Hundreds of student-athletes from schools throughout Niagara County can chalk up one final, significant accolade in a school year cut short by the COVID-19 pandemic.
The New York State Public High School Athletic Association (NYSPHSAA) has announced its winter sports 2020 Scholar-Athlete teams and individuals.
Dr. Robert Zayas, NYSPHSAA executive director, said this is the 28th year the NYSPHSAA has conducted the Scholar-Athlete program, which is sponsored by Pupil Benefits Plan, Inc. and the American Dairy Association North East.
This winter, NYSPHSAA recognized 2,475 Scholar-Athlete teams and 30,497 individuals. A total of 569 schools across the state participated in the Scholar-Athlete program.
“Congratulations to the Scholar-Athlete teams and individuals from the winter 2020 season,” Dr. Zayas said.
“The Scholar-Athlete program continues to be one of the most rewarding endeavors we encourage here at the association. The winter season was extremely challenging this year, so to see this many student-athletes honored for their work in the classroom is truly rewarding.”
Due to the cancellation of the spring sports season and the closing of schools for the rest of the academic year, the spring, 2020 scholar-athlete program has been cancelled, Dr. Zayas said.
“We are hopeful the program will return in the fall of 2020,” he added.
Here's a look at which local schools produced scholar teams, with the number of individual students on that team honored in parentheses:
BOYS BASKETBALL: Akron (5), Lewiston-Porter (7), Niagara-Wheatfield (5), Starpoint (5), Wilson (11)
BOYS BOWLING: Lewiston-Porter (6), Niagara Falls (9), Niagara-Wheatfield (5), North Tonawanda (4), Starpoint (8)
BOYS HOCKEY: Kenmore West (10), Lewiston-Porter (13), Niagara-Wheatfield (10)
BOYS INDOOR TRACK: North Tonawanda (17)
BOYS SWIMMMING: Akron (10), Lewiston-Porter (16), Medina (12), Newfane (4), Niagara-Wheatfield (12), North Tonawanda (8), Royalton-Hartland (17), Starpoint (12)
COMPETITIVE CHEERLEADING: Lewiston-Porter (10), Medina (8), Niagara Falls (14), Niagara-Wheatfield (10), North Tonawanda (10), Starpoint (7), Wilson (12)
GIRLS BASKETBALL: Akron (4), Barker (8), Lewiston-Porter (14), Medina (5), Newfane (6), Niagara-Wheatfield (9), North Tonawanda (12), Royalton-Hartland (8), Starpoint (6), Wilson (12)
GIRLS BOWLING: Kenmore West (6), Lewiston-Porter (9), Niagara Falls (10), Niagara-Wheatfield (5), North Tonawanda (7), Starpoint (4)
GIRLS HOCKEY: Kenmore West (18), Starpoint (16)
GIRLS INDOOR TRACK: Kenmore West (17), Niagara Falls (17), North Tonawanda (27), Starpoint (13)
GIRLS SWIMMING: Akron (21), Medina (13), Newfane (12), Royalton-Hartland (16)
UNIFIED BOWLING: Niagara Falls (16)
WRESTLING: Lewiston-Porter (4), Niagara-Wheatfield (7), Wilson (10)