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Video: St. Joe's 61, Bishop Timon-St. Jude 57 (boys basketball)

Timon's Williams takes walk-on opportunity with Niagara hoops

Bishop Timon-St. Jude senior Jordan Williams will try and walk on with the Niagara University men's basketball program.

Williams, a 6-foot-2 senior sharpshooter for the Tigers, committed to attend the school Tuesday night after a meeting with NU coach Joe Mihalics and his staff. That's according to an email I received from the Williams family today. 

Williams, who was a first-team All-Western New York football player at wide receiver, chose the walk-on opportunity over offers to play football at the University at Albany, Hobart and Edinboro. Williams had 10 touchdown catches and 988 receiving yards his senior season. 

Williams excelled for the Tigers' top 10 large school basketball team as well. He was Timon's leading scorer and capped his career with a 29-point effort in a loss to eventual champion Canisius in the Manhattan Cup semifinals at Canisius College. That game was witnessed by Niagara coach Mihalics. 

According to Williams, he is being given the opportunity to walk on and then may be red-shirted.

"I had football offers on the table but ever since I can remember I’ve wanted to play Division I basketball," Williams said in a staement.  "Now I’m going to get that opportunity and to be able to stay home to do it is exciting."

---Keith McShea

(@KeithMcSheaBN on Twitter)

PrepTalkTV: Highlights, interviews from Monsignor Martin semifinals

Note: The interviews in this video are, in order, with St. Mary's coach Dan Gill, St. Mary's senior Erik Simmons (not Canisius), St. Mary's senior Devin Redden (not Jake Cercone), Canisius coach Kyle Husband, Canisius senior Aaron White (not Erik Simmons), Canisius senior Matt Hart, and Bishop Timon-St. Jude coach Jim Palano. Our apologies regarding some technical errors on-screen.

Thursday Night Live: Canisius wins at Timon in OT, St. Francis stuns St. Joe's, your #preptalkscores and PrepTalkTV

Tonight I'll see two large school top 10 matchups: the Yale Cup I finale of McKinley at Riverside, then be at Bishop Timon-St. Jude as the Tigers host Canisius at 7:30 p.m.

While I'll have updates from those games, tweets to the hashtag #preptalkscores will also automatically show up in the live blog. So if you are a game tonight (including the ECIC II showdown of Williamsville South at Williamsville East) and you're updating via Twitter, be sure to include that hashtag. I'll have periodic tweets updating the game at @KeithMcSheaBN, but most of my play-by-play updating will come in the live blog.

Check out tonight's full schedule on our scoreboard page, where you can check back throughout the night for updated box scores and highlights.

See you out at the games, in the chat and on the tweeter. :-)

* * *

Video reporter/producer Lauren Mariacher will be at Riverside and Timon and she (and possibly I) will stop by Medaille as OTC Middle College tries to complete an undefeated season against MST Seneca.

We'll have a PrepTalkTV episode posted as soon as possible. Photo-videographer John Hickey will be at Williamsville East.

---Keith McShea

(@KeithMcSheaBN on Twitter)

More on St. Mary's huge win at Bishop Timon-St. Jude (with video interviews & highlights)

St. Mary's recorded a huge win Tuesday night with a 73-71 victory at Bishop Timon-St. Jude. I updated the game via Twitter, posted the box score and details on our scoreboard and the writeup and a photo led our High School Extra in today's paper

Here's more, starting with video interviews with the victorious Lancers (classy job by St. Mary's coach Dan Gill starting his postgame comments by lauding longtime Timon coach/athletic director Jim Palano, who will be retiring at year's end):

I walked in at halftime and immediately saw that St. Mary's was ready to play in South Buffalo. Timon senior sharpshooter Kyle Kobis drained a jumper in the final seconds, but it left just enough time for Erik Simmons to speed to the other end and beat the buzzer for a tie at 33-33. 

St. Mary's shot the lights out in the second half, but it's not like they just had a good shooting night, like one of those everything-they-were-throwing-up-went-in deals. They certainly shot the ball well, but most of the baskets came off good shots created by good passing and good decisions during good possessions. Some of it came off of alert, fundamental defense and/or rebounding.

The Lancers played with a confidence, an intelligence and a togetherness on both ends of the floor that was more than impressive. That play was rewarded with a big lead, and when Timon had Kobis and Jordan Williams hit big shots to give the Tigers a chance, St. Mary's responded. 

Here's a recounting of the second half from my notebook & going over the game film (that means my iPhone video :-) ):

Third quarter

Redden hit a three-pointer (36-33). ... Ryan Winnicki hit a three off an Erik Simmons drive-and-kickout (39-37). ... Jake Denz got fouled on a three-pointer and sunk all three FTs (42-39). ... Simmons with a spectacular drive finished with an up-and-under scoop-to-the-hoop (44-39). ... Simmons again with a drive (46-39). ... Denz with a nice follow of a missed Redden drive (48-42). ... An offensive rebound by Paul Rath turned into a three by Nate Meyers (53-45). ... A Redden open three (56-47) was followed by pressure on the inbound that forced a Timon timeout with 1:25 left in the third. ... Denz with a nifty scoop vs. DeMilo Gibbs (58-49). ... Nicc Johnson with a nice-looking pop-up baseline jumper from the right side (60-51) -- that shot was the only one, to me, that was like, wow, they're hitting everything. There was some good defense and I believe the shot clock was running down, and he popped up and hit a tough jumper.

St. Mary's finished the third with a 60-53 lead after Kobis got the benefit of a goaltending call although -- from the way I saw it -- the shot never got above the rim. Kobis, Jordan Williams and Gibbs -- who played very well down low -- were effective on offense to keep Timon in the game. 

Fourth quarter

St. Mary's did a great job defending Gibbs in the post, and they did it right from the start. There was some great help defense on Timon's first possession to earn the ball back for St. Mary's. 

That was followed by two free throws by Redden after a good, aggressive drive to the basket (62-53). ... Johnson put on a fantastic drive with an off-the-glass finish (64-55). ... Denz made a great play to poke the ball free from a Timon dribbler, leading to a fast break in which Johnson's shot didn't fall but Denz was right there for the follow (66-55), prompting a Timon timeout with 5:48 to go. 

Timon made it 66-60 with a little over five minutes to go by doing what they do: Kobis hit a three; Williams drove and scored. At this point, crunch time seemed to get both sides a little tight -- no field goals for about two minutes. 

Denz made a nice play to pick off an entry pass for Gibbs, St. Mary's called a timeout with 3:15 left, and then ran a play which resulted in a Denz kickout to Simmons for a three (69-60).

This started a nice-back-and-forth (video below) that saw a Jordan Williams crossover-and-fadeaway (69-62), then a Redden jumper off a Meyers kickout (71-62), then a Zach Hayes follow of a missed Kobis drive (71-64) that prompted a Timon timoeut with 2:03 left.

Redden took advantage of some loose Timon defense to score on a drive (73-64); Kobis hit a three (73-67) to make it a two-possession game with about 1:20 to go. St. Mary's had some great ball movement against some aggressive defense that resulted in Denz finding Redden on the baseline but that was one shot that rimmed out for the Lancers. It was still a two-possession game with 1:00 left. 

Big play here. Jordan Williams got the ball on the left wing, faked out his man and drove to the basket, and Denz came off his man (Gibbs) and drew a charging foul on Williams with 37.6 to go.

Now, I am the biggest anti-flopping basketball fan in the world. I think the beautiful game of basketball is soiled by "take a charge," which I like to call flopping, because that's what it is most of the time. That being said, and this is a testament to how difficult this call is to make for officials (maybe the most difficult in sports?), at first glance I thought this was a good call.

But when I went to the iPhone video, it was a block. Williams is leaving the floor as Denz slides over. Denz makes sure he gets a shoulder in Williams' way and falls to the floor. That's defense? That's not defense, but that's what passes for defense in basketball for many people these days. The offensive player blows by his defender, has a clear lane, and he's made his move to the basket truly before the help defender has established position. 

The shot didn't fall, and it would have been two free throws, so Timon would certainly have had a better shot to win. I don't think they got robbed of the game whatsoever. St. Mary's went 0 for 2 down the stretch so Timon still had a shot to win. I definitely think St. Mary's deserved this one, big-time. And to be clear: This is not a knock on Denz by any means. He was fantastic on both ends, he did a great job fronting DeMillo in the fourth quarter, and the charge play was one of several smart ones he made during the game -- including not inbounding the ball on this final play.

Overall, a fantastic performance by St. Mary's. Timon may have underperformed a bit, but they were mostly outplayed by St. Mary's.

I'll be headed to another top 10 large school-small school matchup of the Monsignor Martin Association this evening when Canisius hosts Archbishop Walsh at 6:30 p.m.

I'll talk about that game, the St. Mary's game, Friday's Canisius at St. Joe's game, today's Prep Talk column, the basketball polls, the Power 10 and whatever else comes up during our video chat starting at 9 p.m.

---Keith McShea

(@KeithMcSheaBN on Twitter)

Timon lax standout DiMillo verbally commits to Maryland

With each year, the recruiting clock seems to be getting set earlier and earlier. 

Bishop Timon-St. Jude sophomore Adam DiMillo, a lacrosse standout who is a member of the Class of 2014, verbally committed to the University of Maryland this week, Timon coach Mike Burke told The News.

DiMillo picked Maryland over other perennial powers in college lacrosse: Johns Hopkins, Syracuse, North Carolina and Notre Dame. He was a second-team All-Western New York pick as a freshman last season as Timon won the Monsignor Martin title and followed it up with a successful summer at recruiting events (check out more on those from Inside Lacrosse).   

DiMillo also earned All-WNY honorable mention in football this past season; he was a key part in Timon's resurgence before a suffering a broken arm that ended his year in a Week Eight win against Canisius

DiMillo is No. 6 on Inside Lacrosse's Top 20 Sophomore Watch List, which was released in October.

---Keith McShea

(@KeithMcSheaBN on Twitter)

Review blog from Timon-Frannies MMA semifinal

High school football: Day One from Lackawanna and Timon

Good news for Lackawanna fans. There's another kid named Smith at quarterback. No, not
Capone or Christian, but their younger brother, Cameron. And he's ready to carry on the family
tradition as signal-caller.

Cameron was one of 32 players who greeted the new season at Monday's first practice on the
field behind the school. He's only a sophomore and is 5-foot-10, 150 pounds, but he's got the
passion and pedigree to lead.

Capone was the 2008 Buffalo News Player of the Year while while Christian, who graduated
last May, was also first team All Western New York, at punter. Sounds like a lot of live up

"They just tell me to play my game, play my own style," said Cameron, who was a running
back last year on the junior varsity. "Just watching them since I was little, we would always
play football with our friends all the time. They tell me to come out here and practice hard.
My brothers were always a team in front of me, so I always watched their games and they always
watched me."

Cameron said he expects his main targets this season to be wide receivers Anthony
Mastrocicco, Shaquille Brooks and his cousin Mike Smith.

The Steelers used the first day of practice to work on basic bag drills, worked on agility,
and some basic install.

They are coming off an 8-2 season which included a berth in the Federation's Class B
championship, which they lost to Alden, 14-12.

Elsewhere, Charlie Comerford, a two-time all-WNY pick before graduating from Timon in 2001, began Day One as head coach of his alma mater, succeeding Al Monaco.

The Tigers have one of their better teams in many years with the addition of six or seven kids who didn't come out last year. But the school with 240 boys still has to contend with Canisius, St. Joe's and St. Francis.

"You need every athlete in the school to come out to be competitive. We have a tough schedule and every game we play will be an uphill battle, but we like it that way," said Comerford. "We've been working out for three days a week for three months, so the kids have been really dedicated. Frankly, they're sick of losing, so they've come out in good numbers and have made this transition real easy."

---Mary Jo Monnin

Playing catch (up) with some summer hoops

I had a summer break that started as soon as the 2010-11 season concluded, and now I'm back -- and here to throw some notes out regarding some summer news and notes ... 

* Late in the spring season we told you about the BCANY Hoops Festival set for Johnson City from Aug. 5-7. The event seems like a great one, and it's one that came about due to the unfortunate absence of the Empire State Games this summer. 

The roster has been selected by the coaching staff of head coach Larry Jones (Depew) and assistants Mike Haskell (retired Pioneer) and Mike Berkun (Medaille):

Reggie Agbeko (St. Joe's), Stan Wier (who has transferred back home to East Aurora), Sterling Taplin (Williamsville North), Ryan Whelpley (Walsh), Matt Hart (Canisius), Aaron Frasier (Seneca), Aaron White (Canisius), Jamaal Carter (City Honors), Adam Weir (Canisius), Jordan Williams (Bishop Timon-St. Jude).

Alternates are: Matt McDonald (Canisius), Demone Harris (Timon), Kyle Kobis (Timon), Derrick Sekuterski (Depew).

The team will play Long Island on Friday, Aug 5 at 4:30 p.m. On Saturday, Aug. 6, the Buffalo team plays New York City at 9 a.m. and Hudson Valley at noon. Saturday's evening session includes a dunk contest and three-point contest at 4:30 p.m.; a parent clinic on recruiting at 5:30 and a player clinic with college coaches at 6:30.

The event concludes on Sunday, Aug. 7 with the seventh-place game (9 a.m.), fifth-place game (10:30 a.m.), consolation (noon) and championship (1:30 p.m.).

While the event is being run by BCANY, there are some expenses that will need to be covered for teams and players (food, lodging, transportation -- costs mostly taken care of by the ESG during the Games). The squad is seeking sponsorships -- if you are interested in helping the team defray some costs, call Jones at (585) 746-8327.

This team deserves some serious commenting -- that squad is a really good one, a much better collection than I expected for what is a startup event this year. Great talent, great depth, great mixture of schools. Excellent job by the basketball community in getting the word out and credit the coaching staff for what must have been some difficult choices after the tryouts. 

* Speaking of some good hoops competition, this weekend might be the Taste of Buffalo but fans can get a taste of hoops up in Niagara Falls. Some top programs are in action at the Niagara PAL Team Camp at Niagara Falls. Here's the lineup: 

Friday: 5 p.m. -- Main gym, Niagara Falls vs. Canisius; Aux. gym, St. Joe's vs. Niagara-Wheatfield; 6 p.m. -- Batavia vs. Grand Island; Aux. gym, Wilson vs. Holland; 7 p.m. -- Main gym, Jamestown vs. Sweet Home.

Saturday: 9 a.m. -- Main gym, St. Joe's vs. Niagara Falls; Aux. gym, Canisius vs. Jamestown; 10 a.m. -- Main gym, Sweet Home vs. Wilson; Aux. gym, Batavia vs. Niagara-Wheatfield; 11 a.m., Main gym, Grand Island vs. Holland.

Single elimination tournament begins at noon, with championship at 5 p.m.

There is a $2 admission for fans 13 and older.

* I will hopefully hit some summer events of all sorts -- I'll be soon selling raffle tickets to benefit the Tom Borrelli Award and Scholarship Fund. We have some great prizes and it's a great cause as we continue to honor our fallen coworker. 

The third Borrelli Award for boys and the inaugural Borrelli Award for girls will be announced later this month and the winners will receive their trophies at the July 27 Tom Borrelli Golf Tournament at Holland Hills. For those interested in golfing ($100 per person) or donating, please email me at 

* By the way, the spring All-WNY teams and all-league teams (for baseball, softball and boys and girls lacrosse), which have been published over the last month, have all been collected at the high school home page.

---Keith McShea

(@KeithMcSheaBN on Twitter)

Timon-OP lax showdown is ... only a scrimmage

I've been looking forward to Friday's boys lacrosse matchup between Orchard Park and Bishop Timon-St. Jude since before the spring season, and I know I'm not the only one.

Bad news just in from Timon coach Mike Burke: It's just a scrimmage.

Why? Timon scheduled too many games. The state limit for Catholic schools is 18 and the Tigers have already reached that total.

On the team's schedule as reported to, Timon is 16-3. Coach Mike Burke said that Timon's game with Kiski Prep (Pa.) was played as a scrimmage and will not count towards the team total. 

Burke said he was unaware of the limit until he was told by league chairman Tom Franz, who is the Nichols coach, following TImon's 11-9 home win over the Vikings Wednesday evening. Burke consulted with Timon administrators, including athletic director Jim Palano, and learned that the Timon-OP game would have to be a scrimmage.

"It's disappointing because this is a game that all of our kids look forward to, because Orchard Park is the top dog," said Burke. "I know that they're disappointed, too.

"We overlooked the rule regarding how many games you could have. We probably need to be more selective with who we play -- maybe we didn't need to play Aquinas [of Section V] twice. I talked to [OP] coach [Gene] Tundo. He sounded disappointed but he was as accomodating as he could be."

The teams will still play Friday evening, but with a running clock for 15-minute quarters and no official score kept on the field. 

"With the playoffs coming up, it's still good to get another quality opponent to prepare us, so something is better than nothing," Burke said. "We're going to be playing it as hard as possible, and I know they are too."

Timon has several games scheduled against private schools in Detroit this weekend; Burke said those will also be played as scrimmages and were always scheduled as such. Burke also said that in previous years, Timon's game against Ontario's Hill Academy was treated as a scrimmage. 

"We did a couple of things different and it really screwed it up," said Burke. "We just have to be more selective with who we play."

My take?

Coach Burke has played perhaps the most impressive nonleague schedules in Western New York over the last five or six years. I credit him for seeking out top competition that has included outstanding programs both from within New York and out of the state (and out of the country). His scheduling is one of the major reasons that Timon has become one of Western New York's elite program. 

But (and this is a big but) to schedule too many contests is a hugely critical error on behalf of Burke and the school. To have an outstanding game like Timon-OP wiped out because of too many games being played is inexcusable. It's a simple matter which could have been avoided. It's also something that almost never happens in other sports.

The bottom line is that arguably the best regular-season matchup between Western New York boys lacrosse teams has been lost for the players, programs, fans and yes, the media. A matchup like this attracts attention and deserves attention. It is one that would not have only benefitted the teams involved, but would have benefitted the sport in Western New York in general.

Instead, we won't be there. Because it's just a scrimmage.  

---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 |