Section 9 Girls Basketball Preview

Section 9 Girls Basketball Preview

By Sean Lynch

Twitter: @SeanLynch845 Creator 

Last season in girls basketball was an interesting one. After losing twice to Warwick in the regular season, Washingtonville upset Warwick in the semi-finals, only to get beat by Kingston in the final.

After a disappointing 2016-17 season for the Sawyers, the Van Roy twins led Saugerties to its first Class A title since 2015-16. Without a senior on last years team, the Sawyers look to win the Class A title 3 out-of-the-last 4 seasons.

A well-rounded Highland squad led by Bri Rozzi was 22-1 last season, giving them the best record in all of Section 9. They beat Marlboro 52-31 in the Class B final, and look to win its third consecutive B title.

Led by underclassmen Erin Fox and Sam McKenna, Millbrook won its first ever girls basketball state title in Class C last season. 

Below, is a list of returners, graduates, last season’s record, and current coaches for all Section 9 teams.

Coaches: If you have any stats or players to add — please email them to me at

Division I


Coach: Steve Garner

2017-18 record: 14-6, AA Champion

Top returners: Sr. G Nicole Spinelli, Sr. G Madison Burke, Sr. F Rachel Cook

Kingston guard Nicole Spinelli

Key losses: F Chloe Chaffin, C Jaid Harrell


Coach: Pat Harris

2017-18 record: 10-10, lost to Washingtonville in AA quarterfinal

Top returners: Sr. F Melissa Alifano, Jr. C Jamie Waldron, Jr. G Toni Neely, Jr. G Taylor Neely

Monroe-Woodbury center Jamie Waldron

Key losses: C Caroline Helbeck


Coach: Kaitlyn Gould

2017-18 record: 9-10

Top returners: Jr. G/F Kiara Kennedy

Key losses: F Shanaya Bernard 

Newburgh Free Academy

Coach: Arturo Santana

2017-18 record: 7-13

Top returners: Sr. G E’laysia Williams, Sr. G Gabby Palladino

Key losses: F Kayla Walsh, F Jasmine Jones

Division II


Coach: Jim Steeves

2017-18 record: 15-5, lost to Kingston in AA Final

Top returners: Sr. G Victoria Pecovic, Sr. G Dyana Budakowski, Jr. G Michaela Beyers, Sr. F Jen Shute

Washingtonville guard Victoria Pecovic

Key losses: F Victoria Mirecki


Coach: Jim O’Brien

2017-18 record: 18-1, lost to Washingtonville in AA semifinal

Top returners: Sr. G Britt Tagg, Sr. F Hannah Davis, Jr. F Isabella Astorino, Soph. F Kristen Desrats

Key losses: F Emily Welling, G Lauren Desrats

Valley Central

Coach: Randy Axtell

2017-18 record: 14-6, lost to Kingston in AA quarterfinal

Top returners: Jr. F Erin Cooney, Jr. G Katie Crofoot, Soph. Madeline Feller, Soph. G Deanna Murdock

Key losses: C Megan Roell

Pine Bush

Coach: William Lacovara

2017-18 record: 5-14

Top returners: Jr. F Taylor Pannell, Jr. G Toni Adipietro, Soph. G Isabella Colon

Key losses: F Nicole Schuelesser


Division III


Coach: Chris Miller

2017-18 record: 11-9, lost to Red Hook in A semifinal

Top returners: Sr. F Maggie Malone, Sr. F Isabella Bulusan, Soph. F Eliana Bulusan

Key losses: G/F Cassidy Brusseler, F Taylor Moreau

Minisink Valley

Coach: Ali Colon

2017-18 record: 8-12

Top returners: Sr. F Saige Colon, Sr. G Nora Hanlon, Jr. F Catherine Burke

Key losses: F Lily Batule, G Aubrey Ketcham


Coach: Eric Harris

2017-18 record: 6-14, lost to Saugerties in A semifinal

Top returners: Jr. G Erin Smith, Sr. F Grace Clark, Sr. F Erika Fuentes

Key losses: G Roses Smith

Port Jervis

Coach: Caitlyn Gunderman

2017-18 record: 9-11

Top returners: Sr. G Rudae Gadson, Jr. Anastacia Richardson

Key losses: G Kristen Robinson, G Courtney Bedford


Coach: Tamin McCoy

2017-18 record: 2-18

Top returners: Sr. F Zanaya Cooper, Sr. F Mackenzie Turick

Key losses: G Michelle Duran, G Naszay Stergis

Division IV


Coach: Daniel Redmond

2017-18 record: 11-8, lost to Marlboro in B semifinal

Top returners: Jr. G Amanda Zeno, Sr. Zariah Williams

Key losses: G Diamond Weeks, Sr. C Sierra Barbiani

Burke Catholic

Coach: Kim Egan

2017-18 record: 10-9, lost to Marlboro in B quarterfinal

Top returners: Sr. G Katelyn McCann, Jr. G Caileigh Costello, Jr. G Brenna Costello

Burke Catholic guard Katelyn McCann

Key losses: G Shannon Pullar


Coach: Kevin Clark

2017-18 record: 7-11

Top returners: Sr. Haley Jackson

Key losses: G Starr Hayes


Coach: Linda Trapini

2017-18 record: 1-18

Top returners: Jr. G Aaliyah Jackson, Jr. G Cynthia Castro

Key losses: G Janeen Gomez, G Nyaila Elmore


Coach: Carlton Williams

2017-18 record: 1-19

Top returners: Sr. G Kassidy DeGroat

Key losses: G Olivia Racette

Division VI

S.S Seward

Coach: Joe DiMattina

2017-18 record: 17-3

Top returners: Jr. G/F Alexa Roach, Soph. G Josely Medina

Key losses: Sr. G Erika Straub, Sr. F Alexa Chiappone, Sr. F Nikki De Los Santos


Red Hook (Class A)

Coach: Andrew Makebish

2017-18 record: 9-8, lost to Saugerties in A final

Top returners: Sr. G Chrissy Gildersleeve, Sr. C Kristine Miller, Sr. F AJ Fuchs-White, Fresh. Morgan Tompkins

Key losses: G Syr Esposito

Wallkill (Class A)

Coach: A.J. Higby

2017-18 record: 9-11

Top returners: Sr. G Brianna Cross, Sr. Molly O’Hare, Fresh. Emma Schwartzbeck

Key losses: G Kiera Power, G Ify Ezedum

New Paltz (Class A)

Coach: Bill DeFino

Top returners: Sr. F Hailey Osborne, Sr. G Anna McDuffie

Key losses: Sr. G Erin Metzger

Saugerties (Class A)

Coach: Mike Melville

2017-18 record: 16-6,S9 A Champion

Top returners: Sr. Grace Van Roy, Sr. F Anna Van Roy, Sr. G Jaclyn Murphy, Jr. G Erin Dudzic, Sr. C Elise Peters

Key losses: No graduates from last years team.

Highland (Class B)

Coach: Jim Malak

2017-18 record: 22-1, S9 B Champion

Top returners: Sr. G Brianna Rozzi, Sr. F Jayda Jackson

Key losses: C Sam Garcia, G Candace McCutcheon, G Emily Peterson

Marlboro (Class B)

Coach: Marion Casey

Top returners: Jr. F Erin Lofaro, Sr. G Taylor McDonald, Soph. G Elizabeth Lofaro, Sr. G Emily Lofaro, Sr. G Lauren Schwarzbeck 

Key losses: G Talaya Lewis, G/F Faith Welker

Spackenkill (Class B)

Coach: Don Neise

2017-18 record: 11-9, lost to Highland in B semifinal

Top returners: Sr. G Izzy Herrera, Sr. F Olivia Zykoff

Key losses: F Noelle Mancini, G Ashley Libolt

Millbrook (Class C)

Coach: Adam Peek

2017-18 record: 22-3, S9 C Champion, defending NYSPHAA Class C Champ

Top returners: Sr. G/F Sam McKenna, Jr. F Erin Fox, Sr. F Claire Martell

Key losses: G Kaitlyn Daly, F Brooke Babbitt