Dallysshya Moreno had 21 points and 20 rebounds in state...

Dallysshya Moreno had 21 points and 20 rebounds in state final on March 20, 2022. Credit: Newsday/Hans Pennink

Dallysshya Moreno’s first chance at a state championship was taken away from her when the tournament was canceled by COVID-19 in her freshman year. Two years later, Moreno led the Baldwin girls basketball team to the state Class AA Tournament at Troy’s Hudson Valley Community College.

Moreno led the charge in Baldwin’s semifinal win over Cicero-North Syracuse with 14 points and 14 rebounds. Despite falling in the final round 63-57 to Bishop Kearney Saturday night, Moreno put up 21 points and grabbed 20 rebounds. Baldwin finished the season an impressive 16-1.

“I’m proud of myself, but I wish we came out with a win,” Moreno said. “It was a once in a lifetime experience even though we lost.”

Moreno is Newsday’s Athlete of the week.

A 6-foot junior forward who led Baldwin with 17.1 points per game this season, Moreno can score against just about anybody. She’s too strong for guards to defend and too quick against forwards. “I’m not really afraid of anybody on the court,” Moreno said.

As talented as she is, Moreno’s competitiveness might be her greatest asset.

When the Baldwin girls returned from their trip upstate, Moreno traded in sleep for film study. She watched Baldwin’s loss in the final round 12 times before getting up early the next day for a workout.

“During that two-day span I slept for about five hours,” Moreno said. “I hate losing. It hurts a lot.”

Moreno had extra fuel throughout the season following the death of assistant coach Anthony Bolden last fall.

“It was so important that we went as far as we did because everything we did this year was for him,” Moreno said.

Bolden, who was beloved by players and fellow coaches, died of complications from pulmonary fibrosis.

“He was like a second father to me,” Moreno said. “He took time that he could’ve spent with his family to work out with me and come to my tournaments in the summer.”

Moreno is being recruited by Division I colleges, but she won’t announce a commitment until Sept. 7 — the one-year anniversary of Bolden’s death.

Moreno will have one more chance to come home with a state championship trophy as a senior next year. She and her teammates have all the motivation they need.

“We got so close and we’re hungry for more,” Moreno said. “We want to go out on our own terms next year.”

Newsday LogoCritical LI Information You NeedDigital Access$1 for 5 months