Stiff Competition as Whitman Tops Bay Shore 59-50

Jordan Aiken (10) in a recent game against Connetquot, has solidified himself as floor manager and team leader.
Jordan Aiken (10) in a recent game against Connetquot, has solidified himself as floor manager and team leader.
Willie Petro (20) brings the ball, along with the rest of his team, down court for a score against Connetquot.
Willie Petro (20) brings the ball, along with the rest of his team, down court for a score against Connetquot.
Senior forward Gary Harris (13) is an active player and can usually be found where ever the action is.
Senior forward Gary Harris (13) is an active player and can usually be found where ever the action is.
Andre Harris (25) is proving to be a strong competitor and leading his Wildcats as they fight for a spot in League II rankings.
Andre Harris (25) is proving to be a strong competitor and leading his Wildcats as they fight for a spot in League II rankings.

Whitman was firing on all cylinders in their recent win over rival Bay Shore. The team needed the win at a crucial moment in their schedule and they came up big 59-50.

From coaches Thomas ‘Fitz” Fitzpatrick and Ray Eatmon:

Fitz: “The first half ended in a tie 27-27, and in the second half we switched from primarily playing zone to a little bit of man coverage with some traps in the bottom of the zone. After the first few minutes we were down 7, so we called a time-out. Coach Eatmon settled the guys down, and we worked on pressing a little differently, next thing you know we had a 17 point quarter.”

Fitz: “The guys are buying into our defense and really beginning to execute, last night we saw what happens when it comes together. Guys were moving; we had steals with guys capitalizing on the possession.  It was working, and they could see it. On one of those steals Jordan Aiken hit a 3 pointer that capped an 11-0 run.  So for a few minutes we caught them off guard, we capitalized on it, and that proved to be the difference in the game.”

Fitz: “Coach Eatmon and I are happy with how the guys are coming along, were making small steps on the defense and Thursday night at Northport will be a big challenge, so were hoping for good results again.”  

Eatmon: “Aiken stepped up to solidify himself as a leader on the team in the Bay Shore win. Jordan has been one of the most consistent players on the team.”

Fitz: “He’s put in the time to improve his game, and it’s showing.”

Fitz: “Andre Harris had a big night too.  He’s been a pleasant surprise. He had 17 points and 13 rebounds; he’s earned his starting position.”

Eatmon: He [Andre Harris] has matured tremendously; you can see it in his game, and in his teammates.  They respect his game, especially from a guy who is new to Whitman basketball. He’s bought into our system and you can see how it’s elevated his game.”

Fitz: “Kory Lee come up big for us too. He had 8 points in the second-half, made some good moves and finished strong at the basket. Willie Petro has also been playing well and contributed in the Bay Shore win. Off the bench we have been getting some solid minutes from Julian Kleberg, Claude Cajuste, Dylan McNally, Matt Stockfeder, and Matt Kleet. Coach and I are getting much more comfortable putting them in the game because they have been delivering.

Fitz: “It was a good win, to be down 7 in the 3rd quarter and come back the way we did to win by 9 was good. The place got loud, which always brings back great memories for coach Eatmon and myself. It’s a tough league, so now were 3-3 as we wrap up the first go-around with Northport, Thursday night at 7PM on their home court.”

Go Wildcats!

 

Prior Post:

With their big upset over Northport recently, Bay Shore’s basketball team tips off against the Whitman Wildcats today (1/13/15) at 6PM in the North Gymnasium. The Wildcats have split their last two games, making tonight an important game to stay in competition with Suffolk’s League II elite.

After the Connetquot win, we had a chance to talk with Varsity Head Coach Tom ‘Fitz’ Fitzpatrick. “We got off to a good start, and having a 10 point cushion in the first quarter put us at ease a little,” said Coach Fitz.  “The guys were able to come out and concentrate on playing good defense.”

Whitman controlled the ball for most of the game outscoring Connetquot in each of the four quarters. The wildcats were led by 6’4” senior center Andre Harris who netted 13 points and 10 rebounds. “Andre had a really good summer league for us this year and I don’t know where we’d be without him,” said Coach Fitz. “He’s matured greatly and it’s shown in his performance from the football field to the basketball court.”

Whitman’s senior forward Gary Harris also has a good night against Connetquot with nine points and eight rebounds. “Gary is a great student athlete who has stepped up to do everything we’ve ask him to,” said Coach Fitz. “We look to get more of the same quality time from him as the season progresses.”

Whitman junior guard Willie Petro also stepped up and made his presence known. “Willie is a great open court player with a tremendous first step,” said Coach Fitz. “Combined with accurate passing, Willie is a big part of our growth.”