By Andrew Rudansky
Still riding high from their 51-24 victory over the visiting Port Jefferson Royals on December 10, the Pierson Lady Whalers varsity basketball team was brought back down to earth after finding themselves on the business end of a 54-18 beating at home by the Westhampton Lady Hurricanes on Saturday, December 17.
The Lady Whalers were stunned in the first quarter when they were outscored 26-0 by a Westhampton squad led by forward Kristen Polan. Polan scored nine of her game-high 13 points in the first.
For most of the first half the Hurricanes blew right through the Lady Whalers’ zone defense, and on the other side of the ball created turnovers and blocked shots that stifled the Whalers offense.
The Pierson squad, now with a record of 1-4, was without long-time head coach Dennis Case, who missed the game due to personal reasons. Replacing him as skipper for the game was assistant coach Kevin Barron. This game was Barron’s first time as head coach of the Lady Whalers.
While admitting that few things went right in the first half, Barron said there was a lot to like about the Lady Whalers in the game.
“They played a lot better in the second half,” said Barron. “And when we switched out of zone, I thought that our man-to-man defense showed a lot of promise.”
Bridget Canavan led the Lady Whalers with six points, while Emily Hinz, Katherine Matthers, Rachel Saidman and Abby Ruiz also contributed to the team’s offensive output.
“So I told them just now that that is a victory in our book,” said Barron, “I gave them a goal, hold them under 55, we held them to 54.”
The Lady Whalers traveled to McGann-Mercy yesterday to take on the Monarchs in another non-league matchup; however that game was not over as of press time.
After the winter break the girls will have another test when they head across the ferry to take on Kelsey McGayhey and the Shelter Island Lady Indians (1-2) on Tuesday, January 3 at 5:45 p.m.