Saturday, January 13, 2018

Sports this 'n' that

He's just a junior, with a state football championship under his belt in 2016, but Glens Falls' Joseph Girard III is Section II's new all-time leading scorer, as of Thursday night.

It's a clear case of Glens Falls building its offense around the high scoring phenom, who averages nearly 50 points a night. He broke the sectional scoring record vs. Schuylerville. He'd earlier broken the school record, held by former NBA star Jimmer Fredette, who's now playing overseas because the NBA didn't really respect his talents. By the time Girard graduates in 2019, the scoring record could be well out of reach, considering that some kids don't play through their senior seasons in high school, opting to move to prep schools to improve their stock for college and/or the pros. Here's to hoping that when Girard chooses a college, he'll stick close to home and go to either Siena or UAlbany.
Add Siena. The Saints said good-bye to Nico Clareth earlier this week, prior to Thursday's loss to Iona. Clareth will finish the school year at Siena, then transfer to another school, likely to be closer to his family. Something tells me there's more to this than anyone's letting on. Just sayin'.
Ever since entering the Suburban Council, there've been some elite schools in the league that Troy High hasn't beaten, either in men's or women's basketball. The Troy men broke their hex vs. Guilderland Tuesday night, but then dropped a 91-87 overtime thriller on the road to Saratoga Friday night. Greg Davis' Flying Horses are now 6-4 overall (6-3 in league play), and will return home to play Ballston Spa on Tuesday before a 2-game road trip next weekend at Burnt Hills & Kingston. With CBA running away and hiding in the Grey division, it's all Troy can do to keep pace.

Meanwhile, back at home, the Lady Horses were blown out of the gym by Saratoga. Troy was playing its 3rd game in 5 days, and 5th in 10, coming out of the holiday break. Paul Bearup's senior-less squad falls to 3-9 overall, and will face 3 games in 4 days next week before a break for mid-term exams. The girls travel to Niskayuna on Tuesday, then will finally play Shaker on Thursday, before coming home to play hapless Burnt Hills next Friday night, and that could be the only winnable game left on the schedule for the Lady Horses.
You've heard, I'm sure, about WWE's Mixed Match Challenge, launching on Facebook Watch on Tuesday night. Here's the field and schedule:

Week 1: Finn Balor & Sasha Banks vs. Shinsuke Nakamura & Natalya.
Week 2: The Miz & Asuka vs. Big E & Carmella.
The winners meet in Week 7 (February 27).

Week 3: Braun Strowman & Alexa Bliss vs. Sami Zayn & Becky Lynch.
Week 4: Goldust & Alicia Fox vs. Jimmy Uso & Naomi.
The winners meet in Week 8 (March 6).

Week 5: Elias & Bayley vs. Rusev & Lana.
Week 6: Apollo Crews & Nia Jax vs. Charlotte Flair & Bobby Roode.
The winners meet in Week 9 (March 13).

I think the idea would be to keep the matchups as Raw vs. Smackdown through the semi-finals and maybe even the finals. Each team is competing for charities that have been associated with WWE (i.e. Make-a-Wish, Special Olympics). Some of the first round matches are easier to figure than others, but trying to out-think Vince McMahon's Uncreative team isn't that easy.
The NFL playoffs have reached the Divisional Round. Both of the #1 seeds (Philadelphia & New England) play today, which goes against tradition. The largest odds on the board are for New England, a 13 1/2 point home favorite vs. Tennessee, and that's because the idiot oddsmakers don't think the Titans can keep up with the league's biggest diva, Tom Brady, and the Patriot offense. I still think Crybaby needs to balance things out and let the running game take control for a night. Local viewers will be tuning in to see Albany Academy graduate Dion Lewis, who's been a star for the Patriots this season, but overshadowed by Brady and his ego, as well as party boy TE Rob Gronkowski, who's the biggest cheater on offense since Michael Irvin, as both get away with offensive pass interference a majority of the time. "Playfaker" Irvin's in the Hall of Fame, and Gronk's likely to join him a few years from now.

How I see it this weekend:

Philadelphia, a 3 point home underdog, reasserts itself and ends Atlanta's hope of repeating at NFC champ.

New England over Tennessee, but not by 2 touchdowns.
Pittsburgh over Jacksonville.
New Orleans over Minnesota.

Of course, I could be wrong.

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