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ON CAMPUS A look at the area college sports scene

Thursday, March 1, 2007

A look at the CIAC boys' tournament

After a week of action my picks in the girls’ basketball tournament are faring very well. So here’s a look at the boys' brackets and I fully expect not to do as well here. This tournament, although not typically loaded with upsets, is very balanced. Even the top teams in the state could be knocked out.
Class LL
You’ve got to love some of the potential matchups here. Trinity Catholic could meet Harding in the quarterfinals and Hillhouse could face Crosby-Watertown on the same night. Is there anyway to see both games?
I doubt it.

If you have to pick a game that night, assuming they all make it that far, you’d have to see the Hillhouse-Crosby game with the Acs’ Mike Moore matching game with the Bulldogs’ B.J. Montiero, clearly two of the best players in the state.
Cross your fingers that these two face off and get your tickets early.
Crosby fans come out in droves to see their team. Overall I’m picking Hillhouse to meet Trinity in the finals with the Acs repeating as state champs.
Their defense is awesome and should be the difference. Hillhouse must be consistent offensively throughout the tourney to defend its title.
But again, this bracket features no less than eight teams that could realistically win it all: Trinity, Harding, East Catholic, Holy Cross, NFA, Wilbur Cross, Hillhouse and Crosby. You can’t say that in any other tournament in this state.
Class L
Maloney-Meriden is the top-heavy choice. I only wish the Spartans were in the Class LL fray. Still, they will be challenged by the likes of Bulkeley, Farmington, Weaver and a red-hot Bassick-Bridgeport team.
But Maloney is the most athletic team in the state and if they get any type of consistent offensive game they won’t lose. It would be Howie Hewitt’s first state title and he’s had several contenders.
Class M
One really has to question why Kolbe Cathedral did not petition to play in a higher division. Kolbe is undefeated and has been relatively untested much of the season.
They are very good but most people will never know how good they because fans will skip their tourney games to see the Class LL affairs.
If John Pfohl knew how good his team was going to be he may have made the jump to the Class LL.
Last year I said that the CIAC should change its tournament format and it did.
One detail the CIAC left out of my suggestion was to give schools until the beginning of the new year to decide if they wanted to petition to play in the Class LL.
Maybe Kolbe would made the leap and maybe it wouldn’t, but at least it would have had the choice. That being said, like Maloney, I wouldn’t vote Kolbe No. 1 in the final poll for winning the Class M state title.
Nothing against either of these schools but it won’t get anything near the test of the Class LL winner. Still, Kolbe has to watch out for teams like Sacred Heart, Weston, Old Saybrook, to claim the title. And its first game against Hartford Public will be a test.
One it’ll pass it with flying colors I expect.
Class S
Only 21 teams qualified for these brackets and many are true longshots.
Coginchaug has been strong during the season and should be the favorite to win this tournament dominated by CSC and Shoreline Conference teams.
Watch out for Jeff Robinson and Granby to advance.
Cromwell is also strong and Canton has been receiving plenty of accolades. I’ll go with Canton here but excuse me if I miss the final. I’ll be heading to Storrs for the big one. You can find the brackets here: http://www.casciac.org/ciacsports.shtml

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