When Sarah Harrington emphatically swatted a three-pointer at the top of the key, scooped up the loose ball and ran the length of the floor for a layup in transition late in the first quarter, her face burst into a smile.
So did the faces of her Smithtown West teammates, who erupted at the conclusion of the play.
“It’s probably my favorite thing to do,” Harrington said about blocking shots. “It gives me a lot of adrenaline. It was like a volleyball spike.”
The 6-foot senior filled the stat sheet Thursday night, recording 10 points, 10 rebounds, six steals, four assists and three blocks in a 51-32 win over visiting North Babylon in a Suffolk League III girls basketball game.
Teammate Gabby Horman, a 6-2 senior, also put forth a complete effort, posting 17 points, 12 rebounds, five steals and four assists.
The two forwards posed a challenge to North Babylon (1-2). With two 6-footers in the low post, Smithtown West (4-0) can present a matchup nightmare to teams without height in the frontcourt.
The Bulls have taken advantage of this all season.
“Every single game we’ve outrebounded the other team,” Harrington said.
Their combined efforts helped the Bulls build a 25-8 lead at the half. Junior guard Ashanti Chandler scored 11 of her 16 points in the third quarter to help keep the Bulldogs competitive, but Smithtown West prevailed despite a better showing in the second half from North Babylon.
“It’s exciting to be 4-0 in league now,” Horman said. “We have to keep pushing, work harder every day.”
Harrington and Horman are both four-year varsity players and top-notch athletes. Harrington will attend Davidson for soccer, while Horman will play volleyball at Quinnipiac.
Coach Katie Combs said all of her starters are multi-sport athletes — including Gabby Lorefice, who had 13 points — and the team’s athleticism has played a factor in their fast start.
There was no better display of pure athleticism in the game than Harrington’s block-steal-layup. Not only did it pave the way for her big night, but it also kick-started a Smithtown West team that has had lots of reasons to smile early in the season.