Fayetteville-Manlius Unified Basketball: A Season to Remember


Anthony Ahn

Teammates celebrate after scoring!

The 2022 Unified Basketball season was an electric one.  The pandemic and restrictions on sporting events took a toll on Unified sports last season. However, after some time off, the Fayetteville-Manlius Hornets were ready to hit the court this season and have some fun. 

In the first game of the season against Cazenovia, the Hornets found themselves in a close game at the end of the fourth quarter trailing by 2 points with less than 10 seconds on the clock. With the assist from Riyyan Ahmed, senior Neva Ricardo was in place and ready to take the final shot. Neva sank the winning shot at the buzzer to bring the Hornets to victory ending the game with a score of 29-28.

In another close game this season, the Hornets were facing the Jamesville-Dewitt Red Rams. Once again both teams competed down to the last quarter, as the score went back and forth the whole game. In the final seconds of the fourth quarter, Stella Barlow attempted a couple shots from around the rim and was so close to sinking a final basket. With the assist from senior Michael Ouyaung, Stella scored the final basket with 2 seconds left on the clock. The Hornets pulled away with the win, with the final score being 47-40. 

This year FM had to say goodbye to a very good group of senior partners and athletes. Senior Night was an electric night to remember in the House 1 gym. The rematch against Caz was a physical and competitive game, filled with big plays from everyone on the team. The atmosphere was one of the best things you will ever see as two entire sections of bleachers were filled with students and fellow FM sports teams. Junior partner Lauren Hoffman explains, “All of the students brought energy to the student section every game which left smiles on everyone’s faces in the gym.” The energy continued as Luke Assimon hit a buzzer beater three-pointer from the top of the key. It sealed the deal for the Hornets as they took home the win on Senior Night 33-28. 

The final game of the season was away at CNS. This was yet another game that came down to the wire for the Hornets this season. It was a competitive game and every last second counted for both teams. With 5.8 seconds left on the clock, Trevor Martin was passed the ball where he then sank the winning buzzer beater to help them pull off the win 47-45. 

Unified Sports, especially basketball, are unforgettable experiences for the players, the partners, and the fans watching. This season was one to remember for the Hornets, with amazing plays and moments from everyone on the team. Hoffman said, “We had so many amazing buzzer beater games which left so many amazing memories from the season.”