For the past month, it appeared whichever team emerged out of Class B between Suffolk and Nassau Counties would face Section 1 power Irvington.
Since Feb. 9, Irvington was ranked No. 1 in the state for Class B by the New York State Sportswriters Association. The Bulldogs, behind a 45-point performance from junior Lindsay Halpin, knocked off sectional rival Woodlands in the Section I championship game on Feb. 29, to defeat the then fifth-ranked team in the state.
But in their next game, the Bulldogs saw their season come to an end with a 61-60 loss to Marlboro of Section 9. And perhaps, giving the Mattituck girls basketball team a greater chance of advancing to the program’s first state final four.
At 7:30 p.m., the Tuckers will continue what has been their greatest season in program history when they host Marlboro at St. Joseph’s College in Patchogue. The winner will be crowned the Southeast Region champion and earn a ticket to Troy, N.Y. next weekend for the state final four.
The Tuckers, despite a now 20-2 overall record, have not been ranked among the state’s top-25 Class B teams in the state this year. Marlboro is now ranked No. 10 in the most recent rankings released Wednesday.
The Tuckers won 37-33 against Carle Place on Tuesday, their 12th win over the past 13 games. The only loss came against Class A champion Islip in the small school championship, a non-elimination postseason game. The only other loss for the Tuckers this season was by one point to Port Jefferson on Jan. 11.
In Marlboro’s victory Wednesday over Irvington, 5-foot-10 senior Missy Sadler scored 23 points with 19 rebounds, according to the Daily Freeman. The Dukes are now 21-2.
Tonight’s game is the end of a girls basketball triple-header at St. Joseph’s. The Class A Long Island final is at noon, followed by the Class AA game at 2:30 p.m. Each game has a separate $7 admission.
The Class B winner plays at 11:30 a.m. March 11 at Hudson Valley Community College against either Westhill (Section 3) or Seton Catholic Central Section 4).
Photo Caption: Corinne Reda fights for the ball against Carle Place Tuesday. (Credit: Garret Meade)
Editor’s note: The game time was changed from 5 p.m. to 7:30 p.m.