Yesterday marked the day of the top 8 teams in the Shore battling it out to make it one step closer to the glory of winning the SCT final! Like I predicted, and like many of thought, the top 4 seeds won out all of their games to make it an action packed final 4 to come. Today we’re going to go through all of the games and talk about the ups and downs, and where the future lies in these next few weeks as the tournament closes out.
Saint Rose #4 seed (vs) Middletown South (#5) 61-40 Saint Rose: To my dismay South hung in this game, and played 150% all the way till the end. Right from the jump they played the “How to beat Saint Rose” strategy perfectly. Shut down Markham, get a body on the bigs, and limit the three point shots. That’s only defensively, offensively you want to attack the cup, make the defense pack in and look for the kick out, as well as getting the big girls in foul trouble. South did all of these things to start the game off, and they stuck in the game hence the first quarter being 14-13. Then came the 16-0 run in the 2nd and things were just hard to come back from at that point. Markham started the run draining nearly 6 threes if I’m keeping the correct count. Near the end of the half South made a little run, and Balsamo really kept them in the game, but with Roses strong 5 players South was just the weaker team positional wise. 3rd quarter was all about the big girls, high low action, the three ball, the rebounding, the blocks, Thomas and Marsciano completely took over! 4th quarter took a bit of time to extend the lead for Rose, but in the end Rose takes the double digit lead in the end. Player Mvp’s: Saint Rose= Mikayla Markham, Midd South= Alexandria Balsamo/Isla Brennan
Rumson Fair-Haven #2 seed (vs) Neptune (#7) 52-26 RFH: Neptune comes out with the normal boom they always come out with, but can’t finish it out in the end. 1st quarter Neptune’s Dezzy Allen knocks in the first 6 points, AND REACHES 1000 POINTS in the middle of the 2nd quarter! Congratulations to Dezzy Allen on the major accomplishment, and a bright rest of junior year, and senior year. Here comes the slippery slope though, it seemed to be that Dez’s 1000th point was Neptune’s bad curse. As soon as she hit 1000, took the ball and flowers for the picture, and play continued, Neptune just fell apart. It was already 20-6 at the end of the first, but that when play continued after the 1000th point picture, Neptune’s turnover count increased, hustle decreased, and they just got really sloppy. It was back and forth for a while here and there, but basketball is a game of runs, and Rumson’s runs were bigger and came more often than Neptune’s did, resulting in a win! Player Mvp’s: RFH= Tori Hyduke, Neptune= Dezzy Allen
SJV #1 seed (vs) Colts Neck (#8) Is there even anything left to say about SJV anymore? Let’s face it, right now they are the Golden State, the UConn, they are simply the team to beat. SJV’s balanced attack throughout the first half got them the early double digit lead 35-15 heading into the half. Applying the same pressure in the 2nd half to finish out the game 68-37. The only question now is if they can finish out the SCT undefeated? Player Mvp’s: SJV= Kelly Campbell/Kimi Evans, Colts Neck= Lola Mullaney
Manasquan #3 seed (vs) RBC (#6) 47-36 Squan: A closely contested game, but down the stretch Manasquan proved they are the tougher team. A HUGE game for Dara Mabrey, Faith Masonius, and Stella Clarke aka THE BIG THREE! The Casey’s stuck with it all the way through, but in the end Manasquan just stayed tighter, mentally and physically stronger, and finished out the game. RBC only trailed by 5 with 2 minutes to go in the game, but Manasquan made their free throws, milked the clock out, and took their time and didn’t panic to shut this one out. Player Mvp’s: Manasquan= Dara Mabrey, RBC=Katie Rice
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