GLENS FALLS — The Saratoga Springs boys’ basketball team struggled to get much going offensively against CBA in the Section II Class AA tournament semifinals on Thursday night, as the Brothers once again clinched a spot in the championship game.
The CBA defense held Saratoga to single-digits in two separate quarters, defeating the Blue Steaks 56-43 at the Cool Insuring Arena.
“I reminded them that we’ve had success going inside,” CBA coach David Doemel said of getting the Brothers’ offense going in the second half. “Once we did that, I think we opened up some avenues to hit some outside shots.”
Oreo Odutayo, a 6-foot-7 junior, led the way for CBA with 21 points and two blocks. JJ Osinski tacked on 15 points, six rebounds and two steals, while Matt Sgambati added nine points and three steals.
“Our student section was great,” Odutayo said. “They brought the energy, and it really helped us. They bring that energy every game at CBA and they’re always getting us hyped, especially tonight in the second half.”
Drew Stallmer scored 16 points for the Blue Streaks, with nine rebounds and three steals. Ryan Farr added nine points.
“We’ve come back from double-digits many times this year, but we just dug ourselves too deep of a hole with bad shots, turnovers and fouls,” Stallmer said. “Once the fourth quarter came around and we were down 15, we still had a little hope, but the time started to tick down and their lead didn’t really get any smaller.”
Saratoga posted its best offensive period in the fourth quarter, but CBA seemingly always had an answer.
The Blue Streaks finish their season 17-6, dropping both games they played against CBA. Saratoga earned playoff victories over Guilderland and Shenendehowa to advance to the AA semifinals.
“Me and a couple other of my teammates have dreamed of this since the fourth grade, making it here and playing for a sectional championship in front of all these people,” Stallmer said, a junior. “Obviously I want to make it back here, but I won’t take anything we did this year for granted.”
CBA improves to 15-6, having won nine of its last 10 games.
“I think the young guys have taken a step up. The inexperienced guys took a step up and they devoted themselves to defense,” Doemel said of CBA’s improvement from the beginning of the season. “We got here last year to the final and it’s nice to be in the final again.”
Last season, CBA dropped the Class AA championship game to Green Tech, the team that it will see once again this year at Cool Insuring Arena on Saturday at 4:15 p.m.
Saratoqa Springs 7 12 6 18 — 43
CBA 15 10 15 16 — 56
Saratoga Springs scoring: Snyder 3-0-6, Friedman 1-1-3, Robbens 1-0-3, Farr 3-2-9, Stallmer 7-2-16, Casey 1-3-6. CBA scoring: Lavigne 0-1-1, Leak 1-0-3, Osinski 5-5-15, Sgambati 3-2-9, Picard 0-1-1, Odutayo 8-5-21, Wine 1-4-6. Team totals: Saratoga Springs 16-8-43, CBA 18-18-56.