The St. Rose supporters think there SEEDING was wrong before the SCT started. They say they were just 8 seconds away from being the #1 seed. How could they drop to #5? Conveniently forgetting to mention that RBC lost to Manasquan at the buzzer. The RBC faithful feel the#1 seed was taken from them by a brutal call at the end of there game against Manasquan. Conveniently forgetting that SJV had them beat on there home court, until SJV forgot how to make layups. Manasquan thinks they are the clear favorites, conveniently forgetting that they could easily have lost 3 games in the conference , if not for miraculous shots and good fortune. They fail to mention that they never played SJV who just may be the best team these days. Each team supporters are doing something called spinning. But the good news is all the spinning for blackboard material use and silly us against the world motivation stuff, means nothing..BECAUSE SCT IS DECIDED ON THE COURT.
There were no big shots yesterday. They were no defining plays yesterday or moments. There were no great coaching move or decisions. There were no bad calls to decide the outcome. Most of all there were no surprises. We are right back to where we started the season. The Top four ranked teams to start the season are all in the semi finals. Nothing has changed since December 1st. The four teams everyone expected to play for the SCT will do just that. Each advanced with little fanfare. Manasquan defeated a game Middletown South team. St. Rose defeated one of the real surprise teams of the year RFH in convincing style. RBC ended TRN’S Shore season in grand fashion . Then finally SJV sent NEPTUNE home in a spirited game. They was nothing shocking about the results. What was shocking yesterday was that quietly, we witnessed two of the best preformances in all my years covering the SCT.
TORI HYDUKE at times has been brilliant. This season she has been at times spectacular. Dave Callahan will no question be a finalist for Coach of The Year. Hannah Scanlan will be a finalist for Player of The Year. Both will have TORI HYDUKE to thank if they win either award. It has been Hyduke who has gotten the ball to Scanlan all year in the right spot, time after time, all season. It has been TORI HYDUKE that has elevated the guard play at RFH single handily this season. Allowing Dave Callahan to make a smooth transition as the new coach at RFH. BUT YESTERDAY HYDUKE TOOK IT TO LEVELS…NOBODY COULD BELIEVE.
When ST. ROSE jumped out to a 10-0 lead yesterday, most believed RFH was sleep walking. They may have been right and too boot, there STAR center Hannah Scanlan was sick. It appeared RFH was in real trouble, that was until TORI HYDUKE showed what many predicted years ago. She could be the best pure point guard in the state. Yesterday she was just that. We have seen some great preformances in the SCT, but nothing like yesterday. It was TORI Hyduke who kept RFH from getting blown out early yesterday. She had 14 points in the first quarter. But it was how she got them that was so shocking and next level.
Hyduke showed in the first quarter every aspect of an elite guard. We are talking Power five type stuff folks. She drove the lane against the long and athletic St. Rose post players for twisting layups while getting knocked to the floor. She displayed a sweet three point shooting touch and mid range game. They reminded us the the bank was open for business and busneiss was good for TORI HYDUKE. She made high off the backboard shots, the kind you need at the highest level of basketball. She made spinning bank shots from every conceivable angle. She tortured the talented ST. ROSE guards.
in the 2nd half it was much of the same for Hyduke. But what made her 2nd half preformance even better, was this! Her HEART and competitive nature. Coach Whalen ran everything and the Kitchen sink at TORI HYDUKE . I believe even the managers were asked to be ready to be subbed in to guard her. They were the lucky ones, who did not get that call. Because Hyduke was a total one women wrecking machine. She was a total assassin in the final 16 mintunes. When St. Rose tried to close the door by going up 19 points, it was Hyduke’s sheer will that prevented it. She dove for lost balls, she ran down long rebounds. She even found time to turn into the Cookie Monster and took the St. Rose guards to “COOKIE TOWN” stripping them off the dribble, for easy layups.. She would not allow her team to quit. Some of the dimes, she dropped where out a mix tape. The crowd buzzed with some of her jaw dropping antics. She was truly special and she did this totally exhausted, her only break coming, when she was hit in the stomach and couldn’t walk. She tried to jog to half court but simply collapsed. She returned 15 seconds later. I have never seen a player in this tournament hit the floor so much and bounce up. I have also NEVER SEEN A PREFORMANCE IN THE SCT LIKE THIS…EVER! St. Rose won the game but TORI HUYDUKE stole the show. She also locked down a 1st TEAM ALL SHORE SPOT AS WELL…I’m also starting to believe Miss HYDUKE can play anywhere in the country
Most expected SJV to roll over NEPTUNE yesterday. SJV is playing as well as anyone these days. There babies are no longer crawling, their running. They are no longer learning the KARPELL system, they are the system. So when the ball went up yesterday the gym was mostly empty. Too bad for those that left, because DEZZY ALLEN did to SJV what she does to everyone, she dominated them all afternoon. SJV had no answers for DEZZY ALLEN, the same way RBC didn’t last year, or TRN, this year. SJV found out DEZZY ALLEN is something we have never seen before.
Yesterday DEZZY ALLEN left the Shore a parting gift with 29 electrifying points. She did so as at times 4 and 5 players trying to stop in transition. Dawn Karpell and her army chased Allen all night to no avail. The more players, she put in ALLEN’s way, the more, she destroyed them. DEZZY Allen spent most of the day in space. She ripped down rebounds and went coast to coast all afternoon. SJV knew she was coming and they saw her coming…and like everyone else before them….they could not stop her. They could not stop the slicing and dicing of ALLEN all afternoon. They tired over and over to step in front of her for charges, they even got a few mystery calls. But it could not slow ALLEN down. She was unstoppable all afternoon. When SJV did get DEZZY ALLEN in the half court, she abused the SJV young studs and got to the foul line. She went to the perimeter, she beat the SJV forwards and guards off the bounce. There was parent in the stands yelling she “can’t go right, make her go right” I chuckled and thought to myself. He doesn’t think we’ve all being saying that for four years. The best coaches in the state have being trying to make her do that for 4 years. Nobody has ever been successful and yesterday was the Shore Conference’s final chance.
I was reminded by a college coach yesterday of something pretty funny. When DEZZY ALLEN was a freshman, she was the team designated shooter. It was she against TOC champ Manasquan who came off the bench to stretch the defense, in the SCT as a baby. DEZZY ALLEN is now a grown women against girls on most nights. There were some who doubted her throughout her career, in fact last year DEZZY ALLEN did not make ALL STATE. With the exception of Kimi Evans, name one player that has the impact on there team, the way ALLEN has had on NEPTUNE the past two years. Stop right now…you can’t. So it was only natural that DEZZY ALLEN’S, Shore Conference career ended against the hottest team in the state and defending champs…with a show stopping preformance of THE AGES…
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