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Soccer teams begin their quests for Sectional titles

Niskayuna doesn't get a break to start its Suburban Council season. The Silver Warriors play defending state class AA champion Shenendehowa Thursday.

"We're in the toughest division in a tough league," said Bundy. "We're in a division with Shen, Shaker and Bethlehem. We don't get many days off, but it's good because it'll get us ready for Sectionals."

Schalmont Sabres

Head coach: Chris Bailey

Key offensive players: Joe Lontrato, Fabio Urbano, Carlo Viscusi

Key defensive players: Dan Mackin, Jordan Flores

Outlook: With 13 seniors returning from last year's team, the Sabres will be one of the favorites to win the Colonial Council title.

"Barring injuries, I'm looking to finish in the top three, if not challenge for the title," said Bailey, whose team finished one point behind Voorheesville for the Colonial Council championship last year.

Schalmont won't be able to compete for the class A title like it has the last several years, though. A decline in the Rotterdam school's enrollment dropped it under the cutoff for class A this season. The Sabres will play in class B this season.

Schenectady Christian Falcons

Head coach: Chad Bowman

Key offensive players: Jake Bowman, Mike Shafts, R.J. Gallup, Matt DiBlasi

Key defensive players: Owen Henderson, Jared Kulbaco, Tyler Welsh, Jason Reed

Goaltender: John Henk

Outlook: The Falcons' bid for a Western Athletic Conference South division title took a hit last weekend when senior midfielder Matt McCarty broke a bone in his foot. McCarty, who was going to be one of Schenectady Christian's leading offensive players, will have surgery next week and is out for the season.

"We were already making adjustments, and now we're having to make more adjustments without Matt," said Bowman.

Even without McCarty, Schenectady Christian should challenge Middleburgh and Duanesburg for the South division title with a squad that features a veteran defensive unit and two talented junior strikers in Shafts and Jake Bowman.

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