Championship Preview: Mount Vernon boys, Ossining girls out to maintain Class AA supremacy; KDJ’s picks
Mount Vernon’s boys and Ossining’s girls have long been the standard for Section 1 baskebtall. Both face unique challenges for Class AA titles on Saturday afternoon.
The top-seeded and defending state champion Knights meet one of the great Cinderella stories in tournament history in No. 18 Ramapo. Ossining, the seven-time Section 1 champion, must get by the last undefeated team in the region in 23-0 Our Lady of Lourdes.
The Class AA finals are part of an afternoon single-admission doubleheader at Pace University’s Goldstein Center in Pleasantville.
Watch all Section 1 Basketball championships this weekend on the Pace Sports Network. Click here for details
Check out my video on Ramapo’s unforgettable run to the Section 1 Class AA title game with this video here:
Video shot, written and produced by Kevin Devaney Jr.
Section 1 Class AA Boys Championship
No. 1 Mount Vernon (21-2) vs. No. 18 Ramapo (10-14)
Time: 11 a.m.
Place: Pace University
How they got here: Mount Vernon beat No. 17 White Plains 87-54 and No. 9 Scarsdale 87-79. The Knights then beat No. 4 Horace Greeley 91-80 at the County Center in the semis. Ramapo beat No. 15 Ketcham in the outbracket, 60-56, in overtime, beat No. 2 Clarkstown South 49-40 and No. 10 Clarkstown North 68-65. Ramapo beat No. 3 Mamaroneck in the semis, 47-44, in overtime.
Players to Watch: Mount Vernon — Jason Douglas-Stanley, 6-2, Sr., G; Demetre Roberts, 5-7, Sr., PG; Brandon Scott, 6-3, Sr., F; Chase Johnson, 6-1, Sr., F. Ramapo — Anthony Simon, Sr., G; Franc Wilson, Jr., G; Elijah Fenton, Sr., F; Brian Aldeus, Sr., G; Charif Lowery, Soph., G; Marco LaPointe, G.
Scouting Report: Nobody in the world, at least not outside of Ramapo, will give the Gryphons any chance to win. And it’s not just because of the seeding. Mount Vernon may have its area’s of deficiency compared to the state title team of 2017, but the Knights still feature the section’s best player in Jason Douglas-Stanley, the top pure point guard in Demetre Roberts, and the deepest bench. Ramapo can play at any pace and just might be able to run with Mount Vernon. But can they scored in the 80s? This is not your typical lock-down defensive Mount Vernon team but one that can get out in transition and is never in danger of a shot clock violation. Ramapo must have Anthony Simon and Elijah Fenton get to the basket and create of the dribble.
KDJ’s Pick: Mount Vernon 79, Ramapo 69. The Knights gave up 80 points to Horace Greeley in the semis and Ramapo is capable of scoring at the pace. But it’s going to be difficult to maintain for 32 minutes. Jason Douglas-Stanley should top 30 points against and the Knights make it back to back Gold Balls.
What’s next: The winner gets a bye to the NYSPHSAA Regional Championship on Friday, March 9 at Pace University. They’ll play either Section 9 or Section 4. Pine Bush and Burke Catholic are meeting for the Section 9 title on Sunday at 11 a.m. at SUNY Orange.
Section 1 Class AA Girls Championship
No. 1 Ossining (20-3) vs. No. 2 Lourdes (23-0)
Time: 1:30 p.m.
Place: Pace University
How they got here: Ossining beat No. 16 Clarkstown North 98-31 and No. 8 White Plains 97-54. Ossining then beat No. 5 Ketcham in the semis, 79-49. Lourdes beat No. 15 Mount Vernon 87-43 and No. 7 Clarkstown South 77-39. The Warriors defeated Albertus Magnus 75-61 in the semis at home.
PHOTO GALLERY: Ossining beats Ketcham in Section 1 semifinals
Players to Watch: Ossining — Aubrey Griffin, 6-0, Jr., G; Kailah Harris, 6-1, Jr., F; Kelsey Quain, 5-5, Sr., G, Julia Iorio, 5-7, Soph., F. Lourdes — Maddy Siegrist, 5-11, Sr., G/F; Rebecca Townes, 5-8, Sr., G; Daniela Valdez, Sr., F.
Scouting report: The great team versus the dominant scorer. That’s how this game might be billed on the outside. But Lourdes is hardly a one-player team despite all the attention Villanova commit Maddy Siegrist receives. The senior forward might be Section 1’s MVP this season for her prolific scoring and the fact the Warriors are undefeated. Siegrist is coming off a 27-point effort in the semis against Albertus Magnus. But Lourdes is a terrific defensive team and one that might have what it takes to slow this Ossining train down. The Pride are without star point guard Jaida Strippoli (knee) and that will surely be something Lourdes will attempt to attack. But they need to be careful. Ossining’s ability to get out in transition often hinges on rebounding and outlet passes. If Lourdes can take that away and turn it into a halfcourt game, they may be equipped to end this Ossining run of titles.
KDJ’s Pick: Ossining 67, Lourdes 62. When all is even, give me the team with the best player and nobody is as naturally gifted as Aubrey Griffin (27 ppg). Expect a tight game into the fourth quarter that Griffin and Kailah Harris (21.4 ppg) take over and help the Pride lift another Gold Ball.
What’s next: The winner gets a bye to the NYSPHSAA Regional Championship on Friday, March 9 at Pace University. They’ll play either Section 9 or Section 4. Washingtonville and Kingston are meeting for the Section 9 title on Sunday at noon at SUNY Orange.