Friday, February 26, 2010

'Burgh heading to semis in Glens Falls, finally; Friday news and notes

Lansingburgh's Sajae Pryor fights for a loose ball with Mohonasen's Quinton Brown during Friday's Section II Class A quarterfinal game at Hudson Valley Community College. Mohonasen's Garrett Sisson (50) and Ben Dalton (22) look on. (Lansingburgh photos by J.S. Carras - The Record).

Despite a 16-day layoff and despite running into the team that knocked them out of the playoffs a season ago, the Lansingburgh boys basketball team is marching off to Glens Falls for a Class A semifinal game for the first time in Guy DiBacco's seven-season tenure with the Knights.

Sajae Pryor scored 19 points, adding seven rebounds and four blocks in a superior defensive effort by Lansingburgh in the 56-42 victory.

Senior center Tyler Hammett, 6-foot-10, added 17 points and 13 rebounds, anchoring Lansingburgh's 2-3 zone and providing the Knights an unstoppable offensive force in the paint.

Not unlike Thursday's Class AA game between Troy and Colonie, the Suburban Council team set the pace of the game early. While Lansingburgh did make a nice run late in the first quarter - Alex Drake scored seven points and made three steals during an exciting stretch - Mohon ground the game to a halt in the second, holding 'Burgh to just nine points in the frame.

"We came out a little slow and finally picked it up," Hammett said. "We kept scoring and we played great defense. With our team, we have to play good defense if we want to win games."

Lansingburgh junior point guard Alex Drake drives around Mohonasen's Jeffrey Kruzinski during Friday's Section II Class A quarterfinal game at Hudson Valley Community College.

Drake finished with 10 points, adding three steals and two assists for the Knights.

--
It's been a long and strange season for Lansingburgh. Head coach Guy DiBacco and assistant Mike Benfer had tempered expectations about the year ahead when I spoke with them prior to their first game at Catholic Central in the Crusaders' Thanksgiving weekend tournament.

But, they have fought through some early questions to win a share of the Colonial Council regular season title, only to lose to a then-winless Ravena team late in the season.

Still, after knocking off Mohon Friday night, the Knights will be heading to the Civic Center for the first time under DiBacco's watch, blazing new ground for the Lansingburgh basketball program.

"I’m very excited. Maybe it was my lack of faith in them early, I don’t know," DiBacco laughed. "This is a group that their components fit well together. We have a couple of guys that can shoot it, we have a couple of guys that can handle it and I have a 6-foot-10 guy that’s coming on."

Schuylerville's Katelyn Fane dribbles around Catskill's Kiona Walters during Friday's Section II Class B opening round game at Schuylerville, a 54-26 victory for the Black Horses. (Photo courtesy The Saratogian).

Schuylerville's win sets up a quarterfinal rematch with Watervliet, which needed double overtime to dispatch the Black Horses in the quarterfinals a season ago.

Friday, No. 1 seed Watervliet topped Colonial Council rival Schalmont 45-33 in an opening round game on George Mardigan Court.

The Lady Cannoneers will host a pod of quarterfinal games on Wednesday, March 3.
Ravena will face Monday's Cohoes/Greenville winner at 6 p.m., followed by the Watervliet/Schuylerville clash at 7:30 p.m.

On the other side of the Class B bracket, we know No. 3 Mechanicville will playing No. 6 Johnstown at 6 p.m. Wednesday, but we don't know the location yet. Assuming No. 2 Fonda beats No. 15 Granville Saturday, the games will be played at Fonda.

In other girls action Friday, Glens Falls beat Gloversville in a Class A opener, setting up a quarterfinal matchup at No. 1 Averill Park Saturday night.

In Class CC, the Maple Hill and Hoosic Valley teams both advanced to the semifinal round, but did it in different fashions. Hoosic Valley cruised to a 61-24 victory, while the Wildcats sweated out a 49-42 triumph over Cambridge.

In Class C, Berlin topped Mayfield by three points, clinching a game at No. 1 seed Greenwich Saturday night.

In Class D, the Heatly girls topped No. 5 Hartford, 47-40, sealing a date with No. 1 Whitehall at Adirondack Community College Tuesday night at 7:30 p.m.

(For all results, see the post below this for digital brackets)

In Friday's boys action, Ichabod Crane made a furious second quarter rally to toppled No. 4 Scotia-Glenville in a Class A quarterfinal game. The Riders will face No. 1 Lansingburgh Thursday night in Glens Falls in the semis.

In Class B, Johnstown edged Hudson 61-60.

In Class C, Corinth, Schoharie, Voorheesville and Canajoharie were winners. Maple Hill plays a long-awaited game against No. 16 Berne-Knox this afternoon at 4 p.m.

In Class D, New Lebanon, Fort Edward and Hawthorne Valley all marched on to the round of eight.

--
Check back Saturday as I'll be bringing you live updates from the six boys basketball games at Hudson Valley Community College, staring with the Averill Park vs. Gloversville game at Noon.

We'll also have full covering of the New York State Wrestling Championships in Sunday's paper and I will do my best to bring you updates from that as well. For nearly real-time scores, see the wrestling post below this to view PDF brackets updated often at www.armdrag.com

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