LOCH SHELDRAKE -- For the twelfth straight year the Sullivan County BCANY vs. Cancer Classic was a stunning success not just in terms of staging some amazing local basketball, but more importantly …
LOCH SHELDRAKE -- For the twelfth straight year the Sullivan County BCANY vs. Cancer Classic was a stunning success not just in terms of staging some amazing local basketball, but more importantly for its successful mission to raise money and community awareness in the ongoing battle against Cancer.
This year's fundraising total of upwards of $6000 dollars was the greatest in the history of the event. Donations poured in from attendees as well as those who could not make the event. That this tournament was dedicated to Fallsburg's Amanda Zeno and Team Zeno made the battle seem even closer to home.
Monticello Coach/BCANY President Christopher Russo summed up the event he has organized and marshaled these past dozen years: “Many people want to thank me for this event, but I cannot do it without the help and support of so many. My family, the other coaches and Athletic Directors. I am so grateful to Chris Depew, Brent Wilson and the staff at SUNY Sullivan. The facility and the people working there all weekend are donated to the event, which allows us to give all the money raised to the cause.”
Russo added that the Oncology Unit at CRMC does amazing work treating cancer patients.
“It is fantastic that we can help them with the BCANY vs Cancer Classic,” he said. “It is our community hospital and so we are helping people who live and work right here in Sullivan County.
“Although I wish we didn't have to, it makes us all feel good that we could honor Amanda by dedicating the event to her and make the donation in her name,” Russo continued. “A portion of the funds will go to her as well. She is such a tough young woman and has handled this with grace and class.
With the support of her family, teammate, friends, and the basketball community she continues to fight with a determination like no other. I want to thank Maria, Jamie, and Athan for being at the event for the dedication -- I know it wasn't easy for them, but it was an opportunity for them to feel our love and support.”
The highlight of the high school games was most assuredly the Monticello boys' 93-41 thrashing of Goshen. Having borne witness to Monticello basketball since 2002 I would have to categorize this level of play throughout the entire game as the zenith of Panthers basketball thus far.
“We were outstanding on both ends. It is arguably the best any team of mine has ever played,” Russo said. “We were relentless on defense, shot the ball very well, played unselfishly, were happy for the success of teammates, it is what you want every game to be like. During pregame we talked about being disruptive defensively -- we have to take teams out of their regular rhythm. Josh sets the tone for us and the whole team follows him. He is a tenacious defender. We certainly were disruptive; they really couldn't get anything going and we caused over 20 turnovers.”
Russo concluded by saying, “I am so proud of how we played, especially in this event. These guys get it -- there are things greater than ourselves and we have all been affected by cancer in some ways. They all know Amanda and seeing her go through this hits home for all of them. They wanted to go out tonight and play for Amanda; I know she would have loved to see us play tonight.”
Roscoe Boys 57, Tri-Valley 54
Monticello Girls 49, Eldred 32
Monticello Boys 93, Goshen 41
Fallsburg Boys 48, Manor 37
Manor Girls 40, Fallsburg 22
Sullivan West Boys 47, Eldred 24
SUNY Sullivan Women 126,
Bryant and Stratton of Albany 76
SUNY Sullivan Men 100,
Bryant and Stratton of Albany 78.
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