Southampton proved it wasn't the same team that lost by 30 points in last season's state Southeast Regional Class B final in Friday's rematch with Irvington. But unfortunately for the Mariners, the result was the same.
Southampton was still in the game midway through the third quarter, but couldn't recover from a lopsided first period and fell again to Irvington, 62-41, at Hofstra.
Irvington (21-2), the defending state Federation Class B champions, will seek its fourth consecutive state Class B title, starting Friday in Troy.
"We were stronger this year. Last year we let the game get away from us a lot sooner," said Kesi Goree, one of four Southampton senior starters. "This being our senior year, we wanted to show that we're a good team, too and we can play with Irvington, and except for that first quarter, I think we did."
Irvington coach Gina Maher said, "It was a huge difference from last year, they're a much better team."
Irvington took command early, jumping to a 16-4 lead after one. The Bulldogs moved the ball quickly and turned defense into offense with a number of transition baskets.
The two big buckets of the period came within 25 seconds of each other: Laurilyn Gelardi's basket followed by Lauren Chafizadeh's three-pointer from the corner that gave Irvington its first double-digit lead at 15-4 with 2:13 left in the quarter.
Southampton (15-5) settled into a 3-2 zone in the second. But with a chance to come within 10 in the final seconds, it turned the ball over and watched Irvington's Brittni Lai (17 points) finish another fast-break layup to make it 29-14 at halftime.
"We had to get back in transition from offense to defense and we didn't," Southampton coach Rich Wingfield said. "They created a game of numbers."
In the third, Cassidy Guida got hot from deep with three-pointers on consecutive possessions to bring Southampton within 12, and two free throws from Goree made it 35-25 with 5:38 left in the quarter.
But Irvington closed the third on a 9-3 run, and with Alexis Martins (25 points, 23 rebounds) leading the way, the Bulldogs ran away with it in the fourth.
Paris Hodges led Southampton with 15 points, Goree added 12 and Guida had eight.