Mechanicville Boys Basketball Preview

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Head Coach:  Rian Richardson

2018-19 Record:  12-10

Key Returning Players:  Anthony Atalla  Josh Germaine  Luci D’Ambro  Devin Garland  Tyler Dion

A year ago Mechanicville flashed the ability to play with anyone, and with plenty of returning talent from that squad, hopes run high in Raider Nation this season.

Coach Richardson likes what he’s seen thus far from his group.  “Our practices have been so competitive that each individual has improved which makes our team better each day. Each player brings a little something different to our team in a positive way.”

Richardson highlighted his squads work ethic, ” We’ve worked really hard early, starting back with our open gyms in April.”

The head coach touts the Raiders speed and quickness as strengths that, “Will help us defend and create mismatches offensively” and “Our experience, which should also be beneficial.”

As for keys to Mechanicville’s success this season Richardson pointed to teamwork.

“We will need to play as a team and share the ball to be successful.  Guys are currently learning their roles and if everyone buys in we will be competitive.”

Regarding his thoughts on contenders for the league crown Richardson offered, “We hope to be at the top when the season ends and we realize it won’t be easy.  Hoosick Falls returns five starters that lost in the Class C final last year.”

The Mechanicville mentor concluded by saying he wants, “People to say that we play the game the right way.”

Look for that, as well as a run at the Wasaren title from these Raiders, this season.

 

 

 

Hoosic Valley Boys Basketball Preview

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Head Coach:  Alex Lilac

2018-19 Record:  8-6 League  10-11 Overall

Key Returning Players:  CJ Bassett (Sr.)  Nick Santiago (Sr.) Matt Rowe (Jr.)  Logan Reilly (Fr.)

Last season the group from Schaghticoke, more nights than not was a tough out for league opponents and will look to do more of the same in the 2019-20 campaign.

“We have a young group that has blended nicely together on and off the court thus far”, said Lilac, who will lean on a pair seniors in Bassett and Santiago to provide leadership for the Indians.

A year ago the Valley showed prowess at the defensive end and look for their ability to guard to be a cornerstone again for this year’s version of the Indians.  “We have a gritty, defensive-minded team”, said Lilac, adding “We’re capable of beating anyone.”

He continued, “What our team needs to do to be successful is to get better each day and control what we can control.”

Regarding contenders for the league crown, Lilac named just one, the defending champion Panthers of Hoosick Falls.

Asked for the word or phrase he wants most associated with his squad, Lilac simply responded, “Toughness.”

For decades, going all the way back to packed houses, surrounding the small floor in the old Valley gym, opponents have known to bring their “A” game when facing the Indians  or risk going home with a loss.

This season promises to be no different as visitors will find a tough minded Valley team with the ability to guard, ensuring once again, they’ll be no nights off on the hardwood in Schaghticoke.

 

 

 

 

Stillwater Boys Basketball Preview

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Head Coach:  Bruce Lilac

2018-19 Record:  11-10

Key Returning Players:  Brian McNeil, James Galarneau, Josh Luca, Grant Baker all return with newcomers CJ McNeil, Isaac Cutler,  Tyler Paffen, Jacob Zecca, Tyler Juliano and Rhett Mercier.

Stillwater will look to build on a solid season from a year ago and coach Lilac feels optimistic about doing just that.

“We have a nice mix of returning players with varsity experience along with a talented group from the JV team.  The preseason has been going well as we slowly work in the football guys after they had such a long and great season.”

As for the teams blueprint for success this year coach Lilac said, We will be a team that prides itself on the defensive end, while pushing the ball offensively.  To be successful this season we need to play to our strengths offensively and be really tough on the defensive end of the court.”

Regarding top contenders for the Wasaren title, Lilac echoed a common theme amongst league coaches.  “The league will be tough as usual but Hoosick Falls returning all five starters from last year has to be the top contender.  That being said it’s a league with lots of competition and you have to be ready to play every night or you will get beat.”

When asked of a word or phrase he wants people to associate with his team Lilac responded, “We want people to think of Stillwater basketball as a mentally tough group of kids who play hard every night and leave everything on the floor.”

If the Warriors can bring the effort, coupled with it’s talented roster, there’s a good chance they’ll be in the mix at season’s end for the league crown.

Tamarac Boys Basketball Preview

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Head Coach:  Eric Medved

2018-19 Record:  14-7

Key Returning Players:  Dalton Maxon (only returning starter)

Coming off an excellent 2018-19 campaign the Bengals roster lost seven players to graduation but will see an infusion of talent from the senior class as Tristan Nemjo, Jacob Barbera, Alex Medved and Miles Ednie, will all return to basketball after spending a year away from the sport.

Danny Honsinger returns as a “glue kid” for coach Medved who likes what he see’s in the preseason from his Bengals.

“We get better each and every practice which is what you want to see in a new group.  This is a very unselfish team that simply lacks varsity level game experience.   We have four sophomores and a freshman who will play significant roles this season which is a huge benefit down the road, but for now we are young. ”

Medved likes the potential he sees in freshman Joe Poulin and sophomore Zach Rice saying the tandem could be “poetry in motion” as they continue to grow moving forward.

When asked what his team needed to do to be successful this year the Tamarac mentor responded, “We pass the ball very well and are unselfish, if we utilize that as a strength we may surprise some people.”

As for top contenders in the league, Medved named a handful of squads as is so often the case in the Wasaren where on any given night the difference between a “W” and a Ziggy is slim.

Defending champion Hoosick Falls, an experienced Stillwater squad, a Mechanicville team that “returns 90% of it’s firepower”, Spa Catholic and a “savvy Waterford group” highlighted Medved’s thoughts on the league’s best.

Finally, the head coach wants people to recognize his team as being “hungry”. ” We may not be pretty to look at all the time, but we will compete.”

 

 

 

 

Wasaren Girls Soccer All-Stars

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Offensive Player of the Year:  Brooke Pickett     Stillwater

Defensive Player of the Year:  Keelyn Peacock   Stillwater

First Team

Ryleigh Hopeck        Mechanicville       Jr.    Def

Savannah Bowe        Mechanicville      Sr.    GK

Teya Staie                 Stillwater              Jr.     F

Devon Wagner          Stillwater              Jr.     M

Jada Brown               Mechanicville       Sr.    M

Brynn Murphy           Mechanicville      So.    F

Lily Phillips                Cambridge           Jr.     F

Vanessa Evans           Cambridge           Sr.     F

Neveah D’Aloia          Mechanicville      So.    M

Samantha Lanoue     Hoosic Valley       Sr.     M

Sophie Champagne   Tamarac                So.    M

Maggie Brown            Hoosick Falls       Sr.     M

Molly Brophy              Greenwich           Jr.      Def

Addyson Galuski         Waterford            8th     M

Lauren Maher             Spa Catholic        Sr.      F

 

Second Team Continue reading

Wasaren Sportsnet Player of the Week

stillwater warriorCongratulations to Stillwater soccer player Paige Brinsko on being named Wasaren Sportsnet Player of the Week.

In the Class C state title game on Saturday, Brinsko scored the only goal of the match late in the first half when she connected on a free kick, curling a low shot around the left post giving the Warriors all the offense they would need in their 1-0 victory over Unatego.

Congratulations go out to Paige, our newest Wasaren Sportsnet Player of the Week.

Appreciate the Excellence of Stillwater

stillwater warriorExcellence.  It’s a word like others that while it may be hard to define you recognize it when it’s present.  Like love when you find it, trouble when you’re in it or  hunger when you feel it. We know excellence when we see it, and for a number of years the followers of Stillwater girls soccer have seen plenty.

I’m not the biggest soccer fan in the world, but having had the chance to watch the Warriors on occasion I always came away encouraging people to go see them play.

A talented roster filled with players owning full skill sets.  They played with chemistry, were well coached and brought the will to compete into every match.

Stillwater played with swag, and why not.

The last time the Warriors lost a game was the state finals in 2017.

Since that November day two years ago Stillwater has compiled a 43-0-3 mark in winning back to back state championships.

Undefeated in 46 outings, with the vast majority of those wins coming against quality opponents starting in a competitive Wasaren, moving into sectional and regional play and finishing at the Final Four weekend in Cortland.  Roughly one third of Stillwater’s games over the past two years have come in the post season where contenders play after pretenders are sent home.

But in a room full of contenders the Warriors showed all others the door.

This season Stillwater scored 125 goals and allowed just 18 to their opponents.  The Warrior defense pitched ten shutouts on the year, and fourteen times Stillwater scored five or more goals in a match. They were dominant with many games being decided by wide margins, but they had the grit, to grind out close wins like the 3-2 semifinal “W” and the 1-0 decision in the title game this weekend.

Stillwater will lose three players to the graduation stage in June, with Kate McEvoy, Paige Brinsko and Brooke Pickett all having played their final game in Cortland on Saturday.

Those three players were the senior leaders of a Stillwater team that put together a remarkable two year run displaying skill, chemistry, competitiveness, swag, grit and dominance, while playing all comers and not dropping one match.

Congratulations to the Stillwater Warriors, we celebrate your excellence.

 

 

 

 

Stillwater Goes Back to Back

Yesterday, in their home away from home, the Stillwater girls soccer team scored the only goal of the match on a free kick by Paige Brinsko with 3:13 left in the first half, and the Warriors made the 1-0 advantage stand, posting the championship “W” over Unatego to claim their second straight New York state soccer title in Cortland.

Appearing in their third consecutive state soccer final, the Warriors had to grind against a determined Unatego squad with Brinsko finding the net late in the first half, curling a low shot inside the left post for the eventual game-winner.

Stillwater keeper Kiertsen Conroy and the Warriors defense shut down the Unatego attack to seal the victory, completing a two year undefeated run for Stillwater with back to back titles.

 

 

Greenwich 2nd, Berlin 4th at Cross Country Championships

A pair of Wasaren cross country teams competed in Saturday’s State Cross Country Championships in Plattsburgh and the Greenwich and Berlin girls squads both ran well in the wintery conditions.

The Witches finished a close second in the Class C race scoring 77 points to first place Camden’s 75 points.

Senior Brynne Wright ran to a 5th place finish covering the 3 mile course in 17:15 to lead the Witches.  The next four Greenwich runners to cross were senior Brooke Wright 18:36 (34th), senior Quinn Collins 18:36.9 (35), freshman Teagan Wright 18:48 (41), and sophomore Emily Skiff 18:50 (43).

Berlin earned a fourth place finish in Class D with 126 points behind Delhi, 50 points, Maple Grove, 55 points and Tully with 57 points.

Freshman Elsie Corbett led the Mountaineers finishing 20th with a time of 18:46.  The next four Berlin runners were junior Haley Beckwith 20:08 (45), Sadie Giumarra 20:57 (60), Brady Hills 20:58 (61), and freshman Samantha Rokjer 22:07 (72).

In the Class D race, running as an individual,  Hoosic Valley freshman Lily Czub ran to an impressive fourth place finish in a time of 17:59

Stillwater Tops Marion

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Brooke Pickett scored a goal late in the second half to lift the Warriors to a 3-2 victory over Marion in a Class C semifinal of the State Girls Soccer Tournament in Cortland on Saturday.

Pickett and Marion’s Chloe DeLyser both connected for first half goals and the teams went to the break tied at 1-1.

After intermission a Paige Brinsko scoring strike gave Stillwater a 2-1 advantage, but Marion scored the equalizer with Abigail Marotta finding the range, setting up the game-winner by Pickett.

The defending state champion Warriors advance to the state championship game today at 10:00 at SUNY Cortland where they’ll face Unatego.