Shelter Island basketball fans filed into the school gym Tuesday on a cold, windy night for a game against Greenport. But the chill outside was quickly forgotten, replaced by hot shooting from the boys varsity, resulting in a 59-42 win over their cross-bay rivals, the Greenport Porters.
The win comes on the heels of a league victory on the road against Port Jefferson Saturday, January 9. The Blue and Gray’s season record now stands at 7-5.
The Porters came out flying after the tip with a steal and a quick layup for a 2-0 lead. The Islanders responded nicely with a pass by Tristan Wissemann to Semaj Lawrence for an easy bucket. Greenport substituted frequently early in the quarter and at the 5:21 mark the Islanders had a slim lead of 5-4.
But they ran their home floor for some quick scores to build a 9-point lead. Jack Kimmelmann had the home crowd buzzing with a great block in the open floor on a Greenport player’s fast break under the basket. Lawrence showed good hustle on defense by rebounding and moving for the ball at the offensive side of the court. At the end of the first quarter Shelter Island had a 17-8 lead.
In the second quarter the Blue and Gray kept up the pressure with aggressive defense. But two key fouls and the resulting free throws gave Greenport life, cutting the lead to 19-13. The Porters kept battling with a full court press and at one point cut the lead to 21-19. Kimmelmann hit a three point shot followed by a Billy Boeklen 3 after a steal to give his team the momentum. The Islanders again built the lead to double digits for a 31-21 halftime lead.
In the third quarter Greenport fought back. Good foul shooting helped cut the lead to 9 points. A time out by Coach Jay Card Jr. kept the team focused and composed as it built its lead to 44-27 at the end of the third quarter.
The fourth quarter started with a nice tip-in by Lawrence for two under the basket. Hot shooting by Boeklen helped Shelter Island build a 48-30 lead. Halfway into the quarter the Islanders had a 20-point lead.
In the final minutes of the game, Coach Card gave the starters a break, and Will Garrison, Henry Lang and Max Moroz came in to make a positive impact on the outcome.
The Islanders slowed the ball down to use some clock. The last points for the Blue and Gray came from a foul shot by Lang to make the final 59-42.
Boeklen led the team in scoring with 24, Wissemann had 16 and Lawrence added 7. Wissemann and Lawrence controlled the glass at both ends of the court with 21 and 18 rebounds respectively.
The win provides a boost heading into a challenging part of the season with an away game against first place Stony Brook on Friday, January 22, Pierson at home on Tuesday, January 26 followed by a game against the Killer Bees in Bridgehampton on Thursday, January 28.