The 5th Annual MaxPreps Girls' Basketball Tour of Champions presented by the Army National Guard landed in upstate New York to honor the Cicero-North Syracuse Lady Northstars for their state championship and No. 5 national ranking. Led by head coach Eric Smith, the Lady Northstars earned the Class AA State Championship by defeating Penfield 62-48 and finishing the season with a 23-3 record. Cicero-North Syracuse is one of only ten girl's basketball teams out of over 20,000 girl's teams nationwide to receive the prestigious Army National Guard national ranking trophy this season. The team was honored at a school assembly on Wednesday, April 25th.
Despite the rainy conditions outside, it did not dampen the spirits of the students and school administrators who piled into the gymnasium to congratulate Coach Smith and his team on their tremendous season and witness the trophy presentation by MaxPreps representative Conor Byrnes and Staff Sergeant Nicholas Miller of the New York Army National Guard. With the entire crowd and many local television crews poised for the ceremony to begin, Cicero-North Syracuse athletic director Tom Tratham briefly expressed his gratitude to MaxPreps and the Army National Guard for selecting Cicero-North Syracuse and congratulated the players and Coach Smith on their outstanding season. The ceremony was then turned over to Conor Byrnes from MaxPreps who spoke about the Lady Northstars' on-court accomplishments leading to their Class AA State Championship and No. 5 national ranking in the MaxPreps Freeman Poll. Staff Sergeant Nicholas Miller then took the microphone and talked about the similarities between a championship basketball team and the Army National Guard. SSG Miller then gladly handed over the coveted Army National Guard national ranking trophy to Class AA Coach of the Year Eric Smith. Finally, Coach Smith thanked MaxPreps, the students, his players and coaches, and the Army National Guard for making this season "a gift that keeps on giving."
The 2011-2012 Cicero-North Syracuse Lady Northstars truly demonstrated the characteristics of excellence and dedication embodied in the Army National Guard national ranking trophy, and was certainly worthy of the honor for this season.
Congratulation Coach Smith and the Lady Northstars on their Class AA state championship and their top 5 national ranking!!