The Eastport South Manor duo of sophomore Samantha Giacolone and junior Kristen Anderson proved to be too much to handle for the Westhampton Beach girls basketball team, as the Lady Sharks defeated the Lady Hurricanes, 49-24, in Westhampton Beach last Thursday, January 3.
ESM got out to an 8-4 lead after the first quarter and widened the gap with a 15-4 second quarter. The Lady Sharks used the size of Anderson, who stood six inches taller than any Westhampton Beach player on the court, to their advantage. And when the Lady Hurricanes would double team—sometimes even triple-team—Anderson, she would kick the ball out to Giacolone, who would sink a three pointer.
Anderson finished with 14 points and 12 rebounds, while Giacolone made five three’s—three of them in the second quarter—on her way to 19 points and seven assists.
“You have to take advantage of what you could get,” ESM head coach Steve Giacolone said. “Using Kristen’s height is something we need to establish. And Kristen knows if the double teams are coming, and she can’t get to the basket, she can kick it out. Fortunately, the ball found its way into Sam’s hands.”
Westhampton Beach head coach Mike Polan said his team just couldn’t match up with ESM’s size. He tried a 2-3 defense and a 1-3-1 defense and neither really had any effect. On the offensive side of the ball, the Lady Canes (1-3 League V, 2-8 overall) missed open shots and opportunities, especially early on in the game.
“They played a match-up zone against us and we had trouble making shots,” Polan said. “It was a tough loss for us. I thought going in we had a good shot at beating them. But Steve has been coaching for years, and I told my kids ahead of time, he has his kids play defense. They play a good solid defense, and when you shoot 30 percent or lower from the field, it puts a lot of pressure on us.”
Westhampton Beach senior Sammie Vickers, junior Brooke Alpert and sophomore Kathleen Mensch all scored six points each. Alpert, who missed some games earlier this season due to a wrist injury, may have suffered a concussion after hitting the floor hard. Polan was unsure how much time Alpert would miss. Alpert and Vickers were supposed to create a very quick backcourt for the Lady Canes this season, but multiple injuries to Alpert has kept any type of rhythm between the players from happening.ON THE SCHEDULE: ESM—Thursday, 1/10, at Islip, 4 p.m.; Tuesday, 1/15, vs. Kings Park, 6 p.m.; Thursday, 1/17, vs. Rocky Point, 5:45 p.m. Westhampton Beach—Friday, 1/11, at Sayville, 4:30 p.m. Tuesday, 1/15, vs. Islip, 5:45 p.m.; Thursday, 1/17, vs. Kings Park, 6 p.m.