County Teams Get Matchups for Western Mass Openers
Four Berkshire County girls teams are favored to reach the finals of their Western Mass regional tournaments next week.
And if all goes according to form, they will be playing in double-Berkshire games on Championship Saturday.
The Pioneer Valley Interscholastic Athletic Conference Friday released the final regional rankings in all four classes for boys and girls for the tourneys, which mark an end of the MIAA regular season and a precursor to the state tournaments that get underway the week of Feb. 27.
Among the 10 county boys teams that qualified for one of the eight-team regional tournaments, only Taconic grabbed one of the top two seeds. The Thunder are seeded first in Class B boys field that includes No. 3 Pittsfield, No. 4 Wahconah and No. 5 Monument Mountain.
In the girls brackets, four of the top seeds in Classes B through D belong to county schools; no Berkshire County squads are classifed in Class A.
In Class B girls, Pittsfield is the top seed, and Wahconah is seeded second.
In Class D, No. 1 Hoosac Valley No. 2 Lenox stare at one another from opposite sides of the bracket.
In all, seven Berkshire County girls teams will be competing in the tournament.
Joining the Hurricanes and Millionaires in Class D is No. 5 Mount Everett.
Class C includes No. 4 Taconic and No. 6 Drury.
Rounding out the boys in the Western Mass field.
Half the teams in Class C call Berkshire County home: No. 3 Mount Greylock, No, 4 Drury, No. 5 Lenox and No. 8 McCann Tech.
Class D's boys field includes No. 3 Hoosac Valley and No. 6 Mount Everett.
All teams that did not qualify for the regional tournament get paired up among other non-qualifiers for a pair of games to finish their 20-game schedule this week. The losers in the quarter-finals also are paired up later in the week to give them a 20th game.
The winners of the semi-finals will meet next weekend for a game that is not counted in their seeding for the MIAA state tournament; teams have until the end of the day on Thursday to play games to count toward their 20-game schedule for state tournament purposes.
All the quarter-finals are scheduled for Monday unless otherwise arranged by the competing schools.
That sets up a big Presidents Day for area basketball fans, including girls-boys double-headers at Hoosac Valley, Pittsfield, Taconic and Wahconah, where both their varsity squads earned home games in the quarters.
The day also features the first three all-Berkshire games of the basketball post-season, all on the boys side. Mount Everett goes to Hoosac Valley, Lenox goes to Drury and Monument Mountain is at Wahconah for a rubber match. The Spartans won in Great Barrington in December; Wahconah won the rematch in Dalton last month.
The semi-finals will be played at campus sites. The Western Mass finals will be played at neutral sites.