Courtesy of Laura Albanese
This one was for the glory.
Days after being eliminated from postseason contention in a three-point loss against Floyd, Commack (9-8) pulled out a 63-57 overtime upset of League II champion Northport in non-league.
Colleen Walker and Nicole Hagenah combined for nine points in overtime as the Cougars outscored Northport 13-7 in the frame. Northport cut the deficit to two points midway through the overtime, but Taylor McDonnell, Haller and Walker hit six foul shots to ice the victory.
“This was our season because we lost by a bucket on Thursday we're not going to the playoffs,” said coach Bruce Haller. “This was our playoff game.”
Kaitlin Dabkowski sunk a baseline jumper to put Commack ahead 50-48 with 10 seconds left, but Northport tied it with a short jumper with two second left to send it to overtime. Kerry Haller scored all six of her points in the fourth quarter and overtime.
It’s the first time in 15 years that Commack has defeated Northport without the help of former All-American Sammy Perhalis, said Bruce Haller.
Four different starters scored for Commack in a 20-12 fourth quarter to tie the game. They were led by Walker, a junior who scored a career-high 21 points in the effort.
“She’s a pure shooter,” said Haller.
It certainly showed, as Walker sunk three treys, including one in the fourth and one in overtime. Hagenah, the senior captain, added 12 points, 12 rebounds and four blocks. She also guarded Northport’s Stephanie Leon, who was held to eight points. Northport is 11-0 in league and 14-2 overall.
“This was our kid's rivalry,” Haller said. “Because it's such a rivalry, we really wanted to play it... Hagenah … didn't get a chance to put us in playoffs on Thursday and she really played against Leon, who’s like 6-4.”
Said Haller: “This was a great way to close senior year.”
It’s not a postseason berth, but for one afternoon, it was just as sweet.