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N-W hoops hosts end-of-the-year banquet

by yarger
Thu, Mar 21st 2019 01:30 pm
The Niagara-Wheatfield boys basketball team poses following its end-of-the-year banquet at Pane's restaurant. From left, back row, Jay Smith, Ryan Mellerski, Cam Miller, Joe Woroniecki, Zach Stanley and coach Steve Miller. From left, front row, Roman Wright, TJ Robinson, Ben Salomon, head coach Erik O'Bryan, Andy DeVantier and Raejaun Smith. (Photo by David Yarger)
The Niagara-Wheatfield boys basketball team poses following its end-of-the-year banquet at Pane's restaurant. From left, back row, Jay Smith, Ryan Mellerski, Cam Miller, Joe Woroniecki, Zach Stanley and coach Steve Miller. From left, front row, Roman Wright, TJ Robinson, Ben Salomon, head coach Erik O'Bryan, Andy DeVantier and Raejaun Smith. (Photo by David Yarger)

By David Yarger

Tribune Editor

After compiling one of the best seasons in over 10 years, the Niagara-Wheatfield boys basketball team gathered for one final hoorah. 

The team hung out for its end-of-the-year banquet at Pane’s in North Tonawanda. 

Both the junior varsity and varsity athletes were honored at the dinner. Seniors were gifted with commemorative posters, shirts and additional items from coach Erik O’Bryan. 

The dinner compiled laughs, memories and fun stories into an enjoyable evening. 

O’Bryan said the 2018-19 team had been through a lot – starting 3-6 and finishing 13-10. He also credited his team and said it was his most memorable season in his time as a head coach. 

The Falcons were able to reach Buffalo State College and compete in the Class A1 semifinals for the first time since 2005, which O’Bryan said was a huge accomplishment and a step in the right direction for the program. 

Seniors for N-W included Davon Ware, Roman Wright, Zach Stanley, Cam Miller and Raejaun Smith. 

On top of everything, O’Bryan was proud to announce several athletes as scholar athletes. The team finished with a 91.42 overall average as a team. 

Junior Jay Smith led the team with a 98.95 GPA, while Miller was right behind Smith with a 98.85. 

The team in 2019-20 will return some of its talent that got the Falcons to Buff State, including freshman TJ Robinson, juniors Andy DeVantier, Ryan Mellerski, Ben “Rico” Salomon, Smith and Joe Woroniecki. 

Above, members of the Niagara-Wheatfield boys varsity basketball team smile for the camera following a dinner banquet. (Photo submitted by Erik O’Bryan)

Above, Niagara-Wheatfield head coach Erik O’Bryan and his son, Ryder, pose during the Falcons’ end-of-the-year banquet at Pane’s. (Photo submitted by Erik O’Bryan)

Coach Erik O’Bryan gives a speech to his team before handing out awards and senior gifts. (Photo by David Yarger)

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