Top teams to meet this week
It’s a switch that’s made each year to ensure that the Sac-Joaquin Section is an equal opportunity athletic entity, but as boys and girls basketball programs flip-flop their play dates this week, a few Metro Conference teams are finding things not so equitable.
And that’s especially the case for Nevada Union’s varsity girls.
As the Metro girls move their game nights from Wednesday and Fridays to Tuesdays and Thursdays, Duwaine Ganskie’s Miners find themselves facing quite a challenge. Not only will NU face two of the top teams in the league this week, the Miners will do so on consecutive nights.
The four-team logjam atop the Metro girls standings is about to be broken open, as Nevada Union (11-8 overall, 4-1 Metro) travels to Yuba City (14-4, 4-1) for a 7 p.m. showdown today and then hosts Granite Bay (8-8, 4-1) on Thursday.
“Coming in late (after accepting the Nevada Union job), I didn’t see it,” Ganskie said. “I think it’s a huge challenge. When you’re in a race for the league championship, and you’re playing two of the three other contending teams … well, let’s just say that’s not what I would have designed.
“At least on the second night we’re at home. I guess the reverse of that would be worse.”
Ganskie, who left Bear River for NU, said the Pioneer Valley League makes the change each year ” allowing both boys and girls to have the opportunity of playing the same game-night schedules, including the coveted prime-time Friday night slot ” at the beginning of the week.
“They’re trying to be fair in that both the boys and girls will get six games on Wednesday and Friday, but then you have to do this middle week,” Ganskie said. “At Bear River, the girls will get five Wednesday and Friday games, while the boys will actually get seven.
“The only way around that is someone will have to play back-to-back nights. I guess Granite Bay and us got the worst of it.”
Granite Bay also will play on two consecutive nights and also will face another of the Metro’s top contenders in McClatchy (15-5, 4-1) on Wednesday.
McClatchy travels to Grant (4-14, 0-5) on Thursday, while Yuba City will have a bye after hosting the Miners.
Other key matchups this week:
Bear River at Colfax “Bear River’s Bruins (9-10, 2-3) snapped a two-game skid last week with a 69-60 win over Mesa Verde and now head over the hills to face their rival Falcons (11-9, 3-2) in a Pioneer Valley League clash at 7:30 p.m. today.
The host Falcons have won three straight, after falling on the road at Mesa Verde and at league-leading West Campus to open PVL play.
Woodland Christian at Forest Lake Christian ” FLC’s Falcons (8-9, 4-2) host the Central Valley Christian League-leading Cardinals (10-8, 6-0) in this 8 p.m. matchup Friday ” the second half of a varsity doubleheader.
The Falcons had won two straight heading into Tuesday’s trip to Victory Christian (12-6, 5-1) , while Woodland Christian fell to Capital Christian 57-45 Saturday in a non-league affair before the Cardinals’ matchup with Sacramento Lutheran (9-8, 3-3) Tuesday.
Nevada Union at Granite Bay ” The Metro Conference leaders host the Miners (8-12, 3-2) in this 7 p.m. showdown Friday. The Grizzlies (12-8, 4-1) had won four straight games since their 68-59 league-opening loss at Nevada Union on Jan. 4.
Granite Bay hosted McClatchy (9-10, 3-2) Tuesday.
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