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Istrati Drops 30 as Girls’ Basketball Routs Royals

January 14, 2011

This past Tuesday, the girls’ basketball team lost to Pierson, 33-35, their first loss to the Lady Whalers since falling to them in the 2004 County Championship, 33-35, ending a run of 23 consecutive regular season wins in League VIII. Additionally, since January 31, 2005 our girls had won 62 of their 63 games in League VIII on their way to six consecutive League Championships. The setback could have been devastating to a team that has dominated their league opponents for over half a decade, but our girls showed their resilience by routing Port Jeff yesterday afternoon, 62-20.

Natalie Istrati enjoyed a career day, scoring 30 points and pulling down 15 rebounds. Brannon Burke overcame early back pain to net 13 points and Jess Winston was the architect for the offense with 15 assists.

1st Quarter

7th-grader Ariana Odom got the scoring started for the Brook by drilling a jumper, but a moment of anxiety set in for the fans as Burke sat down early with back pain and Port Jeff drilled a 3-pointer to take a 4-5 lead. With one captain on the bench, the two others, Istrati and Winston, righted the ship and ignited a 27-2 run that extended into the second quarter. Istrati scored 10 in the frame and was a terror on the boards, Winston pushed the ball up the floor, the defense yielded six steals, and Keara Vancol beat the buzzer with a layup to give the Bears a commanding 23-7 lead after one. Burke showed her toughness by returning to the floor and scoring 7 points including a tough and-1. | 23-7

2nd Quarter

The Brook started the frame with an 8-0 run and outscored the Royals 16-5 in the quarter as the defense forced five more steals, three courtesy of Danielle Pappas, and Istrati netted 10 more points to give her 20 at the half. Burke beat the buzzer on a tough shot to give her 9 points at halftime. | 39-12

3rd Quarter

The Bears’ tenacious defense again set the table for their offensive attack as they pilfered the ball four times. Istrati capped off her memorable day with 10 more points in the frame to give her a career-high 30. Burke’s vicious block on a Port Jeff jumper firmly announced to everyone that this game was decidedly Stony Brook’s. | 53-18

4th Quarter

Several key starters sat out for most of the fourth as the Bears secured a solid win that helped them improve to 2-1 in the league. The defense grabbed four more steals to give them 19 for the game. | 62-20

Impressions

We got a glimpse of what our girls were made of yesterday. For a team that is so used to winning, a loss to a league opponent is tough to swallow. However, they showed no ill-effects from the loss and displayed their toughness. It was a great team win that saw a number of girls contribute other than the big three of Burke, Istrati, and Winston. Our defense was energetic and unrelenting and will give us a chance to win every game the rest of the way if we bring it on a nightly basis.

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