Playoff Preview: Somers out to defend title, KDJ’s Class A girls preview and picks
Perhaps the most wide-open bracket in the Section 1 basketball tournament resumes on Friday with the Class A girls quarterfinals.
Somers is the defending the champion but the final eight has no clear-cut favorite and the quarterfinal round features a No. 21 seed in Nanuet, a dangerous 10 seed in Panas and a talented but unproven top seed in John Jay-Cross River.
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As you read the breakdown of the four Class A quarterfinals below, click to the ‘Play’ button on this week’s “KDJ Show” podcast below:
SECTION 1 CLASS A QUARTERFINALS
Friday, February 23, 2018
Photo by HVSP – CLICK HERE for link to site
No. 1 John Jay-CR (18-3) vs. No. 8 Brewster (13-8), 5 p.m.
Scouting report: For a team that’s a No. 1 seed, has 18 wins and boasts six victories combined over Class A teams still alive in the bracket (Rye, Somers, and two each over Brewster and Panas), it feels like John Jay still has something to prove in the playoffs. The Indians most recently beat Brewster 53-47 on Feb. 6 after posting a 60-51 win on Jan. 19. This won’t an easy matchup in any regard for Jay.
KDJ’s Pick: John Jay-CR 54, Brewster 50. Another tight game throughout that veterans Kendall Degenhardt and Ana Dorta take control of late and guide the Indians to the County Center on Tuesday.
No. 2 Somers (15-6) vs. No. 10 Panas (12-10), 5 p.m.
Scouting report: The defending Section 1 champion Tuskers have a tricky quarterfinal matchup here with league-rival Panas. Both games in the regular season came down to the final four minutes as a proven, veteran Somers team found a way in both instances. Can they do it a third? Panas has dynamic interior player in Danielle Merante, who can matchup on both ends against Hannah Angelini. The question will be whether Panas can get enough secondary scoring to beat Somers.
KDJ’s Pick: Somers 51, Panas 46. Expect another close game but another victory. Don’t see the champs going down on their home floor at this point.
No. 3 Rye (16-5) vs. No. 6 Hen Hud (14-7)
Scouting report: Hen Hud very quietly entered the postseason as the hottest team in Class A and head down to Rye a confident team. The Sailors won their final seven games of the regular season, highlighted by a victory over Ardsley, to jump to the No. 6 seed. The team’s seven losses came against teams with a combined 78-27 record in the regular season. This team is tested and has capable scorer in Caitlin Weimer and a talented group around her. Rye has a dynamic player of its own in Teaghan Flaherty.
KDJ’s Pick: Rye 55, Hen Hud 50. In their home gym and winners of eight of nine, the Garnets will find a way to contain Weimer and control the pace enough to win.
No. 4 Harrison (15-6) vs. No. 21 Nanuet (8-14)
Scouting report: Nobody expected Nanuet to be here, especially before it went up against a Tappan Zee team it lost to twice in the regular season. They’re a scary opponent walking into the gym for a Harrison squad eyeing a championship. The Golden Knights must figure out a way to slow down Avery LaBarbera. The Canisius commit has the ability on her own of shattering Cinderella’s glass slipper.
KDJ’s Pick: Harrison 58, Nanuet 50. While all defensive attention will likely be paid to LaBarbera, this should be a game Ashley Stagg lights it up and shoulders the load. Harrison is headed to the County Center.