Wednesday, May 17, 2017

No rest for the weary: sectional play begins sooner than assumed

I think everyone in the home district assumed that sectional play would begin Thursday at the very latest. We know that the Section II softball committee, and presumably also the lacrosse committee, would meet today. What we didn't know was that the baseball committee met at mid-morning on Tuesday, with tournament play in classes AA, B, & C to start later that afternoon.

So imagine my surprise, reading the Record this morning, and finding that out. The only explanation I can think of was that the committee members, recognizing that the weather forecast calls for rain Thursday and/or Friday, needed to start the tournaments ASAP in order to get to the title games, scheduled for Joe Bruno Stadium May 23-25. Due to state tournaments scheduled to start June 2-3, there was no room for error.

Anyway, Troy High & LaSalle, having had their regular season meeting cancelled on Monday due to weekend rains and wet grounds at THS, had their first round games Tuesday afternoon. As expected, Troy was on the road, seeded 9th, and returning to Clifton Park to play defending AA champ Shenendehowa for the 2nd time in as many weeks. Shen was seeded 8th, as they weren't the dominant team in the Suburban Council's Blue division this season. Their quest for another AA title began by beating Troy again, 5-3. The Flying Horses, then, finish 10-10 for the season, a marked improvement over last year.

Meanwhile, LaSalle, playing at home at Geer Field,  rallied in the 7th inning to force extra innings, then defeated Columbia in 8 innings, 5-4. The Cadets now advance to the quarter-finals to play 3rd seeded Ballston Spa on Thursday. Shen, meanwhile, will face top-seeded Christian Brothers Academy, also on Thursday. Weather permitting, of course.

We'll know later today where Troy's softball team will play their first sectional game. As for the lacrosse team? After finishing the regular season 6-10 (4-10 in the Suburban Council) following a 13-7 loss to CBA on Tuesday, there's no guarantee the Flying Horses will be in the sectionals, as the Suburban has enough teams over .500 without including Troy or CBA, but we'll see. The committees are likely meeting as I write, so the pairings will be announced later today.

Updated, 1:04 pm (ET): Troy's softball team will be on the road, drawing the #6 seed in an 8-team field in class AA. Their first round game will be at Ballston Spa on Monday. Semi-finals and finals, as in recent years, will be in Malta at the Luther Forest Complex.

Updated, 5/20, 8:10 am (ET): Troy's lacrosse team joins the softball team in Ballston Spa on May 22 for a first round game in Class B sectionals (No Class AA in lacrosse). Winner faces the winner of LaSalle at Burnt Hills later in the week.

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