First, let’s start by saying we love the response from yesterday’s post on the best *POTENTIAL* matchups in sectionals. Everyone looks ahead, and we’re no different.
Also, don’t get us wrong, we love the upsets as well. In a way, you could say we are providing the bulletin board material for the underdogs.
Now, onto the Class B semifinals and Class D quarters for the girls varsity teams Friday, Feb. 21.
First off, in the D quarterfinals, Schroon Lake will travel to Moriah in the 1-8 matchup. Not much to say here, Moriah should move on easily.
Next, in the 2-7 game, Willsboro (4-14) travels the back roads of Reber and Lewis to play ELCS (13-5). The Warriors are led offensively by Andrea O’Hara (13.2 ppg) and Taylor Bigelow (6.0 ppg). O’Hara has scored her 172 points on the season in only 13 games, placing her ninth on the Valley scoring list but fourth as far as average points per game.
Two of the ladies O’Hara trails will be on the other side of the court in Jasmin Barnes (14.1) and Valley leading scorer Lily Whalen (19.4). Whalen is 50 points shy of a 400-point season, while Barnes is second in the Valley in scoring. Savanah Graves (6.4 ppg) has also cracked the 100-point barrier for the Lady Lions this season.
The other player O’Hara is behind average-wise will take to the Keene (13-3) court as they play host to Crown Point. Freshman Hanna Whitney has scored 228 points on the season to average 14.3, the second highest average in the Valley. But it’s not just the Keene point guard, as Naomi Peduzzi (11.9), Tucker Geiger (10.4), Elaina Smith (8.6) and Taylor Geiger (6.8) have all had big nights for a team that averages 46.8 per game.
In the 4-5 matchup, Westport (11-7) will travel to play Minerva/Newcomb. Brendee Russell (12.4 ppg) paces the Lady Eagles offense with support from sisters Ellie (9.4 ppg) and Hannah Schwoebel (6.8 ppg) along with Sarah Looby (5.8). With two teams that can get hot, it is going to come down to who plays the better defense late.
Finally, onto the Class B semifinals at 6 p.m., the game that we will be going to tomorrow night as AuSable Valley (14-4) faces Saranac for a trip to the Class B finals against either Beekmantown or Northeastern Clinton (give us a guess, we’ll take the Eagles).
Three days after putting on a clinic at the point guard position, junior Meghan Strong (12.7 ppg) will lead a balanced Patriot offensive attack which includes Taylor Saltus (11.1), Logan Snow (10.0) and Madison Rondeau (7.4). Like last season when Rondeau filled the roll, the Patriots also have firepower coming off the bench with sixth woman Madison McCabe, who averages 8.6 per game.
We could say that AuSable Valley has the history on their side as they just went to the NYSPHSAA Final Four a season ago, but (1) that was in Class C and (2) it was just two years ago that Saranac made the same trip as a Class B school. Both these teams know how to get it done, and both want that potential shot to knock Beekmantown off. This has the potential to be the best game of the night.