The Westhampton Beach girls basketball team is off to its best start in two years after a pair of victories last week. The Lady Hurricanes won, 39-14, at Pierson on December 4, then two days later won, 59-34, at Southold/Greenport. Both were non-league wins.
Westhampton Beach head coach Mike Polan is excited about the positive start to the season.
“I think the story this season, which is great, is that everyone is going to contribute,” he said. “Everybody needs to get their 10, eight, six points. I always thought it was harder to beat a team that had balanced scoring and I think we’ll have that this season.”
Polan said what he particularly liked in the win over Pierson is the way his team played defense. Westhampton Beach outscored the Lady Whalers 22-6 in the second half. And of the 11 players that played for the Lady Canes, 10 of them scored. Kennedy Skala led the team with 10 points, Zoe Recchion scored six, Camryn Bancroft and Shea Casey each scored five points and Maddy Sganga and Ivonne Grunseich each scored four points.
Westhampton Beach had a more competitive game with Southold/Greenport. Still, the Lady Canes had the lead for most if not all of the game. Brooke Alpert scored a game-high 16 points and Bancroft had a career-high 11 points. Grunseich and Lauren Smith each had eight points.
“What’s impressed me about this team, so far, is that at any given time during the game somebody can spark us,” Polan said. “So I have no problem going to the bench. Everyone should be able to contribute something. If someone is not getting the job done, I can just go to the bench. In years past, if someone goes down with an injury, it’s been tough to plug the hole. I don’t think that will be a problem this season, and that’s definitely a positive.”
Westhampton Beach will get its League V schedule underway this week with games against Eastport South Manor and Sayville.
“Although I’m happy we won both games, there’s still a lot of room for improvement,” Polan said. “Our league is very hard, and we have to realize that the teams that we beat are in lower leagues.
“But we’re working hard in practice,” he added. “As long as we keep focusing on one game at a time I think good things will happen.”
One game into the season, and the Westhampton Beach boys basketball team has matched its win total from a season ago. The Hurricanes won convincingly, 61-29, at Hampton Bays on Friday.
Leading the way for the Canes was newcomer Devonte Dixon, who scored a career-high 33 points. He scored 18 in the first quarter, which included four three-pointers, some from 30 feet. The Canes led, 23-8, after the first quarter.
Luke Dyer contributed with seven points and Mike Frangeskos had six.
Westhampton Beach head coach John Baumiller said the game plan was not to give Dixon the ball and have him score at will. But Dixon couldn’t be stopped.
“We’re just tying to play every game to win,” Baumiller said. “If they’re going to give [Dixon] the shots he’s going to take them. He’s capable of doing it but he’s not going to score 30 points a game. Mike and Luke are going to have to do some of the scoring too.
“Our offense is more team oriented,” he added. “But [Dixon] is a prolific offensive person.”
ON THE SCHEDULE: Girls—Friday, 12/13, vs. Sayville, 4:30 p.m.; Saturday, 12/14, vs. Mattituck, 10:45 a.m.; Monday, 12/16, vs. Southampton, 4:30 p.m.; Tuesday. 12/17, at Rocky Point, 4:30 p.m.Boys—Thursday, 12/12, at Sayville, 5:45 p.m.; Tuesday, 12/17, vs. Rocky Point, 4 p.m.