Meiss, who scouted last Saturday’s game at O-State, said she was impressed with the Purple Devils as a whole.
“They are very well-coached, well-disciplined and athletic,” she said. “We know they want it just as much as we do. It’s going to be competitive game.”
One of the key matchups should involve centers Marisa Cawley of Franklin and Oriskany’s Christina Graziadei. A 5-foot-10 junior who averages 13.9 points, Cawley will have to adjust to the rarity of being the second-tallest player on the court. That’s because Graziadei is a 6-1 senior who also holds a program record — with 1,298 varsity points — and she’s coming off a monster game.
“She kind of took the team on her back at the (Carrier) Dome there,” Meiss said of Graziadei, who upped her season scoring average to a team-best 16.5 points after finishing the Section Three final with a varsity-best 31 points. “That’s not normal for us. At different points in the season, we’ve had three or four different high scorers. Christina plays consistently well, but that wasn’t a typical performance. I’m very happy that happened in that game, though.”
Said Dutcher: “We’ve had a chance to see (Graziadei) on tape and she’s a good player. She’s got a couple nice moves around the basket and she can step out and hit the three. I think she’s a player we can defend and Marisa’s a big key.
“It’s going to be a challenge,” he continued. “We kind of have to go back a little bit to how we played the Pochkar girl (Worcester’s Karli Pochkar) in the Tri-Valley League championship last year. She was probably the best girl in the league. Marisa’s going to be fine, as long as she plays straight up and it’s not just her.”