The Shelter Island School boys varsity basketball team hosted the Block Island Hurricanes on Monday, December 29, in a renewed rivalry that dates back more than 35 years.
Both the girls and boys varsity teams were scheduled to play on Shelter Island but unfortunately, the Block Island girls varsity could not attend.
The Block Island School has a smaller enrollment than our school, with about 110 students K through 12. They play in an “independent league” in Rhode Island against both charter and private schools.
Their journey to the Island for the game Monday wasn’t simple or quick. The team travelled to the Island by taking a ferry from Block Island to Port Judith, Rhode Island, boarded a bus to New London, Connecticut, rode the Cross Sound Ferry to Orient Point, and were picked up and transported to here. Six ferries, round trip.
Once the team arrived, they proceeded to the school’s gymnasium for a practice session. The Shelter Island parents and American Legion Post 281 hosted a bowling/dinner party for both teams on Sunday evening.
A special thank you to Dave Clark and Gunnar Wissemann, as well as Linda McCarthy and Jen Wissemann (as well as other parents) who did a fantastic job hosting this event.
Both Coach Peter Miedema and Coach Ian Kanarvogel played pivotal roles in executing this special event. The visiting team (only six players and one coach) stayed overnight with both the Card and Colligan families.
After a wonderful breakfast at the Islander, Coach Jay Card Jr. gave the visiting team a tour of our beautiful Island.
Finally, it was time to tip-off at 11 a.m. The Hurricanes were led by guard, Griffen Hall, who hit his first two 3-point shots giving his team an early 7-5 lead. Coach Card Called a quick time out and reminded his team about the importance of being more patient on the offensive end and getting the ball inside for high percentage shots.
The team responded well going on a 14-1 run to close out the first quarter with the Indians up 19-8. Once again, junior captain, Tristan Wissemann scored 10 of his game high 23 points in the opening period. The Indians extended their lead to 31-16 by halftime.
At the break, Coach Card emphasized the need to stay focused and to come out strong in the second half. Once again, the team responded, outscoring their opponents 16-6 in the third quarter, opening up a 25-point lead. Both Semaj Lawrence and Wissemann combined for all 16 third quarter points, each scoring eight.
Shelter Island posted an impressive 60-35 final score as junior Billy Boeklen scored 6 of his 10 points in the fourth, but more importantly, collected many of his game high 6 assists during the final period.
Coach Card was successful in getting all seven players in the scoring column. Both Peter Kropf and Jack Kimmelmann did a superb job shutting down the Hurricane’s top scorer.
Senior Sawyer Clark played his typical high-energy game scoring 6 points, collecting 3 steals and committing only 1 turnover. Wissemann (16) and Lawrence (15) combined for 31 of the team’s 43 rebounds. Senior Johnny Sturges pulled down 5 rebounds and was a perfect 2 for 2 from the foul line.
It was the Indians second straight win and will hopefully serve as a confidence builder going into January. The next two league games are scheduled for Tuesday, January 6 at home against a strong Bridgehampton team —5:45 p.m. start — and for Thursday, January 8 at Smithtown Christian at 4:30 p.m.
The team appreciates all your support and wants to wish you all a very happy and healthy New Year.