Revenge is sweet for squad
Fort Ann 49
FORT ANN -- What a difference three weeks and some strategy adjustments can mean in high school basketball.
With tweaked game play and a steely will, the Warrensburg boys basketball team defeated Fort Ann in a hot-shooting rematch Saturday on the same court they lost by a crushing 17 points three weeks earlier.
The Adirondack League crossover game demonstrated clearly to Warrensburg players and fans what their team is capable of, as no less than four Burgher players tallied double figures. The win provided a dose of confidence for the team as it headed into Sectional play this week.
Coach Rich Schloss said he changed the team's offensive patterns to loosen up the game and create shooting opportunities for more of his players.
"Our new motion offense allows our players to get more looks, giving everybody some good shots rather than a few key players," he said.
Mike Perrone scored 16 points to lead Warrensburg. Ryan Belden and Brendan Frye each scored 12, while Hunter Werner added 10 for the Burghers. The prior game against Fort Ann, this quartet shot only 14 points combined against the Cardinals.
Also key to the win was a tweaked Burgher man-to-man defense, which contained the Cardinals' shooting opportunities, Schloss said.
"What won the game is we worked on boxing out and the kids played hard defensively, shutting them down pretty good," he said.
Schloss added that the win was also a matter of attitude.
"We went in knowing they beat us, and to not underestimate them," he said.
With seven minutes left in the game, the Cardinals were down 17 points, then with three and a half minutes to go, they narrowed the gap to four points after Warrensburg substituted freely, but Warrensburg put their starters back in to boost their margin to nine points and secure the win.
Assisting Perrone, Frye, Belden and Werner were Mike Curtis with three points, Jason Power with two, plus one point from Tyler Williams, just drafted from the JV team, who hit a foul shot for his first Varsity basket.
Robert Sprague led Fort Ann with 24 points and 12 rebounds.
With the win, Warrensburg improves to 10-8 for the 2009-10 season.
While the win demonstrates to the Burgher team they're true capabilities, they'll need all the confidence they can muster for the Sectional tournament.
This year, the divisions have been realigned and Warrensburg, for many years a "D" or "C" competitor, will be competing against both "C" and bigger "CC" schools.
Schloss said his team was up to the challenge.
"We're peaking at a good time," he said. "When you play good defense, box out well and spread the shots around, good things happen."
Lake George 51,
Fort Edward 41
FORT EDWARD -- There's a burden that comes with being the perennial "big shot" in the Adirondack League, and it's that everyone is gunning to bring you down.
And that's what almost happened Monday, if it weren't for a scoring surge by Matt McGowan that turned around a seven-point third quarter deficit, converting it into a 10-point win for his Warriors.
Trailing Fort Edward 34-27 at the end of the third quarter, Lake George rallied with 24 points to defeat Fort Edward 51-41 in a league crossover game.
Matt McGowan's 10 fourth-quarter points were aided by the fact that foul trouble plagued Nick Abare, McGowan's Fort Edward counterpart.
McGowan scored 22 points in the victory, followed by Alex Hladik with 17. Jeff Maldonado added six, Aaron Chambers contributed four, and Chris Kosz chipped in two.
For Fort Edward, Abare and Mike Taft each scored 11 to lead their team.
With this game behind them, Lake George improves to 14-4 for the season.
North Warren 40
CHESTERTOWN -- The North Warren Cougars put forth a scrappy fight in their near-upset of the Hartford Tanagers Monday. Kept to the perimeter by a tough Hartford defense, Cougar Joe Aiken scored six three-pointers in the close game.
North Warren launched the game with an 13-8 lead in the first quarter, but their effort was counteracted by an 11-4 second-quarter Hartford resurgence, and the game was neck-and-neck from then on.
Aiken ended up with a game-high 24 points that may also be his highest season tally. In the effort, Jeff Bennett contributed 11, Kristian Seeley added three and Benn Frasier had two.
Hartford's Charles Cornell scored 14 points to lead the balanced Tanagers effort.
Lake George 27
LAKE GEORGE -- In a gritty battle of defenses, Corinth downed Lake George 30-27 on Feb. 10 to secure the Adirondack League West Division title.
It was a bitter loss for the Warriors, who nearly own that moniker, having won it year after year during the last several decades.
Corinth set the pace in the first half with their tough defense, containing Lake George to 21-8. Lake George answered back, fighting to within one points with three minutes left to play. But Corinth's defense and rebounding secured the final margin.
With the win, Corinth - with a 13-1 league record - advanced to play East Division winner Argyle Tuesday for the league championship.
Matt McGowan led his team with 10 points, followed by Alex Hladik with nine, J.D. Jenkins with six and Jeff Maldonado with two.
Ron Bovee, who fouled out, led Corinth with 12 points and Eric Hernandez finished with 11.
Lake George finished the regular 2009-10 season with a record of 10-3 in the league, 12-4 overall.
North Warren 44
NORTH WARREN - The North Warren Cougars put up a formidable effort, nearly scoring an upset Feb. 12 as they played tough against Hadley-Luzerne in Adirondack League boys basketball action.
The Cougars kept the margin narrow most of the game and were leading 35-31 to start the last stanza, but they were daunted by a 17-point scoring surge by the Eagles.
Hadley-Luzerne's Devin Waite tallied 15 points and Jordan Jensen scored 14 in the Eagles' balanced effort.
Joe Aiken led the Cougars with 14 points, aided by Jeff Bennett's 10. Monroe contributed nine, Kristian Seeley hit six, Benn Frasier added four and Dennis Kruithof scored one.
Lake George 58,
WARRENSBURG -- Threatened by a Burgher scoring assault several weeks ago, Lake George took control Feb. 12 during Warrensburg's "Senior Night," defeating their northern neighbors 58-32.
The balanced Warrior effort featured Matt McGowan with 18 points and Alex Hladik with 16, aided by Jeff Maldonado and Matt Stover with seven each, Aaron Chambers adding 6, and J.D. Jenkins contributing 4.
The Warriors launched their attack with a 15-5 lead in the first quarter and never looked back.
Warrensburg's Mike Curtis scored 13 points to lead his team. High scorer Brendan Frye was contained to five points. Jason Power and Ryan Belden scored four each, Ben Nicols contributed three, Hunter Werner added two and Mike Perrone hit one.
Maldonado and Chambers hit two three-pointers for the Warriors, and Curtis hit two for his squad.
Warrensburg's Junior Varsity team won their matchup.
North Warren 21
WARRENSBURG -- The Burgher Boys Basketball team employed a stonewall inside defense and decent shooting Feb. 9 to defeat North Warren 34-21.
Brendan Frye scored nine points to lead the Warrensburg team, with Ryan Belden and Mike Perrone each adding eight, aided by four from Hunter Werner, a three-pointer from Dante Siletti and two points from John Joseph.
Cougar Jeff Bennett, who led his team with 15 points, hit four three-pointers in the effort. He was helped out by Benn Frasier, Jeff Monroe and Dennis Kruithof, each with two points apiece.