Schools of Thought: Teams back in routine

With the holidays behind me, I’m ready to get back into the regular routine. Between holidays and extra days off and non-league holiday tournaments, I had a hard time the last two weeks remembering what day of the week it was.

Not anymore.

Today’s Monday and as we move into the new year, we move into the teeth of the winter sports season. With the exception of a few days at the end of this month for Regents exams, there are few breaks as the basketball season accelerates and heads toward the sectional tournament in February.

So far, there have been few surprises on the court.

The Fort Plain Lady Hilltoppers, the Western Athletic Conference North co-champions last year are in command of the division once again and are undefeated, heading into Wednesday’s game against Mayfield.

The Canajoharie Cougars, who were co-champions with the Fort Plain boys team in the WAC North last year are again at the top of the division. However, the Hilltoppers own a win over Canajoharie, but Fort Plain has been plagued by inconsistency of late.

Immediately before the holidays, they were decimated by Saratoga Central Catholic and they were edged by St. Johnsville in overtime Friday as coach Casey Russom looks to right the ship.

The Northville Falcons have been making a little noise of late, sneaking in four straight victories, gaining some momentum for the remainder of their WAC North schedule. The Falcons sit two games behind first-place Canajoharie.

Closer to home, I’m a bit surprised the Johnstown Lady Bills have not won a game in the Foothills Council yet. They just finished a stretch of 2 1/2 weeks between games and came out swinging Friday, putting up a 65-24 win over Notre Dame-Bishop Gibbons Friday.

That’s a lot of scoring for one game, but whether it’s a testament to Johnstown’s long stretch of practices or an indictment on the quality of Bishop Gibbons’ program remains to be seen. We might get an indication tonight as the Lady Bills get on the bus and call on the Broadalbin-Perth Lady Patriots, who are coming off three straight wins between their holiday tournament and Friday’s non-league game.

That should be an interesting matchup of local teams, as both are looking for their first league win.

Tuesday’s boys game between these same two schools should be just as interesting as the Sir Bills are seeking their first win. Johnstown is showing promise, but hasn’t been able to put it together quite yet for a Foothills win.

Meanwhile, the Gloversville Dragons are 2-2 and hanging out in the middle of the league standings.

There is still a lot of basketball to be played over the next six weeks before the leagues break up for the five sectional tournaments. What happens during that time could go a long way to determining how long some of the local teams will hang around in the postseason.

So, it’ll be busy for the next six weeks, but at least I won’t be caught off guard when I’m told what day it is.

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