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Sports Archives — The Altamont Enterprise, January 11, 2007

Bulldogs have a post-holiday feast

By Tim Matteson

BERNE — The Berne-Knox-Westerlo boys’ basketball team began its post-holiday season, with back-to-back wins against league foes.

The Bulldogs took a bite out of Sharon Springs and Middleburgh to get two more wins in the Southern Division of the Western Athletic Conference.

BKW beat Middleburgh, 60-34, on Tuesday after beating Sharon Springs, 73-43, on Friday.

The Bulldogs dominated Tuesday’s game, holding Middleburgh to nine first-half points and cruising to victory. BKW led, 39-9, at halftime.

Mike Hopper led the Bulldogs with 12 points and grabbed 15 rebounds. Lenny Coons added 10 points and Rich Geist and Josh Skinner each chipped in with eight points.

Against Sharon Springs on Friday, the Bulldogs again got off to a fast start and were able to build a big lead and coast to the win. BKW led, 17-11, at the end of the first quarter and 37-16 at halftime.

David Sikule led the Bulldogs with 22 points and Coons added 16. Rich Geist scored 10 points and Joey Conklin added nine for BKW.

The Bulldogs improved to 3-2 in the Western Athletic Conference and now have an overall record of 6-5.

Girls split games

The Berne-Knox-Westerlo girls’ basketball team split two games this past week. The Lady Bulldogs beat Sharon Springs, 77-37, on Friday but lost to WAC South Division leader Schoharie, 67-41.

BKW dominated Sharon Springs on Friday from the second quarter on. The Bulldogs trailed, 17-14, at the end of the first quarter, but dominated the second quarter with a score of 27-12. Then the Bulldogs held the Spartans to eight points in the second half to cruise to the win.

Brittany Krimisky led the Bulldogs with 19 points. Andrea Van Dyke added 18, Lauren Ford scored 10 and Kristina Yakel chipped in with nine points.

The Lady Bulldogs couldn’t keep up with Schoharie in last Wednesday’s game. The Bulldogs scored just one point in the first quarter but did come back to hold the Indians to two points in the second frame.

The Bulldogs took a 33-27 lead at the end of the third quarter but were outscored 20-8 in the final frame.

Ford led the Bulldogs with 11 points. Van Dyke added nine points for BKW.

The Lady Bulldogs have an overall record of 4-5 and are 3-2 in the South Division of the WAC.

The Bulldogs played Middleburgh on Wednesday. BKW then travels to Canajoharie on Friday and Galway on Monday. They return home to play Duanesburg on Jan. 17.

Game Dutchmen miss hurt teammate

By Tim Matteson

GUILDERLAND — Guilderland’s Drew Smith might be the area’s most important cheerleader this season.

The Guilderland High School junior has been relegated to that role after breaking his hand during a basketball scrimmage earlier in the season; he has not played since the Dutchmen’s first two games.

Guilderland could have used Smith in Friday’s 56-46 loss to Saratoga. The Blue Streaks came into the game with the best record in the Suburban Council.

"We need more scoring," said Guilderland Coach Ron Osinski after Friday’s game. "We can’t wait until Drew comes back. I don’t know when that will happen. He got the cast off, but it could be a while before the hand is ready."

Smith broke his dominate right hand, and needs to work it back into shape before he can be a factor on the court.

"He does things that open up the game for us," Osinski said.

"A funk"

Despite missing Smith, the Dutchmen were game against the Blue Streaks. They battled for all four quarters though during a stretch in the second quarter the Dutch shot themselves out of the contest.

After the first quarter finished in an 11-11 stalemate, the Dutch fell behind by six points early in the second quarter.

Guilderland battled back with a drive by Mark Domaracki and two foul shots by Taylor Walden to cut the lead to two points.

But the Dutch started settling for outside shots and couldn’t completely catch the Blue Streaks.

They trailed, 25-19, at halftime.

"In the second quarter, we were not running a good offense," Osinski said. "That put us in a funk. They have a couple of good players. Garrett Bishop is tough, but I thought we did a good job on Jordan Stevens."

The Dutch continued to trail the Blue Streaks, and were behind by nine points, 39-30, at the end of the third frame.

"Playing catch-up"

But Guilderland didn’t go away without a fight.

The Dutch trailed, 45-33, after a basket by Saratoga’s Dan Harkins. Guilderland answered with an inside bucket by Jim Munsie and that was followed by a Brett Marfurt lay-up.

A jump shot by Steven Doak and another lay-up by Marfurt pulled the Dutch within four, 45-41, with 3:22 left in the game.

But Saratoga moved the ball up the court on the inbound and Stevens scored on a lay-up. A few seconds later, Stevens stole the ball and went in for a lay-up to give the Blue Streaks an eight-point lead and change the momentum of the game.

"We cut it to four and he got a couple of big ones," Osinski said. "For two-and-a-half quarters we were playing catch-up. We made a game of it, but we missed shots. I don’t know if it was fatigue late in the game. At halftime, we were down by nine, and against this team, I thought it was too large of a hill to climb. And when they got it to 10 [in the fourth quarter] I thought we were going to be blown out. But we made a couple of stops, and got the ball back."

Stevens led all scorers with 22 points. Bishop scored 15 points for Saratoga and Harkins added 10.

Guilderland was led by Domaracki’s 16 points. Marfurt added 13 and Walden chipped in with eight.

"I told the kids, ‘If we give that effort every night, we’ll win a lot of games down the road,’" Osinski said. "We almost forced two five-second calls [on inbound plays]. In the end, we just didn’t have enough to come back, but it was not because of a lack of effort."

Osinski was very pleased with the defensive effort his team put forward.

"We held them 15 points below their average," Osinski said. "We had a couple of mental lapses and I was harping on the kids about that. We didn’t box out at times and their kid scores. We don’t have a lot of room for error. A lot of things we missed by not executing. It was not our best shooting night. It’s hard to beat a team if you can’t get out of the 40s. It’s hard to hold a team to 45 points, especially one like that."

Osinski praised the play of Uwane Okure on Bishop.

"He’s a tough kid," Osinski said of the Saratoga player. "He got the ball a lot but it wasn’t easy for him. He had to work for it. He’ll wake up tomorrow and he’ll know he was in a battle tonight."

The Dutchmen are now 6-4 overall and 3-3 in the Suburban Council. The Dutch host Averill Park on Friday and then travel to Shaker on Tuesday. They will then play a double-header with the girls’ team on Jan. 19 at Ballston Spa. The girls’ game starts at 6 p.m. and the boys’ will tip-off around 7:30.

Lady Dutch are warriors on the road

By Tim Matteson

GUILDERLAND — The girls on the Guilderland basketball team were road warriors this week as they traveled to Saratoga and Bethlehem and came away with a pair of wins.

Kristin Pezze scored 14 points to lead the Lady Dutch to a 39-38 win over Bethlehem on Tuesday.

The Lady Dutch held off a furious comeback attempt by the Eagles in the fourth quarter to sneak away with the win. Guilderland was outscored, 14-8, in the final frame, after leading, 31-24, at the end of the third quarter.

Mary Kate O’Connell scored 11 points for Guilderland and Nikki Branchini chipped in nine points.

The Lady Dutch had a much easier time on Friday night against Saratoga. Guilderland led 12-8 at the end of the first quarter, then used a tough defensive effort to hold the Blue Streaks to 17 points for the rest of the game to win, 48-25.

Pezze led the Dutch with 13 points. Danielle Burns scored 12 points and Branchini added 10 points for Guilderland.

The Lady Dutch improved their record to 8-3 overall and 5-2 in the Suburban Council.

The Guilderland team will travel to Averill Park on Friday and then host Shaker on Tuesday. The Lady Dutch then travel with the varsity boys’ team for a double-header at Ballston Spa on Jan. 19.

Skating Dutchmen’s streak stopped

By Tim Matteson

GUILDERLAND — The Guilderland hockey team didn’t travel far to get to Tuesdays night’s away game, but it looked like they did.

The Skating Dutchmen played an "away" game on their home ice against host Burnt Hills-Scotia-Glenville and were blanked, 5-0.

The Burnt Hills team also uses Achilles Rink at Union College as its home ice.

So why the Dutchmen came out flat, despite being on familiar turf puzzled Coach John DeRubertis, especially after the Dutch had won their last three games.

"We played three good games," the coach said. "We were riding that high, but we were not prepared for the game speed that Burnt Hills brought. They have great speed. They look like a better team this year than in years past. We just weren’t prepared for the speed of the game."

Guilderland trailed, 2-0, at the end of the first period and couldn’t recover, though it played an even second quarter with the Spartan-Tartans.

The score didn’t change until the final seconds of the frame, when the Dutchmen made a mistake.

Bobby Choquette slipped the puck into the net on a power play attempt with just eight seconds left in the period. Guilderland’s Jon Fogel was called for a hooking penalty with 1:32 left in the stanza.

Guilderland turned the puck over in its own zone; Steve Nichols got to the puck and passed it to Choquette who got it by Guilderland goalie Brendan Glennon.

"What changed the game was the goal they got with eight seconds left," DeRubertis said. "We basically had the penalty killed off, but there was a loose puck and their player got to it. It was a breakdown on our part and terrific execution by them. We needed to get the puck out of the zone and that really turned the game there. We had just eight seconds to kill and they got the puck with 11 seconds left and three seconds later, the puck is in the net."

"Bodies to the net"

The third period was just a formality as Burnt Hills-Scotia-Glenville added two more goals against a lethargic Dutch team.

"Going into the room after two down 3-0 was big," DeRubertis said. "If we’re just down 2-0 we pop one in the net and the momentum changes."

Guilderland did get shots from senior captains Ben Fogel and John Potts. They had good shots but they were stopped by Burnt Hills goalie Roland Marlow. Jeff Geisendorfer and Greg Warnken also had shots on goal in the period.

"Quality of shots made a huge difference,’ DeRubertis said. "They have a couple of goal scorers in Nichols and Choquette. They tried to get Choquette in the slot and feed him shots. I think they only had one set play where he got the puck in the slot. I think it was the fourth goal where he got a really nice shot."

Burnt Hills only held a one-shot advantage, 19-18, in the game, but they got better chances.

Marlow stopped all 18 Guilderland shots. Glennon made 14 saves for the Dutchmen.

"We’re not sending bodies to the net," DeRubertis said. "We moved the puck and were able to generate some shots, but we have to focus on getting bodies to the net. We were certainly lacking there."

Moving on

Guilderland beat Mohonasen-Schalmont, Saratoga, and Bethlehem in the last three games to achieve a 4-1 record in the Capital District High School Hockey League.

"It’s disappointing," DeRubertis said after Tuesday’s game. "I thought we would be better prepared, but the difference was the speed of the game. We have to show that we can compete with a team better than us. We’ll practice this week and get ready for Shaker on Friday. This is our only game with Burnt Hills this year; they’re in another division. We’ll put this one behind us and move on."

Despite the setback, DeRubertis sees a lot of potential in this team.

"We were doing good things in our three wins," the coach said. "We were being aggressive. We were putting pucks on the net and going to the net. We did those things in the past three games. We didn’t do that tonight. But they have a good defense. They have four solid defensemen that are good sized kids. It wasn’t easy to get to the net."

DeRubertis said he has seen good things from everyone on his team, especially sophomore Colin Burg, junior Jeff Geisendorfer, and freshman Greg Warnken.

"I see potential with this team," DeRubertis said. "It was building in the last three games. Even tonight, I wouldn’t sit here and say that the better team won. I’m confident that we can play competitive hockey with that team."

The Skating Dutchmen play Shaker-Colonie on Friday and then Niskayuna-Schenectady on Saturday. Guilderland doesn’t play again until Jan. 19 against Shaker-Colonie.

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