By Ted Waddell
LAKE HUNTINGTON February 11, 2005 On the way to dominating the Lady Raiders of James I. ONeill by a final score of 59-29 in Monday nights Orange County Interscholastic Athletic Association (OCIAA) Division IV basketball game, the Sullivan West Lady Bulldogs posted a shutout in the second quarter.
In those eight minutes of play, SW outscored visiting ONeill 19 to 0.
In the first period, however, it was a different story as the Lady Bulldogs were lucky to squeak out a one-point lead (10-9) against a Lady Raiders squad that seemed determined to turn the tables on the home team.
SW (11-5, 4-1 Division IV) outscored ONeill 12-6 in the third period.
The teams battled to a 14-14 tie in the final quarter as the SW substitutes saw a great deal of action.
At the final buzzer, SWs Jennifer Pitz converted a steal into a two to end the scoring.
Double-digit scorers for the Lady Bulldogs were junior forwards April Ackermann, who netted a game-high 14 points, and Kate Fanning, who registered 12 points.
Elizabeth Cannon paced ONeill (7-8, 1-3 Division IV) by scoring eight points.
Stats from the free throw line: SW was 2-of-4 (50 percent); ONeill was 2-of-15 (13 percent).
ONeill Coach Tom Mrazek described his teams season as up and down.
We have two good games and then a bad game, he said.
The girls came out anxious tonight, Mrazek said of the contest versus the Lady Bulldogs. In the first period, it was 10 to nine and then things kind of unraveled
the girls got flustered.
Mrazek praised the performances by three Lady Raiders: point guard Cannon, senior forward Marrissa Selby, whom he noted was a big rebounder, and center Katelyn Kort.
Tonight was a struggle, he added. I give Sullivan West a lot of credit for putting pressure on us
hats off to them. They played a real tight defensive game and shut us out in the second period.
SW Coach Ron Bernhardt was back at the helm in the wake of last weeks benching after an official tossed him off the court with a couple of technicals fouls during a January 28 contest.
This was a huge win for us, he said, noting that the victory over ONeill had positive ramifications in terms of the Lady Bulldogs possibly hosting a game in the upcoming Section IX Class B Tournament.
Bernhardt said the 2004-2005 season has been a roller coaster ride for the Lady Bulldogs.
Weve had some peaks and valleys, he said.
To close out the year on a winning note, Bernhardt said that he needs a 20-some day sustained stint at the summit with a team that we had to get every ounce out of to be 11 and 5 right now.
Were looking forward to meshing and having an exciting end to the season, he added.