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Scholastic Roundup: For the Clippers, it was thisclose

March 17, 2023 Andy Furman
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The Xaverian High School varsity basketball girls entered the GCHSAA Tier 1 city championships as the No. 3 seed – and proceeded to defeat St. Francis Prep after a first-round bye.

The semi-final with Christ the King was a three-point victory for the Clippers and then defending city champion — and No. 1-ranked Msgr. Scanlon High School from The Bronx – was the test for the title.

Xaverian fell 62-46, but the bright spots were senior guard and co-captain Kara Wehner scoring a team-high 14 points, with four assists. Senior forward Charlotte Mitchell had eight points and eight rebounds.

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Mitchell was the winner of the GCHSAA John Moran Sportsmanship Award.

Sophomore forward Alexandra Carbonaro had seven points and six rebounds; and sophomore guard and GCHSAA All-League pick Grace Lanier had five points, five rebounds, three assists and two steals.

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Callie Mullin, a freshman guard and niece of former NBA and St. John’s University star Chris Mullin – and daughter of former St. John’s guard Terence Mullin added 12 points and three rebounds in a reserve role.

Coach Mark Spelman – Xaverian ’92 – will lose only two seniors – Wehner and Mitchell.

The Xaverian ice hockey team skated to their second consecutive City Championship with a 5-1 win over Stepinac in the best of three series. Chris Astorino, C.J. DiAgostino, Alan Litovsky, Jake Giordano and Andrew Migliore all scored while Liam Conry was outstanding in goal.

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Ketsia Athias led Iona College in rebounds-per-game (8.2) and assists-per-game and was  second on the team in scoring average (12.1) – and helped the No. 14-seeded Gaels gain a spot in the NCAA Tournament.

The James Madison High grad earned All-MAAC distinction for the  (26-6, 18-2 MAAC) Gaels who will be playing the No. 3 seeded Duke Blue Devils in the opening round in Durham, North Carolina tomorrow (Saturday, March 18th) 9:30 pm ESPN2. The winner of the contest will face the winner of No. 6 Colorado vs. No. 11 Middle Tennessee State, scheduled for a 7 p.m. tip-off Saturday.

Athias led the MAAC in blocked shots (46) and registered double-digit points in 18 contests while posting seven double-doubles. She scored a season-high 22 points twice and posted new career highs in rebounds (17 vs. Niagara) and assists (nine vs. Rider and Canisius).

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Mergin Sina, a 6-8 forward from Bishop Loughlin who played two seasons with the University of Rhode Island (1987-89)  — he averaged 8.7 points and 6.7 rebounds-per-game – was recently inducted into the school’s Hall of Fame. He is the current head coach of the Gill St. Bernard’s School, Peapack-Gladstone, N.J.

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The final day of the 2023 National Invitational Championship Swim Meet saw Brooklyn’s Brian Baldwin (Xavier High School) – join with Chase Bateman, Mikel Palaj and Michael Faughnan combine for 32nd place at 3:04.95.

Former Bishop Ford, and later St. John’s University standout Julian Champagnie signed a two-way contract with the San Antonio Spurs after the team claimed him on waivers. Previously, he was with the Philadelphia 76ers.

Former Tilden High basketball coach Jeff Schrier asks: “Is it me, or o stere something amiss when the Big East final pits schools from Ohio and Wisconsin against each other?”

Marquette (Wisconsin) met Xavier (Ohio) in the finals – with Marquette the winner. “I long for St. John’s vs. Syracuse or Georgetown vs. Villanova once more,” he said. “Where are Looie vs. Boeheim? Rollie vs. Big John?”

Schrier was most recently bench coach for Ameriprise’s 70-plus senior softball team in the East Coast Tourney (Pompano Beach, Fla.). “We went 6-0,” he said, “coming from behind in the last two games against two other undefeated teams and won our division.”

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Nana Samake, a Medgar-Evers College freshman earned an All-Star distinction (women’s indoor track and field) while also being selected to the Sportsmanship team. She was timed in 2:45.54 in the 800-meters. Head Coach Alphonso Dance says Samake – a dual-sport athlete—is the cornerstone for our women’s team. The outdoor season gets underway, Saturday, March 25th.

Nine student-athletes from Medgar-Evers were named to the City University of New York Athletic Conference (CUNYAC) 2022 Fall Scholar-Athlete Honor Roll. They are: Men’s Soccer Taye Simon, Hamou Soumare, and James Hyacinthe, Women’s Soccer KLIA Mckenzlie, Kelis Pearsall and Sheriann Jones, Women’s Volleyball Djemilie Jabouin and Jacqueline Council and Women’s Cross Country Te’Mia Durand.

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Brooklyn College’s softball team was picked to finish fifth in this year’s preseason (CUNYAC) coaches’ poll. Hunter was picked to repeat as conference champs followed by Baruch, John Jay and Lehman. The Bulldogs begin conference play April 7th against last year’s CUNYAC runner-up John Jay.

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Twelve different players recorded base hits for the St. Joseph’s University Brooklyn softball team – with four registering multi-hit games as the Bears topped Crown College, 11-10 Saturday.
Arianna Heinsch (Fontbonne Hall Academy) scored in the first inning after singling and stealing third base.

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Sophomore center Sarah Bandoma of the St. Francis College Brooklyn women’s basketball team was named to the Northeast Conference All-Tournament Team after Sunday’s conclusion of the tournament finals. In two contests, Bandoma delivered the best offensive performances of her career. Against Wagner in the quarterfinals, she scored 12 points on perfect six-for-six shooting from the field, adding seven rebounds and a block. Against FDU, she scored a career-high 15 points. Her two performances put her over 200 rebounds on the season and her field-goal percentage climbed to nearly 50% for the 2022-23 campaign.

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Lluna Katz scored seven goals, but LIU women’s lacrosse team fell to Bryant 20-14 at Bethpage Federal Credit Union Stadium, Saturday. Katz’s total was the highest output by an LIU student-athlete in a Division I game since Jenn Peters had eight goals against Campbell on March 14, 2015. Julia Trainor and Olivia Fantigrossi contributed two goals apiece. She was named NEC’s Co-Player of the Week, along with Lydia Werlau from Sacred Heart.

Mark Regan’s scoring outburst helped lead LIU men’s lacrosse team to a win in Saturday’s MAAC opener against VMI. And he was named MAAC Offensive Player of the Week for his six goals, two assists, five ground balls and one caused turnover in the Sharks’ 14-13 win against the Keydets.

The six goals and eight points were career highs.

The LIU softball team capped its week-long stay in Florida with a one-hit shutout against Iona. Lindsey Cowan struck out 10 in a complete game as the Sharks defeated the Gaels, 4-0 at the Spring Games. Camryn Lyman went three-for-four with a pair of run-scoring hits in the win.

Anthony Vincent scored his team-leading 17th goal in LIU’s season finale hockey game against Arizona State. Vinnie Purpura was lights-out in the Sharks’ 2-1 overtime loss to the Sun Devils. The senior made 42 saves in his last game as a Shark. Adam Goodsir, Vincent, Austin Rook, Santeri Hartikinen and Purpura played their final game at LIU. Vincent finished the season with a team-high 37 points. LIU finished the season 13-22-1.

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Dianne Nolan who was hired as only he second women’s basketball coach for St. Francis College Brooklyn in 1974 has become a broadcaster.

She does radio for the Quinnipiac men and women’s basketball regular season, MAAC women’s tournament and Awards Show.

She got the biggest surprise of her life before the recent Quinnipiac-Marist game, when Marist retiring coach Brian Giorgis handed her a package.

“He (Giorgis) is a sports memorabilia collector,” Nolan told Scholastic Roundup, “and low and behold, the package contained a Howard Carmichael jersey and Jalen Hurts rookie card. He knows I’m a huge Eagles fan. I was touched by the heartfelt gift.”

Nolan finished her five-year coaching career at St. Francis with a record of 61-57 (.517). In 28 years as head coach at Fairfield (Conn.) University, she accumulated a program record 456 wins and led the Stags to four NCAA Tournament appearances. With Fairfield’s 69-53 victory at Rider on January 29, 2006, Nolan became the 28th coach in Division I history with 500 career wins. She’s a member of the Connecticut Women’s Basketball Hall of Fame, as well as the St. Francis College Hall, the Fairfield Hall and her alma mater Glassboro (NJ) State.

Andy Furman is a Fox Sports Radio national talk show host. Previously, he was a scholastic sports columnist for the Brooklyn Eagle. He may be reached at: [email protected] Twitter: @AndyFurmanFSR

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