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LeSueur's Jumper Makes LI History / Garden City senior breaks Kaz' record

The pass came from under the basket and nestled in the capable hands of

Garden City guard Bethany LeSueur. Like so many times before, LeSueur gripped

the ball in her right hand and let go with a 15-foot jumper. Nothing but net.

The significance of the basket was not lost on the capacity crowd, which

stood and applauded LeSueur's record-breaking basket. Her 15th and 16th points

of the game Friday night gave her a six-year career total of 2,584, breaking

the Long Island record of Sachem's Nicole Kaczmarski.

The record-setting jumper gave Garden City a 35-12 lead with 3:03 left in

the first half in a game the Trojans would go on to win handily, 66-31, over

Floral Park in a Nassau Conference III opener before 1,423 fans at Garden City

High School.

LeSueur, a two-time winner of the Charles Clark Award presented to Nassau's

best player, finished with 29 points, shooting 10-for-20 from the field. She

converted 9 of 15 free throws and now has a career total of 2,597 points.

"I'm just so happy that I did it on a jump shot instead of a free throw,"

LeSueur said with a wry smile. She'd missed five of nine free throws in the

first half after making 86 percent from the foul line through her six-year

career. "I didn't miss them purposely. I just wasn't bending my legs."

LeSueur was at her very best throughout the first half, diving for loose

balls, playing strong underneath the basket at both ends of the floor and

making a few crowd-pleasing passes, including a long bounce pass to Jamie

Lardner for a basket.

"I'm real happy for her," said Floral Park coach Greg Mayerhofer, who

presented LeSueur with a bouquet of flowers after the record jumper. "Few

people talk about her tenacity and intelligence on the floor. They only see the

points-but she's so much more than that."

Garden City (3-2, 1-0) opened a 25-8 first-quarter lead and Floral Park

(1-5, 0-1) never challenged from there. The night belonged to LeSueur. She

needed 16 points to break Kaczmarski's record and had 11 in the first 5:34 of

the game.

"She's handled the pressure well and I believe she's just as happy as we

are to have set the record and can now move on toward a championship," Garden

City coach John Dell'Olio said. "Now that we've started our conference season,

we can concentrate on picking up our intensity and winning a title."

LeSueur accepted a full basketball scholarship to attend Virginia during

the early signing period in November. The four-time All-Long Island selection

scored her 1,000th point as a ninth-grader and her 2,000th point last season.

Garden City has won two Long Island Class B championships and has a 104-10

record during her career.

The second standing-room only crowd for a girls basketball game in Garden

City history came to see LeSueur break the mark.

With the record chase over, the pursuit for a state title is on. LeSueur

has intimated throughout her career that she'd trade all of her points for a

state crown. "I want another shot at a state championship," she said. She knows

there's only one more shot.

"I remember when Bethany's father [Peter] brought her over to Floral Park

for a shootaround when she was in sixth grade," Mayerhofer said. "He was my

athletic director then. And he asked me what I thought of her. I looked at him

and said, 'Would you like to buy a house in Floral Park.' "

New York Sports