By Ted Waddell
LOCH SHELDRAKE March 20, 2007 The Lady Generals of Sullivan County Community College (SCCC) began the 2006-2007 basketball season like a house afire, posting a 6-0 record.
But as the year moved along, the level of competition heated up and SCCC wrapped up the year with a 12-11 record. In their last game of the season, the Lady Generals lost by six points to the Nassau Community College Lady Lions on February 27 in the opening round of the National Junior College Athletic Association (NJCAA) Region XV Women’s Basketball Tournament.
SCCC was seeded fifth in the tourney, the highest seeding in a postseason competition for the women’s team in school history.
During the regular season, SCCC split with Nassau CC. In the team’s first meeting, which was on December 16 at Paul Gerry Fieldhouse on the SCCC campus, the Lady Generals defeated the Lady Lions, 65-59. But the Lady Lions prevailed by three points when the teams met in February at Nassau CC.
“The teams were obviously very well-matched,” said Coach Paul C. Clune, who is in his third year of leading the Lady Generals.
Clune has been coaching basketball for about 20 years, and of his transition from men’s hoops to women’s basketball, he said, “You can tell guys to run through a wall, and they’ll try to do it, but [with] girls [we] talk a little more about what we want to accomplish, our goals and how we want to get there.”
He said that going into the season, the team veterans had a pretty clear idea of “what we wanted to run, so we were a step ahead.”
“They were a great bunch, they really liked each other and we had great chemistry,” Clune said. “It was a great season.”
Seven of the 13 players on the Lady Generals’ roster, about 58 percent, were graduates of Sullivan County high schools.
A handful of players are schedule to return next year, so for Clune it’s off on the recruiting trail.
“Now it comes down to recruiting,” he said. “That’s the name of the game.”
Clune said that he plans to build the 2007-2008 Lady Generals around the nucleus of Victoria Carter and LaShaun Malcolm.
Assisting Clune with the coaching duties for the recently completed 2006-2007 season were Steve Nash, a former SCCC student, and Carl Graham, a coach at Liberty High School.
The 2006-2007 Lady Generals included:
• Lamorne Chang freshman forward, 5-foot-6, Liberty High School “It took her a while to transition from high school basketball to play at the college level… she did a great job for us… a role player for us this year… came in with good fundamentals.”
• Maria Jeltsch freshman guard, 5-3, Tri-Valley “Started with us, but hurt her arm and couldn’t continue… we hope to have her back next year.”
• Victoria Carter freshman forward, 5-5, Monticello “The kids who come out of the Monticello program play hard, the coach [Karen Atack] gets on them pretty good in practice and she knows the game… Vicky was used to playing guard at Monticello, but we needed her in towards the basket because we already had two all-league guards… she did a great job.”
• Nikki Dean freshman guard, 5-4, Tri-Valley “I’m really proud of Nikki Dean… she’s had back problems, she’s hurting, and didn’t play last year because of it… tried out this year and got through the first semester, but the doctor told her not to continue… she’s the daughter of a coach, so she’s head and shoulders above some of the players when it comes to understanding the game.”
• LaShaun Malcolm freshman guard, 5-4, Mount Vernon “A two-guard, one on the top scorers in the nation… finished second in the region in scoring… left-handed, so she’s deceptive at the point guard position.”
• Pamela Graddick sophomore guard, 5-9, Walton “Played for us two years ago… left school for eye surgery, and came back this fall… she did a great job at point guard… got some votes for All-Conference honorable mention… one of the top scorers in the conference.”
• Sharon Darling sophomore forward, 5-10, Sheepshead Bay “Sharon was a true center for us… came a long way… limited scoring ability, but worked hard in practice and developed some moves around the basket… a good rebounder and excellent defender.”
• Lauren Wheeler sophomore guard, 5-8, Seward Park “Sat out the first semester, came back in the second semester… played some point guard for us… very good ball handler and shooter.”
• Shauna Murry sophomore guard, 5-8, Tri-Valley “First Team All-Region XV and nominated for All-American honors… one of the league’s top scorers and rebounders… I’ve been coaching over 20 years now, and she’s probably one of the top five players that I’ve ever coached, guy or girl, that got the most enjoyment out of playing… practiced hard and just loves to play.”
• Jessica Lake sophomore forward, 6-1, Tri-Valley “Played last two years, and was on the roster this year… tried to get a medical redshirt because she hurt her knee last year, but it didn’t work out… didn’t play any games [this season], but was always part of the team.”
• Lisa DeStefano sophomore guard, 5-7, Liberty “Played the second semester this year… Lisa is a very strong defender and a very good complimentary player… at Liberty she was asked to do a little more scoring, but in our program she realized she didn’t have to score to be effective… a good, smart defensive player.”
• Hannah Coen sophomore forward, 5-9, Calasanctius College, Ireland “named Second Team All-Region XV… Probably our most versatile player… good at taking the ball out of bounds after the basket in a pressing situation… we had an offense play set up just for her.”
A review of the season,
The Lady Generals’ individual stats for this season, which were compiled by Assistant Coach Steve Nash, are as follows:
• Shauna Murry 462 points, 283 rebounds, 90 assists, 561 steals, 31 blocked shots.
• Hannah Coen 399 points, 372 rebounds, 133 assists, 59 steals, 50 blocked shots.
• Pamela Graddick 348 points, 162 rebounds, 130 assists, 72 steals, 26 blocked shots.
• LaShaun Malcolm 205 points, 75 rebounds, 35 assists, 28 steals, one blocked shot.
• Sharon Darling 129 points, 216 rebounds, 24 assists, 25 steals, 121 blocked shots.
• Victoria Carter 90 points, 854 rebounds, 18 assists, 11 steals, five blocked shots.
• Lauren Wheeler 56 points, 55 rebounds, 55 assists, 28 steals, four blocked shots.
• Lisa DeStefano 38 points, 60 rebounds, 18 assists, 15 steals, two blocked shots.
• Lamorne Chang 20 points, 256 rebounds, four assists, five steals, one blocked shot.
• Jessica Carrillo three points, 10 rebounds, two assists, two steals.
• Nikki Dean one point, nine rebounds, 14 assists, five steals, three blocked shots.