By John D'Onofrio
Lockport Union-Sun & Journal
Fill the tank, check the oil and as the great Van Miller used to say, “Fasten your seat belts” Lockport fans for Saturday afternoon’s two-hour drive to the 2012 New York State Public High School Athletic Association girls basketball Class AA Far West Regional in Canandaigua.
Finger Lakes Community College is hosting Saturday’s 2:15 p.m. contest between the Section VI champion Lockport and Section V’s large school champion, undefeated Penfield.
Head coach Bill Shaw’s Lady Lions (17-3) out-lasted Lancaster, 57-54, in Tuesday’s Section VI Class AA final at Niagara County Community College, earning their fourth Section VI Class championship in the past nine years.
Last Thursday, Penfield (22-0) defeated Gates Chili, 63-52, for the Section V Class AAA basketball crown. On Monday, head coach Mark Vogt’s Lady Patriots beat V’s AA champion, Greece Athena, to advance to the Far West Regionals. They last won a Section V class title in 2009.
Finger Lakes CC is hosting Far West Regional contests for a total of five girls basketball classes this weekend.
At 6 p.m. Friday, VI-Randolph takes on V-Perry in Class C, then at 8 p.m., VI-Olean meets V-Aquinas in Class B.
Lockport-Penfield is one of three class FWRs at Finger Lakes CC on Saturday. The day opens at noon with VI-Grand Island taking on V-East in Class A. Lockport-Penfield (AA) follows at 2:15, then VI-Clymer meets V-Elba at 4:30 p.m. in Class D.
The winner of all the class FWR games will advance to the state’s prestigious “Final Four” March 16-18 at Hudson Valley Community College in Troy, where the 2011-12 girls hoops state public high school class champions will be crowned.
• Directions to the game
Here’s directions to Saturday’s girls basketball state Class AA Far West Regional between Lockport and Penfield at Finger Lakes Community College:
• Pick up the Thruway (East 90) via Route 77, 78 or 98 (there is a toll).
• Get off Thruway at Exit 44 (South 332)
• Turn left at US-20 (East)
• Watch for signs. FLCC is on the right.
Thruway tolls (one way)
• $3.30 — Depew (Rt. 78) to Exit 44 (South 332)
• $2.60 — Pembroke (Rt. 77) to Exit 44 (South 332)
• $2.05 — Batavia (Rt. 98) to Exit 44 (South 332)