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Aug 8, 2017 10:40 AMPublication: The East Hampton Press & The Southampton Press

Westhampton Beach Wins SYS Summer Basketball League

Nolan Quinlan of Westhampton Beach puts up a shot. MICHELLE MALONE
Aug 8, 2017 11:11 AM

Due to what SYS director Scott Johnson called a ton of parity in this year’s annual SYS Summer Basketball League, the playoffs were expanded from four to six teams. Westhampton Beach, the top seed heading into the playoffs, wound up staying on top, defeating Greenport, the second seed, 53-40, on Monday evening to take the SYS crown.

Led by Jake Gaudiello, Nolan Quinlan and Nigel Braithwaite Jr., the Hurricanes were tough to beat this summer. They defeated William Floyd in the semifinals before taking on a scrappy Greenport team in the finals. William Floyd had defeated Southampton by a point in the quarterfinals. Riverhead defeated Mattituck in the other quarterfinal before falling to Greenport in the semis.

Greenport took an early six-point lead over Westhampton Beach a little over three minutes into Monday’s game. The Canes battled back, though, and after a putback from Braithwaite Jr., they trailed the Porters by a point with under a minute remaining. Gaudiello nearly hit a half-court shot as time expired—the ball hitting the backboard then the rim before missing the basket—allowing Greenport to cling to a 26-25 lead at halftime.

Westhampton Beach took over the game early in the second half. Jack Tiska hit a three which started a 16-0 run for the Canes that ultimately gave them a 42-30 lead, capped by a nifty behind-the-back pass on the run from Gaudiello to a trailing Tiska who laid the ball in.

Summer league basketball is a bit different from the varsity winter season. There are a pair of 20-minute halves that are only stopped on a timeout, except for the final minute of the first half, or final two minutes of the second half, when there are time stoppages for regular plays, such as the ball going out of bounds. There is no shot clock and each team has two timeouts per half.

While the summer is much more lax than the varsity season, it still remains an important part to the growth of the players.

“These kids … they came, they were dedicated, they played like a team,” Westhampton Beach varsity head coach John Baumiller said. “It’s important to work in the offseason. Now, they need a couple weeks off before they go back to school.”

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