Bayside girls not satisfied with 59-37 victory

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Shakia Woods’ steal and layup just capped a game-ending 14-2 run, but there were no smiles for the Bayside girls’ basketball team, despite defeating second-place Van Buren on its home court by 22 points Monday.

That’s because when expectations are as high as they are at Bayside, there is no settling for mediocrity. More important than the final score of 59-37 is what the Commodores did, or rather didn’t do, along the way.

“We’re still playing sloppy, not up to our potential,” said Bayside coach Steve Piorkowski. “The challenge is before them because either they’re going to step up in the playoffs and execute the fundamentals, or they’re going to have another team bring it to them. Right now we’re not playing playoff basketball.”

Just how high are the expectations for a team that is three games away from a second straight undefeated record in Queens III-B?

“Pretty high,” said Gayle Silverstein, who scored 15 of her game-high 18 points in the first half. “If this isn’t the year, it’s not going to happen.”

“We want to go all the way,” added Allie Falco, one of nine seniors on the team. “Our playoff record [a first-round loss last year and a second-round defeat in 2000] isn’t up to par. We want to go further than we’ve ever gone.”

Thanks to the interior dominance of Delise Johnson, a 6-foot-2 sophomore center who scored 15 points, Van Buren (14-4, 9-3) led 24-22 at halftime.

But without Jennaer Brown, a talented sophomore guard who averaged 12 points, 6.8 rebounds and 6.6 assists per game before being ruled academically ineligible, the VeeBees — with only one true ball handler in senior Jeneva Kelly — wilted under Bayside’s 2-2-1 press in the second half.

“It definitely hurts because [Brown] is just as fast and as good a dribbler as Jeneva,” said Van Buren coach Mike McLain. “Even without Jennaer, we played good for three quarters but then fatigue set in. [Bayside] hit a couple of shots and we just ran out of gas.”

While Silverstein paced Bayside (17-2, 12-0) in the first half, Falco (7 points, 7 assists, 5 steals and 4 rebounds) and Woods (14 points, 4 steals) led the way in the third and fourth quarters.

The Commodores, whose substitutions resemble line changes in hockey with four players switching, which resulted in fresh legs, went on a 19-4 run in the third quarter to take a 41-30 lead and finished the game on a 14-2 run to take its largest lead of the game.

“They didn’t take the game over, we had the will to win the game,” Woods said. “But a lot of work still needs to be done.”

“It’s how you execute on the floor,” Piorkowski added. “You don’t want to get into bad habits of not playing fundamentally sound. But Van Buren is a quality team and this is a quality win.”

Townsend Harris 58, Bryant 34. Shanay Freeman scored 24 points and Andi Strauss added 15 for Townsend Harris (10-7, 8-4 Queens A).

Cardozo 72, Jamaica 46. Leah Lipschitz had 23 points and 9 boards and Britni Bolden scored 19 points and grabbed 12 rebounds for Cardozo (12-4, 9-3 Queens A).

John Adams 61, Springfield Gardens 40. Dinorah Diaz scored 16 points and Nicola Moore had 17 points and 6 assists for John Adams (11-8) in a non-league win, while Diana Frank netted a game-high 20 points for Springfield.

Forest Hills 51, Grover Cleveland 34. Katie Gilbert (17 points and 18 rebounds) and Albana Gega (11 points and 10 rebounds) each had double-doubles, while Jackie Butler added 9 points and 11 assists for Forest Hills (14-4, 10-2 Queens II-B).

Richmond Hill 56, Far Rockaway 32. Helen Marte scored a game-high 27 points and Nia Harrison added 12 points for Richmond Hill (9-9, 7-5 Queens I-B). Nancy Reid led Far Rockaway with 22 points.

Thomas Edison 42, Robert F. Kennedy 22. Nicole Wright had 21 points and 13 rebounds for Edison (8-6, 8-4 Queens II-B).

Francis Lewis 78, Martin Luther King 61. Alaina Davis and Diatiema Hill had 15 points and 7 rebounds apiece, and Natasha Page added 9 points and 11 boards for Francis Lewis (16-1) at the PSAL Manhattan Winter Classic at Hunter College Sunday. Jennifer Brown led MLK (17-1) with 26 points and 20 rebounds.

Lincoln 53, Cardozo 38. Lipschitz had 12 points, Bolden had 9 points and 10 rebounds and Denise Fath added 9 points and 7 assists for the Judges at the PSAL Brooklyn Winter Classic Saturday at Brooklyn College.

Newcomers 40, Campus Magnet 24. Maria Rios scored a game-high 20 points and had 4 assists, and Vanessa Otero had 6 points and 6 assists for Newcomers (5-10, 5-6 Queens II-B).

Franklin K. Lane 53, Long Island City 40. Joelina Diaz had 14 points and 11 rebounds and Jamie Bellettini added 10 points and 8 assists for Lane (7-11).

Springfield Gardens 55, RFK 15. Frank netted a career-high 38 points for Springfield Gardens.

Beach Channel 49, Forest Hills 20. Katreem Palmer led Beach Channel (11-1, 8-0 Queens I-B) with 20 points and 5 assists.

John Adams 49, Grand Street Campus 47. Diaz had 23 points and 13 boards, and Aisha Cardoza added 5 points and 11 rebounds for the Spartans.

Reach Associate Sports Editor Dylan Butler by email at or call 229-0300, Ext. 143.

Updated 10:25 am, October 12, 2011
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