For the first time this season, the Scotia-Glenville boys’ basketball team gutted one out.
With a key spurt to begin the fourth quarter and enough free throws as time wound down, the Tartans beat Glens Falls, 53-45, to secure their second straight Section II Class A championship and third in five years Saturday night at the Glens Falls Civic Center.
Scotia-Glenville will take on Massena (Section X, 11-9) in Wednesday night’s 7:30 regional semifinal game at Saratoga Springs High School.
“This is 12 months a year for these guys. Of all the teams I’ve had, this one is the most professional,” said Scotia-Glenville coach Jim Giammattei. “I didn’t think they were going to collapse.”
Alex Sausville had 13 points and six rebounds in his best playoff performance, and fellow junior Dom LeMorta nailed a three-point basket to start the fourth-quarter run and later made four foul shots in a game that was tight for all but quick stretches early on and in the late going.
“It’s never been like that. It was a weird feeling,” said Sausville. “We wondered how we would handle it, and I guess we handled it pretty well. We persevered, and it feels great. This is a big one.”
Scotia-Glenville had eased to victory in each of its 20 previous games, including 70-46 and 74-49 triumphs over Glens Falls during the Foothillls Council schedule. Saturday night’s contest marked the first time the Tartans didn’t hold a double-digit advantage heading into the fourth quarter; their lead was 36-30.
“They [Glens Falls] really wanted it. They were playing in front of their hometown, and they were amped up,” said LeMorta, who finished with 12 points, 10 coming in the second half, and nine rebounds. “They were all over the boards and got loose balls. Hats off to them.”
Top-seeded Scotia-Glenville won this one on an off night for its offense after piling up 81 points in the semifinals against Lansingburgh.
“Going in, I thought if we could hold them to 50 we’d be all right. We ended up being a little better than that” said Giammattei. “I thought we could get 55, even on a bad night.”
The Tartans made only three threes after collecting 12 of them against Lansingburgh, but LeMorta’s long ball to open the fourth quarter couldn’t have been more timely. Andrew Tabbert sandwiched layups around a LeMorta free throw as the Tartans’ lead grew to 44-31.
“That run was was huge,” said Sausville. “If it got closer, we might have tightened up a little. That carried us through.”
Glens Falls (No. 3 seed, 14-7) got within 44-36 on two foul shots by Mike LaNoir and a three by Cam Girard before Sausville dropped in a momentum-changing layup, and the Tartans went 7-for-12 from the line over the final 90 seconds.
“They locked down on [Joe] Cremo and Tabbert, and we did what we’ve done all year. We took was was given to us,” said Giammattei. “It was Alex’s night, as far as making big baskets.”
Cremo took most valuable player honors with 12 points, 12 rebounds and four assists, the sophomore’s last of three fourth-quarter assists going to Sauville for his layup that made it 46-36.
Tabbert, the Tartans’ only senior starter, had 12 points, 11 rebounds and five assists to clinch his all-tournament team spot.
“We weren’t in rhythm tonight,” said LeMorta. “We fought. We made an effort to get it, and it paid off.”
Sausville nailed a three and converted a three-point play in a 10-0 run to end the first quarter, and Scotia-Glenville held a 17-8 lead early in the second after a layup by Cremo. Glens Falls pulled within 24-20 at the break. The comeback was highlighted by Girard’s four-point play and three-point hoop soon after.
A jumper by LeMorta gave Scotia-Glenville a 36-28 third-quarter edge, and LaNoir’s layup had Glens Falls within six with eight minutes to go.
“I thought Dom’s three was hugh after Tabbert’s kick-back pass,” said Giammattei. “That gave us some breathing room.”
LaNoir, Girard and Sam Sax, each a star performer on Glens Falls’ state runner-up football team, scored 14, 13 and 12 points, respectively. LaNoir also had eight rebounds and three assists.
Most valuable player Tyler McLeod went 8-for-8 from the line as part of a closing 10-3 run, and Watervliet beat Schuylerville, 64-52, for its third consecutive Class B championship and 17th title in program history.
Schuylerville (No. 2, 20-2) cut a 10-point deficit down to five twice in the fourth quarter, the second time at 54-49 on a Shane Lyon layup with 1:39 left. McLeod made both ends of a one-and-one, and his steal led to Shane Ray’s put-back basket. McLeod added six free throws afterward.
“Schuylerville is a great team. They never gave up,” said McLeod. “Down the stretch, we executed.”
McLeod scored 15 of his 24 points in the second half and took down 13 rebounds. All-tourney pick Jordan Gleason had 12 points for Watervliet (No. 1, 14-8, five forfeit losses), and freshman Ty’Jon Gilmore delivered 18 with six boards.
Dan Waldron topped Schuylerville with 21 points, and fellow all-tourney selection Lyon had 12, including a last-second slam to reach 1,000 for his career. The Black Horses came in with a 19-game winning streak.
Watervliet will travel to SUNY-Plattsburg Wednesday for a 7:45 regional semifinal game against the Section VII champ, either Peru (13-6) or Beekmantown (12-7).
Super sophomore Joel Wincowski scored nine straight points for Lake George in the fourth quarter, including a go-ahead jumper with 1:55 left, in a 51-48 Class C title-game win over top-seed Hoosic Valley.
Wincowski’s jumper gave the Warriors a 49-48 lead, and gave the 10th-grader 1,001 career points. Lake George had two key steals down the stretch, Greg Rosenthal padded the lead on two free throws with 14.9 seconds left, and Mike Pierre missed a three at the buzzer for Hoosic Valley (18-3).
Wincowski, the Class C MVP, had 28 points and nine rebounds. Pierre scored 16 of his 20 in the second half, teammate John Rooney had 14 points, and both made the all-tourney roster.
Lake George (No. 2, 20-2) will join Scotia-Glenville in regional semifinal action Wednesday at Saratoga. Lake George won its last Section II flag in 2004.
Argyle (No. 1, 21-0) put together a 13-0 third-quarter run, and used a finishing 12-3 flurry to beat Loudonville Christian, 63-49, for its second straight Class D championship.
Joey Lufkin had 26 points, six assists and three steals to wrap up most valuable player honors. The Argyle senior went 11-for-14 from the line and boosted his career points total to 2,063, eighth best in area history.
Mat Yamin paced the Eagles (No. 2, 19-2) with 13 points, and fellow all-tourney pick Gabe Brown had 12 points, 14 rebounds and two blocks. Brock Liddle backed Lufkin with 16 points and five steals.
SCOTIA-GLENVILLE 53, GLENS FALLS 45
LaNoir 4-4-14, L. Girard 1-2-5, C. Girard 4-1-13, Green 0-1-1, S. Sax 3-6-12. Totals: 12-14-45.
Stopera 1-1-4, Tabbert 6-0-12, Sausville 5-2-13, Cremo 5-2-12, LeMorta 3-5-12. Totals: 20-10-53.
Glens Falls 8 12 10 15 — 45
Scotia-Glenville 15 9 12 17 — 53
Three-point goals: LaNoir 2, L. Girard, C. Girard 4, Stopera, Sausville, LeMorta.
WATERVLIET 64, SCHUYLERVILLE 52
Lyon 6-0-12, Hayes 2-0-5, Cook 1-0-3, Langley 1-0-2, Waldron 9-2-21, Buell 4-1-9. Totals: 23-3-52.
Gleason 4-2-12, Gilmore 8-1-18, McLeod 5-14-24, Ray 1-2-4, Bruce 0-1-1, McConico 2-0-5. Totals: 20-20-64.
Schuylerville 9 14 11 18 — 52
Watervliet 13 21 10 20 — 64
Three-point goals: Hayes, Cook, Waldron, Gleason 2, Gilmore, McConico.
LAKE GEORGE 51, HOOSIC VALLEY 48
J. Wincowski 10-4-28, Zibro 1-3-5, McCoy 3-2-9, Rosenthal 0-2-2, E. Wincowski 2-3-7. Totals: 16-14-51.
Anderson 1-0-2, Schoonmaker 2-0-4, Rooney 6-1-14, Acker 4-0-8, Pierre 8-3-20. Totals: 21-4-48.
Lake George 11 16 9 15 — 51
Hoosic Valley 10 13 17 8 — 48
Three-point goals: J. Wincowski 4, McCoy, Rooney, Pierre.
ARGYLE 63, LOUDONVILLE CHRISTIAN 49
Bellanti 1-2-4, Dariano 1-0-2, Keener 1-0-3, Brown 4-2-12, Spence 1-0-3, Yamin 4-4-13, Hilton 4-4-12. Totals: 16-12-49.
Lufkin 6-11-26, Liddle 5-4-16, B. Schmaler 1-0-2, Rosati 1-3-5, R. Schmaler 3-2-8, Pryce 3-0-6. Totals: 19-20-63.
Loudonville Christian 16 9 13 11 — 49
Argyle 16 12 18 17 — 63
Three-point goals: Keener, Brown 2, Spence, Yamin, Lufkin 3, Liddle.