Sunday Sports: Hammond Lady Red Devils bring home the State Class D Title

Hammond Lady Red Devils bring home state title
Published: Mar. 19, 2023 at 10:01 PM EDT
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TROY, New York (WWNY) - The top ranked team in the state in Class D, the Hammond Lady Red Devils, were looking to bring home a 3rd state title as they met Oxford in the State Class D Championship game at Hudson Valley Community College.

Hammond was also looking to keep the title in the North Country with the Copenhagen Lady Golden Knights capturing the crown last year.

The Lady Red Devils made it to the title game after beating Panama 78-56 in the state semi-finals on Saturday.

In the 1st quarter, Sadey Sprabary misses but gets her own rebound and scores: Hammond up 2.

Then it was Hailee Manning with the miss, but she grabs the loose ball and connects. Manning finished with 16 points on the day.

Landree Kenyon takes the feed and kisses 2 off glass to put Hammond up 18-12 after 1 quarter.

In the 2nd quarter, Ava Howie misfires but Manning cleans the glass and hits: Hammond up by 7.

Howie buries the 3 on her next attempt to put Hammond on top by 10. She had 18 points on the day.

Howie hits another 3 to put Hammond up 33-19 at the half.

In the 3rd quarter, it was Sprabary with the reverse lay-in to put Hammond up 49-31 after 3 quarters. She had 10 points.

In the 4th quarter, Kenyon comes up with the steal and hits for 2 of her 13 points.

And Hammond caps off a magical season, beating Oxford 61-37 to capture the State Class D Championship, the first for the girls since 2008.

And the celebration didn’t stop there for the ladies of Troy.

The team bus received an escort of police and fire vehicles back to the school, stopping first in Morristown where some of the Lady Red Devil basketball players go to school, before making its way up State Route 37 to the school.

Friends and family packed the parking lot at the school to congratulate the team and thank them for providing them with so many thrills throughout the season.

Then the team was greeted inside the school by students and fans, and the school set up an impromptu ceremony inside the gym for the newly crowned champions.

For the coaches and players, it’s a day that they will remember for the rest of their lives.

”Yeah, the girls, I mean, they really deserve this. In Ogdensburg, we met some cops there and then we stopped in Morristown, picked up a few more for the parade. On the way here, it was great seeing- we had kids from elementary that were holding up number one, the older people of the community. The girls just started crying. It was emotional for all of us on the bus,” said Coach Alyssa Crosby.

”Our community is, we’re one whole family. We all love and support each other, we push each other. It’s weird, to be honest. I never thought I would ever win a state championship but it feels amazing,” said Landree Kenyon.

”It sounds awesome. We’ve done so much to prepare for this. Coach, she’s done a lot for us and it’s good to bring it home,” said Ava Howie.

”It’s really exciting. I’m very proud of my whole team. It’s something I can’t explain,” said Hailee Manning.

”So, obviously it’s a once in a lifetime opportunity for us. Just to get there with the team, it’s the best thing in the world. I love all of these girls and we have great chemistry and I’m just really happy,” said Sadey Sprabary.

Staying on the hardwood, the Indian River Booster Club will be holding it’s 16th annual Alumni basketball game this coming Saturday with proceeds benefitting the Betsy LaClair Scholarship Fund.

Four games are on tap beginning at 2 PM with the Indian River Women vs. the 10th Mountain Division Women. That’s followed by the Joel Davis Law Enforcement Game and 2 more contests.

The cost to play is $20 which includes a t-shirt. Admission is $3 for adults, $2 for students, and kids 5 and under get in for free.

For those involved it’s a labor of love for a good cause.

”When we first started, Betsy was real sick with cancer and we wanted to raise money for her. We started out the first year and she happened to be there and we supported her. Then she passed away and we just kept the anthem and kept after to go and earn money for a scholarships for the kids,” said Scott Kelsey of the Indian River Booster Club.