Thursday, March 22, 2012
State Federation tournament preview
By Matt Ehalt
The New York State Federation tournament takes over Albany this weekend as the best in the state will be crowned. Here's what to look for from the New York City teams in each bracket.
St. Raymond vs. Boys & Girls; Winner vs. Mt. Vernon
THE SKINNY: Mount Vernon is the defending champion and will meet the winner of the St. Raymond vs. Boys & Girls. These two teams met once this season, with St. Raymond winning the game on a last-second shot. This meeting should be another great game as both teams are hot. No matter who wins, Mount Vernon will be a tough out in the final.
Nazareth vs. Cicero-North Syracuse; Winner vs. Murry Bergtraum
THE SKINNY: Nazareth is the favorite here as the defending champion. The Lady Kingsmen are simply the most talented team in the field, although CNS has the best player in Connecticut-bound forward Breanna Stewart. Those two teams meet in the semifinals with the winner getting Murry Bergtraum in the final. The Lady Blazers are the underdogs.
Long Island Lutheran vs. Brooklyn Collegiate/Iona Prep vs. Harborfields
THE SKINNY: This is a very competitive field, featuring the defending champion in Long Island Lutheran. Iona Prep has been a solid team all season and certainly could walk away with the title. Brooklyn Collegiate has a tall task with Long Island Lutheran. The final very easily could be Iona Prep taking on Long Island Lutheran in the final and the Gaels certainly have a good chance to win it all.
Rochester East vs. Bishop Loughlin; Winner vs. Curtis
THE SKINNY: A new Class A champion will be crowned but the title could be coming back to New York City for the second straight year. Bishop Loughlin has been one of the best teams all season, including the AA, and has to be considered the favorite in this bracket. If it gets by Rochester East, it gets a meeting with Curtis. The Lady Warriors will present a tough challenge in the final for either team.
Nazareth vs. Bishop Ludden/Collegiate vs. Pathways Prep
THE SKINNY: This is certainly an intriguing bracket. Collegiate is the four-time defending champion but certainly has its work cut out for it. Its semifinal opponent, Pathways Prep, has one of the top prospects in New York City in Jordan Washington. Nazareth, on the other side of the bracket, is an impressive athletic team that can create problems, if the teams meet. Whoever wins this bracket will certainly have earned its championship.
Scholars Academy vs. Long Island Lutheran/Irvington vs. Cardinal O'Hara
THE SKINNY: Long Island Lutheran will look to defend is title and is the favorite in this field. Last year, it bested Irvington in the final and that could be the same case once again. Scholars Academy is back in the bracket once again, after falling to Irvington in the semifinals last year. We'll see if Scholars Academy can change its luck around this time and win the title.