together 1,214 series at Strike-N-Spare

All through the post-season, Chittenango girls bowler Casey Smith showed that she was able to maintain a top form even under the highest amount of pressure. And Smith did so again on Sunday, pulling off the best finish of any Section III individual as she took third place in the sectional team portion of the New York State Public High School Athletic Association championship tournament at Strike-N-Spare Lanes in Mattydale.

Akinpelu, Basla, Norris share state indoor title

Liverpool, C-NS runners help win distance medley relay

Liverpool and Cicero-North Syracuse brought more than a dozen of their top indoor track and field athletes to Cornell University’s Barton Hall to participate in last Saturday’s New York State Public High School Athletic Association championship meet.

C-NS’s Cloute bowls in state tournament

Section III team finishes sixth; Cloute has high game of 219

Many times this winter, Cicero-North Syracuse’s Josh Cloute had bowled at Strike-N-Spare Lanes, including the Dec. 23 match where he notched a 300 game against Syracuse. But no appearance at Strike-N-Spare compared in importance with Cloute taking part in Sunday’s New York State Public High School Athletic Association tournament, where tough competition, and tough condition, was the order of the day.

Barber third in 1,000 at state indoor meet

ESM's Marra, CBA's Schug also have top-10 finishes

Just six days after getting nationwide exposure on NBC’s “Today Show”, Fayetteville-Manlius runners were back in the business of trying to win championships.

B’ville’s Watchus bowls in state tournament

Top-20 finish caps stellar season for Bees' bowler

A month after his tremendous regular season ended, Baldwinsville boys bowler Tyler Watchus received his reward by competing in the New York State Public High School Athletic Association championship tournament at Strike-N-Spare Lanes in Mattydale.

Indoor track Lakers vie for state meet honors

Boys 4x200 relay team gets sixth-place finish

Two of the Skaneateles indoor track and field team’s relay teams would go up against the best competition of the winter during last Saturday’s New York State Public High School Athletic Association championship meet at Cornell University’s Barton Hall.

Gugel earns victory at state indoor track meet

J-E junior part of Section III distance medley relay win

Jordan-Elbridge junior Abby Gugel can now call herself a state champion. That’s because Gugel was part of the Section III quartet that prevailed in the distance medley relay during last Saturday’s New York State Public High School Athletic Association championship meet at Cornell University’s Barton Hall.

Brothers rip J-D, get first title in six years

CBA takes advantage of Red Rams lineup without DeRegis

Championship ceremonies are part of the post-season routine and ritual, but the Christian Brothers Academy boys basketball team were quite eager to pick up the banner symbolic of earning the Section III Class B title Sunday night at SRC Arena, and for good reason.

Warriors prevail, Ludden falls in sectional finals

Westhill handles SAS; Gaelic Knights stopped by Henninger

Westhill and Bishop Ludden’s boys basketball teams each took separate Section III championship streaks into Sunday’s title games at SRC Arena, but only the Warriors emerged with its streak intact.

CBA/J-D hockey handles Victor in regionals

Brothers meet Skaneateles again in state semifinals

For a few fleeting moments amid the sold-out din of Onondaga Nation Arena on Saturday night, a terrible thought may have crept through the collective minds of players, coaches and fans of the CBA/Jamesville-DeWitt ice hockey team.

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B'ville hockey battles way to state Frozen Four

Bees get past Ithaca 2-1 in regional final

A first-ever Section III Division I championship is nice - but the Baldwinsville ice hockey team knows that a first-ever state championship, if accomplished next weekend at Utica Memorial Auditorium, would be a whole lot nicer.

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Lakers top Pelham, reach state Frozen Four

Skaneateles plays CBA/J-D for fourth time in state semis

Whatever disappointment the Skaneateles boys ice hockey team may have felt leaving Utica's Memorial Auditorium in the wake of its 4-0 defeat to CBA/Jamesville-DeWitt in the Section III Division II final on Feb. 28 was tempered by the knowledge that, if things went as planned, it would not be the last time the Lakers and Brothers would see each other this winter.

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C-NS girls basketball sets sectional record

Northstars beat RFA for seventh straight AA championship

Having already achieved plenty of special feats in the last half-dozen years, the Cicero-North Syracuse girls basketball team now stands alone in a different way. When the Northstars rolled past Rome Free Academy 55-27 Saturday night in the Section III Class AA final Onondaga Community College's SRC Arena, it became the first program, regardless of class, to claim seven consecutive girls basketball sectional titles.

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J-D girls hoops earn fourth straight sectional crown

Defense, timely plays push Rams past Whitesboro again

Jamesville-DeWitt and Whitesboro's girls basketball teams have made post-season meetings an annual event - and recently, that's meant the Red Rams finishing the night with another Section III Class A championship in its possession.

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Westhill girls end 12-year wait for sectional title

Comeback leads to OT victory over South Jefferson

Sure, it took a late-game comeback and yes, it was accomplished by a roster lacking any seniors in its starting five, but the facts are the same - for the first time since 2003, the Westhill girls basketball team has a Section III Class B championship in its possession.

Neidl steps down as Cazenovia football coach

In 25 years, Lakers won 15 league, seven sectional titles

Year after year, as his Cazenovia varsity football teams piled up league and Section III titles, Tom Neidl said that the program's continuity was a primary source of its success, with few changes in staff over the course of a quarter-century. Now, though, it's Neidl himself who is exiting the scene.

J-D, CBA hoops set up sectional finals showdown

Red Rams beat top seed Carthage; Brothers handle Whitesboro

For all of the fun times the Jamesville-DeWitt and Christian Brothers Academy boys basketball teams have shared on the court in the last decade or so, they've never faced each other with a Section III championship at stake, largely because they were placed in separate classes once tournament time rolled around.

Ludden, Westhill reach sectional hoops finals

Gaelic Knights rally for OT win; Warriors whip Cazenovia

In order to still have a chance at maintaining their respective Section III championship win streaks, the Bishop Ludden and Westhill boys basketball teams had to go through very different experiences in their respective semifinal games on Sunday at Onondaga Community College.

Lakers handled by Westhill in Class B semis

Defending state, Federation champs pull away from Caz

What the Cazenovia boys basketball team found out was that having a terrific 2014-15 season was both great and terrible at the same time. The fun was in building up a 16-5 record and advancing to the Section III Class B semifinals. The misfortune was that it came at the same time that Westhill was making a historic run at back-to-back state and Federation championships.

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