Ron Moshier - Sports

Monday, December 29, 2008

Moshier: Guerin got start in Utica

If you remember the Utica Devils, who used to call the Utica Memorial Auditorium home when they were the old American Hockey League affiliate of the NHL’s New Jersey Devils, you must remember Bill Guerin.


Way back when, Guerin was a fifth-round draft pick who got his start in Utica, a skillful forward with just the right amount of grit and grind. In two AHL seasons (1991-92 and 1992-93) in Utica, he played in only 40 games and had 23 goals and 17 assists. More than that, though, his style of play left a lasting impression. He made a name for himself here, and he’s made a name for himself in the National Hockey League.


Last Friday night, Guerin scored twice to help the New York Islanders end a 10-game winless streak with a 4-1 victory over Toronto. Those two scores gave the 38-year-old right winger exactly 400 goals in his NHL career. He became the 79th NHL player, and just the eighth U.S.-born player, to score 400 goals.


A 6-foot-2, 220-pound native of Wilbraham, Mass., Guerin has played for the Islanders, Devils, Oilers, Bruins, Stars, Blues and Sharks. He’s a four-time NHL all-star – he was the MVP of the 2001 all-star game – he won a Stanley Cup with the Devils in 1995, he won a World Cup in 1996, and he helped Team USA win a silver medal at the 2002 Winter Olympics.


And as brief as his AHL stay here was, it must have been time well spent. Thanks for the memories, Bill Guerin.







Saturday, December 20, 2008

Moshier: Area wrestlers excel

Whitesboro High School hosted the Tri Valley Tournament on Saturday, and five area wrestlers won individual titles and Holland Patent’s Golden Knights placed second in the 18-team field.


Dylan Kavanaugh (96 pounds) and Dan Walts (119) of Vernon-Verona-Sherrill, Mike Sardo (103) of Whitesboro, Ryan LeBlanc (160) of Morrisville-Eaton, and Dan Fruscella (189) of Holland Patent were weight-class winners. Fruscella decisioned Morrisville-Eaton’s Alex Meyers 4-2 in the 189-pound final.


Tyler Mann (171) and Glenn Garrett (285) were also finalists for runner-up Holland Patent.


Monday, December 15, 2008

Moshier: Whitesboro's Schoen staying put

The questions had to be asked.


Long-time Whitesboro High School football coach Tom Schoen wasted no time answering both of them.


Schoen has been the Warriors’ head coach for 35 seasons. Was this his last? Not a chance. No way. You can bet Schoen and his assistants, Jack Silvestri and Joe Nassif, don’t want to go out like this – with a 4-5 record and an early exit from the Section III Class A playoffs.


Schoen, one of the section’s winningest coaches at 201-108-4, certainly wasn’t happy with the way his 35th season ended, but he most certainly will be back, trying to help the Warriors make the Section III playoffs for a 19th straight year.


Oh yeah, the other question that needed to be asked, another one the coach answered without hesitation: When was the last time one of his Whitesboro teams finished a season with a losing record? That would be 26 years ago, back in 1982 when the Warriors went 2-5-1.


This year’s 4-5 finish, of course, included nonleague losses to two Class AA teams (Rome Free Academy and Section IV champion Binghamton) that at the time were ranked in the state. Ask Schoen, though, and he’ll tell you a loss is a loss. No excuses.


Winning has been the football way at Whitesboro, and you can bet Tom Schoen and his Warriors will return next season, with a vengeance.


Friday, December 12, 2008

Moshier: Bulldogs look like contenders

There’s a lot to like about this year’s Westmoreland boys basketball team.


Coach Jim Sojda’s Bulldogs, now 5-0 after Friday night’s 63-56 win at Oriskany, have a little bit of everything going for them, and together, perhaps enough to challenge defending Section III Class C champion West Canada Valley for Center State Conference Division III honors.


That will be a tall order, but Westmoreland has a point guard with vision in T.J. Losowski, scorers in Kyle Eisnor and Taylor Brockway, and a rugged post player in 6-foot-4 junior Danny DeCarlo.


Against Oriskany, the Bulldogs also played a long and very active 1-2-2 zone led up top by Eisnor and wingmen Brockway and Losowski. DeCarlo isn’t alone in the paint, either. Jason Colburn is 6-2 and Jake Lyman is 6-1.


Westmoreland can score and defend, both inside and out. Soon, we’ll see if that’s enough to contend with West Canada Valley and Hamilton in the race for the CSC Division III title. It’s early, but it looks like they can. How well the Bulldogs handle full-court pressure – something Oriskany didn’t try – may be the key down the road, when they face West Canada Valley and Hamilton.



Saturday, December 6, 2008

Moshier: VVS-Notre Dame on tap Tuesday

Were Notre Dame High School’s Jugglers simply looking past Whitesboro, and ahead to Tuesday night’s home game against unbeaten Vernon-Verona-Sherrill, when they lost to the Warriors 96-90 in double-overtime Friday night?


“I don’t know,” said Notre Dame coach Mike Durr. “We’re going to find out.”


Tuesday’s Tri Valley League matchup, no doubt, will be a good one, featuring two of Central New York’s best players in Notre Dame junior Pat Moore and VVS senior Evan Croll. Moore has scored 33 and 42 points in his first two games, and Croll has scored at least 20 points in all four of the Red Devils’ games this season.


VVS and head coach Al Knapp might want to make it a more deliberate, half-court game that might favor the Red Devils and their 6-foot-10 center, Adam Kemp. Notre Dame might want to pressure the ball and quicken the pace.


The outcome may very well be decided by the backcourt play of Notre Dame’s Matt Petrone and Jerrell Hunter and Vernon-Verona-Sherrill’s Croll and point-guard Jeremy Roden. Foul trouble plagued Notre Dame in its loss at Whitesboro on Friday night, and Roden and Croll will be difficult to handle if the Jugglers play man-to-man.


We shall see!

Tuesday, December 2, 2008

Ron Moshier: Good riddance, Plaxico

True blue New York Giants fans have had enough of wide receiver Plaxico Burress. Farewell, Super Bowl hero. Have a nice life.


You were good here, while it lasted. Against all odds, you helped us win it all. But as good as you are from the neck down, you won’t be missed. We were fortunate enough to get what we got out of you, before your character – or lack thereof – threatened to undermine all that is good about our team.


You thought you were above your teammates, and they’ve gone out and proven you wrong. Apparently, you thought you were above the law, too. Wrong again.






Ron Moshier: Jugglers' Moore at his best

Notre Dame High School junior forward Pat Moore just might be the best basketball player in the area. He looked like it Tuesday night, when he made his first 11 shots, including a 3-pointer, and scored a career-high 33 points as the Jugglers opened their season with an 87-54 Tri Valley League win over New Hartford.


The 6-foot-5 Moore, considered by many an NCAA Division I prospect, finished 13-for-15 from the floor. He also grabbed eight rebounds and handed out six assists.


Senior swingman Jerrell Hunter (12 points, 8 rebounds, 6 assists) also looked good for the Jugglers, who Friday travel to Whitesboro, then return to Michael Walsh Gym next Tuesday for an early-season showdown with perennial TVL West powerhouse Vernon-Verona-Sherrill.