Who will Step Up Tonight and Help their Team Advance to the Semifinals?
SYOSSET: Quarterfinals Predictions
By Anthony Leo | Syosset League Coordinator
Ballerz vs Dream Team
We kickoff the playoffs with the Ballerz taking on the Dream Team in the battle of the 4v5 matchup. We start with the Dream Team who finished the regular season with a 4-4 record. The Dream Team’s strength all season long was rebounding and scoring in the paint. They beat teams off of second chance points with Chris Albano and Antonio Q dominating the boards to control games. Albano is the team leader averaging 20 points and 16 rebounds per game.
The Ballerz led by team captain Mike Seff didn’t have the regular season record that many envisioned them having. They finished with a 3-5 record, but their roster doesn’t show a 3-5 team. Top to bottom they are one of the most complete teams that just hasn’t put it all together. Their strength this season has been team defense. With Zeb Pirzada guarding opposing teams best wing player and Cedric Wallace blocking shots they have been a lockdown team.
The Ballerz and Dream never got the chance to faceoff in the regular season so this will be the first time they play each other. There are a lot of one on one matchups in this game to watch, but the most important matchup is Chris Albano and Cedric Wallace. Wallace wont out score Albano in this game but it will Wallace’s job to keep Albano from rebounding the ball and controlling the game. If Wallace can control Albano and keep him under his season average of 16 rebounds per game and take away the offensive rebounds he normally pulls down it will make a huge difference.
On the perimeter, Zeb Pirzada or Mike Seff has to chase around Mike Venuti all night long. If Venuti gets hot it changes the game and opens the floor. In the end I think this game comes down to the final few minutes and the team who gets a big stop or hits a big shot will win this game.
Hooligans vs Shooting Stars
In the second game of the night we have the Hooligans taking on the Shooting Stars. These teams faced off twice during the regular season splitting the season series. In their first matchup the Hooligans had a blowout victory over the Shooting Stars. In their second matchup the Shooting Stars bounced back with a 59-53 win.
In the second half of the season the Shooting Stars went 2-2 after starting off the season 0-3. They started to play a lot better as a team and once Justin Dattolo got back on the court the offense totally changed. The Hooligans and Shooting Stars actually matchup very well on paper which should make for a great game.
The Hooligans have all the playoff experience and championship pedigree with Jay Harris leading the way. The Hooligans no matter the roster is always ready to go in the playoffs with different defenses and styles to get teams frustrated. If the Hooligans come out not playing a normal man to man or normal 2-3 zone don’t be surprised. The Shooting Stars should get prepared to see defenses they haven’t seen yet this season.
For the Shooting Stars, they need Alain Wehder and Justin Dattolo to be aggressive from the start. If they are passive looking to get others going they could go down early in this game. Wehder is the second leading scorer in the league and he needs to play like it. If he attacks the basket and Dattolo knocks down open 3s it will be a totally different game. The Hooligans will try and slow this game down and take some chances in transition when Stephen Sombrotto can rebound and run. Sombrotto is the Swiss army knife of the Hooligans who can do it all. We’ll see who can win this rubber match and move onto the semifinals.