The 2016-17 high school sports season had it all. From instant-classic football games to teams capturing sectional championships on the hardwood to a standout earning gold at the state track meet — it was a stellar season for athletes and teams in the Finger Lakes.
I decided to take a look back at the entire school year and dish out some honors to athletes and teams in the Finger Lakes Times’ coverage area.
So, without further ado, here are the first-ever 700 Level Awards.
Female Athlete of the Year: South Seneca’s Emily Lavarnway
This one was probably the easiest to pick, as this standout was the only local athlete to capture a state championship.
Lavarnway not only won the Division II state title in the pentathlon, she captured the overall gold — meaning she beat out athletes from Division I and private schools.
The senior was a key reason why the South Seneca girls basketball team made its second straight trip to the New York State Final Four. Lavarnway was the Times’ Co-Player of the Year along with teammate MacKenzie Kenyon after leading the Falcons to another Section V title and a trip to Troy.
In the fall, Lavarnway was a Finger Lakes West first-team defender for the Falcons’ soccer team.
Male Athlete of the Year: Waterloo’s George Williams
While the Female Athlete of the Year was easy to pick, deciding which male athlete to honor was more difficult.
The Finger Lakes had a ton of talented athletes who put together special seasons with Mynderse Academy’s Brett Anderson and Jake Mein, and Clyde-Savannah’s Derrick Chance also making compelling cases to be named the Athlete of the Year.
In the end, I went with George Williams because he was probably the most consistent athlete across all three seasons.
In the fall, the Waterloo senior was a member of the Times’ Top 25 Football All-Star team as a defensive tackle.
This past winter, Williams picked up his 100th career wrestling win and would place sixth at the state championships.
Williams wrapped up his high school athletic career with a stellar season in the cage as the goalie for the Waterloo lacrosse team. The standout was a major reason why the Indians earned a trip to the sectional finals.
Here are some other athletes that had stellar seasons this school year:
Mark Suchewski, Geneva football
Derrick Chance, Clyde-Savannah football
Gavin McCumiskey, Marcus Whitman football
Daryn Carswell, Midlakes football
Brett Anderson, Mynderse boys soccer
Dillon VanDemortel, Newark boys cross country
Chance Rice-Porter, Waterloo girls cross country
Joey Maher, Geneva golf
Jake Mein, Mynderse boys basketball
Tyler Norris, NR-W boys basketball
Brian Sharp, Newark boys basketball
MacKenzie Kenyon, South Seneca girls basketball
Heidi Miller, Mynderse girls basketball
Adam Wagner, South Seneca wrestling
Hammond Raes, Midlakes wrestling
Robert Middlebrook, Midlakes wrestling
Austin Blumbergs, Penn Yan boys lacrosse
Sadie Mapstone, Mynderse girls lacrosse
Jeremiah Carnicelli, Mynderse boys track
Murphy John, Romulus softball
Hayley Case, Mynderse softball
Shannon Gallagher, Geneva softball
Ryan Fishback, Geneva boys tennis
Morgan, Kapp, Waterloo softball
Teams of the Year
Mynderse boys basketball
Mynderse girls basketball
South Seneca girls basketball
Newark girls bowling
Penn Yan boys lacrosse