Sean Charters, the starting junior point guard for the Greenport Porters, has come a long way since he first played varsity level basketball with Greenport’s summer league team as a seventh grader. The 5-foot-9 Charters was about 14 inches shorter at the time, trying to find his way around giants and playing alongside Ryan Creighton, who later graduated as Greenport’s all-time leading scorer.
Wasn’t that intimidating? You bet. Not that one could tell by Charters’ demeanor on the court at the time. “You can’t show that you’re intimidated out there,” he said.
Charters joined the varsity team for the school season last season. This season is his first as a starter, and he said he has grown more comfortable running the offense with the ball in his hands.
“I think he’s come along real well,” Greenport Coach Al Edwards said. “He knows the game real well. … He’s got a good head on his shoulders.”
For a team that is short on varsity experience, Charters plays a valuable role. He said his early exposure to varsity basketball helped him a lot, particularly in adapting to the speed of the game. He said he has worked on his defense a lot with Rodney Shelby, one of the team’s assistant coaches.
“He stepped his game up,” said Tremayne Hansen, Greenport’s senior center. “He does everything. He hustles, everything, all-around. He’s faster than everybody on the team.”
It must have been gratifying to Charters for him to be one of four Porters who scored in double figures in a 60-41 defeat of the Pierson Whalers in a Suffolk County League VIII game at Greenport High School on Friday night. Hansen led the way with 17 points and 13 rebounds. Dantré Langhorne also produced a double-double with 14 points and 10 rebounds. Charters and Jalen Shelby chipped in with 13 points apiece for the Porters (6-0, 3-0). It was a career-high total for Charters, who knocked down three three-point shots and had 10 second-half points to help the Porters build on a six-point halftime lead.
“Today I finally started knocking down shots,” Charters said. “On normal days it was rimming out, rimming out, and today it came to me in the second half.”
A blowout was expected, but Pierson (0-5, 0-2) gave the Porters a good fight before Greenport put more distance between the teams in the second half.
“I think we just played a little sloppy, though,” said Hansen.
Was he ever worried?
“No, not at all,” he said.
Edwards said League VIII is competitive and teams aren’t going to roll over for the Porters. Every game, he said, is going to be a tough one.
“We’re top dogs, so to speak,” he said. “Everybody thinks we’re top dogs. We’re supposed to come in here and blow these teams out. Everybody thinks that [in] the Southold game [a 61-54 win two nights earlier], we should have blown them out, but you know, these guys played hard. Everybody plays hard.”
Pierson received a good game from Skyler Loesch, who finished with 19 points. Three of his points came on a long-range chuck off the backboard as the buzzer ending the third quarter sounded. Seamus Doyle added eight points.
But the Porters dominated in rebounding by a 34-19 count.
In addition to Charters’ contributions on offense, Edwards said he also played good defense, as did Matt Dibble.
Charters, whose older brother Kyle was a senior for the Porters when Sean was in sixth grade, said he is comfortable with the teammates surrounding him.
“I love playing with Dantré and Tremayne and Jalen,” he said. “It’s a lot of fun playing with these guys. I like the uptempo and I think we should be doing good stuff this year.”