Three of the top teams from Long Island took on three of the top teams in the PSAL Sunday in the Under Armour Classic at St. John the Baptist and it was a sweep for Long Island. North Babylon topped Francis Lewis, 60-32 then Sachem East trounced South Shore, 67-37 and St. John the Baptist capped the day with a 48-36 win over John F. Kennedy.
It was a great day for Long Island hoops. The top team teams from the city this season are mostly from the CHSAA league and Bergtraum, the top PSAL team, is ranked nationally. The rest of the top teams in the PSAL have been inconsistent this season, but it was a great showing for Long Island either way.
North Babylon jumped out to a quick lead and led 27-14 at the half. UConn-bound Bria Hartley had 17 of her 27 in the first half along with 12 rebounds and 10 steals. Katrina Plummer scored nine points. North Babylon held Francis Lewis without a field goal for 12:25 over the second and third quarters.
"We have a lot of young kids and the kids that play big minutes for us are new to the program," North Babylon coach Mike Petre said. "We have had a lot of teaching to do and it has taken us a while to get everything in and figure out who we are. We're a much better defensive team now than we were eight weeks ago."
Hartley carried the offensive load as usual and the Bulldogs have enough threats to supply enough points from a myriad of players to be successful.
"The other kids are enough of a threat that you have to guard them," Petre said. "Charise Wilson can hit the three. Katrina Plummer has been in double digits a lot lately. Jalen Powell's been making shots. Jeanette Scott has been making layups inside. Our young kids get a bucket or two here or there and it sustains us."
Sachem East is playing like the best team on the Island right now. The Flaming Arrows have won nine straight and dominated in the process. Boston College-bound Kristen Doherty, who scored her 2,000th career point Friday, came out sizzling. She scored 15 in the first quarter, including three treys. She had 26 of her 28 in the first half where she shot 11-for-17 from the field. She added 17 rebounds and six assists. Caitlin Hopkins continued her good season with 13 points. Sachem East led 26-9 after one quarter and 45-14 at the half.
It would be a shock if North Babylon and Sachem East don't meet in the Suffolk Class AA championship.
St. John the Baptist is starting to come around after an inconsistent start, mainly due to injuries and a tough non-league schedule. SJB played without Brianna Thomas, who has a severely sprained left index finger, for the second consecutive game. Kamala Thompson had 15 points 10 rebounds, Alexis Smith had 12 points, seven steals, six rebounds and four assists and Kristen McMahon added 11 points.
SJB ended the first half with a 12-2 run to take a 25-15 lead at the half and maintained a double-digit lead the entire second half.