What: New York State Public High School Athletic Association Final Four
When: 11:45 a.m. Friday at Hudson Valley Community College, Troy
Records: Franklinville 19-5; Notre Dame Bishop Gibbons 15-8
Rankings: Franklinville is ranked No. 3 in the New York State Sportswriters’ poll. Notre Dame is ranked No. 4.
How they got here: Franklinville again defeated Section V Elba in the Far West Regionals by leaning on one of the top scorers in Secion VI, junior Danielle Haskell. Haskell scored 33 of Franklinville’s 49 points and only one other player on either side had more than 10 points. The Panthers rolled through their first two opponents in the Class D playoffs before edging Panama 54-53 in the finals as Haskell and junior Abby McCoy combined for all but 10 of their points.
Notre Dame received a bye into the regional round and defeated seventh seeded Westport Central 49-24. The Golden Knights defeated North Warren 39-36 to claim their first Class D sectional title in 30 years.
Franklinville key players: Jr. Danielle Haskell, 5-7 (26.7 ppg, 4.6 apg, 5.6 rpg, 4.8 spg); Jr. Abby McCoy, 5-7 (15.2 ppg, 4.7 rpg, 3.6 spg); Jr. Abby Burrell, 5-5 (6.0 ppg, 8.7 rpg, 1.8 spg)
Notre Dame Bishop Gibbons key players: Jr. Ava Megyeri, 5-7, (12.5 ppg), Sr. Abigail Kienzle, 5-4, (11.5 ppg), Sr. Jailene Santiago, 5-6, (5.3 ppg)
Scouting report: Haskell, a junior who has scored more than 2,000 career points, does so much for the Panthers, but she gets plenty of help from McCoy, Burrell and others. Franklinville fell behind Elba in the first quarter before switching to a zone defense and forcing the Lancers to settle for jump shots. Haskell outscored Elba by herself. She handles the ball well and can get to the basket or shoot from the perimeter.
Notre Dame was 6-7 after beginning the season with four straight wins. The Golden Knights hasn't finished a season with a winning percentage above .500 for more than a decade, but will do so this year. Senior Kienzle and junior Megyeri are the leaders but watch out for senior Jailene Santiago, who shoots well from the outside. She made six 3-pointers in a win over Oppenheim-Ephratah-St. Johnsville earlier this year. Kienzle also can shoot from the perimeter. The Golden Knights have played superb defense in the playoffs, using a variety of looks to hold Westport to 24 points and North Warren to 36. Notre Dame also has excellent depth and will use nine or 10 players.
Next: The winner will advance to the championship game at 4 p.m. Saturday against either X-Edwards-Knox or IV-South Kortright Central.