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SportsHigh SchoolGirls Basketball

CHSAA, Long Island private schools girls basketball preview

St. Anthony's Colleen McCullagh puts up a shot

St. Anthony's Colleen McCullagh puts up a shot against Sacred Heart during a CHSAA girls basketball game on Tuesday, Jan. 8, 2019. Credit: Kathleen Malone-Van Dyke

CHSAA

HOLY TRINITY TITANS

Last season: 10-14

Coach: Roger Gaeckler

KEY PLAYERS

Destini Gaeckler F 5-9 So.; Jada Graves G 5-7 So.; Maggie Long PG 5-8 So.; Katrina Samuda C/F 6-1 So.

ABOUT THE TITANS: Long was the Titans’ leading scorer a year ago as a freshman. The defending CHSAA Class B state champions will be a predominantly underclassmen team under former Hofstra men’s coach Gaeckler.

KELLENBERG FIREBIRDS

Last season: 12-6

Coach: Matt Kirk

KEY PLAYERS

Victoria Dieguez G 5-7 Jr.; Amelia Hirschfield G 5-6 Sr.; Sam Lombardi G/F 5-8 Sr.; Mackenzie McAllister G 5-5 Jr.; Maureen McNierney G 5-8 Sr.

ABOUT THE FIREBIRDS: Kellenberg will rely on Dieguez, who led her squad with 13 points and 5 assists per game last season. The athletic Firebirds should be competitive in a tough Class A in search of their first title since 2017.

OUR LADY OF MERCY MUSTANGS

Last season: 10-15

Coach: Randy Todd

KEY PLAYERS

Kaitlin Anderson F 5-9 Jr.; Meghan Andersen F 6-0 Fr.; Hailey Clancy G 5-5 Jr.; Samantha Shea G 5-4 So.; Morgan Wolf G 5-7 Sr.

ABOUT THE MUSTANGS: Two-way senior guard Wolf should run the show for the Mustangs, but Todd is excited to see how freshman Andersen performs on the CHSAA’s big stage.

SACRED HEART SPARTANS

Last season: 15-9

Coach: Dennis O’Brien

KEY PLAYERS

Belinda Daniel G 5-5 Jr.; Nicole Paprocky G 5-8 Jr.; Kayla Martello G 5-8 Sr.; Catherine Mitchell G 5-9 Sr.; Brianna Ungania G 5-5 Sr.

ABOUT THE SPARTANS: The Spartans reached the CHSAA A final, but came up short against St. John the Baptist. Paprocky is one of the better overall players in the league, averaging 11 points, 5 rebounds, 5 steals and 3 assists per game last season.

ST. ANTHONY’S FRIARS

Last season: 17-10

Coach: Hughie Flaherty

KEY PLAYERS

Colleen McCullagh G/F 6-1 So.; Gianna Santacroce G/F 5-11 Jr.; Synclair Taylor G/F 5-10 Sr.; Kayli Parham G/F 5-9 Sr.

ABOUT THE FRIARS: The Friars have won four straight CHSAA titles, and seemed poised for a fifth. McCullagh and Santacroce give St. Anthony’s a talented one-two combination.

ST. DOMINIC’S BAYHAWKS

Last season: 7-11

Coach: Shannon White

KEY PLAYERS

Emma Burke F 5-9 So.; Jackie Gillen G 5-6 Jr.; Victoria Islam G 5-7 Fr.; Meghan McAuliffe G/F 5-9 Jr.; Megan Morrisroe G 5-6 Fr.

ABOUT THE BAYHAWKS: A young, but athletic squad, St. Dominic’s will look to captain McAuliffe as a leader on both ends of the court.

ST. JOHN THE BAPTIST COUGARS

Last season: 13-9

Coach: Kate Gordon

KEY PLAYERS

Jen Gaffney G/F 5-7 Sr.; Abby Gress G/F 5-10 Sr.; Kennedy Keenan F 5-8 Sr.; Katie Maguire G 5-5 Sr.; Cara McCormack G 5-3 Sr.

ABOUT THE COUGARS: The Cougars return 12 players, including nine seniors, from last season’s state CHSAA A finalist squad. It all starts with the Holy Cross-bound McCormack, the reigning CHSAA player of the year. But how Gordon gets everyone minutes could be the key to St. John the Baptist's state Federation run.

ST. MARY’S GAELS

Last season: 13-12

Coach: Kevin White

KEY PLAYERS

Laura Bogota G 5-6 Jr.; Alisa Blalock G 5-6 So.; Sirviva Legions G 5-8 So.; Kalena Ricketts F 6-0 Sr.; Samyah Allen F 5-10 So.

ABOUT THE GAELS: St. Mary's came up short against St. Anthony’s in last year’s CHSAA AA final, but return a group of experienced players with an eye on a title run. Legions and Blalock are both drawing interest from Division I schools and will lead the offense this season.

PSAA

LAWRENCE WOODMERE ACADEMY TIGERS
Last season: 11-5
Coach: Karim Shabazz
KEY PLAYERS
Cherish Atkinson PG 5-4 Sr.; Inara Coles G 5-2 8th; Diana Dosso F 5-6 Jr.; Kyra Milord F 5-8 Jr.; Autumn Washington C 5-11 Sr.
ABOUT THE TIGERS: Led by seniors Atkinson (10 points per game, 4 steals per game last season) and Washington (8 points, 12 rebounds, 2 blocks per game last season), Lawrence Woodmere boasts a deep roster with players who can play multiple positions. 


OUR SAVIOR NEW AMERICAN PIONEERS
Last season: 1-4
Coach: Karla Welty   
KEY PLAYERS
Briana Beekman C 5-11 Sr. Pileigh Shahinian G 5-5 Sr.; Courtney Springer F 5-7 Jr.; Norah Williams F 5-8 Fr.; Katerina Reade G 5-5 So.
ABOUT THE PIONEERS: Watch out for Beekman and Shahinian who both offer senior experience and an inside-out game for Our Savior New American.


PORTLEDGE PANTHERS
Last season: 21-4
Coach: Jay Lynch
KEY PLAYERS
Sarah Buonaguro
G 5-5 Sr.; Bella Greenwald PG 5-6 Jr.
ABOUT THE PANTHERS: Looking to build on last season’s success, Portledge boasts an athletic roster with players that pride themselves on their tenacity in every aspect of the game. 

WALDORF WOLVERINES
Last season: 3-10
Coach: Shawna Thornton
KEY PLAYERS
Jordan Henry
G So.; Kennedy Mayers G 5-10 8th; Celeste Parks F 5-9 Jr.; Lucinda Peal G 5-4 Sr.; Mollie Resnick C 5-9 Sr.
ABOUT THE WOLVERINES: Resnick and Peal come into their senior seasons with plenty of experience after playing every game last year and look to step into leadership roles this winter.

INDEPENDENT

LONG ISLAND LUTHERAN CRUSADERS

Last season: 15-8

Coach: Rich Slater

KEY PLAYERS

Jamie Behar G 6-2 Sr.; Paris Clark G 5-10 So.; Syd Rosenoff G 5-8 Jr.; Kaylene Smike G 6-0 So.; Simona Visokaite G 6-2 Jr.

ABOUT THE CRUSADERS: With their sights set on a Federation championship, the Crusaders will be lead by Lehigh-bound Behar, the lone senior in this year’s backcourt. Clark, a scoring threat with solid range and a strong presence on the boards, will also play a big role.

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