As I have previously mentioned I'm doing three different statistical analyses (I think that's the right word) using the Sectional Forecast Rating (SFR as I will start referring to it, not sure how I didn't think of that one before) that you have been reading about all year, the Sectional Prediction Rating (SPR) and the Common Opponents Analysis (COA). Unfortunately I just haven't had the time to complete all the games for the COA so I'll have to update you as I get them done. It takes forever to sort through all the combinations. Anyway, I'll also be telling you what I think in my own biased opinion.
|S2||Shenendehowa||Shenendehowa||Green Tech||Green Tech|
Class AA is tough this year because unlike a number of previous years I actually think the Suburban has a chance to dethrone the Big 10. I also think Green Tech as a solid chance. My contenders are CBA, Troy, Green Tech, Shaker and Bethlehem. A lot has to go right for all of these teams to win, but CBA is the favorite again this year. Their loss to Bethlehem was without Marini and with Troy missing one of their best guards to suspension that drops them a tick behind the favorites. LaSalle has also been solid this year and I wouldn't be surprised if they made some noise early in the tournament. This bracket is actually a lot harder than I thought it would be. Everyone but CBA will have a strong test in the second round which also factors in to them being the favorite. I wouldn't be shocked if any of the teams I've mentioned or Shen make the final four. My prediction: Troy over Shaker, CBA over Green Tech, CBA over Troy. Potential upsets: Just about every game from the second round on and a couple in the first.
In class A it's pretty unanimous that Scotia-Glenville probably runs away with it, but this could be one of the more entertaining brackets in all of sectionals. Much like on the girls' side, a lot of these teams are good and it should make for some good games. I would have loved to see Troy play in this bracket because I think it would have been an epic showdown in the final with SG, but instead we'll probably see them face off against one of the Suburban teams. I would actually prefer it that way as we know they will crush any of the Foothills teams as they have already proven. It's really hard to list only one team as having a chance, but unless something out of the ordinary happens I do believe that's the case. Burnt Hills, Averill Park and Glens Falls would be in that second tier and coincidentally, they are all on the same side of the opposite bracket from Scotia. My prediction: Scotia over South Glens Falls, Burnt Hills over Averill Park, Scotia over Burnt Hills. No significant upsets as, in this case, the difference between 3 and 6 isn't that great.
I know the larger schools get a lot of pub and talk, but having grown up in a smaller school I actually find their tournaments to be a lot more intriguing most years. There are some years, like this year's potential Albany-Bethlehem match-up in girls AA that pique my interest, but I often find the most compelling games in the smaller classes. For me, this year is no different. In class B alone there are ten or so games I would like to see in person. In the second round there are two potential games featuring Patroon teams against Colonial and WAC teams and one Colonial against Wasaren team and they should all be really good games. Ultimately this is Watervliet's tournament to lose, but if they give it up, Mekeel Academy, Schuylverville, Cairo-Durham, Catskill, Cohoes and Ravena all stand in line with a shot. The first real test of this tournament will be Catskill against Cohoes. It will tell us how much punch the Patroon will have in this tournament. I believe the Patroon is weaker than the other conferences, but they could prove me wrong early on. I could pick this six different ways and still get it wrong so here it goes. My prediction: Watervliet over Catskill, Mekeel Academy over Schuylverville, Watervliet over Mekeel Academy. Potential upsets: Schalmont over Cairo-Durham, Ravena over Schuylerville, Mekeel Academy over Watervliet.
When I was growing up they always had a CC and a C bracket and I never really liked it (even though my alma mater won two C titles and lost two CC-C finals). I always thought if they were going to split them they should give each of the top two schools a bracket, but I like it even better this way. The most deserving team is going to win and that's the way it should be. This year contenders for that title are Hoosic Valley, Lake George, Greenwich, Mechanicville and Berne-Knox. The reason I stop at Berne-Knox and not include Schoharie and Canajoharie is pretty simple. Neither of them have a player at the level of Garrett Pitcher. I have seen more than one class C championship won by a team with a dynamic big man and I wouldn't count out BKW for that reason. Canajoharie has beaten Schoharie twice and should meet them again in the second round and I just don't see Canajoharie as a major threat (maybe a minor threat) against Hoosic Valley. The challenge for Hoosic Valley could well come in the second round against a very dangerous Rensselaer team who knocked off Cairo-Durham late in the year and gave Catskill a good run in their second meeting. The other side of the bracket is a nightmare. All four of the top seeds could lose to each other, and some even have a threat in the first round. Lake George's two losses both came at the hands of Joey Lufkin's Argyle and while there may not be a Joey Lufkin in this bracket LG has yet to face any team the caliber Greenwich, Mechanicville, or Berne-Knox. As tough as HV's second round game is, LG's may prove to be even tougher. This is the first and only time this year I'm going to go out on a limb. My prediction: Hoosic Valley over Schoharie (via Voorheesville), Berne-Knox over Greenwich (via Mechanicville), Hoosic Valley over Berne-Knox. Potential upsets: Rensselaer over Hoosic Valley, Stillwater over Schoharie, Voorheesville over Canjoharie, Hoosick Falls over Mechanicville, Maple Hill over Berne-Knox, Voorheesville over Schoharie, Mechanicville over Greenwich, Berne-Knox over everyone else.
The D bracket is actually very similar to the A bracket in that there is one team that should run away with it (Argyle) and then another group of pretty good teams behind them. Those teams would be Loudonville Christian, North Warren, Germantown, and Fort Ann. The battle in this bracket should be for second place and I honestly don't see a lot of upsets happening though a few could. The two CHVL teams are solid and should be able to hold their seeds as should Fort Ann and Hartford. Doane Stuart is looking to win their first sectional game in at least 5 years and have a home game as an advantage. Unfortunately, Northville is probably underseeded at 10 and will give them a run for their money. My prediction: Argyle over Germantown, Loudonville Christian over Fort Ann, Argyle over Loudonville Christian. Potential upsets: Northville over Doane Stuart, Hartford over Fort Ann, Fort Ann over Loudonville Christian.
Good luck to everyone and let the best teams win.....and my predictions be right.