Saturday, February 2, 2013

Boys Basketball Sectional Forecast #6

Once again I would like to thank the good people at the PS Varsity on (in case you aren't reading the girls forecast, in which case you should be) for providing a few box scores I had been missing.  Also I would like to propose another acronym for the rating scale I use.  It runs from champion, finals, final four, final eight, and that mysterious mid-point between the final four and final eight I like to refer to.  Just for simplicity I'm going to call it HF48, so similar to MOV (margin of victory).  However, I won't pull a Rachael Ray on you and say it a thousand times along with its short version.  Happy forecasting. Sectional Forecast #5.

Class AA

(1) Troy  12-1
(16) Niskayuna 3-11
(8) LaSalle 9-6     up 2
(9) Schenectady  7-7     down 1
(5) Shaker  13-2
(12) Catholic Central  6-8     up 2
(4) CBA  13-2
(13) Ballston Spa  5-10     down 1
(3) Bethlehem  12-2
(14) Colonie  7-8     down 1
(6) Guilderland  9-5     up 1
(11) Bishop Maginn  7-8
(7) Columbia  9-5     down 1
(10) Shenendehowa 9-3     down 1
(2) Green Tech  5-1
(15) Saratoga Springs 7-8

Unranked:  Albany, Albany Academy (not participating)

Troy is the only team in the AA bracket that is above the finals rating.  They are significantly ahead of Green Tech who is just above the final four rating and Bethlehem is also above the HF48 line.  What is interesting is that both CBA and Shaker, who are virtually tied, are both below that rating.  CBA would probably cross it by beating Troy, and may do so anyway.  Though I haven't tested it I feel that the HF48 line is the minimum of a title contender, so I hope both end above as I feel they can both win sectionals.  After Shaker no team is above the final eight rating, but I do believe LaSalle, Shen and Schenectady pose threats to knocking someone off in the top.
The boy's AA bracket is not as straight forward as the girls in that Green Tech isn't part of either the Big 10 or the Suburban so I'm not sure where the committee will put them.  What happens if CBA and Troy are tied atop the Big 10 and Shaker and Bethlehem atop the Suburban.  In that case, Green Tech would probably be the overall #1, but where do you put them, B1 or S1?  I can't really analyze it without knowing the answer.  As it stands now, they would be the S1 as Troy is above them in the model and would be the B1, but too much can still happen before the regular season ends to make a call.

Class A

(1) Scotia-Glenville  15-0
(16) Bye
(8) Gloversville  6-9     down 1
(9) Mohonasen  3-12
(5) Lansingburgh  7-6     up 1
(12) Bye
(4) Averill Park  6-9     up 1
(13) Bye
(3) Burnt Hills  6-8
(14) Bye
(6) South Glens Falls  8-6     down 2
(11) Bishop Gibbons  1-14
(7) Queensbury  8-7     up 1
(10) Amsterdam  4-11
(2) Glens Falls  10-3
(15) Bye

Glens Falls had a good week and put some distance between themselves and Burnt Hills.  GF has now moved above the final eight rating, which is good because they are the #2 seed.  Scotia is the biggest favorite at this point and by a lot.  They are just below the final four rating, but given how far they are ahead of everyone else, it may as well be championship level.  Burnt Hills is still a long way away from the final eight rating and they are sitting in third, so that means that six teams rated below the final eight rating will, in fact, reach the final eight.  Seeds 4 through 8 are so closely packed that we may see a number of upsets that may not really be upsets.  This bracket is competitive everywhere except for the first team so it may at least be entertaining.

Class B

(1) Watervliet  8-0
(16) Greenville  4-11     previously unranked
(8) Broadalbin-Perth  5-10     up 1
(9) Ichabod Crane  7-8     down 1
(5) Cairo-Durham  12-2     down 3
(12) Corinth  7-8     up 1
(4) Schuylerville  14-1
(13) Taconic Hills  6-9     down 2
(3) Catskill  16-1     up 2
(14) Chatham 5-11     up 2
(6) Cohoes  8-5
(11) Fonda-Fultonville  6-9     up 1
(7) Ravena  11-4
(10) Hudson  8-8
(2) Mekeel Academy  13-2     up 1
(15) Schalmont  6-9     down 1

Unranked:  Johnstown, Hudson Falls, Tamarac, Granville, Coxsackie-Athens, Cobleskill

This is a solid bracket at the top with Watervliet leading the charge just a hair below the finals rating.  Though none of the 2 through 5 seeds are above the final four rating, they are all really close.  Mekeel has the best chance to get over with two games remaining.  Catskill only has one game left and is in danger of being passed by Schuylerville who has three left.  Cairo's stunning loss to Rensselaer last weekend killed their chance as a #2 seed and will likely have to go through 2 of the top four to win sectionals.  It's not impossible, but it would currently be Schuylerville and Watervliet and I wouldn't bet on it.  Catskill and Mekeel would be a good match-up and one I would like to see.  Cohoes is also above the final eight rating but well below the HF48.  Ravena is just below the final eight rating and both of those teams are dangerous to the upper seeds. Watervliet will be the beneficiary as they won't meet any of those teams in the second round and are almost assured another trip to the Civic Center.

Class C

(1) Lake George  14-1
(16) Waterford  7-8
(8) Stillwater  9-7     down 1
(9) Mayfield  9-7     up 4
(5) Berne-Knox  10-5
(12) Maple Hill  10-7     up 2
(4) Greenwich  11-5
(13) Saratoga Catholic  8-8     down 5
(3) Canajoharie  14-2
(14) Voorheesville  6-7     down 5
(6) Schoharie  12-4
(11) Rensselaer  8-7     up 1
(7) Fort Plain  9-5     up 4
(10) Mechanicville  8-7
(2) Hoosic Valley  14-2
(15) Hoosick Falls  7-7

Unranked:  Berlin, Duanesburg, Whitehall, Cambridge, Middleburgh, Hadley-Luzerne, Galway

I hate this bracket.  I have a bad feeling it's going to blow up in the first round.  I think the model is undervaluing the Colonial teams and I would have Mechanicville as #6.  Schoharie should be ahead of Berne-Knox as they beat them twice.  To be fair, they are really close in the model.  Also, Mechanicville has beaten Stillwater twice so they should be up ahead of them.......
Ok, I'm just going to list them how I think they should be, 1. Lake George (because of the return of the other Wincowski), 2. Hoosic Valley (because they haven't jelled yet with the Academy transfer, though there is still time), 3. Greenwich (they beat Canjo), 4. Canajoharie (they beat Schoharie), 5. Schoharie (they beat Berne who beat Voorheesville, who beat Mechanicville), 6. Mechanicville (they are the best Colonial C),  7. Stillwater (they beat Voorheesville), 8. Berne-Knox, 9. Voorheesville (nice rematch there).  I can't do anymore.  It's completely ridiculous Spa Catholic split with Fort Plain (the win by 47 points) both of who split with Mayfield.  Mayfield lost to Maple Hill by 2.  Rensselaer lost to Berne-Knox by 8 and split with Maple Hill and Hoosick Falls lost to Lake George by 17, Hoosic Valley by 11, Stillwater and Greenwich by 12.  I do not envy the committee on this one, oh my God.
Anyway, back to the point of the column, Lake George is the only team rated above the final four but still have some work to do to be above the finals rating.  HV and Canjo are both above the HF48.  Berne and Schoharie are just above the final eight rating and are nearly tied.  Greenwich is about halfway between Canjo and Berne but below the HF48.  Seeds 7 through 15 are separated by .064 which is about half of the difference between Lake George and Hoosic Valley.  That is why you see such huge swings this week and I expect you will see until the final brackets come out.
Last week this bracket scared me, now I'm terrified.

Class D

(1) Argyle  15-0
(16) Sharon Springs 0-11
(8) Northville  7-9     down 1
(9) St. Johnsville  6-9     down 1
(5) Fort Ann  10-4     down 1
(12) Warrensburg  5-9
(4) North Warren  11-4     down 1
(13) Fort Edward  3-11
(3) Germantown  10-4     up 2
(14) Hawthorne Valley  2-10
(6) Hartford  7-6
(11) Salem  6-9
(7) Doane Stuart  8-6     up 3
(10) Heatly 7-8     down 1
(2) Loudonville Christian  14-0
(15) Bolton  0-15

Unranked: New Lebanon

Argyle has the highest rating of any team in the section and they are still .060 from the champion rating which means it's unlikely you will see anyone with that rating anytime soon.  That being said, they are only just over a tenth greater than Loudonville Christian who is also undefeated in Section 2.  LC is about mid way between finals and final four rating (maybe HF24?).  Regardless it seems like Argyle is on a runaway train in this bracket.  Germantown, North Warren and Fort Ann are all above the final eight rating, but below the HF48.  No one else has a prayer.

Only one more forecast before the final one.  I'll be putting that out on the evening of the 12th (hopefully early so I can go to bed) with as many games as I can get in.  For the sake of time, I'll save the analysis until after the official brackets come out.  I'm looking forward to it.

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