Friday, April 19, 2024

Basketball: Lady Islanders Maintain Grit, Run Into Buzz Saws

Two games in less than 24 hours, two tough opponents. One was 5-1, having won four games by more than 15 points. The other was undefeated after ten games. How would the Lady Islanders, a basketball team with three freshmen, two sophomores, and a player who just started playing basketball in November, respond?

. . .  with grit, resilience, and heart, never giving up despite two losses: 45-4 versus High Tech High, and 59-24 versus Vista High.

Selena Herrera (#5) boxes out while teammate Virginia Ryan reaches for the rebound versus the High Tech High Storm.

Versus High Tech High Storm

Against the Storm, the Coronado Islanders managed only four points, all on foul shots: two by junior Selena Herrera, and one each by sophomore Claudia Geraldi and senior Virginia Ryan.

High Tech High mounted a fierce defense, playing full-court press and double-teaming relentlessly throughout the game, stifling offensive opportunities. In the fourth quarter, two Coronado players, Herrera and Charlie Reyman, fouled out, and two others – Ryan and Alina Molina-Murrieta – left the game with injuries, leaving the team with only four available players. Midway through the third period, High Tech High led by 30. Curiously, High Tech High continued its full-court pressure and double teaming until two minutes were left in the game. Despite the opposition, the Islanders continued to support one another, naming the final four players the “Core Four.” Final score, 4–45.

Versus Vista High Panthers

A mere 20 hours after the High Tech High drubbing, the Islanders were back on the court versus undefeated Vista High. The Islanders erased the memory of the previous evening, and began the game with sharp passing, shooting, and teamwork. After the first quarter, the Islanders led 8-6. The second quarter continued strong, with a three-pointer by Herrera followed by a two off of a great assist from new-to-basketball Seina Fernandez, to increase the lead to 13-6. The first half was characterized by teamwork, a laser focus on finding the open player, good shooting, and lock-down defense.

Senior Susanna Pate brings the ball down the court for the Islanders.

The previous night’s effort took its toll, however, as Vista came back to take the lead with two minutes left in the half, 13-15, then poured in 11 more, including a 3 at the buzzer, to end the half,  26-13. During the second half, the Panthers showed why they were undefeated, hitting 2s and 3s with relative ease.

Herrera led the scoring for the Islanders with 13 points, Reyman added five, Susanna Pate four, and Molina-Murietta with two. Final score, 24-59.

Coach and Player Prognostications

The Islander players shared their thoughts about the team’s prospects for the season. Herrera is excited about the positive energy the team has, as well as the experiences playing other sports that some of the players bring to the game. Senior Pate appreciates that the team has a lot of speed, as well as some experienced players that she can learn from. In addition to Herrera and Pate, assistant coach Andre Murphy, Geraldi, and Seina Fernandez all agreed that the team will continue to improve once it has more opportunities to build teamwork, bond, and develop an identity.

“The girls played really, really hard. They were just beat up from last night,” Coach John Coolidge said. “They ran out of gas in the second half. Vista is 10-0, and they started hitting their shots. (Vista is) a very, very good shooting team, but we held them pretty good. We we put a scare into them the first half.”

He expressed his confidence in the team. “This team, once we get everybody (in the gym) at the same time, everybody back from injuries, I think we’ll be okay,” he said. “Our job is to play these (early) games, learn from these games. But when League starts, that’s when we start. That’s when we compete.”

Next Up: Mar Vista at Home on Dec. 15, a non-conference game at 5 pm.

Freshman Charlie Reyman shoots for the Islanders at home versus the Vista High Panthers.

Lisa Lamb
Lisa Lamb
Lisa’s passion for sports journalism stems from her experiences playing high school sports and reading great sports journalists, especially those who write about her favorite basketball team, the San Diego State Aztecs. As a professor of mathematics education, she enjoys analyzing data to highlight the statistics that help bring the story to life. Lisa has lived in Coronado for almost 20 years with her husband and son. She loves the friendly neighborhood community and the walkable access to wonderful restaurants and parks.Have news to share? Send tips, story ideas or letters to the editor to: [email protected]

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