Mohon strikes first

"Stempsey showed how good of a player he was in the first half, but I thought once we switched to a man-to-man defense in the second half, we shut him down," said Dagostino.

Barnes made 10 of his 15 free throws on his way to an 18-point night, and Couball drained a pair of three-pointers as part of a 14-point performance to lead Mohonasen.

In the other opening round game, Schalmont's defense kept Niskayuna off the scoreboard for the first four minutes, which helped the Sabres build a 7-0 lead. The Silver Warriors cut into the deficit several times, but they were unable to recover from their slow start.

"I think we caught them by surprise a bit with our full-court press early on," said Curtin.

Macejka had 13 points, and Catino contributed 12 points for Schalmont, which became the second Colonial Council team to beat a Suburban Council team this season. Watervliet knocked off Ballston Spa in the finals of the Watervliet Tournament one week earlier.

"Any time you can get a Suburban Council team on their home court, it's a very good thing," said Curtin. "I'm very happy about that."

Garrett Bush's 12 points led Niskayuna, which defeated Bethlehem 48-45 in Saturday's consolation game.

Mohonasen and Schalmont looked to carry the momentum from their Niskayuna Invitational performances into their league openers Tuesday night. Mohonasen began its Suburban Council season by playing Colonie, while Schalmont hosted Watervliet in its Colonial Council opener.

"I know Kenny's thinking the same thing I am " we want to carry over what we did in the tournament to our league seasons," said Curtin. "We don't want to go into the Kirvin Cup (Dec. 27 and 28 at Mohonasen) and have those be our only wins."

"No matter how it ends up, I believe in my heart that we will be a competitive team," said Dagostino. "It's a new identity for Mohonasen."

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