With the benefit of an extra Friday slate of games a full analysis of the Section 2 leagues and conferences is upon you. This one is a bit more interesting for me as this is the first time I've delved into this type of analysis for girls basketball. A couple of quick notes before I start. I've been noticing a few differences between the girls and boys stats so far. First of all, if you've been following the leading scorer posts you've seen how in the girls games, the leading scorer's team is more likely to win than for the boys. I think this lends itself to my previous thoughts that there might be a bit more parity in boys basketball. The plus side for the girls is that it might lead to better and more dominant teams, and it's always fun to watch greatness.
Another thing I've noticed is that the private schools in the girls aren't as much of a force as on the boys side. The team with the larger enrollment (typically the public school) is currently winning 60% in girls basketball and only 46% in boys basketball. I think this is mainly due to Emma Willard's significant enrollment advantage over the other teams in the CHVL, but another factor is there is no dominant team like CBA on the girls side consistently beating teams with greater enrollments. Alright, enough with my side notes, without further adieu, the State of the Section.
We got a big clue as to how this is going to play out tonight with Waterford beating Heatly by 33. Waterford has won their five league games by an average of 44 points. The real question for Waterford is whether or not they'll have enough to win sectionals with Hoosic Valley, Maple Hill, Fort Plain and Lake George are waiting. They could potentially be a 4th or 5th seed in the forecast with that lineup. Heatly and Emma Willard are next in line but there is a bit of separation between each of the three and with them and the rest of the league.
The East division looks like it could be a solid three team battle between Argyle, Fort Ann and Fort Edward. FE beat Argyle by one in their meeting and Argyle and FA have comparable Margins of Victory (MOV) in their common opponents. All of these teams will also be fighting for the D sectional title.
In the West, Lake George looks to have the upper hand but Warrensburg isn't far behind. The West appears to be playing second fiddle to the East this year with LG beating Hartford by single digits who is already 0-2 in East play.
Similar to the boys the Southern division has barely played a league game yet, but each of the class C teams has decent out of league wins or near misses. This might be a situation where the team that comes out of it on top has a few losses and could be a tough out as a lower seed in sectionals.
On north side of town Fort Plain and Galway have shown the most promise and FP already has a low single digit win vs. Galway. At this point they are in the driver's seat and it is theirs to lose.
There was a tight game tonight for the leader in the Wasaren between Hoosic Valley and Tamarac with HV coming out on top by 1 point. That is their 3rd one point game out of six total games played. Both teams played tough out of league games so far and this is going to come down to one of them for the title. I'm looking forward to the rematch in this one. One more thing to point out here. Last year HV beat Catholic Central by 20 points. CC only lost 2 Big 10 games last year and those were by a combined 9 points (oh yeah, those two losses were to Albany who lost in the AA final). This year HV lost to CC by 1. It's not often you find C schools that can consistently compete at the same or greater level than solid AA schools and you almost never see it on the boys side. It's one of the things I'm starting to like about girls basketball. The girls have a different kind of parity, between the really good teams.
Things start and end with Maple Hill in the Patroon. Taconic Hills will probably end up 2nd and they just lost by 13 to MH. Again, the most important question in the Patroon is whether or not MH has enough to get through the C bracket. I'm really looking forward to the first forecast for this one.
There's a gaggle (yes I said gaggle) of good teams here but this is going to come down to Watervliet and Holy Names. The Colonial Council in both boys and girls basketball remains one of the toughest in Section 2 and I'm glad I don't have to navigate through their league schedules. Voorheesville beat Schalmont by 2, Schalmont beat Albany Academy by 8, AA lost to Cohoes by 4 and Cohoes beat Ravena by 4. It's a mess, but fun to look at.
Albany Leadership finds itself without a home but at least they are playing Section 2 teams, which the model appreciates. They probably won't compete this year but every team provides useful data.
Not a whole lot to go on yet, but Scotia and South Glens Falls are both 2-0 with close wins over Johnstown who is now 0-2 and in a tough spot for what seems to be a very competitive team. Queensbury is also 2-0 but not sure where that is going as they haven't played either SG or SGF. On a side note, if anyone knows why Gloversville doesn't have girls team, I'd be interested to know.
Girls Big 10
Did anyone notice I put the Big 10 before the Suburban unlike what I did in the boys SOS? That's because for all the dominance the Big 10 has in boys basketball, the Suburban has it in girls basketball. They have won 8 of the 9 AA championships since the change to 5 classes and have fielded 16 of the 18 title game participants. This year the Big 10 looks an awful lot like last year. Albany and Troy have the most impressive results at the moment with Catholic Central a close third.
For all the love I gave the Colonial Council, this might be the toughest league in 2012-2013 for both boys and girls. The defending AA champs returning their best player are currently 1-2. If I had to pick right now I'd have to say Bethlehem wins the South and Shaker the North, but I'm not counting out Colonie yet and Averill Park and Shen are still players. That's 5 teams, 4 in AA that are really good. I wouldn't bet against another all Suburban AA final.