Hoosic Valley Girls Basketball Preview

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Head Coach:  Walt Dorman

2018-19 Record:  15-6

Key Returning Players:  Sam Dickenson  Emaleigh Peckham  Anna Jensen

Coming off a 15 win season a year ago the Indians will have,  ” A nice mix of returning players and a few new ones,” according to head coach Walt Dorman.  A trio of starters in Dickenson, Peckham and Jensen give the veteran coach a solid core to build around.

In the early going things have looked good for the Valley with Dorman commenting, ” We had a nice tempo this preseason.”

On a team with strengths on both sides of the ball Dorman highlights what’s been the Indians calling card for years, ” Our ability to play tough man to man.”

As for goals set for the Schaghticoke squad Dorman said simply, ” To improve everyday as a player and a person.”

The head coach touted Cambridge and Mechanicville as the front runners for the Wasaren title in a league with a host of quality teams.

While Coach Dorman didn’t respond with a word or phrase he most would like people to associate with his team this year, I know what fans will most likely see from the Indians.

A tough, physical man to man team, with the ability to extend the floor defensively and turn opponents over, leading to transition buckets.  Also a program that brings to the court a winning pedigree, and a high level of compete.

All longtime cornerstones of the Hoosic Valley program that I’m confident will be ever present, once again, this winter in Schaghticoke.

 

Witches Win Season-Opener

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Greenwich jumped out to a 26-10 lead at the end of one and extended their advantage to 49-17 at the half in cruising past Corinth 86-34 in the boys basketball opener for both squads on Tuesday night in Greenwich.

Alex Curtis with 23 points and Jesse Kuzmich with 19, led the Witches attack that used the long ball effectively, bottoming nine triples in the contest.

Isaac Melville with 10 points showed the way for the Tomahawks.

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.

 

 

 

 

Warriors Fall To Gouverneur

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Most quality football teams have a few things in common.  A skilled, deep and coachable roster that plays for each other, along with a high compete level come to mind.

The Stillwater Warriors checked all the boxes this season and on Friday night in their state quarterfinal in Rotterdam they leaned heavily on their ability to compete, keeping the decision in doubt until the clock showed triple zeroes.

The Warriors, trailed the entire contest and were held scoreless until late in the fourth, but managed to give themselves a chance on the game’s last play, before falling to Gouverneur 10-2.

Gouverneur jumped on top less than two minutes in on a 23-yard touchdown from quarterback Caleb Farr.

Those would be the only points in the game until early in the fourth when the Wildcats added a 25-yard field goal that gave Gouverneur a 10-0 advantage.

On the ensuing Stillwater drive the Warriors moved the football to the Wildcat one-yard line but were denied on three straight run plays, giving the ball back to Gouverneur with 5:45 remining.

Undeterred, the Warriors defense came up big three plays later when Farr was smothered in the end zone by a host of Stillwater defenders for a safety, trimming the deficit to 10-2.

After receiving the free kick Stillwater ran just four plays, before turning the ball over on downs to the Wildcats who looked to run out the clock and seal the “W”.

But with 1:41 on that clock Stillwater’s “want to” gene showed up again, when the Warriors Rhett Mercier recovered a Gouverneur fumble giving Stillwater life at their own 37-yard line.

On the game’s final series Stillwater picked up three first downs in moving the ball to the Wildcat 23 yard line.  But from there the Warriors final three passing attempts fell incomplete, the last coming with all zeroes on the clock, and Gouverneur survived, walking off with the quarterfinal victory.

Stillwater wraps up an outstanding season with a 10-1 mark and the schools first Section II Football Championship.

 

 

 

A Special Fall Season In Stillwater

stillwater warriorWith snow on the ground for many of us, and single digit temperatures this morning, mid-August, and the start of the fall season for high school athletics seems a long time ago.  Teams throughout the state kicked off their respective seasons in the late summer heat, eager to start what they hoped would be a memorable year where goals were met and expectations exceeded.

Now with league and sectional championships long since decided, the fall season for most schools is a wrap, with only the very best in the state left to play in the chill of November.

Two of the state’s elite squads call Stillwater home, as the Warriors football team and girls soccer team have put together remarkable fall campaigns and are in the midst of a extended post season run.

The Lady Warriors, under head coach Christine Ihnatolya, have compiled a 20-0-2 mark heading into the girls soccer Final Four Weekend in Cortland on Friday, where they’ll look to defend their Class C state title from a year ago.

Ian Godfrey’s Stillwater football squad sports a perfect 10-0 record and will play in a Class C state quarterfinal this weekend at Mohonansen High.

While the two groups, with sectional titles in their pockets, are obviously looking for more, they fully appreciate what they’ve been able to do thus far.

“We are incredibly excited about the success of our team this year”,  remarked Godfrey. “Our kids have worked extremely hard all off-season to be able to compete for and win a championship for the first time in school history.”

” There have been a lot of contributing factors to the success of our season thus far”, offered Ihnatolya.  “Aside from our level of talent and work ethic, our team chemistry has really helped to mold the bond of this team, and take our level of play to the next level. I’m so incredibly proud of what we have accomplished and look forward to seeing where the hard work, commitment and team camaraderie will take us as we head to the state championship tournament this weekend.”

The soccer team has been dominant throughout the year scoring 121 goals while allowing just 16 with Warriors keeper Kiersten Conroy and the Stillwater defense combining for nine shutouts. In five postseason matches Stillwater has outscored the opposition 31-3.

Senior Brooke Pickett leads the Stillwater attack with 56 goals and 11 assists, with junior Teya Staie connecting for 22 goals, and classmate Keelyn Peacock assisting on 30 goals while scoring 14 of her own.

Similarly the football squad has compiled impressive numbers scoring 376 points to their opponents 97.  The Warriors defense has posted three shutouts on the year, the most recent a 21-0 decision over Cambridge-Salem in the Section II final.

Stillwater owns a pair of players who have rushed for more than 1000 yards in senior quarterback James Galarneau, (1396 yards), and senior running back Mason Seymour, (1368 yards), with the tandem combining for 39 touchdowns.

Through the air Galarneau has thrown for 676 yards and 10 scores, connecting with his favorite target senior Ryan Greene nine times, for 200 yards and four touchdowns.

Both teams post season journey will intensify this weekend, facing high quality opponents which characterizes all remaining squads at this point of the season.

“Gouverneur from Section 10 is a traditional power who is big, really fast and flat out talented”, said Godfrey.  “Their quarterback and lead running back are as explosive as any players we’ve seen all year.  It is vital we stick to our game plan and execute good technique, and contain as much as possible.”

The Lady Warriors will face a Marion team from Section V with just one loss on the season. “Their main offensive threat is Chloe DeLyser”, said Ihnatoyla.  “She is a Division I player who has committed to play at Ohio State University and has scored more than 300 career goals for Marion.”

So what needs to be done for both squads to take the next step towards the ultimate prize?

Coach Ihnatoyla wants her team to “Keep the same mindset that we have had the entire season.  It is up to our team to follow the game plan and continue to do the little things right, that have helped us achieve the success we have had so far.”  She continued, “From our goalie, to the defense all the way up to our forwards, every single girl on this team plays an important role.  The caliber of play we see this weekend may be the best we have seen all season and it is up to us now, to increase our level of play and give it all we’ve got.”

“We have to get as healthy as possible by Friday”, Coach Godfrey offered.  “As with many small schools, our athletes go multiple ways so this week is big in getting them ready to go”.  Godfrey went on to say, “Offensively we are going to have to do what we’ve done all year, run the football.  Establishing the run will open up the pass for us and to win in the state play-offs you have to be multiple.  Defensively, we have to limit the big play, bend but don’t break.”

Three months ago most of the state’s more than 1500 public high schools, spanning five classifications started their soccer and football seasons. This weekend in the C classification eight football teams remain in the tournament, while in girls soccer the field has been trimmed to four.

Incredibly, Warrior teams will compete in both.

Each group understands they’re in the deep end of the pool this weekend and that’s just fine with the Stillwater squads.  They’ll lean on talented rosters, good team chemistry and high compete levels in looking to extend what has already been a very special fall season in the town Stillwater.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Football, Soccer Sectional Outlook

With the Section II tournaments entering their second week of play in football and girls and boys soccer, let’s take a look at how many Wasaren teams are continuing to compete for a sectional championship.

In the Class C football tourney things played out as we talked about on this site last week with all four Wasaren schools advancing to the semifinal round this weekend.

The top two seeds in Stillwater and Cambridge-Salem handled their business as expected, the Warriors posting a 46-16 “W” over eighth-seeded Granville, and Indians turning back seventh-seeded Voorheesville 36-4.

The other two league squads came away with upset victories, at least on paper, with fourth-seeded Greenwich dominating #5 Fonda 45-7, and the sixth-seeded Bengals of Tamarac topping #3 Watervliet 28-16.

Semifinal weekend shakes out with #1 Stillwater hosting #4 Greenwich on Friday night and #2 Cambridge-Salem will entertain #6 Tamarac on Saturday afternoon.

The Friday night game should be a dandy.  Can Greenwich come into Stillwater and knock off the undefeated Warriors?  They could as the Witches after a week one loss to Cambridge-Salem are playing as well as anyone in Class C. Continue reading

Greenwich, Stillwater Cross Country Champs

The Greenwich girls and the Berlin boys earned league titles at the Wasaren Cross Country Championships at Saratoga Spa State Park on Tuesday.

Greenwich’s Brynne Wright and Nina Scambelluri finished one, two and the Witches claimed six of the top eight spots to post the victory.

Stillwater’s John Gannon won the boys race with Berlin’s Collin Douglas running second and Hoosick Falls’ Collin MacDonald third.

Girls Team Points

Greenwich 21  Emma Willard 67  Berlin 86  Stillwater 100  Spa Catholic 132  Mechanicville 192

Individual Times  3.04 mile course

Brynne Wright Greenwich 18:03

Nina Scambelluri Greenwich 18:10

Lily Czub  Hoosic Valley  18:52

Josie Smith  Emma Willard  18:52:43

Quinn Collins  Greenwich  19:02

 

Boys Team Points

Berlin 35  Stillwater 42  Greenwich 85  Spa Catholic 87  Hoosic Valley 95

Individual Times  3.04 mile course

John Gannon  Stillwater  17:16

Collin Douglas  Berlin  17:35

Collin MacDonald  Hoosick Falls  17:49

Jacob Ziem  Greenwich  18:10

Matt Kluck  Berlin  18:22

Bloomer, Smith Qualify at Golf Championships

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At the Section II Golf Championships at Orchard Creek Golf Club on Monday Hoosick Falls golfers Ryan Bloomer and Matthew Smith both qualified for the Section II team that will compete in the State Boys Golf Championships in June at Mark Twain Golf Course.

Bloomer fired a two round total of 146 to tie for third overall while Smith totaled 149 in his two rounds including a first round score of 68 to finish tied for seventh on the team of 11 golfers.

Al Cavotta of Saratoga was the medalist carding a pair of 69’s for a four under score of 138.

 

Boys Soccer; Mechanicville Continues Streak

Mechanicville 3 Waterford 0: Quietly over the past three seasons the Mechanicville boys soccer team has strung together an impressive winning streak in Wasaren play that extended to 37 straight with the defeat of the Fordians in Waterford Thursday night.

After a scoreless first half Brandt St. Gelais, Zac Rapaccioulo, and Wyqui Agunda all found the back of the net for the Raiders who move to 6-0 in league play this season, with an 8-4 overall mark.

Zach White, 3 saves, and the Mechanicville defense combined for the shutout of Waterford who go to 9-2-1 overall with the loss.

 

Stillwater 3 Hoosic Valley 0: The Warriors used single tallies by Grant Baker, Harry Rubenstein and Jack Rubenstein to slip past the Indians of Hoosic Valley.

Stillwater held a 1-0 advantage at the break and put the game away with two unanswered in the second half.

Warrior keeper Tim Buchal saved four shots and with the Stillwater “D” notched the shutout.
The Warriors improve to 4-3, 9-3 on the year while the Valley goes to 1-6, 4-9-1.

 

Tamarac 4 Greenwich 2: The Bengals ran out to a 2-0 halftime lead and used that cushion to hold off the Witches for the home victory on Thursday.
Dylan Briccetti with a hat trick and Miles Ednie with a single scoring strike paced Tamarac offensively.                                                                                                                               soccer-ball1
AJ Rymph and Liam Niesz found the range for the two Greenwich scores after the break.
Tamarac, with the win improves to 6-1, 9-1 and Greenwich slips to 4-1-1, 9-2-1 with the loss.

 

Spa Catholic 8 Hoosick Falls 0: The Saints rang the bell four times in each half in coasting to the easy shutout “W” over the Panthers.

Spa’s Dante Marin scored four goals, Ben Urbaetis added a pair and Matthew Apy and Jordan Catone rounded out the Saints attack with single strikes.                                 Saratoga Catholic improves to 3-5-1, 5-6-2 on the year.