|By Kevin Devlin
Winter hoop is over but that doesn’t mean that hoop is over. On Monday, April 3, the All-Dorchester Sports League began the fourth season of their 14 and under girls’ league at the Tynan Community Center gym.
Gatey Shamrocks 28
Gatey Hoopsters 26
It came down to the wire as these teams battled from start to finish. The Shamrocks, coached by Linda Chapin, were trailing early, but went on a 6-0 run to take a 12-11 lead. The teams traded baskets for the final three minutes of the first half and the Shamrocks realized a 15-14 lead at the break. In the second half, the Hoopsters, coached by Fran McNally, trailing by as much as seven points came roaring back to come within two points with 20 seconds remaining. They scored the last six points of the tilt but fell short as time expired.
Haley “Neezo” Nee had a tremendous game, as she netted 14 points, a handful of rebounds, timely assists, and several key steals. Ainsley Cuddyer (three steals) was also in a run and gun mood, as she was beating her opponent down court on a consistent basis for easy lay-ups, en route to an 11-point performance. On the other side of the ledger, Jill Skerry, Marylyn Joyce, and Hannah McNally (four steals) each scored six points.
Gatey Magic 23
The two-time defending league champions had too much depth and firepower for the young OLLIE Club coached by Kathleen McCarthy. Leading 11-2 early in the game, Coach Joe Kelly’s squad coasted to victory. All-Star Katey O’Brien scored 12 points and super guard Laura O’Donnell added 10 points. For the OLLIE, Ashley Sullivan scored six points and Katelyn Coe finished with four points.
Gate of Heaven
In other local hoop, the Gate of Heaven CYO sixth-grade team, coached by Kevin Lally and John Lydon had quite a weekend. Beginning last Thursday night, the team played six games in four days, participating in the New England CYO Championships and in the Sacred Heart of Quincy Basketball Tournament.
In the opening game of the CYO Championships, played at Milton High School, Gatey defeated Saint Anthony’s of Manchester, New Hampshire, 51-34. Oliver Benner scored 14 points and Matt Beggan added 13 points. Center Brian Hurley also had a great game off the glass and contributed eight points, while Matt “Neezo” Nee had six points. Greg Lally and Brian Fitzgerald had four points each.
In the second game at Milton High, the local hoop hounds lost a heartbreaker to Saint Thomas of Bridgeport, Connecticut, 36-35. Down by four points with a minute to play in the tilt, Gatey stole the ball and scored and then Neezo hit a trey to give his team a one-point lead. Then, looking victory in the face, Gatey saw it fade away as their foe hit a deuce as time expired to steal the win away. Brian Hurld was sensational as he netted 14 points and hit a trey. Neezo also had yet another great game as he scored 12 points, knocking down three trifectas from downtown.
In the Quincy tournament, Gatey went 3-1, but lost the crucial, championship game to Sacred Heart by two points. Gatey defeated Annunciation of New York 52-37. Hurley was unstoppable as he scored 20 points, while Neezo and Beggan each had seven points.
Gatey then defeated the Renaissance School, 44-36. Neezo was brilliant as he netted 18 points. Slick and quick guard Brian “Cool Breeze” Fitzgerald scored 8 points, Beggan added 7 points, and Benner contributed 6 points. Greg Lally had a tremendous rebounding game that caught the eye of the opposing coach. As he shook the hands of the opposing players, the Renaissance coach told Lally (“that’s how you play small”) he played a great game.
Gatey played Sacred Heart of Quincy twice in this tournament. Gatey beat them in the opening game, 35-33. Hurley scored 12 points, Neezo had 10 points, and Beggan contributed 6 points. In the championship tilt, Gatey had a 20-10 lead at the break, but defensive pressure in the second half doomed Gatey’s chances of going home with the title. They lost 34-32. Neezo netted 15 points and Hurley had 6 points.
Although they lost, it was great experience for the youngsters.
“It was a hectic weekend and a lot of games,” said Coach Kevin Lally. “It was fun and a great experience for the kids. They played teams from New York, Connecticut, and New Hampshire, and ended up being rated fifth in New England in CYO. And, we almost won the Quincy title.”
Members of the team were Greg “The Rebound Man” Lally, Oliver Benner, Matt “Neezo” Nee, Brian Hurld, Brian “Cool Breeze” Fitzgerald, Casey Staff, Matt Beggan, Matt Flaherty, Brendan “The Man” Kelly, Sean Skerry, Joey “The Beast” Sweeney, and Konrad Beuchs.