Valley Sports Report
THE VALLEY — In a winter season full of outstanding performances, senior Mike Atanasoff capped a brilliant and record-breaking career for the stories Waverly boys swim program with a pair of state medals at the New York Swimming & Diving Championships. He is the 2019-20 Valley Sports Report boys Super 7 “Athlete of the Winter” season.
Atanasoff, VSR’s “Boys Swimmer of the Year,” won the bronze medal in the 50-yard freestyle at States with a school-record and IAC-record time of 21.1 seconds. The third-place finish matches the best place-finish at States in Waverly program history.
He also earned a sixth-place medal at States in the 100-yard freestyle in a new school-record and IAC-record time of 46.61 seconds.
At the Section IV, Class B Championships, Atanasoff finished second in the 50 free in 22.13 seconds, and was sixth in 100-yard backstroke in 1:03.11. He also swam on second- and third-place relays at Class B meet.
Atanasoff was the only four-time winner at the IAC Championships and was named the MVP. He won the 100-yard freestyle in 47.87 seconds, erasing the previous record set in 2000, and won the 200-yard freestyle in a time of 1:46.61, which ranks second all-time in WHS history. He also swam on a pair of gold-medal winning relays.
During the regular season, Atanasoff, , who recorded his 200th career win during the season, was consistently a quad-winner to lead Waverly to another unbeaten dual season and another IAC Duals title.
He was named the MVP at the rugged Wolverine Invitational, after record-breaking performances in the 50- and 100-yard freestyle events. His time of 21.29 in the 50 free erased O-M’s Tom Iorio’s long-standing record, which was established in 1985.
The remainder of the “Super 7 Male Athletes of the Winter” season are:
Gianni Silvestri, 8th-grader, Tioga: Silvestri became the youngest wrestler in the storied history of the four Valley programs to win a state title, and is the 2019-20 Valley Sports Report “Wrestler of the Year.”
A year after a runner-up finish at 99 pounds in the Section IV, Division 2 Championships, Silvestri posted a 40-1 record and won the 99-pound state title.
Silvestri was the top-ranked 99-pounder in the State when he suffered his only loss of the season, a 5-4 decision against Mount Sinai’s Brayden Fahrbach, who jumped from No. 2 in the state into the top spot with the win.
Silvestri avenged that loss with a 5-2 decision over Fahrbach in Tioga’s 31-29 loss to Mount Sinai at the New York State Division 2 Duals.
In the postseason, including the IAC Championships and the Section IV and New York State Duals tournaments, Silvestri posted an 18-0 record, with 10 falls, one technical fall, and two major decisions. he also posted a 6-0 record against BGAH 8th-grader Darren Florance, who finished sixth at States.
Silvestri has a 68-17 record in two varsity season.
Brady Worthing, senior, Tioga: A state champ as a junior, Worthing won his first 45 matches this season before dropping a 6-4 decision to Gouverneur sophomore Carter Baer in 138-pound state finals.
Worthing finished the season at 45-1 with 35 pins and three technical falls. He won the IACs, Section IV Qualifier A, and the Section IV, Division 2 Championships.
Worthing wrapped up his career with a 176-34 record, and one state title, sandwiched in between a pair of runner-up finishes.
Isaac Chandler, senior, Waverly: Chandler capped his career with a third-place finish in the pole vault at the New York State Indoor Track & Field Championships, improving on last year’s fifth-place finish.
Chandler cleared 15 feet early in the season to break his own school record of 14-feet 6-inches, which he set last year, but it was his final competition for six weeks due to an injury.
Chandler, who also qualified for States in the 110-meter hurdles last year, equalled the 15-foot effort at the State Qualifier — just his second competition after returning from injury — to punch his ticket to States.
Chandler established a new school record at States, clearing the bar at 15-feet, 6-inches.
Scott Woodring, senior, Waverly: Woodring put up numbers that haven’t been seen in decades in the Valley, and is the 2019-20 Valley Sports Report boys basketball “Player of the Year.”
At 6-foot, 8-inches tall, Woodring was a dominant force in the low post, but also played the game like a guard in some respects.
Woodring has great hands, tremendous footwork, and a soft touch on his jumper, which he consistently knocked down from 15 feet and in. He also brought the ball up floor at times, and on more than one occasion pulled up in transition and knocked down a 3-pointer.
He “only” blocked 2.2 shots per game, but altered countless shots, and was judicious in his efforts to block shots, saving those efforts for when the game was on the line, and avoiding foul trouble throughout the season.
Woodring averaged 25.8 points and 14.9 rebounds per game, as well as 2.2 blocks and 1.4 steals per game. He shot 56.9 percent from the field, and made 10 3-pointers.
He finished his senior season with a school-record 552 points, and ended his career 1,083 points, 682 rebounds, and a school-record 39 double-doubles in 51 games.
Gavin Bradley, sophomore, Athens: Bradley followed up one of the best freshman seasons in Athens history with an even better sophomore season. While his finish at States was seventh this year compared to sixth last year, Bradley posted a 39-4 record, improving on last year’s 34-12 mark.
Bradley’s two losses before arriving at Hershey came against Troy senior Sheldon Seymour, who went on win his second PIAA title, and Muncy freshman Scott Johnson. Bradley lost to Johnson in the District 4 finals, but averaged that loss the next week in the Regional finals, and again in the “blood round” at Hershey.
Bradley has a 73-16 record in two years on varsity.
Gage Streeter, senior, Waverly: Streeter qualified for States with a record-setting 11-dive score of 454.85 points. He was the first Waverly diver to go to States since 1995.
At IACs, Streeter won the 1-meter diving competition with 411 points.
During the regular season, Streeter consistently earned first-place points in the diving competition, and broke a long-standing school record with a six-dive total of 273.45 points, breaking the record of 252.5 points set in 1995. (He later re-wrote his record with 278.85 points.)
IN PHOTO: Waverly’s Mike Atanasoff.
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