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SI Indians Unable To Break Away From Stony Brook Bears’ Reach

Originally Posted: January 12, 2008

Brett Mauser

Point guard Tina Rando leads the break for Shelter Island with Kaitie McGayhey on her left flank. Photos by Brett Mauser

Stony Brook - No matter what the Shelter Island girls basketball team threw at Stony Brook, the Bears had a more effective, and least complex reflex - give the ball to Danielle Spiliotis and get out of the way.

Despite having double and triple teams prepared to defend it, Stony Brook ran the best play in its book to perfection. Spiliotis poured in a career-high 35 points and added 12 rebounds to hand the Indians a 55-43 loss in a League VIII clash.

The Indians' Katrina Kaasik takes a step to the side and fires a jumper
with Jenae Ward defending.

Shelter Island Head Coach Rick Osmer will look into a defensive strategy for when the Bears travel east for their Feb. 7 rematch. "We have to find a way to stop [Spiliotis] in order to beat them," he said. "She basically beat us single-handedly."

Her ability to blow up on cue killed the Indians (2-10, 1-3) in the decisive third quarter. SI had trimmed a 10-point halftime deficit to five on a Kaitie McGayhey jumper with 4:47 to go in the period. Spiliotis then keyed a 14-2 spurt that put Stony Brook up by 17 through three.

The Indians didn't quit, yet they were only able to trade with Stony Brook most of the game. McGayhey's three-point play with 3:13 left in the game put SI behind by just 12, but Sadie Singer did the same on the other end, all but dousing the Indians' upset hopes. They did finish in style, though. Tina Rando swiped the ball away on defense and took off on a break. She spotted Katie Siller to her left and whipped a nifty around-the-back pass for a lay-up. Siller scored SI's final five points, also connecting on a jumper and later a free throw.

"I was happy about the way we didn't quit," Osmer said. "At one point, I think we could have rolled over and got beaten by more than what we did."

SI's Callie Starzee drives baseline as the Bears' Alex Angove tries
to keep up.

The game was tied at nine through one quarter, and Shelter Island clung to a 14-13 lead with three minutes left in the first half. Stony Brook, which has won the last two Suffolk County Class C crowns, brought the home crowd to its feet with a 13-2 run to close out the half. The Bears' Jessica Winston buried her only field goal of the game – a three-pointer from the right corner – with two seconds left to put the Bears ahead 26-16 at the halfway point. Every time SI crept close, Stony Brook had the answer. It was the same answer every time.

With the loss, Shelter Island fell to 2-2 on its string of road games, one that won't finish until it plays at Mercy on Jan. 25 and at Port Jefferson Jan. 29. The Indians will close their regular-season schedule with four straight at home.

at Stony Brook
SHELTER ISLAND (2-10, 1-3 League VIII)

Callie Starzee 3-0-7, Kaitie McGayhey 4-4-12, Tina Rando 2-5-10, Kelsey Heinze 3-1-7, Katie Siller 3-1-7. Totals 15-11-43.
STONY BROOK (6-2, 2-0 League VIII)
Danielle Spiliotis 14-5-35, Jessica Winston 1-0-3, Sadie Singer 4-4-13, Allegra Istrati 2-0-4. Totals 21-9-55.
Halftime: Stony Brook, 26-16. Three-Point Field Goals: Shelter Island 2 (Starzee, Rando); Stony Brook 4 (Spiliotis 2, Winston, Singer).

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