A league tournament is just that. But a showcase deserves a venue to match.
The Foothills Council Boys and Girls Basketball Showcase has a historic venue: the Washington Avenue Armory in Albany, home of the Albany Patroons, past winners of CBA and TBL titles. The two-day event Saturday and Sunday will feature all 10 schools’ boys’ and girls’ basketball teams in crossover action.
Though the games count as non-league, they’ll feature the corresponding seeds in the North and South divisions facing each other.
According to Amsterdam boys’ coach Tim Jones and girls’ coach Eric Duemler, the idea started to form when the league decided to have 13-game regular seasons, allowing room for crossovers.
“We didn’t want to have a tournament leading to a championship game because then that takes up two games,” Jones said.
Duemler said the league looked into Hudson Valley Community College and Cool Insuring Arena as possible venues, but their being booked led to the good fortune of renting the Armory.
“Hudson Valley had UAlbany and Cool Insuring Arena had the sectional wrestling,” Duemler said, “so [Broadalbin-Perth athletic director] Tucker Gifford was able to get the Armory.”
The coaches are thrilled to play in the venue where the likes of Phil Jackson and George Karl once coached, and where the Patroons won CBA titles in 1984 and 1988, as well as a TBL title in 2019. Last year, they reached the TBL Finals.
“It’s not like your normal gymnasium. There’s a bigger backdrop, which will help the kids in sectionals,” Jones said.
“It will be a cool facility to play in,” Duemler said. “There’s a lot of history there. I’ve been there to watch games, but never to coach in. Any time you can put [the players] in a foreign environment that are larger places, it’s good. Then, come sectionals, it’s not such a big deal.”
On Saturday, six games will alternate between boys and girls, starting with the lowest seeds. On Sunday, the action continues with four games, ending with the No. 1 seeds meeting. For the girls, that will be Queensbury facing Broadalbin-Perth at 1 p.m., followed by the Hudson Falls/Amsterdam boys’ game at 2:45.
General admission is $5. VIP courtside seating is $10.
Foothills Council Boys’ and Girls’ Basketball Showcase
9:30 a.m. (boys) – Scotia-Glenville vs. South Glens Falls
11:15 a.m. (girls) – Hudson Falls vs. Johnstown
1 p.m. (boys) – Broadalbin-Perth vs. Queensbury
2:45 p.m. (girls) – Glens Falls vs. Gloversville
4:30 p.m. (boys) – Johnstown vs. Schuylerville
6:15 p.m. (girls) – Schuylerville vs. Scotia-Glenville
9:30 a.m. (girls) – South Glens Falls vs. Amsterdam
11:15 a.m. (boys) – Gloversville vs. Glens Falls
1 p.m. (girls) – Queensbury vs. Broadalbin-Perth
2:45 p.m. (boys) – Amsterdam vs. Hudson Falls
Contact Will Springstead at [email protected]. Follow him on Twitter @WLSpringstead.