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Selection Saturday: Boys top seeds unveiled; time change for Class AA final

It's Selection Saturday which means it's time to find out which teams earned No. 1 seeds for the Section VI basketball tournaments, and which teams have the easiest or hardest roads to Championship weekend games at Buffalo State and Jamestown Community College.

Not surprisingly the top seed for the boys in Class A-1 is unbeaten West Seneca West, the ECIC I champion who captured a division that features most of the area Class AA-sized schools.

Other No. 1 seeds for the boys are Niagara Falls (Class AA), Maryvale (Class A-2), Lackawanna (Class B-1), Middle Early College (Class B-2), Randolph via coin flip over Allegany-Limestone (Class C) and East (Class D).

Defending Class D champion Franklinville won a coin flip versus old friend Ellicottville to determine the No. 3 seed in its bracket. The teams split two regular-season games. Winning the coin flip means Ellicottville could potentially have to go through East, provided seeding holds, in order to reach the final March 2 at Jamestown Community College. Sherman is the No. 2 seed in that bracket.

For safety reason, the Class AA boys final on March 3 was moved from its traditional time slot of 8:30 p.m. to 3:30 p.m. The top two seeds in Class AA are Falls and Lockport. The two Niagara Frontier League rivals have been playing afternoon games against each other since early 2017 because fans from both schools got into a violent postgame brawl in Lockport -- a melee that began in the gym and carried out into the school parking lot.  After police seemingly ended the fight, a carry over incident in which someone -- according to a Niagara Gazette story -- reportedly fired guns shots occurred at a nearby gas station.

The time shift means the Class A-2 and A-1 finals will serve as the two games during the evening session of Championship Saturday at Buffalo State. The gym will be cleared out after the Class AA final.

Coin flips also determined the site of the No. 4 Jamestown versus No. 5 Clarence in a Class AA quarterfinal. The coin also broke a three-way tie in Class B-1 with Medina earning a No. 3 seed, Newfane a No. 4 seed and MST/Seneca the fifth seed.

Other items of note:

-- It's an even year, which means Olean drops from Class A-2 to B-1 as has been the recent trend. Olean (19-1) is a No. 2 seed in B-1 but the last time it was in Class B, it won the state title in 2016. The Huskies were in Class A-2 last year.

-- The top two seeds in Class B-2 are Yale Cup Division championships MIddle College (Yale Cup I) and Olmsted (Yale Cup II).

-- Defending Class AA champion Niagara Falls is a top seed after winning as a No. 5 last year. Defending Class A (and A-1) champion North Tonawanda drew a No. 4 seed. Amherst, last year's A-2 champion is a No. 6 seed. Class B state semifinalist Health Sciences is a No. 4 seed in B-2. Last year's B-1 champion, East Aurora, is now in Class A-2.

-- Class C is one bracket this year instead of two. Defending Class C champion Chautauqua Lake is a No. 4 seed. Last year's C-2 champion Randolph is the top seed.

-- Barker, Falconer and Catt./Little Valley -- all Class C schools -- opted out of the playoff tournament.

Section VI boys basketball tournament schedule

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