There’s Shen boys’ basketball, and questions

Only one basketball team has established itself as a runaway favorite to win a Section II championsh
Shenendehowa's Kevin Huerter goes up for a dunk against Columbia in a game Friday night.
Shenendehowa's Kevin Huerter goes up for a dunk against Columbia in a game Friday night.

Only one basketball team has established itself as a runaway favorite to win a Section II championship, and that’s the Shenendehowa boys. They’re just that good. Even state-level good.

At Class AA, Green Tech, Guilderland and Niskayuna form the best-of-the-rest group behind the Plainsmen, followed by Colonie, Schenectady, Saratoga Springs and Christian Brothers Academy.

What about the other boys and girls classes? With three weeks left in the regular season, many teams have put themselves in the conversation.


Class A: Amsterdam made a huge statement with its win last week over Scotia-Glenville, and solidified its standing alongside the four-time defending champion Tartans, Troy, Lansingburgh, Averill Park and a Queensbury team that is getting healthy.

Class B: Broadalbin-Perth, Schalmont, Stillwater and Mekeel Christian Academy all have legitimate final four shots. Glens Falls, Hudson, Voorheesville and Ichabod Crane do, too. Watervliet, Mechanicville, Johnstown and 2015 champ Hoosick Falls are dangerous. The depth of this class is incredible.

Class C: Berne-Knox-Westerlo, Canajoharie, Lake George, Rensselaer.

Class D: Oppenheim-Ephratah-St. Johnsville, Argyle, Germantown, Berlin, Fort Ann, Fort Edward.


Class AA: Shenendehowa clearly is still the team to beat, but its standing took a hit last week when Columbia made the Lady Plainsmen sweat one out. Bethlehem, Albany, Shaker and Catholic Central took notice.

Class A: Troy, Averill Park, Hudson Falls, Amsterdam, Lansingburgh, Voorheesville.

Class B: Hoosick Falls, Glens Falls, Hoosic Valley, Hudson.

Class C: This deep class could end up with an all-Western Athletic Conference final four made up of Mekeel Christian Academy, Mayfield, Galway and Middleburgh. Cambridge, Lake George, Warrensburg and Maple Hill could have something to say about that.

Class D: Fort Edward, Heatly, Argyle.


Just what did Scotia-Glenville boys’ basketball coach Jim Giammattei say to his Tartans after their 58-52 overtime loss at Amsterdam last week?

“Not much,” said Giammattei, whose team with one senior clawed back from an 18-2 first-quarter deficit in a bid to go 12-0. “Get back to work tomorrow.”

The setback ended Scotia-Glenville’s Foothills Council win streak at 52 games, its regular season win streak at 69 games, and its overall Section II win streak at 78 games.

Giammattei said the same kind of thing after all of those wins.

“What do we need to do better? That’s what we look at here, win or lose,” Giammattei said. “We don’t come out of a win saying that was perfect. We’ll look inside the game. There are always things to improve on.”

Scotia-Glenville got better in the Amsterdam game, and outscored the Running Rams in each of the final three quarters to pull even at 45. A three-point play by junior guard Sean DeGraffenreid with four seconds left forced overtime.

“They did a good job of getting back in it,” Giammattei said. “We fought hard. We came up a little short. It was tough on them.”

Senior guard Kory Bergh sparked Amsterdam with 25 points, nine coming in overtime.

Scotia-Glenville’s 11-game win streak to begin the season included seven single-digit wins, including a one-pointer against Broadalbin-Perth and an overtime two-pointer against Johnstown.

The Tartans bounced back from Tuesday’s loss with a 63-40 win at Broadalbin-Perth that featured a 37-15 second-half run.

“Every moment. Every experience. You either learn from it or you don’t,” Giammattei said.

Scotia-Glenville’s list of recent win streaks includes a Section II-record 53-game run that ended in last season’s Federation semifinals (OT against Canisius).


Bethlehem defeated Albany 63-53 last Tuesday in a Suburban Council girls’ basketball game that was halted with 42 seconds left after a spectator threw a water bottle in the direction of an official.

Bethlehem senior guard Jenna Giacone sank four free throws after two technical fouls were called on the Lady Falcons for the game’s final points.

“We were up six or seven with 50 seconds left and we were trying to hold the ball. Keep possession,” Bethlehem coach Matt Bixby said. “An Albany kid was called for a hand check, made a comment, and got a technical. Another kid made a comment and got a technical.”

That’s when Giacone, a McDonald’s All-America nominee, capped her 27-point effort from the line.

“An Albany parent came down from the stands and he threw water at the official,” Bixby said. “The water hit the ref. That fan was escorted away by police.”

The game at Bethlehem pitted an undefeated Albany team against the defending Section II Class AA champion Lady Eagles. Bethlehem junior guard Emily Wander scored 21 points. Albany sophomore guard Bridget Whelan hit five threes and totaled 17 points.

“In hindsight it was the right thing to do,” said Bixby, who met with Albany coach Decky Lawson and game officials after the incident. “In the moment I was trying to get them to finish the game. I didn’t want something away from the court to take away from the game on the court.

“Once we talked about it and gauged the feeling in the gym and the tension in there, we said let’s get the kids out of there.”

Albany and Schenectady fans made the wrong kind of news several years ago when they brawled outside of Schenectady High School after a basketball game and a football game.


Junior forward Zach Hilton joined Garrett and Ted Pitcher on Berne-Knox-Westerlo’s 1,000-point list Wednesday when he netted 25 in a 72-62 Western Athletic Conference win at Schoharie.

Hilton scored another 25 points Friday to boost his varsity total to 1,049 and draw closer to Garrett Pitcher’s school record of 1,062. Pitcher set the mark in 2013 when he passed his grandfather, Ted, who reached the special number in 1955.

Liz Harvey graduated in 2013 with the BKW girls’ record (1,789).

Northville junior guard Danny Reidell moved past the 1,000-point plateau with 29 in Friday’s 75-51 non-league win over Johnsburg. Reidell upped his total to 1,016 after sinking a season-high five three-pointers as part of his 29.

Also Friday, boys’ basketball coaches Dave Cook of Stillwater and Pete Puricelli of Fort Edward got their 200th and 100th wins, respectively, when the Warriors beat Cambridge 55-54 in the Wasaren League and the Flying Forts topped North Warren 84-76 in the Adirondack League.


Coleman Catholic senior guard Austin Uhl made 15 three-point baskets Friday to set what is believed to be a New York State Public High School Athletic Association boys’ basketball record during a 117-79 Mid-Hudson Athletic League victory over Dover.

Uhl finished with 52 points to offset 43 by Dover’s Josh Benson.

The NYSPHSAA record list shows Joe Licata of Williamsville South on top with 13 threes in a 2010 contest. Quincy Douby of Grady set the Public School Athletic League record with 18 threes in 2001, and Kenny White of Monsignor Farrell set the Catholic High School Athletic Association record with 17 threes in 1988.


Schenectady junior Shameek Lobo rolled the Patriots’ high triple this season, a 758, in a Suburban Council bowling win over Niskayuna last week. Lobo already had the team high single with a 300 last month in a match with Averill Park. His brother, Erryl Lobo, rolled a 290 against Niskayuna, and Schenectady’s 3,651 overall pinfall was a season best.

Christian Brothers Academy senior Chris Radliff fired a 300 game Thursday in a Suburban Council win against Ballston Spa. Radliff added to his varsity highlight list which includes two 300 games less than a month apart during his sophomore year in matches against Bishop Maginn and Catholic Central, and the high single (289) at last season’s state championships.

Categories: High School Sports, Sports

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