Tuesday, March 2, 2010

Cannoneers blast Schenectady Christian in Class B semis; other news and notes from Tuesday

Watervliet High School senior Nick Durocher was doing a lot of this Monday afternoon, and it paid off Tuesday night, as Durocher buried a trio of three-pointers for the Cannoneers in a 65-45 Section II Class B semifinal victory over Schenectady Christian at the Glens Falls Civic Center. (File photo by Mike McMahon - The Record).

"I wanted to find my rhythm again," said Durocher, who took an extra 60 three-point practice shots prior to Tuesday's game. "I know in games before that I was hit¬ting those shots, but in the last two sectional games I haven’t been helping the team, except on defense. But we’re getting wins. Wins are the only thing that matter at this point."

Durocher buried a pair of NBA-range three-point buckets from the corner in the opening minutes of the second quarter as the Cannoneers started the period on a 15-0 run. Watervliet’s shooting guard scored 15 points and freshman sensation Jordan Gleason scored a team-high 17 points and snared 13 rebounds in a 65-45 victory at the Glens Falls Civic Center.

No. 2 seed Watervliet (18-3) advances to face No. 1 seed Fonda-Fultonville (21-0) in Sunday’s Section II Class B title game at the Glens Falls Civic Center. Tip-off for that game is scheduled for 4:30 p.m.

"Hopefully we can go out on top and keep going in regionals," Durocher said. "Our team doesn’t want to lose now. Coach told us all year that we have seven goals. This is only our fourth."

Watervliet head coach Walter Bowden took a gamble sliding freshman Jordan Gleason into the starting lineup for the Cannoneers' opening round playoff game against Stillwater, but the move continues to pay dividends. Gleason led the team in scoring for the second straight game and he was aided by another youngster Tuesday night.
Super sophomore Griffin Kelly was a starter most of his freshman season, and he recorded a double-double with 12 points and 12 rebounds against Schenectady Christian.

How are the Cannoneers in the Section II title game with such a youthful roster?

"I think it’s a couple things," Bowden said. "Number one, they’re athletic enough to compete at this level. They are two of the best athletes on the floor every time we step on the floor. And number two, they’re just fearless. They don’t worry about being a freshman, or a sophomore, in Griffin’s case. They know they can come out and compete and they have confidence in themselves and we have confidence in them. A couple of spectacular moves from each of them I thought."

Check out the full story on Watervliet in Wednesday's edition of The Record.

Boys basketball roundup:
Shenendehowa senior Matt Miner floats past Bishop Maginn defender Jerel Scott during Tuesday's Section II Class AA semifinal at Times Union Center. Shen scored a major victory, defeating the Griffins, 65-33. (Shen photos by Mike McMahon - The Record).

Shenendehowa senior Matt Miner tries to evade Bishop Maginn's Jerel Scott during a Section II Class AA semifinal Tuesday night at Times Union Center. Shen won, 65-33.

ALBANY - Matt Miner, the 2009-10 Suburban Council Player of the Year, scored a game-high 21 points as Shenendehowa knocked off the Big 10 Conference’s No. 2 seed, Bishop Maginn, 65-33 in a Section II Class AA semifinal at Times Union Center.
Shenendehowa (20-1), the No. 1 seed from the Suburban Council, outscored Maginn in the second half, 36-9.
Manny Hernandez added 14 points for the Plainsmen, who will face Big 10 No. 1 Christian Brothers Academy in the Section II Class AA title game Tuesday night.
Chris Jeffers scored a team-high nine points for Maginn (17-4).
CBA 64, Albany High 43: Galal Cancer scored 15 points to pace the Brothers in a Section II Class AA semifinal victory over Albany High, the No. 3 seed from the Big 10.
Kam Ritter added 11 points and Max Weaver chipped in with 10 for CBA (20-1).
Jeremic Bennett scored a game-high 18 points for Albany (13-8).
Class B
Fonda-Fultonville 55, Johnstown 33: Brandon Mercado and Luke Nethaway scored 16 points apiece for the No. 1 seeded Braves in a Section II Class B semi¬final victory over No. 5 Johnstown.
James Sheehan added 13 points for Fonda (21-0), which will face No. 2 Watervliet in the Section II Class B title game Sunday at 4:30 p.m. at the Glens Falls Civic Center.
Class D
Argyle 47, Fort Edward 40: Argyle, the No. 1 seed, topped Washington County rival Fort Edward, the No. 5 seed, in the Section II Class D semifinals at the Glens Falls Civic Center.

Girls basketball roundup:

Maple Hill junior center Katie Roth fights for control of the ball in Tuesday's Section II Class CC semifinal against Schenectady Christian. Maple Hill won, 44-29, setting up a title game matchup with Hoosic Valley. (Maple Hill photos by Tom Killips - The Record).

Hoosic Valley defeated Albany Academy for Girls in Tuesday's other semifinal, 47-34, setting up a rematch between the budding rivals in the Section II Class CC championship game, to be held this Friday at Hudson Valley Community College. Tip-off is set for 7:30 p.m.

Don't expect many points in this one, as both teams play a smothering style of man-to-man defense.
Our Ryan Kircher covered these games (check Wednesday's edition of The Record for the story) and this is what he learned from Maple Hill head coach Mark Bubniak:

"Obviously they're one of the best defensive teams, not just in CC, but in the entire section," Bubniak said. "We're lucky we play man-to-man primarily too, so we get to practice our offense against it day in and day out. The in-your-face style of it is probably more than what we've seen, but I think we can handle it and we'll see what happens on Friday."

Schenectady Christian's Heidi Frazier flies by Maple Hill's Erin Mosher during Tuesday's Section II Class CC semifinal game at Rensselaer High School.

Maple Hill and Hoosic Valley met in the Section II Class CC/C playoff game a season ago. Hoosic Valley won that game and wound up in the New York State championship game.

Although Maple Hill is the No. 1 seed and currently ranked No. 1 in the state, they still feel like they're the underdog until they beat Hoosic Valley, which was won four consecutive Section II titles.

"They're a great defensive team and obviously offensively they can hit the three as well," Katie Roth said of Hoosic Valley. "It's kind of another rivalry game for us to come back and play them again especially since they beat us last year. Now I think we want to beat them more than ever."

Girls Basketball
Class A
Holy Names 54, Ichabod Crane 39: Lee Arduini poured in 19 points as unbeaten and second-seeded Holy Names prevailed in a semifinal at Hudson Valley Community College.
Jackie Murphy added 12 points for Holy Names (20-0), which opened the game with a 10-0 run, and Christina Spicer chipped in with 11.
Rebecca Smith scored 19 points to pace the Riders (16-4).
Averill Park 46, Burnt Hills 23: Katie Duma scored 28 points on the day she was named Suburban Council Player of the Year, leading the No. 1 seeded Lady Warriors to the Section II Class A title game by defeating the Spartans in a semifinal game at Averill Park High School.
Duma made three two-point field goals, a trio of three-point field goals and sank 13-of-15 free throws for Averill Park (19-1), the No. 1 ranked Class A team in the state.
Helen Lawry scored five points for No. 4 seed Burnt Hills (5-15).
Class D
Whitehall 59, Heatly 40: The Lady Hornets, the No. 4 seed in the Section II Class D tournament, lost a semifinal game to No. 1 seed Whitehall at Adirondack Community College in Queensbury.
Adriana Brown and Stasha Cuzdey scored 13 points apiece for the Hornets (15-5).
Argyle 47, Germantown 35: No. 3 Argyle upset No. 2 Germantown in the Section II Class D semifinals. Whitehall and Argyle will square off in the Section II Class D title game at Hudson Valley Community College Saturday at 3:30 p.m.

Check back Wednesday for plenty more Section II basketball coverage. I'll be live blogging from the boys' Class C games at the Glens Falls Civic Center featuring Maple Hill and Hoosick Falls.

We'll also be covering the Class AA girls games at Hudson Valley Community College and the Watervliet/Schuylerville Class B quarterfinal round game. Until then, thanks for reading.

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