The Vineyarder girls varsity basketball team dropped a tough one to a game bunch of Cape Cod Academy Seahawks, 44-40, Friday afternoon at the Sancy Pachico Memorial Gym in Oak Bluffs.
CCA brought a roster of just six girls, but they stayed in front most of the way, and held off the Vineyarders down the stretch to earn the victory.
The hosts trailed 14-13 after the first quarter, but the Seahawks reeled off a 15-2 run in the second, and had the Vineyarders chasing the game.
The pace was frenetic throughout, with the ball often bouncing between the teams like a wild animal avoiding capture. When Sasha Lakis scored the final Vineyard bucket of the first half, the task required more than a half-dozen rebounds as players from both teams pitched and dived through the paint.
In the first half, the teams were at their best shooting from the perimeter, and shared the spoils from the three-for-all with five treys apiece.
Down 30-21 at the half, the Vineyarders clamped down on defense and chipped away at the CCA lead, outscoring the Seahawks 11-4 in the third quarter. Taylor Hughes closed out the quarter, and a 7-0 Vineyard run by snaking through the Seahawks defense for a hard-earned bucket to make it 34-32 heading into the final period.
The Seahawks started the fourth quarter with five quick points, and kept the Vineyarders down by at least four for the duration.
After the game, Vineyard Coach Sterling Bishop was frustrated with the result. “We practiced all week, we worked on our game plan, and we did not implement anything that we focused on,” he said. “We focused on fast break, we focused on defense, and we focused on our zone offense, because we knew with a shorthanded team with only six players, they have to play zone. They’ll get burned out if they play man. So we worked on two different zone offenses, and we could not get anything to click.”
The Vineyarders were also playing without ailing leading scorer Kylie Estrella, which certainly didn’t help.
Taylor Hughes played a gritty game at both ends of the court, and led the Vineyarders with 10 points. Riley Yuhas sank a trio of treys to finish with nine points, and Kat O’ Brien chipped in seven. CCA’s Kaileigh Bickford led all scorers with 15 points.
Estrella was back in the lineup, Saturday in Nantucket, and scored a Vineyard-high 12 points, but the Purple came up short to the Whalers, 37-33. Riley Yuhas added eight points, and Sasha Lakis had seven for the Vineyarders, who took a 7-0 lead out of the gate. Nantucket roared back with the next nine points, and maintained a slim lead from there to claim the Cape and Islands League Atlantic Division win. Nantucket’s Malika Phillip was the leading scorer on the day with 19 points.
The Vineyarders (4-11 overall, 2-7 C&I Atlantic) are back in action on Wednesday in Brockton at Cardinal Spellman.