Area boys teams set for sectional tourney

The Leader-Herald

After Friday’s Western Athletic Conference championship game against Mekeel Christian Academy, Canajoharie coach Phil Schoff took a positive thought from his team’s loss to the state-ranked Lions.

“The last time we lost we went on a streak and did not lose for two months,” Schoff said.

The Cougars will start their trip on the road to the Section II championship at the Glens Falls Civic Center as the fourth seed in the Class C bracket.

“I was thinking a three but I know [third-seed] Greenwich beat us heads up early in the season and some coaches have an issue with us being the four,” Schoff said. “But I am not going to complain about something I can’t control. Being in the four spot actually is a bit of an advantage. If we can get past [No. 13] Voorheesville, we will probably face Schoharie, who we have already beaten once. The other bracket looks to be a tougher bracket.”

Canajoharie will host Voorheesville in its opening round game at 7 p.m. Wednesday at Canajoharie High School.

Also hosting opening round games this week are Gloversville, Broadalbin-Perth and St. Johnsville.

Broadalbin-Perth will host Ichabod Crane in a Class B matchup at 7 p.m. Tuesday at Broadalbin-Perth High School, while Gloversville will host Mohonasen in a Class A opening round game at 7 p.m. Wednesday. St. Johnsville will host Heatly at 7 p.m. Wednesday at St. Johnsville High School.

Also entering the 2013 postseason tournament are Amsterdam, Fonda-Fultonville, Fort Plain and Northville.

The Rams will open their Class A tournament on the road in Queensbury, while Fonda-Fultonville will travel to Catskill for a Class B opening round game. Fort Plain will make the trip to Rensselaer on Wednesday for a Class C game, while Northville will play Doane Stuart at Rensselaer High School in a Class D opening round game.

Mayfield was seeded 14th and hosted a Class C play-in game Friday night. The Panthers were upset by No. 19 Hadley-Luzerne, 52-47.

The Johnstown Sir Bills opted not to participate in the Class B postseason tournament.

Class A

No. 9 Mohonasen

at No. 8 Gloversville

Wednesday, 7 p.m.

Like last season, Gloversville opens its bid for a sectional title on its home floor, only this time the Dragons will be looking for a positive result.

Last season, the seventh-seeded Dragons rallied from nine points back to take the lead late in the fourth quarter, only to fall to No. 10 Lansingburgh on a foul shot with 1.5 seconds remaining.

Wednesday night, eighth-seeded Gloversville will look for its first win of the season over a Class A school when it hosts ninth-seeded Mohonasen at Gloversville High School.

The Dragons have been in the thick of every game this season against Class A opponents, with the exception of Foothills Council champion Scotia-Glenville, falling by seven points or less.

Junior Asa Barnhill has stepped up as the Dragons go-to player, leading the team in scoring with 234 points, while Hunter Goodwin shook off a mid-season slump to finish the regular season with 165 points. Senior Kevin Johnston has poured in 21 3-pointers this season and Barceem Dukes has hit 114 points without a 3-pointer.

Dukes and Goodwin have given the Dragons a presence in the paint this season, pulling down double-digit rebounds in multiple games.

The Warriors (4-14 overall) compete in the Suburban Council where they compiled a 3-13 record.

Grant Massaroni leads Mohonasen with a 18.4 points per game scoring average and has delivered 37 3-pointers.

The Dragons and Warriors have a common opponent in Averill Park.

Mohonasen split their league contests with Averill Park, losing 59-46 in the first game, while winning their last game of the regular season 47-45.

Gloversville dropped both non-league games to the Warriors 50-44 in the season-opener and 51-45 in January.

No. 10 Amsterdam

at No. 7 Queensbury

Wednesday, 7 p.m.

The 10th-seeded Amsterdam Rams (4-14) have faced tough opponents all season in the highly-regarded Big 10. Now they will put that experience to use when they travel to Queensbury to face the seventh-seeded Spartans (9-9) of the Foothills Council.

The Tony Orapello-coached Rams have faced state-ranked Class AA teams in Troy and CBA twice this season.

Luis Laboy leads the Rams scoring with 206 points this season, while Rob Sherlock and Zach Dufel have been key elements in the Rams attack

Charles Peltz leads the Spartans scoring with 287 points, including 35 3-pointers and has score 20 or more points seven times, hitting a season-high of 29 twice.

Class B

No. 9 Ichabod Crane

at No. 8 Broadalbin-Perth

Tuesday, 7 p.m.

The Broadalbin-Perth Patriots are riding a three-game winning streak heading into Tuesday’s Class B opening round game.

Both B-P and Ichabod Crane enter the contest with identical 8-10 overall records. The Patriots finished in a fifth-place tie with Gloversville in the Foothills Council standings with a 6-8 league record, while the Riders went 4-10 against Colonial Council competition.

The Riders may have a height advantage, boasting four 6-foot-4 players on their roster, including leading scorers Stephen James (198 points) and Shaun Davis (172 points).

The Patriots have spread the scoring around with four players breaking the 100-point scoring mark this season.

Ben Bellandi leads the Patriots with 198 points this season, while Andre Taylor has put on a late-season surge to hit 191. Preston Taylor has 124 and Chris Natoli has 121 regular season points.

No. 13 Fonda-Fultonville

at No. 4 Catskill

Tuesday, 7 p.m.

In a repeat of the 2012 Class B opening round Fonda-Fultonville will again travel to take on Catskill.

Last season the Braves were seeded 12th and Catskill fifth. This time they enter as the 13th and fourth seeds.

The senior-laden Cats (17-1) enter Tuesday’s match up ranked 19th in the state among Class B schools. Jordan Brantly leads the Patroon Conference contenders with 308 points, while Nigel Gray has connected for 27 3-pointers on his way to 272 regular season points.

Junior Will Turner has been steady for the Braves averaging 19.4 points per game. The 6-foot-7 forward has seven 20-plus games this season, including a 37-point performance against Voorheesville and a 33-point effort against Cohoes.

Ryan Derby has connected for 153 points this season for the Braves including 28 3-pointers, while Zac Nowak has contributed 92 points.

Class C

No. 9 Fort Plain

at No. 8 Rensselaer

Wednesday, 7 p.m.

After winning three-straight games by a total of 11 points, the Hilltoppers dropped a pair of season-ending games to state-ranked Mekeel Christian and Schoharie in the WAC Cup.

The Hilltoppers (10-8) have battled through close games in a roller-coaster season that started with a five of their first six games of the season losing only to Catskill.

Balanced scoring has placed five players above the 100-point scoring mark this season.

Chris Hanifin leads the group with 158 points, while Marcus Failing has connected for 30 3-pointers en route to his 148 regular-season points. Jake Sardina has 132, Joe Ray has 128 and Stephen Belden has 100 while Zach Sweet has 95.

Patroon Conference contender Rensselaer (10-8) has hit 94 3-pointers this season with Shawn Pondillo’s 34 treys and 222 points leading the Rams.

No. 13 Voorheesville

at No. 4 Canajoharie

Wednesday, 7 p.m.

The Cougars (15-3) are coming off a strong showing in the WAC Cup championship.

Josh Gonzalez has put together back-to-back 20-point games against Schoharie (27 points, 20 rebounds) and Mekeel Christian (20 points, five blocks). He has 184 points, all from 2-point range. Dillan Veeder (165), Kevin Shannon (170), Zach Folts (151) and Zach Bowerman (121) have all been factors in the WAC North champion Cougars season that included a 12-game win streak.

No. 13 Voorheesville (8-9) of the Colonial Council have a pair of 200-plus scorers in Dylan Hensel and Logan Hotaling who have 228 and 230 points respectively. Hensel has connected for 48 of the Blackbirds’ 59 3-pointers on the season.

Class D

No. 9 Heatly

at No. 8 St. Johnsville

Wednesday, 7 p.m.

The St. Johnsville Saints continue to improve.

After a pair of winless season before making a return to sectional play last season as the Class D No. 11 seed the Saints have taken another step forward.

Eighth-seeded St. Johnsville (9-9) will host a sectional game Wednesday night against ninth-seeded Heatly (7-9) of the Central Hudson Valley League.

Alex Hart has stepped up as the Saints’ leading scorer with 264 points. He has 14 double-digit games including two 22-point and a pair of 21-point games.

Dylan Klock has put up 197 points for the Saints, while Johnny Vicciarelli has 146, Kyle Smith has 116 and Brandon Campione has 114 regular-season points.

The Hornets are led by Austin Horton who has 22 3-pointers and 220 points.

No. 10 Northville at No. 7 Doane Stuart

Wednesday, 6 p.m.

At Rensselaer High School

In a rematch of the championship game of the John Woodward Memorial Holiday Tournament, Doane Stuart (10-7) and Northville (9-9) will square off in the opening round of the Class D tournament.

The Falcons won that game 53-47 over the Thunder Chicken.

Doane Stuart’s leading scorer, 6-foot-5 Rory Siy has 289 points this season including a 31-point game against Heatly and a 21-point performance against Northville in the tournament championship game.

The Falcons have received scoring from throughout its roster with six players topping the 100-point plateau.

Tim Monette leads the Northville scorers with 172 points, while Jim Grega has 114 and Kalob Russell has 111. Nick Jonas leads the team in 3-pointers with 23, while Barcley Hayward has 19 and Russell 13 baskets from behind the arc.