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Tuckahoe Takes On Mechanicville in State Semi

TUCKAHOE, N.Y. – The unbeaten Tuckahoe boys basketball team have been thinking about Friday’s trip to upstate Glen Falls and their first chance to win a Class C state basketball title since 2010. Two seasons later and a second straight local Section 1 title in the school trophy case, the Tigers will meet Mechanicville in a 5 p.m. tipoff in a semifinal game at the Glens Falls Civic Center.

“We thought we had a team that could go further last year,” Tigers’ leading scorer Sky Williams said after winning the regional semifinal over Pine Plains. “We are more mature I think. We’re focused and have worked very hard to get this opportunity and we want to win a state title.”

The Tigers (23-0) defeated East Rockaway 72-58 last Saturday to earn a spot in the Class Final Four. A win over Mechanicville will land them in Sunday’s championship game against either Cooperstown or Middle College, the two other semifinalists

Mechanicville (18-5), a small team that relies on quickness and good shooting, stopped Seton Catholic in a 66-49 regional final victory led by 1,000-point scorer Jordan McBride. Seton Catholic boasted a 6-11 center, but the Red Raiders used a pressure defense to rush Seton (8-13).

Williams, a career 1,400-point scorer who can score inside and on the perimeter, leads the Tigers offense and gets plenty of help from Justin Nolan, a good shooter who can slash to the basket. Williams is also a good rebounder and works the boards inside with center Mark Raymond, who averages more than 10 rebounds a game.

Tuckahoe coach Al Visconti has taken the nucleus of this year’s team from a 3-15 record in 2009-2010 to a two-year run with two local Section 1 championships and another shot at a state championship.

“This team has grown so much and has the talent to beat anyone in its class,” Visconti said. “They are a team that works hard and works together on the court.”

The Tigers can match any team’s quickness and have a suffocating defense with Nixon at the top menacing opposing guards.

Tuckahoe won state football and baseball titles in the 2010-2011 season and the basketball team hoped to add another but were eliminated in the regional semifinals. The teams's core is the senior class members on this year’s Final Four squad. They  believe it's their mission to win another state title -- starting with Friday’s game with Mechanicville.

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