The East Hampton High School girls basketball team won twice last week to improve its record to 3-4, thus giving it a fighting chance to make the playoffs; the boys swimming team split, losing at league-leading Hauppauge but swamping Deer Park here at the Y.M.C.A. East Hampton RECenter, and the wrestling team, while it continued winless, could point to some good individual results.
Concerning girls track, Shani Cuesta, the coach, said her team is to compete in the league championships at Suffolk Community College-Brentwood Saturday night, with Ashley West, in the 300 and 600, and Dana Cebulski, in the 1,500 and 3,000, being her best bets to place.
“We’ll go all out at the leagues, where each of them can compete in three events,” said Cuesta. The small schools and state qualifier meets are yet to come, as is, of course, the state meet. West made it to the state qualifier last year. Cebulski made the state meet in cross-country this past fall.
Howard Wood and his assistant, Louis O’Neal, said before Monday’s practice session at the East Hampton Middle School that the girls basketball team had played well in its wins over Westhampton Beach and Mount Sinai. The Bonackers edged the Hurricanes 43-41 and defeated Mount Sinai 44-37. Kaelyn Ward, who finds herself invariably the subject of opponents’ box-and-one defenses, led the team in both games, and Sarah Johnson, East Hampton’s senior post player, came up big, as well, when it came to rebounding and boxing out.
Johnson had been getting into early foul trouble, “but she played all 32 minutes against Mount Sinai and in most of the game with Westhampton,” said Wood, who added that the two wins “weren’t pretty, but I’d rather have an ugly win than a pretty loss. . . . We’ve got to win three of our last five to make the playoffs. We’re taking them one at a time.”
As for wrestling, Steve Tseperkas’s team lost 46-34 to Harborfields here on Jan. 18. Sawyer Bushman won by pin at 126 pounds, Mike Peralta won by a major 13-2 decision at 145, Dallas Foglia, who was trailing 10-7 midway through the third period, used a headlock to pin his opponent at 152, Kevin Heine won by pin at 182, and Jacob Hands won by pin at 195.
The Bonackers lost 51-18 at Eastport-South Manor on Friday. Tseperkas had five winners that day — Bushman, by a score of 3-0, at 126, Colton Kalbacher, by 3-2, at 132, Peralta, by pin, at 145, Morgan Rojas, by 3-1, at 160, and Hands, by 7-1, at 220.
East Hampton, moreover, had five place-winners in an 11-team invitational meet at Mattituck Saturday. Lucas Escobar placed fourth at 106 pounds, pinning his Connetquot opponent and thus erasing a 12-5 third-period deficit, in the quarterfinals. Escobar lost 4-2 in the semis “to the Harborfields kid who’d decisioned him 8-1 in the dual meet here.”
Bushman, who won two matches by pin before losing to an all-county Miller Place wrestler in the semifinals, placed sixth at 126.
Brian Ordonez, a junior in his first year of varsity competition, was a surprising sixth-place finisher at 145, earning Tseperkas’s praise, and, at 195, Hands was the runner-up and Alfreddo Perez was sixth.
Tseperkas added that “Colton Kalbacher and Heine were each one match away from placing.”
The team was to have finished the league season here yesterday with Huntington. It is to wrestle in an invitational at Port Jefferson High School Saturday. The league tournament will be at Bellport High on Feb. 4.
East Hampton’s swimmers easily defeated Deer Park at the Y on Jan. 18, exhibitioning (and thus forfeiting 12 points) in the penultimate event, the 200 freestyle relay.
Thomas Brierley won the 50 freestyle in 24.02 seconds; Trevor Mott, Andrew Winthrop, and Jeremy Pepper swept the 200-yard freestyle, and Mott won the 100 free in 53.95. Brierley was the runner-up in the 500 in 5:03.95, and Dan Hartner was the runner-up in the 100 backstroke in 1:01.01.