Slam dunk victory for 'Vliet
Jordan Gleason said hello to Section II basketball last Tuesday against Stillwater and he made quite the debut on the big stage Sunday afternoon against Broadalbin-Perth in the Class B quarterfinals.
Gleason, a 5-foot-9 freshman, scored a team-high 19 points - highlighted by a pair of dunks - as Watervliet won, 89-72. The Cannoneers advance to face No. 6 Schenectady Christian, but there is more on that later.
Gleason finished with 19 points, six rebounds, two blocks and a pair of assists in just his second varsity start.
"He can be spectacular and he showed that tonight," Watervliet head coach Walter Bowden said of Jordan Gleason. "He can do so many little things and for a freshman, he’s very poised, he’s fearless and he is active on the press. He had a lot of tips and steals and you can see his athletic ability on the dunks.
"He has been playing with so much confidence the last few games," Bowden continued, "that the sky is the limit for him."
The beginning was actually a dreadful one for the Cannoneers. Broadalbin jumped out to a 9-2 lead with 5:33 remaining in the first quarter, forcing Bowden to call timeout. He implored his guys to start getting back on defense, and the simple advice worked. Watervliet made a few stops, starting scoring and ratcheted up its smothering press, running Broadalbin out of the gym in the process.
Devonte Gleason, Watervliet's junior point guard and Jordan's older brother, added 17 points, six rebounds and five assists. Kevin Pontore chipped in with 12 points and 12 rebounds, while Griffin Kelly added 16 points and nine rebounds in a stat-sheet-filling game for Watervliet.
The Section II postseason has really become a family affair for the Gleason clan. Not only have Jordan and Devonte Gleason lifted the Cannoneers into the Class B semifinals for the first time during Walter Bowden's tenure, but they have another family member playing on the other side of the river.
Lansingburgh junior Sajae Pryor is cousins with the Gleasons, and Devonte was seen courtside during Lansingburgh's game against Mohonasen Friday night, shouting encouragement.
"Me, Sajae and my brother play basketball together all the time," Devonte Gleason said. "We’re always trying to make each other better. When I play bad, he tells me what I do wrong and when he plays bad I make sure I tell him what he’s doing wrong, as well as my brother. We’re rooting for each other. We both want to win."
No. 2 Watervliet travels to Glens Falls Tuesday night for a showdown with No. 6 Schenectady Christian in a Section II Class B semifinal at 6:30 p.m.
No. 1 Fonda faces No. 5 Johnstown at 8 p.m.
Lansingburgh, the No. 1 seed in the Class A bracket, travels to Glens Falls Thursday night for a meeting with No. 5 Ichabod Crane in a 7:30 p.m. start.
Read the full story on Watervliet's victory over Broadalbin in Monday's edition of The Record.
In another of the weekend's low-scoring games, Schuylerville and Schenectady Christian came alive in the fourth quarter to make it a....39-35 victory for the Falcons. Schenectady shot poorly from the free throw line all day, especially in the fourth quarter, but Schuylerville attempted 40 three-point shots, making just seven.
Watervliet will clearly hold the athletic advantage over Schenectady Christian, but the Falcons play a very disciplined style of basketball and you know they'll be ready for the press. The question is: can they handle it?
Thanks for reading this weekend and we'll have plenty of information coming soon on the semifinal matchups ahead of us this week.