April 22, 2009: State champions at Roxbury in 1959

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To The Editor:
I’d like to respond to John Bernhardt’s recent article re South Kortright’s state basketball championship as the first for a Delaware County school.
I was a member of the Roxbury Rockets varsity basketball team that won the Section IV, Class D New York State Championship in 1959. We defeated Kings Ferry in the final game played in Barton Hall at Cornell University. The final score was 66-55. This was a first for Roxbury as well as for Delaware County. Virtually everyone in Roxbury attended the game; which was extensively covered both by the News and The Oneonta Star.
Although the current South Kortright championship is a great accomplishment, I wanted to set the facts and the record straight.

John Townsend,
Massapequa

Editor’s note: Mr. Townsend is correct in that his 1959 Rockets won the Section IV, Class D New York State Championship. In 1959 there was no true state tournament among the various sections. According to Ben Nelson, executive director of Section IV, the true state championship tournament did not begin until 1974. Mr. Townsend’s Rockets went as far as the could and won their last game but their win earned them a Section IV, Class D title, not a Class D New York State title.