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Live from the Pastor-Cooper Memorial Showcase (written by a wing-eating co-champion)

The Pastor-Cooper family, including the grandchildren of the late Jerry Cooper (and great grandchildren of the late Al and Rose Pastor), present the Al Pastor Sportsmanship Award to St. Joe's senior William Stephan. Back row, from left: Stephan, David Cooper and his mother, Illene Cooper (daughter of Al and Rose Pastor and widow of Jerry Cooper). Kid row, from left: Zachary Wexler, Ryan Cooper, Melanie Cooper, Lyssa Wexler, Jordan Cooper.

Better late than never ... live blog from the final night -- Jerry Cooper Night -- of the Pastor-Cooper Memorial Showcase.

I'm sure I'll mention in a few times in the blog, but I was the co-champion of the wing-eating contest and beat Centercourt in the four-person competition. Just wanted to make sure the score was reported (nine wings in three minutes to tie Jess Dhaliwall, a sophomore on the Grand Island girls hoops team who tied me and beat two other grown dudes). 

* * * 

Just a finishing note. This is really a great event for Western New York high school sports. A total of about 4,500 fans took in some fine basketball action over three days.

There is no admission charge thanks to sponsorship support of an event that David Cooper and his family have continued to carry on in the same spirit of the people for which it is named: Al and Rose Pastor and Jerry Cooper. It is an event whose purpose is to provide a showcase for high school basketball and for those who play the game the right way. It was once again a pleasure to cover.

---Keith McShea

(@KeithMcSheaBN on Twitter)

All-WNY football issue, including OP poster page, is Saturday

The annual All-Western New York football will be published in tomorrow's editions (Saturday, Dec. 3). 

The issue will include the entire All-WNY team, The Buffalo News' Player of the Year, the poll champions, the Buffalo Bills/NFL Coach of the Year and all of the area's all-league teams. 

Tomorrow's section will also include our state championship poster page tribute to Orchard Park for winning the Class AA title (other fall state champions will be honored later this month).

I'll discuss our selections, along with the Connolly Cup choice (the award is announced Saturday) in our weekly live video chat next Wednesday.

---Keith McShea

(@KeithMcSheaBN on Twitter)

The ultimate hoops blogger battle: McShea vs. Centercourt

Get ready for the ultimate showdown of high school basketball knucklehead bloggers. 

It is McShea vs. Centercourt. 

In a chicken wing-eating contest. 

Because sportswriters love free food, I have agreed to take part in the annual Pastor-Cooper Memorial Showcase chicken wing-eating contest at halftime of tonight's middle game (that's a 7 p.m. scheduled start for St. Joe's and McKinley). Chad Andrews of the View From Centercourt blog will be in the field along with some yet-to-be-named opponents.

Tonight's hoops lineup is a heaping helping of appetizing stuff as well (heh): The tripleheader starts with a major girls matchup of Sacred Heart and Grand Island at 5:15; the night concludes with Bishop Timon-St. Jude taking on East at 8:30 p.m.

I'll be bringing quite the appetite. I'm preparing for Saturday's All-Western New York football issue all day at One News Plaza.  

---Keith McShea

(@KeithMcSheaBN on Twitter)

St. Francis RB Lynch named NYS Gatorade Player of the Year

Our All-Western New York team will be published Saturday, which is also the day that the Connolly Cup will be awarded. 

But when it comes to postseason awards, Akeel Lynch of St. Francis -- as he has a tendency to do -- got a quick start.

The outstanding running back of the Monsignor Martin champion Red Raiders, who has verbally committed to Boston College, was named New York State's Gatorade Player of the Year.

Here's the info at ESPNHS site, which includes the award program's "three pillars: athletic production and impact in the 2011 season, high academic achievement and exemplary personal character." There's also a nice quote from Bishop Timon-St. Jude coach Charlie Comerford.

It is the third time a Western New York player has won the award, and first since Malik Campbell of Turner-Carroll won it in 1996. Bill Schoenle of Williamsville South won it in 1986, which was the second year the award was presented.

Our Player of the Year award comes out Saturday. I'll discuss our choice, the Connolly Cup and the entire All-WNY team in our weekly live chat next Wednesday.

---Keith McShea

(@KeithMcSheaBN on Twitter)

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About Prep Talk

Keith McShea

Keith McShea

Keith McShea has covered high school sports at The News since his hiring in 1999. The 1995 University at Buffalo graduate and Long Island native (North Babylon Bulldogs) covers — and live blogs — everything from scrimmages to state championships & helps head The News' All-Western New York selections.

@KeithMcSheaBN |