Lockport Union-Sun & Journal Online

January 2, 2014

Beileinmania

US&J Year End Part II

By John D'Onofrio
Lockport Union-Sun & Journal

LOCKPORT —

Newfane native John Beilein made a lot of stops en route to his 2013 destiny in Atlanta — and his close-knit family and friends were there with him every step of the way.
After successful coaching stints at Newfane, Erie Community College, Nazareth, LeMoyne, Canisius, Richmond and West Virginia, Beilein entered into new territory at Michigan in early April, leading the Wolverines to the NCAA’s “Final Four.”
His Wolverines secretary in Ann Arbor, Mich. was inundated throughout Final Four week with so many Lockport-area family members calling about tickets, she reportedly asked the coach, “And exactly how many brothers and sisters do you have?”
The Wolverines eventually lost to Louisville in a heartbreaker in the national championship game, but the postseason run cemented Beilein as one of the game’s great tacticians.
Beilein’s historic run to the NCAA finals is the Union-Sun & Journal’s Local Sports Story of the Year for 2013.
Michigan advanced to the prestigious Final Four — Beilein’s first as a men’s college basketball head coach — by defeating Florida, 79-59, in Arlington, Texas. Several members of the Beilein family were there, including John’s roommate of 18 years growing up in Newfane, his brother, Joe Beilein, of St. Louis.
Driving hundreds of miles and back to one of John’s games is quite normal, after all, his sister Molly told the US&J, last April. More than half of the sports-crazed Beilein-Niland family of Western New York traveled to Atlanta for the NCAA tournament semifinal and final.
Michigan defeated Syracuse, 61-56, to advance to the finals against Louisville. The Cardinals beat Michigan, 82-76, in the championship game.
Here’s a look back on the second half of the last year in local sports. Part I was published on Monday:
JULY
1 — Head coach Scott Reddinger’s LHS boys varsity lacrosse team are winners of the New York State Scholar Athlete Team Award.
2 — The Buffalo Sabres select Finish defenseman Rasmus Ristolainen with their first pick — eighth overall — in the NHL Draft. With the 16th pick overall, the Sabres select Russian-born blueliner Nikita Zadorov.
3 — The 2013 Erie Barge Canal Fishing Derby opens on canal waters between Albion and the Tonawandas. The Buffalo Sabres waive forward Nathan Gerbe. Bill Quade aces the 145-yard No. 6 hole at the Lockport Town & Country Club.
4 — Sanborn’s Chad Brachmann takes the top spot away from Dale Planck of Homer on lap 5 and never looks back, winning the $5,000, 75-lap “Battle of the Border” at Ransomville Speedway. Pendleton’s Lucas Smith is the early adult sheephead class leader in the Erie Canal Fishing Derby.
5 — Lockport’s Jeff Kinney and Gasport’s George Frombgen each catch tagged fish in  the Erie Barge Canal Fishing Derby. Both earn $150 in fishing merchandise. Lockport’s Jonah Shufelt is the Northern Pike adult class leader in the derby.
6 — Marion Bartoli of France wins the women’s singles title at Wimbledon. The Buffalo Bisons have gone 19-30 since May 16. The easier your golf swing, the better you play says local golf columnist Ken Ruggiero.
7 — The Buffalo Sabres reacquire defenseman Henrik Tallinder from the New Jersey Devils for prospect Riley Boychuk. Andy Murray breaks a 77-year-old British drought by winning the men’s singles title at Wimbledon.
8 — Mike Sanford claims five wins and adds both the high single scratch of 49 and the high, five-game handicap of 412 to spark the Barker Ringers to a 22.5-7.5 victory over the Moose Club II, topping Lockport Horseshoe League action at Outwater Park.
9 — Middleport’s Jacob Velesko leads the carp division in the Erie Canal Fishing Derby. Lockport’s Jonathan Frey is the walleye division leader. Defensemen Chris Chelios, Scott Niedermayer and forward Brendan Shanahan are among five elected the NHL Hall of Fame.
10 — Lockport’s James Chambers and Khari Demos, Barker/Roy-Hart’s Tucker Ruhlen and Clayton Smith, Newfane’s Connor Sears, Starpoint’s Stephen Wilde and Wilson’s Justin Slango are selected to compete July 31 in the 38th annual Kensington Lions Club All-Star Football Classic in Orchard Park.
11 — Tom Carlin aces the 145-yard No. 6 hole at the Lockport Town & Country Club. Carson Tatro, Colin Fragale, Cody Landry and Frankie Pellicano combine to strike out 14, sparking the Blue Rocks to an 18-0 victory over the Jet Hawks in An-Jo Baseball League action. Tonawanda’s Emma Sexton catches the Erie Canal Fishing Derby’s third tagged fish.
12 — Former Major League Baseball player Bernie Carbo gives kids baseball tips at Veterans Park in Medina. Lockport’s Camron Rossow is the new adult sheephead class leader in the Erie Canal Fishing Derby.
13 — Adult Division winners in the Erie Canal Fishing Derby are Grand Island’s Codie Thomas (catfish), Tonawanda’s Joe Henneberger (carp), Niagara Falls’ Jason Whitmer (bullhead), North Tonawanda’s Shawn Krull (bass), Middleport’s Jacob Velesko (sheephead), NT’s Duane Brosius (Northern Pike) and Lockport’s Tyler Caltagirone (walleye).
14 — Kids Division winners in the Erie Canal Fishing Derby are Lockport’s’ Sara Caltagirone (catfish), Lockport’s Colby Lawrence (carp), North Tonawanda’s Adam DiNardo (bullhead), Buffalo’s Kaevon Rollins (bass), Albion’s Tim Drake (sheephead) and NT’s Haylee Brosius (Northern Pike).
15 — Lockport athletics director Patrick M. Burke announces teams and dates for Lockport’s two biggest basketball tournaments of the 2013-14 school year. Lockport, St. Joe’s, International Prep and Williamsville East will compete in the Rotary Club Boys Tip-Off Tournament Dec. 5-7 at LHS, while Lockport, Olean, Cardinal O’Hara and Nardin will compete in the Kiwanis Girls Tournament Feb. 13-15 at LHS.
16 — Oak Run member Larry Rinaldo records a hole-in-one at Oak Run. Using an 8-iron, Rinaldo aces the 153-yard No. 11 hole. Witnesses are Nick Benedetti, Ed Spoth and Paul Hayden. Reliever Mariano Rivera of the New York Yankees is named MVP of the 2013 MLB All-Star Game in New York City.
17 — Retired Newfane elementary school principal Tommy Hicks is inducted into the Bare Knuckles Hall of Fame in Belfast. Veteran Spartans head coach Brian Lasher hosts a cross country camp at Starpoint.
18 — Brian Fry smacks a triple, leading the Nationals past New Era Gold, 12-3 in the title game of the 2013 New Era Classic Baseball Tournament in Lockport. Matthew Flatau smacks a pair of two-baggers to pace the Lugnuts past the Clippers, 5-2, in An-Jo Baseball League action.
19 — The Buffalo Sabres will open their 2013-14 NHL season at Detroit on Oct. 2, according to the league slate released today. The Sabres’ home opener is Oct. 4 against Ottawa. The regular season concludes league-wide on April 13, with the playoffs beginning three days later.
20 — The Buffalo Bills will play in just one of the 51 NFL games not slated for the traditional Sunday afternoon time slot. Buffalo plays at Cleveland on Thursday, Oct. 3. Phil Mickelson wins the 2013 British Open in dramatic, comeback fashion at Muirfield.
21 — Jason Whitmer of Niagara Falls is the winner of a new fishing boat and trailer at the 2013 Erie Canal Fishing Derby Awards Banquet at the Gasport Fire Hall. Sanborn’s Colby Lawrence wins a new canal trail bike.
22 — Newfane native John Beilein is given a contract extension as men’s basketball head coach at Michigan. Beilein, 60, will earn $2.45 million a year.
23 — The city’s annual flag football league is slated to start next month at Altro Park on Willow Street, according to commissioner Doug Rehm of Lockport.
24 — New England Patriots tight end Aaron Hernandez is charged with murder and is held without bail in Bristol, Mass. He is accused of slaying Odin Lloyd, 27, a semi-pro football player whose body was found June 17 in an industrial park near Hernandez’ home.
25 — Tyler Dunlap of Texas and Justin Shin of Hamilton, Ontario, Canada, share the second round lead at the 2013 Porter Cup Golf Tournament in Lewiston.
26 — Golf columnist Ken Ruggiero discusses the history of the Porter Cup Golf Tournament in Lewiston. Professional greats including Tiger Woods and Phil Mickelson have played in the annual amateur tournament at the Niagara Falls Country Club.
27 — Taylor Pendrith of Richmond Hill, Ontario, Canada, wins the 55th Porter Cup Golf Tournament. The Buffalo Bills are set to open training camp in Pittsford without safety Jairus Byrd.
28 — The Buffalo Bills say that the quarterbacking job is up in the air as training camp opens in Pittsford. Just hours before camp opens today at St. John Fisher College, Buffalo signs offensive linemen Antoine Caldwell and Tony Hilts.
29 — Bryan Schubring announces a number of upcoming fall youth sports programs at the Lockport Family YMCA, including Little Champs, Shooting Stars Basketball, Start Smart Flag Football and Youth Fitness. Frankie Pellicano and Noah Hardy each smack a triple and a double in the Blue Rocks’ 12-5 win over the Sky Sox in An-Jo Baseball action.
30 — Don Gibb cards a 38 to earn low gross honors in the Reid’s Two-Man Golf League at Oak Run. Duke Wellington and Frank Nerone share individual low net honors with cards of 33. Class winners in the Lockport Town & Country Club’s 9-Holers event are Molly Case (A-3), Amanda Treharne (B-0); and Ida Quade (C-4).
31 — The An-Jo Baseball League welcomes a special guest to its New Era Cap Classic Baseball Tournament — Niagara County Sheriff James Voutour. New York Yankees slugger Alex Rodriguez is looking at a long suspension for alleged PED use.
AUGUST
1 — Members of Advanced Tech, winners of the Lockport Little League Junior Division playoffs, are Vinnie Lombardo, Matt McAuley, Will Carey, Kyle Jurek, Cono Sammarco, Josh Sherman, Al Kramp, Jay Rodrigues, Sawyer Stapleton, Luke Lawrence, Matt Borel, Trevor Tomtishen and Phil Lange. The champs were coached by Cono Sammarco, assisted by Dan Stapleton.
2 — A foursome of retired Lockport teachers, Mike Finn, Joe Whalen, Wayne Ginty and Alex Mastroianni, place first in the Oak Flight in a Four-Man Team Tournament at Oak Run. Dominic Schiavitti drives in Julia Flynn with the winning run in the bottom of the final inning to lead the Squirrels past the Rattlers, 3-2, in An-Jo Baseball action.
3 — The Buffalo Bills announce that quarterback Kevin Kolb hurt his knee on a slippery and wet rubber mat. Kolb is listed as “day to day.” Mike Nickeas smacks a two-run home run in the bottom of the ninth inning to spark the Buffalo Bisons past the Pawtucket Red Sox, 5-3, at Coca-Cola Field in Buffalo.
4 — Buffalo Bills rookie quarterback EJ Manuel has a poor outing in his first official scrimmage with the Bills, tossing two interceptions. The Bills, meanwhile, announce that they’ve signed another Syracuse product, tight end Nick Provo, who was cut by the Baltimore Ravens last year.
5 — The Buffalo Sabres re-sign forward Corey Tropp to a one-year contract. The wide receivers coach of the Kansas City Chiefs is former Buffalo Bills great Andre Reed. John Godfrey reminds interested players that it’s not too late to sign up for the Lockport Little League’s fall baseball season.
6 — Newfane athletics director Douglas Ames announces that a Parents/Coaches Night is slated this week at the Newfane Middle School. Newfane fall varsity coaches include Chuck Nagel (football), Robert Roach (boys soccer), Catherine Stedman (field hockey), Karen Fawcett (girls volleyball), Mike Heitzenrater (cross country) and Ames (golf).
7 — Members of the Lockport Thunder, champions of the Buffalo and Western New York Indoor Soccer League’s A Division, are Michael Molinaro, Nino Coltello, Brady Hildreth, Joseph Blackley, Vincent Harrer, Trevor Heschke, Kyle DiNicolantonio, Clayton Keyes, Owen White, Reilly Boyer, Aidan Bligh, Trent Smith and Hunter Coakley. The Thunder are coached by Anthony Molinaro and John Boyer.
8 — Members of the historic Lockport Softball and Old Timers Fast Pitch associations announce that they’re planning a special get-together on Oct. 18 at the Elks Club on North Canal Road. Local darts enthusiast Cliff Carlson wins five games to spark the Ski Lodge over Standish Jones, 20.5-9.5, topping Lockport Horseshoe League action at Outewater Park.
9 — Members of the Wilson Yankees, winners of the 2013 Wheatfield League’s 9-11-year-old softball championship are Stephanie Woolson, Melena Amoia, Faith Herlan, Samantha Ellis, Isabella Schultz, Anna Meyers, Jennifer Reagan, Emaleigh Herlan, Catherine Clark, Lyndsey Pawlak, Grace Covatta, Shayna Rutty, Tony Pawlak and Julie Reagan. Coaches are Pete Reagan, Roger Clark, Shannon Rutty and Rich Meyers.
10 — Dennis Covell posts both the individual low gross (36) and low net (29) in the Reid’s Two-Man Golf League at Oak Run. Noah Hardy has four hits to pace the Blue Rocks over the Lockouts, 13-1, topping An-Jo Baseball League action.
11 — Buffalo rookie quarterback Jeff Tuel throws for 200-plus yards as the Bills open their preseason slate on the road with a 44-20 win over the Indianapolis Colts. NASCAR Sprint Cup driver Kyle Busch wins for the first time at Watkins Glen.
12 — Members of the Blue Jays, undefeated (15-0) champs of the Lockport Little League’s Major Division, are Colin Snyder, Christian Hallman, Dylan Fitch, Josh Gill, Kyle Hinkley, Zach Burdick, Garrett Srock, Garot Conklin, Alex D’Anniballe, Jack Capen, Jake Walters and Will Gross.
13 — Newfane’s Trevor Moreland, the son of Pam and Scott “Dutch” Moreland, wins the 14-Under boys division at the 2013 Lockport Tennis Tournament. The Superwomen, Carissa DiTullio, Angela Sammarco, Hannah Lawrence and Jordyn Kwoka, win the Harbor Hoops 15-16-year-old girls bracket at Clark’s Park in Wilson.
14 — Members of the Somerset 16-Under softball team, undefeated champions, are Sarah Mason, Brooke Bodine, Kylie Miller, Erika Moeller, Caitlyn Mason, Chelsea Stratton, Ann Buffington, Destinee Hillman, Sabrina Harris and Mary Rounds. The head coach is Bill Moeller, assisted by Shannon McCracken.
15 — Al VanDeMark and Norm Emerling win the Lockport Town & Country Club’s Men’s Tuesday League championship. Bobby Love and Mike Berhow are five-game winners in Week 10 action of the Lockport Horseshoe League. Buffalo Bills running back C.J. Spiller says his goal is gaining 2,000 yards this season.
16 — Members of the Wilson Fireballs, winners of the Harbor Hoops’ Girls 10-Under Division, are Jennifer Reagan, Megan Mussell, Lilly O’Lay and Kenzie Beyer. Balls Deep wins the Boys 17-18 title, with Dan Bronson, Colin Dougherty, Tyler English and Moziah Townsend. The Bills improve to 2-0 in preseason with a 20-16 win over the Minnesota Vikings at the Ralph.
17 — Ransomville’s Erick Rudolph picks up the most memorable win of his career at Ransomville Speedway by taking the checkered flag in the 29th Alex Friesen Summer Nationals.
18 —  Former Bills Fred Smerlas and Joe Cribbs will come to Lockport next month to sign autographs as part of a fundraiser sponsored by the Niagara County Deputy Sheriff’s Association Dispatchers Union.
19 — Maureen Mahaney wins the LT&CC’s 9-Holers Club Championship. Buffalo Bills rookie quarterback EJ Manuel has minor knee surgery and will miss the remainder of the preseason, rookie head coach Doug Marone announces.
20 — The foursome of Doug Rademaker of Lockport, Sharon (Budde) Lamb of Barker; and Rick and Bev Rodgers of Middleport wins the 2013 The Graney Memorial Golf Tournament at the Niagara-Orleans Country Cub in Middleport. St. Anthony’s wins the 2013 An-Jo All-Star game.
21 — Lockport High School senior and UB-bound Charlie Sobieraski is a member of the Empire State Elite 16-Under baseball team. Jeff Wilhelm claims another Willowbrook Men’s Golf Club Championship.
22 — Peg Morgan wins the 2013 Lockport Town & Country Club Women’s Golf Club Championship with a two-day total of 189. Rick Neumann cards a 38 to earn low gross honors in the Reid’s Two-Man Golf League at Oak Run.
23 — Torree Cheatham finishes with 75 yards and two touchdowns to spark the Lockport Raiders over the Lockport Renegades, 20-6, in the first-ever Lockport Little Loop Football inter-organizational Alumni Bowl at Exchange Club Field, Outwater Park. Cheatham is the Offensive MVP and Santino Drake is the Defensive MVP.
24 — Chicago Blackhawks player and South Buffalo native Patrick Kane is a special guest at the Niagara Falls Air Force Base and brings another special guest with him — the Stanley Cup. The visiting Buffalo Bills drop to 2-1 in preseason with a 30-7 loss to the Washington Redskins.
25 — Lockport High School’s first and second singles players this fall, Kathryn Krawczyk and Delaney Portka, are pictured in head coach John Beatty’s 2013 season preview. The Bills sign free agent quarterback Matt Leinart.
26 — Captains of the Lockport High School boys varsity soccer team are Chris MacDonald, Luke Sciandra, Bailey Reid, Nicholas Deuil and Joshua Beshaw, who will miss the season with a torn ACL. Japan beats California, 6-4, to claim the 2013 Little League World Series in Williamsport, Pa.
27 — John Anderson wins the Boys 15-17 Division, carding a 73 in the 2013 Niagara County Lions Clubs Junior Golf Tournament at Oak Run. Other winners are Victoria Grant (girls 15-17), Nick Peters (bots 12-14), Paige Emborsky (girls 12-14), Alexis Morreale (girls 9-11) and Ian Wagner (boys 9-11).
28 — Senior members of the 2013 LHS girls varsity soccer team are Lauren Edbauer, Elizabeth Finnerty, Jill Golding, Michelle Hamilton, Rachel Herbst, Kasey Johnston, Kayla LaForest, Gabby Rose and Allison Sakowski. The defending Niagara Frontier League champions are coached by Mike Finnerty.
29 — Lockport’s promising boys varsity volleyball team, under veteran head coach Joe Whalen, also features an abundance of returning seniors in Ryan Guyton, Joel Larson, Shawn Moore, Bryce Perry, Jonah Ribbeck, John Traverson, Jack Whalen, Bryan Wojcinski, Jeff Wojcinski, Brad Wroblewski and Eamon Yates.
30 — The Larissa McKenna era is about to begin as the former Lockport swimmer and 2008 graduate takes over as the new head coach of the Lady Lions swim team. The girls’ junior varsity coach is another former LHS swimmer, Steve Kojsza. The Detroit Lions shred the Buffalo Bills in the preseason finale for both teams, 35-13, in Orchard Park.
31 — Local high school fall sports team in football, boys and girls soccer, girls tennis, girls swimming, field hockey and boys and girls volleyball are set to open their seasons next week. The Bills cut five players, including quarterback Thad Lewis, and sign center Eric Wood to a contract extension.
SEPTEMBER
1 — The Lockport football Lions opener this weekend against Starpoint is featured. It’s the sixth “rivalry” meeting between the neighboring school districts. The An-Jo Bombers 9-under baseball team is hosting tryouts.
2 — Jeremy Bari nets the game’s only goal as Niagara-Wheatfield shocks Lockport, 1-0, to open the 2013 NFL boys soccer season. Lockport teacher and veteran LHS junior varsity softball coach Fae Schielke aces the 147-yard No. 5 hole at the Niagara County Golf Course, using a 4-iron.
3 — Head coach Chuck Nagel’s Newfane football Panthers are set to open their season Friday night at Lackawanna. The Bills announce that rookie quarterback EJ Manuel will start this Sunday in Buffalo’s 2013 NFL opener against the New England Patriots.
4 — Ethan Harpst nets the game-winning overtime goal for the Newfane boys soccer team in a 4-3 victory over visiting Medina. Jordyn Kwoka records 13 assists, but Lockport drops its 2013 girls volleyball opener to Niagara-Wheatfield, 3-2. LHS junior Delaney Fragale is a winner at third singles and the Lady Lions also get a second doubles win from freshmen Maddie Stoness and Hayley Coakley, but lose their league opener to visiting Kenmore East, 3-2.
5 — Members of head coach Linea Fetzer’s undefeated Newfane U-12 girls soccer team are Madalyn Traverse, Emily Griffith, Lila Maurer, Erin Dunn, Lauren Boudeman, Grace Caltagirone, Kaitlyn Beiter, Macy White, Megan Knoll, Faith Morgan, Faith Westgate and Kristina Marinaccio.
6 — Gretta Dry nets her fifth and sixth goals of the season, sparking Lockport past Nichols, 3-2, in the opening round of the 2013 Lockport Soccer Tournament. Jill Golding also finds the net for the defending NFL-champion Lady Lions. Albion blanks Barker/Roy-Hart in their Section VI football opener, 32-0, under the lights at Bruno Pacini Field in Middleport.
7 — It’s a bittersweet football opener for Lockport. They beat Starpoint, 7-0, but lose senior quarterback Dan Bronson for the remainder of the season with a broken collarbone. Lockport’s Nigel Davis totals 218 yards and three TDs as St. Joe’s beats St. Anthony’s 20-14 in Catholic school grid action.
8 — A last-second field goal by Stephen Gostkowski lifts the New England Patriots over the Buffalo Bills, 23-21, in the NFL opener for both teams in Orchard Park. Lions Eamon Yates and Brad Schneider are named to the All-Tounament Team as Lockport captures first place at the North Tonawanda Boys Volleyball Tournament.
9 — Catching standout Jake Stern is named Most Valuable Player of the An-Jo Baseball League. Senior Kailyn Szymanski has 3 aces, 14 assists and 6 digs, leading visiting LHS past Niagara Falls in straight sets, topping NFL volleyball action. Stephanie Sherwood has 10 kills to lead the Newfane lady spikers past CSAT in straight sets.
10 — Head coach John Beatty’s LHS Lady net Lions improve to 2-1 in the league with a 4-1 victory over visiting Kenmore West. Delaney Portka and Delaney Fragale are singles winners. Seniors Brandi Condon and Morgan Haley earn the win at first doubles. Freshmen Hayley Coakley and Madeline Coakley are second doubles victors for the blue and gold.
11 — Gretta Dry nets a hat trick in Lockport’s 3-1 girls soccer win over visiting North Tonawanda. Eliza Schwab posts 21 service points to spark head coach Bill Holahan’s Roy-Hart Lady Rams over visiting Akron in straight sets, topping N-O girls volleyball action. Jay Buzak and Sam Murphy have two hits apiece as the DeSales JV Knights baseball team defeats Christ the King, 5-2.
12 — The Buffalo Sabres re-sign center Cody Hodgson to a six-year contract. Kristen Prohaska netts the lone goal for Starpoint in a 5-1 girls soccer loss to visiting Williamsville South.
13 — Nick Hamilton finishes with 91 yards and three TDs rushing while junior quarterback Tyler Fraass adds 126 yards and 2 TDs passing as visiting Lockport shocks Orchard Park, 33-27, topping Section VI Class AA football action. Lockport volleyball teams sweep Kenmore West.
14 — Daniel DiMillo and Chris MacDonald net goals for the Lockport soccer Lions in a 2-0 victory over Niagara Falls. Gretta Dry nets four goals and Jill Golding adds a pair in the Lady Lions’ 8-0 win over the Lady Wolverines.
15 — EJ Manuel’s 2-yard TD pass to Stevie Johnson with two seconds left in the game sparks the Bills past the visiting Carolina Panthers, 24-23. NCCC freshman Casey Domski pitches 2 1/3 scoreles innings of relief in the Thunderwolves’ 7-5 baseball victory over Canisius.
16 — Roserita DiMillo, Elizabeth Connolly and Katie Pollock are double individual winners in Lockport’s 108-65 girls swim victory over Niagara Falls. Among the pool officials is former Lockport YMCA swim coach Bill Natemeier. Torree Cheatham acores three rushing TDs to lead the Lockport Little Loop Football Raiders past the Tonawanda Braves, 36-13, in 120-pound division action.
17 — Kathryn Krawczyk earns a big win at first singles as the LHS Lady net Lions beat Niagara-Wheatfield for the first time in four years, 4-1. Brittany Sanford has 7 aces and 3 kills in Lockport’s 3-0 girls volleyball win over Grand Island.
18 — Alex Stoddard and Jesus Campos net two goals apiece in Roy-Hart’s 5-1 boys soccer win over CSAT. Niagara University Hall of Famer Dave Bunn rolls a 299 in the Nin Angelo Memorial League at Brad Angelo Lanes.
19 — Claire Puff has 5 kills, 12 digs and 10 aces to lead coach Karen Fawcett’s Lady Panthers past Akron 3-0, topping N-O girls volleyball action. Area football coaches and players mourn the death of Brocton player Damon Janes. Savannah Jonathan nets four goals in Newfane’s 7-0 girls soccer win over visiting CSAT.
20 — The Lockport Sports Hall of Fame inducts eight new people in ceremonies held at the Lockport Town & Country Cub. The Hall Class of 2013 is Harvey Mattes, William Judd, Dave Haley, Bob Brown, Tim Tolli, Calvin Shellman, Charlie Croff and Allison Depp. LHS student-athletes are gearing up for this weekend’s annual canned food drive.
21 — Frontier blanks Lockport, 21-0, in a Class AA football showdown at Max D. Lederer Field. Austin Bratek scores the lone touchdown for Starpoint in a 37-6 Class A loss to Sweet Home. Lockport Athletes Fight Against Hunger, collecting canned goods to replenish local soup kitchens. The group is under the direction of Lockport Athletics Director Patrick M. Burke.
22 — The Barker boys cross country team places first out of 25 Section II teams at the 2013 Queensbury Invitational. Sergio Cruz finishes 12th overall and Bryce Moeller is 15th. The Jets beat the Bills, 27-20, in New Jersey.
23 — Savannah Jonathan nets a pair of goals to lead the visiting New fane Lady Panthers past the Wilson Lakewomen, 3-2, topping N-O girls soccer competition. Starpoint’s Nick Dummond sets a Spartans boys soccer record with five points (2 goals, 3 assists) in a 7-1 ECIC II victory over visiting West Seneca East.
24 — Head coach Tim Daley’s Barker Raiders golf team sits at 10-0-1 in the Niagara-Orleans League.
25 — Lockport senior Hunter Sherman scores his third straight goal in two days, sparking head coach Jeff Hulshoff’s soccer Lions past Lewiston-Porter, 1-0, in overtime. LHS senior Bailey Reid makes 11 saves to earn the shutout.
26 — It was “a Whalen of a match” at Lockport High School, where the volleyball Lions defeated the visiting Niagara-Wheatfield Falcons in straight sets. Lockport’s head coach is Joe Whalen. Whalen’s son is Falcons head coach Kevin Whalen. Senior setter Jack Whalen, another of Joe’s sons, plays for the Lions.
27 — Head coach John Beatty’s impressive Lady net Lions (9-1 NFL) win their ninth straight match, 4-1, over visting Niagara Falls. The Royalton-Hartland Boosters, under the direction of Kevin Maynard, does a great job at the concession stand keeping everyone happy at football Homecoming at Bruno Pacini Field in Middleport. Visiting Maryvale beats Barker/Roy-Hart, 38-16.
28 — It’s a Home Sweet Homecoming for Niagara Falls in a 22-16 grid victory over Lockport at Sal Maglie Stadium in Niagara Falls. In Pendleton, Starpoint celebrates Homecoming with a 20-0 victory over Niagara-Wheatfield. Austin Bratek rushes for 83 yards and a touchdown on 24 carries for veteran head coach Al Cavagnaro’s Spartans.
29 — Joe Flacco tosses a career-worst five interceptions and the Buffalo Bills shock the Super Bowl-champion Baltimore Ravens, 23-20, in Orchard Park.
30 — Members of the NFL-champion Lockport Lions golf team are Dominick Morreale, Andrew Borek, J.J. Napoli, Paul DiNicolantonio, Jack Igoe, Joe Quirk, Patrick Sparks, Evan Williams, Zach Rhode and Zack Campfield. Thomas Vanek and Steve Ott will split duties as Sabres captains, the team announces.
OCTOBER
1 — Lockport freshman Adam Perilli and junior Abbey Lang are first place finishers for the LHS harriers in a sweep over Niagara-Wheatfield. Ethan Morgan tops all runners to spark Newfane’s boys cross country team past the Lakemen. Kelly Bochnewetch is first for the Lady Panthers in a sweep over Wilson.
2 — Donning pink uniforms to help promote breast cancer awareness, the Lockport Lady Lions volleyball team defeats Niagara Falls in straight sets, improving to 7-3 in the NFL. Brittany Sanford leads the blue and gold with 12 kills and 4 blocks. The Sabes drop their 2013-14 NHL opener, 2-1, at Detroit.
3 — Head coach Tim Daley’s Barker Raiders claim their third straight N-O golf title. Head coach John Beatty’s LHS Lady net Lions clinch the NFL title with a 3-2 win over runner-up North Tonawanda. In a Thursday night NFL “Battle of the back-up quarterbacks,” the Cleveland Browns defeat the Bills, 37-24. 
4 — Junior running back Austin Bratek and senior tight end Matt Wetzel score fourth quarter touchdowns for Starpoint in a 35-12 Class A football loss at North Tonawanda. Sophomores Jake Rice and Holden Howland score touchdowns for Wilson in a 28-14 loss at Tonawanda. The Sabres drop their 2013-14 home opener to Ottawa, 1-0.
5 — Senior Moziah Townsend hauls in a 15-yard TD pass from junior Tyler Fraass and senior Charlie Sobieraski catches a 41-yard TD pass from Fraass in a 31-21 Class AA football loss at previously winless Clarence. Injury-prone Bills’ rookie quarterback EJ Manuel will be sidelined another two weeks after injuring his knee against the Browns.
6 — LHS junior skyscraper Jason Donorovich is named MVP of the annual Lockport Boys Volleyball Tournament, won by head coach Joe Whalen’s Lions. Senior Hunter Sherman and sophomores Andrew Sakowski an Phil Sammarco score goals in a 3-1 boys soccer win over NT. The Bills re-sign their former punter Brian Moorman.
7 — With a sweep over visiting CSAT and Wilson, the Barker boys cross country team improves to 6-0 in the N-O, led by first-place finisher Sergio Cruz in 17:43. The Buffalo Bills promote their practice squad quarterback, Thad Lewis, to starter.
8 — Gretta Dry nets three goals as the LHS Lady Lions spot visiting Niagara Falls a goal before scoring six straight in a 6-1 NFL win. Melissa Zakrzewski netted Roy-Hart’s lone goal in a 3-1 N-O girls soccer loss at Albion. The Delaneys, Portka and Fragale, earn singles wins for LHS in a 3-2 girls tennis win at Lew-Port.
9 — Lockport senior J.J. Napoli places fourth at the NFL Golf Tournament at Willowbrook. Aidan Morgan, Gracie Cordle, Elizabeth Kershaw, Elizabeth Swartz, Delaney Adams, Paige Smith, Jimmy Sacco, Riley Adams and Haley Hodge, are first-place finishers for the DeSales swim team in a dual win over St. Mary’s/St. John’s.
10 — Lockport’s Jonathan Reid is pictured with his wife, Brittany, after placing third at the TQ Midgets Class at the Rumble on the Ridge at Borgers Speedway in Saylorsburg, Pa. Gabby Clare, Melissa Grosshans and Erin Greenward net goals in Barker’s 3-0 field hockey win over visiting Wilson as head coach Jeff Costello’s Lady Raiders improve to 9-0 in the N-O.
11 — Senior all-everything Jake Haight scores five touchdowns in visiting Barker/Roy-Hart’s 44-20 football win at Wilson. Katie Pollock wins both the 100 and 200 freestyles, but Ken West hands Lockport its first swim loss of the season. Brad Schneider has 13 kills and Shawn Moore adds seven in Lockport’s straight-set, non-league boys volleyball win at St. Francis.
12 — In a bizarre high school football game that features penalty flags before, during or after virtually every play, visiting Ken West beat Lockport, 34-12, on the Lions’ Homecoming. Trevor Noon tosses three touchdown passes as head coach Chuck Nagel’s Newfane football Panthers celebrate Homecoming with a 33-6 win over JFK.
13 — The Cincinnati Bengals beat the Bills in overtime, 27-24, despite the strong play of Buffalo’s practice squad quarterback Thad Lewis. The Sabres remain winless.
14 — Lockport High School’s all-time leading rusher David Fluellen, the fourth best collegiate rusher in the nation at Toledo, is featured. Sophomore Gretta Dry’s 34 goals this season so far is the most ever in a single season, reports LHS girls soccer coach Mike Finnerty and LHS athletics director Patrick M. Burke.
15 — Savannah Jonathan nets two goals as Newfane wins a 9-0 “mud pit game” at CSAT, reports Lady Panthers head coach Troy Sellers. The Bills now say rookie quarterback EJ Manuel will miss the next 4 to 6 weeks due his latest knee injury.
16 — Sam Del Prince earns the shutout for the visiting Spartans in a 0-0 ECIC boys soccer tie for Starpoint at Iroquois. Emily Lasher has 32 assists for head coach Amy Seeley’s Lakewomen in a 3-2 non-league girls volleyball comeback win against visiting Grand Island. Allie Bubar adds nine kills for Wilson.
17 — Lockport’s Jeff Wojcinski comes off the bench in Game 2 and plays a solid back row, serving and passing well in a straight set win at Niagara-Wheatfield. Bryce Perry adds a solid attack game for the Lions (11-0 NFL).
18 — Kayla Neuman scores with just under two minutes to go in the first overtime, leading Wilson over Newfane, 3-2, as the Lakewomen clinch their second straight N-O girls soccer title. Amber Villella nets two goals for the Lady Rams in Roy-Hart’s 4-3 girls soccer win over visiting Medina at Middleport Elementary. Tyler Valentine has the lone goal in Starpoint’s 1-0 boys soccer win at Holley.
19 — LHS junior QB Tyler Fraass tosses two TD passes to senior Charlie Sobieraski and Lions junior running back Nick Hamilton adds 149 rushing yards with two more scores as the football Lions blank West Seneca West to clinch a berth in the Section VI Class AA playoffs.
20 — Lockport juniors Abbey Lang and Hannah Kurbs are named to the All-Invitational Team at the 2013 Clarence Invitational Cross Country Meet at Akron Falls.
21 — Members of the first-place DeSales Knights junior varsity baseball team are Ryan Mullane, Jared Pellicano, Markus Jaekle, Henry Smith, Owen Miller, Colin Fragale, Jason Buzak, Conner MacEvoy, Gianna Fazzolari, Chris Goyette, Sam Murphy, Frank Pellicano and Mark Crocker. Coaches are Todd Fragale, assisted by Tom Murphy, Len Smith and Mike Mullane.
22 — A day after clinching the NFL title, the LHS boys volleyball team celebrates “Senior Night” with a sweep over visiting Williamsville North.
23 — Lockport’s Aidan Morgan shatters a 2002 Neumann League swim record in the 25 freestyle. The DeSales swimmer touches first in 14.61 seconds. The old record was 15.14 seconds. 
24 — The Lockport Lady Lions drop their first game of the season, 2-0 to visiting West Seneca West, in a Section VI girls soccer quarterfinal. Head coach Mike Finnerty’s Lady Lions finish 16-1-1 overall.
25 — Tyler Fraass tosses two TD passes to Charlie Sobieraski, but it isn’t enough in a 27-21 overtime loss at Frontier in a Section VI Class AA quarterfinal football contest under the lights in Hamburg. Chad Gilson nets the game-winner as top-seeded Newfane defeats visiting No. 4 Olean 1-0 in a Class B boys soccer semifinal. Tyler Ribbeck earns the shutout in goal for the Panthers.
26 — Lockport’s Abbey Lang wins the NFL girls cross country championship on Grand Island. The Cardinals lead the Red Sox two games to one in the 2013 Fall Classic. A pair of third quarter touchdowns by Starpoint’s Evan Majewski sparks the Spartans over Barker/Roy-Hart, 28-20, in a non-league football contest.
27 — The Bills drop to 3-5 with a 35-17 loss in New Orleans. Barker’s boys cross country team repeats as Niagara-Orleans League champions. The top four finishers, all members of head coach Paul DerSarkissian’s Raiders, are, respectively, Sergio Cruz, Bryce Moeller, Hayden Hathaway and Casey Webb.
28 — Barker blanks Roy-Hart, 6-0, to advance to the Class C field hockey semifinals. Erin Greenwald and Olivia Denny net two goals apiece for head coach Jeff Costello’s Lady Raiders.
29 — Head coach Kim Lockie’s Lady Lions volleyball team sweeps Niagara Falls to advance to the sectional Class AA semifinals. Jordyn Kwoka tops LHS with 15 assists and 7 digs. Hattie Lasal dishes out 17 assists and Bri Foss adds nine kills as Starpoint beats Springville in straight sets to advance to the Class B girls volleyball semifinals.
30 — Long-time Lockport Little Loop football coach and administrator Gil Eaton announces his retirement. David “Papi” Ortiz is named the World Series MVP as the Red Sox beat the Cardinals, 6-1, to clinch the 2013 Fall Classic at home for the first time since 1918.
31 — Led by junior kyscraper Jason Donorovich, the LHS boys volleyball team downs visiting Kenmore West, 25-9, 25-5, 25-21, in a sectional Class A quarterfinal. Barker beats Holland to earn a return to the Section VI Class C field hockey finals at Amherst’s all-weather artificial turf field.
NOVEMBER
1 — Erica Bradley posts eight kills, six blocks and three aces for Starpoint as the Lady Spartans beat Depew 3-1 to advance to the Class B girls volleyball finals. Lockport’s Lady Lions spikers are eliminated by Frontier in the Class A semifinals in straight sets. Megan Schneider posts 6 kills, 10 assists and an ace for the Lady Lions.
2 — It’s an historic win for the Lockport boys volleyball Lions. Head coach Whalen’s team downs visiting Clarence in straight sets to advance to the program’s first ever trip to the Section VI Class A finals. The visiting Anaheim Ducks score five straight goals to beat the sliding Sabres, 6-3.
3 — The Kansas City Chiefs stay unbeaten, downing the Bills, 23-13, in Orchard Park. Head coach Nate Beutel’s NCCC Lady Thunderwolves basketball team sweeps Corning CC and Tompkins-Cortland CC at the Region III Crossover Classic in Corning.
4 — Eighth grade members of the DeSales swim team are Elaina Murphy, Lauren Miller, Emily Cottrell, Hayley Hodge, Jimmy Sacco, Alyssa Singleton, Elizabeth Mullane and Riley Adams. Lockport’s returning state qualifiers in cross country are Abbey Lang, Hannah Kurbs, Mitch Loiacano and Dan Jones.
5 — The Sabres sink the Sharks, 5-4, in San Jose. Roy-Hart graduate Jesse DeWaters cans 11 points to spark the NCCC women’s basketball team past Finger Lakes CC, 71-59. With the win, head coach Nate Beutel’s Lady Thunderwolves improve to 3-0 on the young season.
6 — The Lockport High School boys volleyball team wins its historic first Section VI Class A title at Hamburg High School, beating Frontier in straight sets, 25-21, 25-18, 25-21. Brooke Bodine, Olivia Denny and Gabby Clare score goals for Barker in a 3-1 field hockey win over Eden in the Class C title game in Amherst.
7 — Lockport’s Sarah Barrancotta earns several prestigious honors at Medaille, including the 2013 All-American Scholar Athlete award, and is inducted into the National College Athlete Honor Society. Sarah is a senior communications major and a member of the Medaille women’s softball team.
8 — Eighth grader Katie Pollock is Lockport’s best finisher at sectionals, placing third in both the 50 and 100 freestyles. Pollock, senior Roserita DiMillo and juniors Elizabeth Connolly and Kristina Connolly, place fourth in the 200 free relay finals and have qualified for the state meet in Buffalo.
9 — Fairport downs Lockport in straight sets in the boys volleyball state Far West Regionals. Head coach Joe Whalen’s Lions finish 12-0 in the NFL and 25-4 overall.
10 — Lockport’s Abbey Lang is the local top finisher at the annual state cross country meet in Queensbury. Lang finishes 43rd overall in the girls large school race. Teammate and fellow junior Hannah Kurbs is 54th. The Pittsburgh Steelers humble the Buffalo Bills, 23-10, in Pittsburgh.
11 — The Sabres knock off the Los Angeles Kings, 3-2. The Newfane Lightning win the Niagara-Orleans Football Association youth football championship, finishing 12-0 under coaches Bill Gross, Mike Capen, Terry Gill and Kevin Lucinski.
12 — Buffalo Bills players Fred Jackson and Aaron Williams are in Lockport to sign autographs. The pair make an appearance at the Niagara County Deputy Sheriff’s Association Dispatcher’s Union Hall in the Bewley Building to help raise funds for The United Way.
13 — Lockport senior Charlie Sobieraski signs a National Letter of Intent to attend the University at Buffalo on a baseball and academics scholarship. The Sabres fire head coach Ron Rolston and GM Darcy Regier and bring in Ted Nolan and Pat LaFontaine to replace them.
14 — Aidan Morgan is Lockport’s only individual winner, claiming both the 100 IM and 50 free at the DeSales swim Knights’ finale at UB. The Lockport Athletic & Fitness Center on South Transit Road is sold by Amer Abdallah to the Jones family.
15 — The Buffalo Sabres respond to the firing of coach Ron Rolston and GM Darcy Regier and hiring of Ted Nolan and Pat LaFontaine by beating the visiting Toronto Maple Leafs, 3-1. The Bills announce that this Sunday’s game against the New York Jets is a sellout, lifting the local TV blackout.
16 — James van Riemsdyk nets two goals as the Maple Leafs dump the Sabres in Toronto, 4-2.
17 — The Bills play perhaps their best all-around game of the year, beating up the Jets, 37-14, at Ralph Wilson Stadium. Jimmie Johnson wraps up his sixth NASCAR Sprint Cup title. Barker loses to Cazenovia, 1-0, in a state field hockey semifinal in Cicero.
18 — Lockport senior libero Eamon Yates and junior hitters Jason Donorovich and Brad Schneider are named First Team NFL all-stars. Five Lady Lions soccer players, seniors Jill Golding, Allison Sakowski and Rachel Herbst, junior Jayme Wadosky and sophomore Gretta Dry, are named First Team NFL all-stars.
19 — Buffalo nets the first goal, then bows to the visiting St. Louis Blues, 4-1. The Sabres announce the demotion of four rookies.
20 — Lockport senior J.J. Napoli is named a First Team NFL all-star in golf. Roy-Hart sophomore Emma Lindke is named to the Niagara-Orleans League’s First Team for girls soccer.
21 — The Buffalo Sabres blow an early lead for the second straight game, losing at Philadelphia, 4-1. Local outdoors columnist Bill Hilts says the arriving cold weather signals the end of salmon season in the area.
22 — Medina Journal Sports Editor Kevin Prise previews both the Barker boys and girls basketball teams as well as the Royalton-Hartland boys basketball team. Among Roy-Hart players featured are senior cagers Cody Breedlove, Marc Roman, Austin Heschke, Alex Stoddard and DaRon Woods.
23 — Lockport heavyweight kickboxer Joe Taylor earns a unanimous decision victory over Toronto’s Satbir Bassi in a fight card at the Kenan Center Arena. Fourteen bouts were on the sold-out card.
24 — Goaltender Jonas Gustavsson leads the Red Wings past the Sabres, 4-1, in Buffalo. The Bills are on their bye week.
25 — The assistant general manager of the CFL-champion Saskatchewan Roughriders is Lockport native and former CFL lineman Jeremy O’Day. LHS seniors Charlie Sobieraski and Moziah Townsend are named First Team Section VI all-stars this week.
26 — Fifty six players and a dozen coaches comprise this year’s Lockport Boys Volleyball Club, announces club director Tom Schneider. Lockport’s Megan Guay earns a national championship for a second straight year in the Elk’s Club soccer shootout.
27 — Starpoint senior Alex O’Donnell signs a national Letter of Intent to attend Canisius College on a baseball and academics scholarship. O’Donnell is accompanied at the signing by his parents, Charlene and Tim O’Donnell. Also attending are Starpoint AD Tom Sarkovics and baseball coach Tim Racey.
28 — Head coach John Sullivan’s Lockport swim Lions improve to 2-0 in the NFL with a dominating 100-71 win over visiting North Tonawanda. Lions senior Derek Secord is a double individual winner, placing first in both the 50 freestyle and 100 free.
29 — Wide receiver Stevie Johnson is the latest Bills player to criticize the Bills-Toronto Series. The game is far from a sellout with two days to go before the game.
30 — Seven-foot former WWF and WWE great Kevin Nash highlights a professional wrestling card at the Kenan Center Arena. Others on the card include Lockport’s Brett “Beef” Stymus.
 
DECEMBER
1 — The Atlanta Falcons defeat the Buffalo Bills, 34-31, in overtime, in Toronto. The game — the sixth in a controversial series — fails to sell out for the sixth straight time. There’s still time to join the Lockport Volleyball Club, says director Tom Schneider.
2 — Carlin Serrianne wins the balance beam in Level 8 for the Lockport Flips at the annual Snowflake Invitational in Williamsville.
3 — The Royalton-Hartland boys swim team earns its 100th straight victory, beating Attica, 110-60. Freshman Zach Wilkesmore fires a 217-612 for the pin Lions, but it isn’t enough in a sweep by visiting Niagara-Wheatfield at Brad Angelo Lanes in Pendleton.
4 — Lockport athletics director Patrick Burke is assaulted by two juveniles during a junior varsity girls basketball scrimmage at LHS. Burke is okay, but security is beefed up for this weekend’s Rotary Tournament. Dontay Gill, Alex Fogle, Miguel Pareja, Vince Eberhart and Kirk Feeney earn pins in Lockport’s 73-9 wrestling win at Grand Island.
5 — Head coach Karen Catalano’s 2013-14 LHS Lady Lions basketball team is previewed. The Rangers beat the Sabres, 3-1. Katie Bars rolls a 189-549 to lead the Lady Lions bowling team to its first NFL win of the season, 5-2, over Lewiston-Porter.
6 — Lockport and St. Joe’s open the 36th Lockport Rotary Club Boys Tip-Off Basketball Tournament with impressive wins before a large crowd in the Lions’ Den. St. Joe’s runs away from International Prep of Buffalo, 85-56, while Lockport beats gritty Williamsville East, 81-65. Lockport forward Ryan Lawrence scores a game-high 21 points for the Lions (1-0).
7 — St. Joe’s beats the host Lions, 78-73, in overtime, in one of the best Rotary Tournament games seen in this city in quite a few years. LHS senior Charlie Sobieraski (17 points, 7 rebounds) drains a three-point bucket at the buzzer to tie the game in dramatic fashion at 67-67, sending it to OT. The Marauders are led by tourney MVP Justin Hollins’ 29 points. Ryan Lawrence leads the Lions with 20 points. 
8 — The Tampa Bay Buccaneers destroy the Buffalo Bills, 27-6. Locals Tom Parker, Joe Neidlinger, Bill Neidlinger, Steve Goodman, Bob Neidlinger and Ryan Keys are pictured with Michigan men’s basketball head coach John Beilein, a Newfane native, after a game in Michigan. 
9 — Lyle Wagner, Roy Phipps and Calee Coleman are the big swimmers in Roy-Hart’s N-O sweep over visiting Albion to kick off their 2013-14 league season. Katie Bars rolls a 232 single and J.J. Ritz fires a 251-665 to spark Lockport’s boys and girls bowling teams to victories over Ken West.
10 — Gretta Dry nets 11 second-half points as Lockport’s Lady Lions open their 2013-14 NFL season with a 52-46 win over visiting Niagara-Wheatfield. Derek Secord and Scott Guyton are double individual winners in the swim Lions’ 109-68 victory over visiting Kenmore West.
11 — Mitchell Seaver (99), Miguel Pareja (126), Anthony Orefice (132), Kirk Feeney (145), Michael Daskavitz (182), Marshall Taylor (220) and Marcelus Hinton (285), all record pins for Lockport in a 60-21 wrestling victory over visiting Kenmore West. 
12 — Emily Lasher leads Wilson with 20 points, 10 rebounds, 7 steals and 5 assists in a convincing 53-22 girls basketball victory over Lewiston-Porter, in the first round of the Wilson Tip-Off Tournament.
13 — Led by senior Colin Dougherty’s game-high 18 points, including a rare four-point play in the first quarter, Lockport spreads the court, then the wealth in a dominating 73-45 win over visiting Grand Island, topping Niagara Frontier League boys basketball action.
14 — Three former Lockport residents, Sam Ritz, center, and his twin sons, Ritchie, left, and Rod were among those who attended last week’s Buffalo Bills Game in Tampa Bay. “I wish I would’ve had a Tops grocery bag to put over my head,” Rod says.
15 — The Buffalo Bills beat the Jacksonville Jaguars, 27-20. No. 2 Syracuse defeats St. John’s, 68-63, at Madison Square Garden, topping NCAA men’s hoops action.
16 — Promising Lockport heavyweight kickboxer Joe Taylor improves to 3-0 with a unanimous decision victory over Binghamton’s Tyler Bayer at the LUX nightclub in Buffalo.
17 — Junior Alyssa Wagner and sophomore Gretta Dry (three, 3-point baskets) can 13 points apiece to lead the Lady Lions to a 51-38 win over visiting Kenmore West, topping Niagara Frontier League girls basketball action. Senior Scott Guyton posts three individual victories in the LHS swim Lions’ 107-71 victory over visiting Niagara-Wheatfield.
18 — Sacred Heart Academy senior Patricia Beaulieu of Lockport signs a National Letter of Intent to attend Canisius College on a rowing and scholastic scholarship.
19 — Drew Stafford scores the winning goal in the third period, and Ryan Miller makes 34 saves in the Buffalo Sabres’ 4-2 victory over the Boston Bruins. Marcus Foligno and Brian Flynn both have a goal and an assist for Buffalo, which wins consecutive games for the first time since Nov. 15.
20 — The Lockport wrestling Lions benefit from eight Merry Christmas forfeits in a dominating win over visiting North Tonawanda. Four Lions, Mitchell Seaver (99), Dontay Gill (106), Vince Eberhart (145) and Kirk Feeney (152) earned pins.
21 — Santa and Mrs. Claus make a special appearance at the Lockport YMCA Stingrays swim team practice and are pictured with coaches Aric Morgan and Tim Menges.
22 — Buffalo (6-9) sacks Miami quarterback Ryan Tannehill a season-best seven times and holds Miami (8-7) to 103 yards offense in posting a 19-0 shutout win in Orchard Park. Denver’s Peyton Manning regains his record for TD passes in a season with 51 when he throws for 400 yards and four touchdowns in a 37-13 win at Houston.
23 — Bills injury-prone rookie quarterback EJ Manuel resumes practicing, though it’s not clear whether he’ll play in Buffalo’s season finale at New England this weekend.
24 — Merry Christmas, Sabres. Buffalo defenseman Mark Pysyk takes a shot that hits Martin Hanzal and became lodged in the back of goalie Mike Smith’s jersey. The Coyotes goalie retreats into his crease, unknowingly carrying the puck across the line and ending the game. The Sabres win, 2-1, in overtime.
25 — MERRY CHRISTMAS
26 — Four local youths take home the hardware at the annual Elks National Foundation Hoop Shoot free-throw contest at the Greater Lockport Family YMCA. The winners are Dray Akin (boys 8-9), 20-of-25; Jasmine White (girls 10-11) 8-25; Elizabeth Bradley (girls 12-13) 7-25; and Anthony Smith (boys 12-13) 23-25.
27 — The Lockport ice Lions get four goals from Will Lyons in beating the Amherst Tigers, 6-3, in a hard-fought Federation Hockey League contest at the Hyde Park Ice Pavilion. LeBron James is named The Associated Press’ 2013 Male Athlete of the Year. Tennis great Serena Williams is named AP Female Athlete of the Year.
28 — Ryan Miller makes 49 saves, and the Buffalo Sabres beat the Washington Capitals 2-1. Drew Stafford nets Buffalo’s goal in regulation, and Steve Ott scores the lone shootout goal in the sixth round as the Sabres improve to 5-0-1 in their last six home games after starting 3-12-1 there.
29 —  The New England Patriots beat the Buffalo Bills in the regular-season finale for both teams, 34-20.
30 — The Lockport Boys Volleyball Team’s undefeated NFL season and first-ever Section VI Class AA championship is named the US&J’s Runner-Up Local Sports Story of 2013.
31 — The Buffalo Bills finish with six wins for a third consecutive year, ended fourth in the AFC East for a sixth consecutive year, and extended its string of losing seasons to nine dating to a 9-7 finish in 2004. “With youth comes inconsistency,” says GM Doug Whaley. “So all those guys that contributed this year, we expect them to take a bigger step next year, play more consistent and be more productive.”