Before playoffs, Porters have league title to play for

GARRET MEADE FILE PHOTO | Dantré Langhorne and the rest of the Greenport Porters will play The Stony Brook School tonight for the League VIII championship.

With two more wins under his high school boys basketball team’s belt, Greenport Coach Al Edwards is optimistic about the Porters’ chances in the upcoming Suffolk County Class C Tournament.

“I like our chances now that we can make a good run,” he said. “We’ll finish strong down the stretch. The kids are working hard and I would like to see us go as far as we can possibly go. We started out to win the league. That was one of our smaller objectives.”

Winning the Suffolk Class C crown and advancing beyond are loftier goals.

“Everybody is aware that you’ve got to have your ‘A’ game,” Edwards said. “You can’t stumble once the regular season is over; otherwise, you’re going to watch everyone else play. It’s hard to get accustomed to doing that.”

The Porters (16-1, 12-1) rolled to a 72-27 victory over visiting Shelter Island on Friday before registering a 63-51 decision over The Ross School in East Hampton on Monday. They will take on their Class C arch-rival, The Stony Brook School, tonight in a home game that will decide the League VIII title.

While preparing for the tournament, Edwards said he has been trying to get reserves more playing time.

“It’s important that we can get seven or eight guys that can step in and give you some help and give some other players some rest,” he said. “You never know when somebody is going to get into foul trouble and you’re going to have to have this one in instead of that one.”

Tyler McNeil contributed three points and four points against Shelter Island and Ross, respectively, in the past two games and Tevin Parish had three and two points, respectively.

Edwards said McNeil “showed some quickness going to the basket. He’s got a big body. Hopefully, he can help us down the stretch as far as rebounding is concerned.”

Parish takes “up a lot of space in the middle. He’s a space eater. Hopefully, he will help us out inside,” Edwards said.

Against Shelter Island (2-14, 1-12), forward Dantré Langhorne put another triple double into the books with 20 points, 10 assists and 12 rebounds. He was helped by guard Jalen Shelby (17 points, eight rebounds) and center Tremayne Hansen (eight points, nine rebounds).

The Porters grabbed a 21-5 first-quarter advantage and never looked back. They extended the lead to 43-10 at the half.

It was more of the same vs. Ross (7-9, 6-7). Langhorne collected 21 points, 12 rebounds and eight assists. Shelby shot the lights out with 21 points, canning four three-point baskets. Hansen had another strong inside game with 11 points and 10 rebounds.

Edwards was impressed with Shelby’s 6-for-9 shooting from the field, which included 4 of 6 from three-point range. Three of those long-range shots came in the first quarter.

“He hasn’t been consistently shooting very well,” Edwards said. “That was good that he had that. It was good that he knocked down some shots early.”

Greenport broke open the game in the second quarter by outscoring Ross, 19-10, en route to a 39-25 halftime lead.