SCHENECTADY — Pat Moran doesn’t believe that four-game win streak to start the season will be the only bright spot for his Notre Dame-Bishop Gibbons girls’ basketball team.
“I think we’re going to have a good end to the season and a good sectional,” the Golden Knights coach recently said. “I’m confident we can do some damage.”
ND-BG will compete in the Class D portion of the Section II tournament this season after one-and-done showings in the Class C field in 2017 and 2018. In 2016, the Golden Knights were part of the Class B field and edged Ichabod Crane in a preliminary game for their last sectional victory.
“My mindset is we’re preparing for Class D as we finish out the season,” Moran said. “We want to build momentum for the playoffs.”
Moran realizes his 6-7 Golden Knights, who are led by senior Abby Kienzle and junior Ava Megyeri, may take another hit or two in the win-loss column before moving forward. They have a non-league game Monday night at Voorheesville, which is among the best Class B teams in Section II.
“Once we get past Voorheesville, we play teams that are at our level,” Moran said. “We should finish strong.”
That’s just how they started, winning four in a row and six of nine before the new year. That run included wins over 2018 Section II Class D champion Argyle and fellow Western Athletic Conference teams Mayfield and Schoharie, which are three of the opponents that ND-BG will meet again before the sectionals roll around. ND-BG will also take on WAC teams Northville and Galway as part of its stretch run.
“We haven’t finished over .500 in over a decade,” said Moran, who also serves as ND-BG’s athletic director. “I can see that happening.”
He can also see his team regaining the offensive form it showed early on. ND-BG beat Canajoharie 51-35 on Dec. 19 to boost its record to 6-3, but didn’t play again until Jan. 7 and lost to Salem 30-26 in the first of four straight setbacks. The others came against Class B Fonda-Fultonville and two of Section II’s top Class C squads in Berne-Knox-Westerlo and Duanesburg.
“We didn’t play a Christmas tournament this year because, in the past, when we did, we were always missing kids for this reason or that,” Moran said. “With the long break, we lost some of our offensive rhythm.”