O’Mara and Palmesano Host Watkins Glen Girls Basketball State Champions at the Capitol

State Senate and Assembly adopt Legislative Resolution paying tribute to the team and their championship season
May 9, 2017
Albany, N.Y., May 9—State Senator Tom O’Mara (R,C,I-Big Flats) and Assemblyman Phil Palmesano (R,C,I-Corning) hosted the Watkins Glen Girls High School Basketball team at the Capitol today where the Senate and Assembly paid tribute to the team’s 2017 Class C State Championship.

In a joint statement, O’Mara and Palmesano said, “It was our great pleasure to host the Watkins Glen state champs at the Capitol. We were grateful for the opportunity to introduce the Senecas to our Senate and Assembly colleagues and to help celebrate such a memorable and remarkable season. This team exemplifies the finest qualities of achievement, commitment to excellence, hard work and success, and they have made their school, their families, their community and our entire region very proud.”

The 2016-2017 Watkins Glen Girls Basketball Senecas captured the program’s first-ever New York State Public High School Athletic Association (NYSPHSAA) championship when it defeated Port Jefferson, 65-63, on Sunday, March 19 at Hudson Valley Community College in Troy, New York. The game was highlighted by sophomore Hannah Morse’s buzzer-beater, a baseline floater to capture the state title and cap off a 22-2 season.

The team was led by Head Coach Alicia Learn, Assistant Coaches Scott Morse and Harold Chaffee, and Strength Trainer Ralph Diliberto. Team members are: Mikenna Ayers, Emilia Bond, Clara Chedzoy, Makenna Fraboni, Mariah Gonzalez, Taylor Kelly, Katlyn Kernan, Ryanna LaMoreaux, Kendra Larson, Hannah Morse, Amanda Pike, Julia Reilly and Jazmin Shea.

Watkins Glen Superintendent Tom Phillips and Athletic Director Rod Weeden also accompanied the team to Albany today.

The Senate and Assembly Resolution adopted in the team’s honor reads, in part, “Proudly donning the school's colors of navy blue and maroon, family, friends, and the community at large loyally and enthusiastically supported the Senecas throughout their journey…In a sport such as basketball, which demands athletic prowess, speed and agility, Head Coach Alicia Learn and her skilled coaching staff worked hard to hone the skills of this championship team, teaching these outstanding athletes lessons which will prove invaluable both on and off the court…the Watkins Glen High School Girls Basketball Team have clearly utilized dedication, determination and teamwork in providing a lasting contribution to the spirit of excellence which is a tradition of their school.”

[In the attached photo, O’Mara and Palmesano are shown with the team and coaches in the State Capitol prior to the team’s recognition during the Senate and Assembly sessions.]