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Island boys fall to Whalers and Royals: Outgunned, but fighting through adversity

Pierson High School hosted Shelter Island boys basketball teams on Saturday, Jan. 7 for varsity and junior varsity games.

During the varsity game, the Islanders dressed only seven players and the Whalers dressed 11.

The Whalers are an impressive team, tall, talented and deep. They played an aggressive full court 1-2-2 press, which resulted in numerous turnovers for the visiting Islanders. The Whalers enjoyed a 36-14 halftime lead and continued using their major height advantage to control the backboards.

Once again, the Whalers continued to pressure the basketball, taking a 25-6 scoring differential, including 10 Whaler field goals from behind the arc and inside the lane. For the Islanders, Hayden Davidson manage to connect on a 3-point field goal and senior guard Bazzy Quigley Dunning added another field goal and free throw.

In the 4th quarter, the Islanders were led by Quigley Dunning with 10 points.

Harry Clark earned some additional court time for the Islanders and played hard. Sebastian Romero grabbed 3 offensive rebounds in the 4th quarter, but overall, this was not a good performance for the Islanders.

On Tuesday, Jan. 10, the Islanders hosted the Port Jefferson Royals for a varsity game. The final score, 56-26, was not necessarily indicative of the effort put forth by the home team. Coach Zach Mundy rewarded Harry Clark by placing him in the starting line-up. Harry is an underclassman who has proven he’s willing to play tough defensively as well as rebounding at both ends of the court. Sebastian Romero also was a starter for the Islanders. 

Shelter Island committed a dozen 1st quarter turnovers and found themselves down 21-3 at the end of the opening period. But they tightened up their defense and held the Royals to just 7 points in the 2nd quarter, while scoring 10 points themselves.

Hayden Davidson came off the bench and played with more enthusiasm, making a nice move to the basket for an easy lay-up. Harrison Weslek stole the ball in the backcourt and dribbled the length of the court, finishing off a lay-up, cutting the Royal lead to 23-9. By halftime, the Islanders had cut into the deficit and trailed 28-13.

Unfortunately, the Islanders were outscored 17-4 in the 3rd quarter, trailing 45-17 entering the final period.

The highlight in the 4th quarter included a superb exchange between the Weslek brothers, which included a great pass and great finish at the rim.

Harrison Weslek (11) and Evan Weslek (9) combined for a team high 20 points. Junior varsity players Hernandez and Vasquez came off the bench and each added a field goal for the Islanders to round out the scoring.

Overall, Coach Zach Mundy was pleased with the better defensive intensity. The team still needs to limit their turnovers and be more consistent in their full-court and half-court press offenses.

The team will be traveling to Smithtown Christian on Friday, Jan. 13 for a 6:15 p.m. contest.