TROY — Notre Dame-Bishop Gibbons wanted to go fast. Schalmont wanted no part of that, and by dictating the tempo in Friday night's Class B quarterfinal boys' basketball game, the Sabres earned another trip north for the Section II final four.
"We saw it on film," Schalmont senior Shane O'Dell said after his team's 65-53 win at Hudson Valley Community College. "They like to get turnovers and get rebounds and go."
Schalmont didn't turn the ball over much with Trent Randle taking charge there, and the Sabres kept up a consistent flow of points, with O'Dell and Jake Sanford the central figures at that end.
"Our game plan was to limit their transition," Sanford said. "We know they're at their best in transition."
Sanford scored 14 of his 18 points in the second half when the Sabres (No. 2 seed, 17-5) were protecting a lead built with a 17-6 second-quarter run. O'Dell notched 11 of those 17 points, and finished with 25.
Randle added 11 points, five steals and four assists.
"He's been doing that all season," O'Dell said of Sanford. "He knocks down big shots and gets rebounds. That's what captains do."
The captain and his friends want a Section II championship in a bad way, something Schalmont was denied both in 2019 and 2018 with title-game defeats. Schalmont lost to Glens Falls in last year's Class B final, and those teams will square off again in a semifinal Monday at 6:30 p.m. at Cool Insuring Arena in Glens Falls.
"It's the biggest thing in my high school career. All I want is to be a Section II champion," said Sanford, a senior who also snared 10 rebounds. "All of us want it, but we don't only want it for ourselves. We want it for everyone who supports the team."
Glens Falls (No. 3, 18-4) defeated Bishop Maginn (No. 11, 13-7) Friday 89-63 at Shenendehowa to set up the semi with Schalmont. Bishop Gibbons (No. 7, 18-4) hasn't played in a final four game since 2012, and hurt its bid to get there with an 8-for-20 showing from the foul line.
"If we make our free throws and take care of the ball, it's a different game," Bishop Gibbons coach Steve Garzone said.
The game changed in the second quarter when Schalmont went on its 17-6 spurt to go up 27-15. The run included early 3s by Tyler Pepicelli and Sanford, and the next 11 points by O'Dell, who continually sifted through the Golden Knights' interior defense to score.
"We did not do a good job playing [halfcourt] defense in the first half," Bishop Gibbons junior Rodney Parker said. "In the second half we tried to press and they broke it kind of easily."
Along with Sanford, Randle was another second-half standout for Schalmont with his handling of the ball against the aggressive Golden Knights and nine fourth-quarter points.
"Jake has been that guy all year," Schalmont coach Greg Loiacono said. "Pepicelli hit a big three for us [in the fourth quarter] and Trent stepped up and hit some big free throws in the end."
Parker had 18 points and six rebounds for the Golden Knights, and Nacier Hundley had 17 points . Four of those came in Bishop Gibbons' best run of the game, an 8-0 second-quarter push that followed a basket by O'Dell that had made it 37-18.
"They can change a game quickly," Loiacono said of the Golden Knights. "With them, you can be up 10 and then be down four in a hurry."
"They're a real good team," O'Dell said of ND-BG. They played [Class A] Lansingburgh and [Class AA] La Salle tough."
Bishop Gibbons took its last lead at 11-10 in the second quarter on a drive by Omari Carmon, and Pepicelli answered with a 3 before Sanford nailed another.
"We knew if we could score baskets, we could slow them down a bit," Loiacono said.
O'Dell scored 18 first-half points, grabbed nine of his 15 rebounds during that stretch, and the 6-foot-6 senior collected four of his six blocked shots in that segment of the contest.
Schalmont started the third quarter with a 10-3 slurry that saw Sanford convert a 3-point play and Ryan Brown sink a 3-point basket.
Hoosick Falls (No. 9, 19-3) will meet Mechanicville (No. 4, 21-1) in Monday's other Class B semifinal at 8 p.m. in Glens Falls. Hoosick Falls edged Catskill (No. 1, 20-1) 60-58 at HVCC, and Mechanicville defeated Broadalbin-Perth (No. 5, 14-8) in double overtime 46-45 at Shenendehowa.
Jon Kempf and Isiah Burnett scored 19 points apiece for Hoosick Falls.
SCHALMONT 65, NOTRE DAME-BISHOP GIBBONS 53
ND-BG 9 6 15 23 — 53
Schalmont 10 17 15 23 — 65
Notre Dame-Bishop Gibbons scoring: Foster 2-3-7, Hundley 7-1-17, Carmon 2-0-4, Williamson 3-0-7, Parker 7-4-18. Schalmont scoring: Sanford 6-3-18, Pepicelli 2-0-6, Randle 2-7-11, Brown 1-2-5, O'Dell 11-3-25. Scoring totals: Notre Dame-Bishop Gibbons 21-8-53, Schalmont 22-15-65.
HOOSICK FALLS 60, CATSKILL 58
Hoosick Falls 16 18 8 18 — 60
Catskill 13 14 15 16 — 58
Hoosick Falls scoring: Kempf 4-9-19, Burnett 8-0-19, Kipp 1-0-2, Williams 4-5-13, Sparks 2-0-4, Rose 1-0-3. Catskill scoring: Christian 2-0-5, Johnson 4-4-12, Fernandez 11-2-24, Lowe-Scott 1-0-2, Doney 2-0-4, Scott 0-2-2, Haye 3-1-9. Scoring totals: Hoosick Falls 20-14-60, Catskill 23-9-58