Alessia Drevnyak and her East Rockaway girls basketball teammates had not played a game since Feb. 10, a span of 20 days.
But that wasn’t an issue the way the Rocks played Thursday.
The 6-1 Drevnyak had 14 points, 16 rebounds and six blocks as East Rockaway held off Carle Place, 43-42, in the Nassau Class BC final at Hofstra. Carle Place (14-8) had beaten the Rocks twice in the regular season by margins of 13 and 10 points.
“I’m the captain, so it falls to me,” said Drevnyak, clutching the BC plaque. “I knew we were playing a great team who had beaten us twice, but we just wanted to get a ‘W’ and earn a championship.”
East Rockaway (10-10), which never trailed, led 28-13 with 5:52 left in the first half. Then Carle Place went on a 21-6 run and tied the score at 34 on a basket by Leah Burden (12 points) with 3:46 remaining in the game.
After a Rocks timeout, Drevnyak sandwiched a layup and two free throws around a jumper by teammate Rachel Graves as East Rockaway took a 40-34 lead with 2:12 left.
Carle Place scored six of the next eight points, capped by a three-pointer by Abigail Selhorn (seven points, six rebounds) that brought the Frogs within 42-40 with 12 seconds to go.
The Rocks’ Kailey Hyland hit one of two free throws with 10.2 seconds left to make it 43-40, but Burden answered with a layup with 5.9 seconds left. The Rocks missed four straight free throws, but Carle Place couldn’t get off a possible game-winning shot before the horn.
Rachel O’Hagan had 14 points and Brooke DeGiulio added 12 for East Rockaway, which will face Port Jefferson in the Long Island Class C final at 7:30 p.m. Monday at SUNY-Old Westbury.
Eighth-graders Victoria Dieguez (11 points) and Erin Leary (eight points) came off the bench to spark Carle Place, which will play Mattituck in the Long Island Class B final at 5 p.m. Monday at SUNY-Old Westbury. Leary’s mother, Karin, is East Rockaway’s coach.
“I told my husband [Patrick] on the phone today, the perfect situation would be if Erin played well but we won,” Leary said. “That’s exactly what happened.”