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Wildcats ready for playoff spotlight

Bowne fell in that battle for first place in Queen A at home, 59-55."It was very frustrating," Bitterman said. "I actually have a video of that game and you can see we were standing around like we were in quicksand."The coach vowed then to improve upon that disappointing performance and get his players to focus more. Missing practice was no longer an option. Neither was being lackadaisical in workouts. The next time around, Bowne came back from a 15-point deficit and knocked off Van Buren, 62-56, Feb. 4 and the two teams finished at tied, at 17-1, for the division crown. Because the Wildcats' win came later in the year, they were rewarded by the PSAL with a No. 6 seed in the Class A city playoffs. Bowne will play No. 10 Washington Irving in the second round Wednesday in Flushing.Van Buren, which got the seventh seed, won via forfeit against LaGuardia Feb. 13 in a a first-round game. The VeeBees host No. 10 Robeson in the second round Tuesday.The key for Bowne, Bitterman says, is its ballhandling. Both Shameka Johnson and Janisha (Brittany) Mitchell are interchangeable at the point and, because of that, the Wildcats are hard to press.Reach Associate Sports Editor Marc Raimondi by e-mail at mraimondi@timesledger.com or call 718-229-0300, Ext. 130.

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