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Valley Sports Report
THE VALLEY — Waverly junior Joey Tomasso had a season for the ages, and is the 2022-23 Valley Sports Report Boys Basketball “Player of the Year.”

Sayre’s Jackson Hubbard also etched his name into the record book, and is the “Offensive Player of the Year,” while Waverly junior Jay Pipher and Athens sophomore Kolsen Keathley share the “Defensive Player of the Year” honors, Waverly junior Jake VanHouten is the “Newcomer of the Year,” and Waverly’s Lou Judson is “Coach of the Year.”

Tomasso averaged a school-record 30.9 points per game in a season that also saw him break the single-game scoring record with 49 points against Lansing in the IAC Large School championship game. He also set a school record with 649 points this season, and tied the school record with 17 made free throws in a game.

He is currently second in school history with 1,381 points, trailing only 1994 grad David Sickler, who sits atop the all-time list with 1,519 points.

Tomasso shot 51.8 percent from the field, and knocked down 50 3-pointers this season. He also averaged 4.6 rebounds, and 2.7 steals per game.

Hubbard scored 25.8 points per game for the Redskins, and set the school-record for points in a game with 55.

Hubbard knocked down 53 3-pointers this season, and made 123 free throws, while shooting 69.1 percent from the charity triple.

Hubbard also averaged 6.1 rebounds, 2.3 assists, and 3.2 steals per game.

Pipher and Keathley are both dogged on-ball defenders with the ability to shut down the opposition’s top offensive scorer. Both are extremely quick, and often get in the passing lanes to create turnovers.

VanHouten, a force on both ends of the floor, averaged 9.7 points and 9.7 rebounds per game, and led the team in blocked shots. He also shot 51.9 percent from the field.

Judson led Waverly to 19-3 record, including an 8-0 mark in the division for a division title, and a 14-0 record in the IAC. Waverly also topped Lansing to win an overall IAC Large School championship.

The Wolverines advanced to the Section IV, Class B semifinals, where it lost to eventual champ Owego. Their other losses came to Section V champ Wellsville, and Section IV runner-up Chenango Forks.

Honorable Mention: Despite few preseason expectations, Sayre’s rookie coach Jon Ward led the Redskins to a 12-10 regular-season record, the program’s first-ever NTL Small School title, and berths in the NTL Showdown, and District 4, Class AA playoffs. They finished 12-12.

2022-23 All-Valley Boys Basketball Super 7:
Joey Tomasso, junior, Waverly:
See above.

Jackson Hubbard, senior, Sayre: See above.

Mason Lister, senior, Athens: Nearly unstoppable taking the ball to the bucket, Lister had the best year of his four-year varsity career — a season that most years would have made him “Player of the Year.”

Lister averaged 18.2 points, 8.7 rebounds, 4.2 assists, and 3.1 steals per game. He shot 51 percent from the field, including a 58-percent clip inside the 3-point arc, and made 83 free throws.

Evan Sickler, junior, Tioga: A slick scorer and quietly strong rebounder, Sickler was the key component in Tioga’s run to the Section IV, Class C championship game.

Sickler averaged 22.5 points, 9.1 rebounds, 2.3 assists, and 2.3 steals per game, which most years would have been good enough for “Player of the Year,”

Sickler shot 48.2 percent from the field, including a 38.4 percent clip from behind the 3-point arc. He knocked down 58 3-pointers on the season, and made 83 free throws.

Jake VanHouten, junior, Waverly: See above.

Jay Pipher, junior, Waverly: A speedy guard and top-notch defender (see above), Pipher had a strong season on the offensive end of the floor as well.

Pipher averaged 8.5 points, 4.3 assists, 2.3 rebounds, and 2.9 steals per game. He also shot 74.3 percent from the free-throw line.

Valentino Rossi, junior, Tioga: A strong low-post presence, Rossi led the team in blocked shots, and altered many more.

Rossi averaged 8.5 points, and 7.2 rebounds per game, including 3.8 caroms per game on the offensive glass. He shot 52.4 percent from the field.

Honorable Mention: Athens senior Chris Mitchell, Sayre sophomore Nick Pellicano, and Tioga junior Ethan Perry.

2022-23 All-Valley Super 7 Newcomers team
Jake VanHouten, junior, Waverly
Shea Bailey, sophomore, Tioga
Xavier Watson, sophomore, Athens
Michael Griffin, sophomore, Sayre
Hudson Trump, sophomore, Sayre
Hogan Shaw, freshman, Waverly
Jake Benjaimin, junior, Waverly

2022-23 All-Valley Defensive team
Jay Pipher, junior, Waverly
Kolsen Keathley, sophomore, Athens
Ethan Perry, junior, Tioga
Zach Garrity, senior, Sayre
Shea Bailey, sophomore, Tioga
Mason Lister, senior, Athens
Jake VanHouten, junior, Waverly

All-Overlooked Team
Korey Miller, junior, Athens
Gavin Fisher, junior, Tioga
Isaiah Bretz, senior, Waverly
Nate DeLill, senior, Waverly
Karson Sindoni, junior, Tioga

Players to Watch in 2023-24
This year’s top Newcomers aren’t the only ones to keep an eye on next year. Most of the boys on this list didn't see much varsity time, if any, but could contribute next year as well.

Jase Babcock, sophomore, Athens: Babcock saw some quality minutes this season, and hit some big shots at key times. Don’t be surprised if he joins Miller, Watson and Keathley as part of a “fab four” for the Wildcats.

Connor Mosher, junior, Athens: He spent the majority of his time on JVs this season, but did see time at the varsity level, and gave the Wildcats quality minutes. With six seniors graduating, Mosher will likely be looked upon to score next season.

Jon Searles, junior, Waverly: Searles could be in line for a lot more minutes if he keeps progressing. He’s 6-5 and athletic, with a nice touch around the bucket.

Ronin Ault, freshman, Waverly: The Wolverines won’t have many openings on the varsity next season, but Ault could in line to get one of them. He does a little bit of everything, and can score from the perimeter, or by taking the ball to the hoop.

Karter Green, freshman, Sayre: He showed a lot of athleticism this season. Once he gains the confidence at the varsity level, he will be a big contributor for the Redskins.

Jackson Bombard, 8th-grader, Tioga: He can handle the ball, and knock down the 3-pointer, but Tioga only graduates one senior. He could provide minutes at the varsity level, or get more experience on JVs.

Carson Rockwell, 8th-grader, Waverly: Rockwell is 6-3, a tremendous passer, and can shoot the 3-pointer, but he’ll need to get a little more physical at the varsity level. He’s another guy who could see minutes on varsity, or get a little more experience on JVs.

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