Assemblywoman Jenne Honors Heuvelton Girls' Basketball Three-Peat State Champions

April 12, 2017

Assemblywoman Addie A.E. Jenne poses for a photo with members of the three-time Class D state champion Heuvelton girls' basketball team during a visit to the school this week. Pictured are, front row (l-r): Madison McCormick, Alexandra Steele, Paige McCormick, Kristi Donnelly and Kedan Mack. Second row: Jidapa Paibulsirichi, Sarah Nichols, Alyssa Johnson, Emily Streeter and Rayna Cameron. Third row: Assistant Coach Austin Weakfall, Xi Du,

Megan Montpetit, Assemblywoman Jenne, Chelsie Jock, Lara Martin, Kelsey Williams and Molly Williams. Back row: Coach Rob Powers.

The Heuvelton girls' basketball team presented Assemblywoman Addie A.E. Jenne with a three-peat championship shirt during her visit to the school this week. Pictured are (l-r): senior Kaden Mack, Assemblywoman Jenne, senior Paige McCormick and senior Kristi Donnelly. The seniors have been part of back to back to back Class D state championships.

Assemblywoman Addie A.E. Jenne stopped at Heuvelton Central School this week to congratulate the girls' basketball team for winning their third Class D state championship.

She acknowledged a stop in Heuvelton to meet with the girls' basketball team is becoming an annual rite of spring on her calendar.

The Heuvelton girls' varsity basketball team recently captured their third Class D state championship in three years with a 78-54 victory over Panama on the floor at the Hudson Valley Community College gymnasium. The Bulldogs finished the season with a 27-1 record.

Heuvelton is one of just three Class D schools to win three consecutive New York State titles;

Assemblywoman Jenne said the next generation of female leaders is being molded from the experiences they gain playing high school and college athletics.

"You have excelled at a really high level. You have shown you have the drive and ability to succeed. There was a time when there was a perception that women leaders didn't support each other," the assemblywoman told team members.

"But the opportunities you have experienced in high school athletics have provided you with the understanding of the value of teamwork in making good things happen," she said.

"You are going to be able to be more powerful in what you choose to do with the rest of your lives because you have shown you have the skills and mental toughness to rise to the occasion and attain near perfection. This experience will impact your perspective as women, as mothers, as professionals, whatever you choose to do," she added.

Assemblywoman Jenne said one of the team's greatest accomplishments has been the players' abilities to adapt to new roles and continue their run of success after losing state championship caliber players to graduation in each of the last two years after winning their first state title.

She also pointed to the tremendous support the team has received from its hometown fans as well as from around the North Country during its state tournament play.

She said the support and the interest Heuvelton's success has generated over the past few years made the Class D Section 10 tournament title game between Hammond and Heuvelton an event that filled the Roos House gymnasium rather than a basketball game.

Assemblywoman Jenne reminded the athletes, however, that with the adulation and community support comes responsibility.

"You are already role models. You are feared and revered. You will always be able to walk with your heads high because you are champions, but you will also always carry the responsibility that goes with being a role model," she said.

"I know you will have a tremendous impact in whatever you choose to do, wherever you choose to go. You have shown you understand the value of hard work, commitment and dedication to reach your goals in life. Those traits will be able to bring you personally and professionally to the highest level," Assemblywoman Jenne noted.

Coach Rob Powers said the experience of the three state titles has continued off the court as the players have been recognized for their success.

It's a post season that includes interacting with state elected officials like Assemblywoman Jenne, having resolutions passed in both houses of the state legislature honoring the team, appearing at a St. Lawrence County Legislature meeting to be honored by county lawmakers and a number of other accolades.

"It's absolutely incredible, just the support we have received from everybody. We came back into town after this year's win, and there was a parade for us with firetrucks coming from all over the region," Coach Powers said.

"We also get great support from our local schools. When we are playing for state championships, it's not just a Heuvelton thing. It's a St. Lawrence County thing, and we are so appreciative of that support. We have such a strong fan base. You look out and see what we call Purple Rain or Sea of Purple. It's just mind blowing," he noted.

Coach Powers said he is as proud of the way the players carry themselves as state champions off the court as he is of their play in the gymnasium.

"It's a testimony to how these kids are raised. They like to joke around about it, but they are not arrogant at all. We wouldn't let them be," he quipped.

Seniors (l-r) Kaden Mack, Paige McCormick and Kristi Donnelly talk about their future plans with Assemblywoman Addie A.E. Jenne (second from left).

Assemblywoman Addie A.E. Jenne visited Heuvelton Central School to congratulate the girls' varsity basketball team on their back to back to back state championships