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Hamburg-area lax girls, boys held in high regard at All-CPOWNY banquet

Allie Stewart and Adam DiMillo are no strangers to the All-CPOWNY lacrosse banquet. The two have been mainstays at the end-of-year gala since its inaugural year in 2010, when both earned Newcomer of the Year honors as eighth graders.

But this year’s event was a little different for the seniors.

Stewart, a midfielder on the Lancaster girls lacrosse team, and DiMillo, a midfielder on Timon’s squad, took home Ilio DiPaolo Player of the Year honors at the All-CPOWNY Lacrosse Banquet June 17 at Ilio DiPaolo’s, adding yet another exclamation point to each of their decorated careers.

A fifth-year varsity starter, Stewart helped Lancaster to a third consecutive Section VI championship this year. Her 55 goals and 89 points both ranked second on the team; her 34 assists led the Redskins.

The Canisius-bound senior earned All-America honors both this year and last and has racked up Western New York accolades during her time on varsity, including an All-Metro Newcomer of the Year bid when she was in eighth grade and her first Player of the Year selection after her sophomore year.

“It definitely feels good to get Player of the Year,” Stewart said. “I wasn’t expecting it, really, because there are so many good players around here. Buffalo has a good lacrosse reputation. I’m really excited to get it again.”

Stewart’s career has been mirrored by DiMillo’s. A five-year standout for Mike Burke’s Timon Tigers, who claimed another Monsignor Martin Athletic Association championship this year, DiMillo earned first team All-America honors in each of the past three seasons. He, too, was named Newcomer of the Year by Metro as an eighth-grader.

The Maryland commit’s 54 goals and 71 points both ranked second to senior teammate and last year’s Player of the Year, Connor Fields. He’s one of the main components of the Timon attack and draws plenty of attention — and praise — from opposing players and coaches.

“It’s great that [DiMillo] got Player of the Year,” said St. Joe’s coach Pete Hudecki, whose Marauders have been Timon’s stiffest competition in the MMA in recent years. “Well deserved. He’s a great kid and is going to do great at Maryland. I told him he’s more than welcome to come to any St. Joe’s practices after he graduates and shoot around, but I do not want to see him on the other side of that field anymore.”

Added DiMillo: “It’s an awesome honor to be named Player of the Year in Western New York. It’s been a great time, a great career for me in Section VI. I wouldn’t replace it with anything or be anywhere else.”

While DiMillo took home the top honors on the boys side of the banquet, he wasn’t the only athlete representing Timon on hand. Fields, defenseman Brandon May and goalie Tristen Dougherty all earned first team selections and played an integral role for a Timon team that would have competed for a third straight MMA crown if the Long Island Catholic Champions hadn’t backed out of the game.

Hudecki’s squad was represented just as well as the Tigers. The Marauders, who fell to Timon in this year’s championship, were represented by Nigel Davis, James Bassett and Dennis Gilbert as first team selections as well as Eric Deakin, who was named Most Improved Player.

“It’s great,” Hudecki said of his players’ selections. “It shows all the hard work they’ve done for the past four years.”

Orchard Park, which won its 22nd Section VI title of the past 24 years this season, saw John Wellington and Matt Perla claim first team honors. Sophomore Kevin McParlane, who was second on the Quakers with 50 goals, took home Newcomer of the Year.

Junior Josh Slowinski of Clarence, an All-American, was also a first team selection. Red Devils’ bench boss Mike Silverstein was named Coach of the Year after guiding his club to a Class A finals appearance, where it fell to Orchard Park, 10-9.

A host of Class B student-athletes also earned All-CPOWNY honors. Iroquois’ Derek Andrews, Niagara-Wheatfield’s Brennan Ferguson, West Seneca East’s Tyler Skretny, and Hamburg’s Evan Hollfelder and Lucas Shafer were all first team selections. Ferguson and Shafer were All-Americans this year.

East Aurora was Class C’s only school represented on the boys side, as senior midfielder Mike Franz made the team.

The girls team was heavy on Lancaster representatives. In addition to Stewart’s big night, head coach Julie Buccieri, who has led the Redskins to nine Section VI championships in 10 years, including one this season, took home Coach of the Year honors. Furthermore, Grace Gabriel and Hannah Nagowski were named to the team.

West Seneca East’s Laura Skrzypczyk, a freshman, was awarded Newcomer of the Year after her 30-goal rookie season. Teammate Elena Osmanski, who led the Lady Trojans with 44 goals and 13 assists, also earned honors.

The Southtowns were well-represented at the banquet. Class B champion Hamburg saw both Claire Herrmann and Jill Ford earn All-CPOWNY honors. They combined for 93 of the Bulldogs’ 174 goals. Frontier, Class A’s runner-up, sent Hannah Lease (37 goals, 19 assists) and Taylor Izzo (30 goals, 32 assists). Additionally, Eden’s Molly Neureuter and Lake Shore’s Alie Jimerson earned honors.

Also receiving recognition were Amherst’s Emily Bitka and Grace Lawson, North Tonawanda’s Zivi Attwood, Iroquois’ Jill Walczyk, Clarence’s Sydney Cerza and Mount St. Mary’s Olivia McDonald. Haley Kempf of Mount Mercy was named Most Improved Player.

In addition to the All-CPOWNY boys and girls teams, Mount Mercy Academy’s Jessica Alvira and Sacred Heart’s Erica Dombrowski were honored at the banquet. Alvira was this year’s Doug Matteson Courage Award recipient while Dombrowski received the Andrew Maisano Leadership Award.

The keynote was given by Army lacrosse coach Joe Alberici. His message to the student-athletes in attendance was simple: “Be a tough person.”

GIRLS TEAM:

Player of the Year: Allie Stewart, Lancaster. Coach of the Year: Julie Buccieri, Lancaster. Newcomer of the Year: Laura Skrzypczyk, West Seneca East. Most Improved Player: Haley Kempf, Mount Mercy.

First team selections: Zivi Attwood, North Tonawanda; Emily Bitka, Amherst; Sydney Cerza, Clarence; Jill Ford, Hamburg; Grace Gabriel, Lancatser; Claire Herrmann, Hamburg; Taylor Izzo, Frontier; Alie Jimerson, Lake Shore; Grace Lawson, Amherst; Hannah Lease, Frontier; Olivia McDonald, Mount St. Mary; Hannah Nagowski, Lancaster; Molly Neureuter, Eden; Elena Osmanski, West Seneca East; Allie Stewart, Lancaster; Jill Walczyk, Iroquois.

BOYS TEAM:

Player of the Year: Adam DiMillo, Timon. Coach of the Year: Mike Silverstein, Clarence. Newcomer of the Year: Kevin McParlane, Orchard Park. Most Improved Player: Eric Deakin, St. Joe’s.

First team selections: Derek Andrews, Iroquois; James Bassett, St. Joe’s; Nigel Davis, St. Joe’s; Adam DiMillo, Timon; Tristen Dougherty, Timon; Brennan Ferguson, Niagara-Wheatfield; Connor Fields, Timon; Mike Franz, East Aurora; Dennis Gilbert, St. Joe’s; Evan Hollfelder; Hamburg; Brandon May, Timon; Matt Perla, Orchard Park; Lucas Shafer, Hamburg; Tyler Skretny, West Seneca East; Josh Slowinski, Clarence; John Wellington, Orchard Park.

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