Gabbie Doria #32, Kelly Vassallo #12, and Katie Durand #24...

Gabbie Doria #32, Kelly Vassallo #12, and Katie Durand #24 of Cold Spring Harbor celebrate after defeating Carle Place during the girls Nassau High School Basketball Class B Finals. (Feb. 24, 2011) Credit: Jim McIsaac

Emblazoned in bold letters across the back of their team T-shirts is Cold Spring Harbor's motto this season: Poise.

The Seahawks have been making keeping composed in the midst of adversity and high-pressure situations appear routine lately. Kelly Vassallo made a buzzer-beater Feb. 8 to defeat Wheatley, Katie Durand made her first basket of the game with 1:04 left to win the county semifinals Saturday and Vassallo was at it again yesterday.

Vassallo scored all of No. 2 Cold Spring Harbor's nine points in the fourth quarter as the Seahawks held on to defeat No. 1 Carle Place, 38-36, in the Nassau Class B girls basketball final Thursday at C.W. Post.

"When the lights are bright she shines the most," Cold Spring Harbor coach Rory Malone said of Vassallo. "She's got ice water in her veins."

Vassallo, who was named Class B tournament MVP, finished with 13 points and six rebounds, Durand had 11 points, seven assists and three steals and Jean Atkinson added eight points to lead Cold Spring Harbor (16-3) to its first county championship in five years and fourth in school history. It was the fourth time the teams met this season with each team winning twice.

The Seahawks led 20-12 at halftime but the Frogs closed the third quarter with a 9-0 run to cut the deficit to three at 29-26 heading into the fourth. Jill Flecker made a basket with 3:15 left to cut the gap to one but Vassallo answered by draining a three-pointer to make it 38-34 and a two possession game. Dana McLaughlin made a pair of free throws with 1:01 left to make it 38-36 and neither team could capitalize on opportunities in the final minute. The Seahawks missed the front-end of two one-and-ones and the Frogs missed a pair of shots to tie the score.

"After the first half we thought that we could definitely win it," Vassallo said. "We were playing great defense and in the last quarter, a minute left, we knew that we had to give it our all and not foul and we did it."

Samantha Burden scored 13 points and McLaughlin added 11 for Carle Place (16-3), which lost in the final for the second consecutive season.

"Last year we walked out of here thinking we need to win this year and we couldn't get over that hump," Carle Place coach Mike Bello said.

Cold Spring Harbor will play Friends Academy in the Nassau BC final at noon March 5 at Post. The Seahawks will play the Center Moriches-Wyandanch winner in the Long Island Class B final at 7 p.m. March 8 at SUNY-Old Westbury.

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