New York, NY | The stage was set at the City College of New York as the Dolphins and Bulldogs squared off once again in the CUNYAC Championship game, a rematch from last season. During the regular season, Staten Island and Brooklyn College split the series, with each team winning on the road. The Bulldogs would go on to win the grudge match 59-50 to win the 2017-18 CUNYAC Championship. The Dolphins finish the season 21-6 while the Bulldogs improved to 24-3.
Pasaturo was held to a career-low 8 points tonight, however, she was active on the boards, pacing Staten Island with 11 while Samantha Flecker led the Dolphins in scoring with 16 points. Price and Victoria Crea added 8 and 4 points, respectively, throughout the game.
CUNYAC Finals MVP Chanel Jemmott led the Bulldogs in both scoring and rebounds with 18 and 14, respectively. 10 of Jemmotts 14 rebounds came on the offensive end. George picked up where Moogan fell short tonight, going perfect from behind the arc en route to a 15-point night.
The Dolphins and Bulldogs had a defensive battle to start the game as blocks were plentiful on both ends of the floor. Each team also had their fair share of air balls as they continued to rush their opportunities. After a solid defensive stand by the Bulldogs, Alexandra Moogan, normally a three-point specialist came streaking down the floor only to be met by CUNYAC’s back-to-back Player of the Year, Christina Pasaturo. Pasaturo made sure her recovery sprint would prove to be worth it as she sent Moogan’s layup attempt flying out of bounds. Brooklyn would move the ball around the perimeter, however, they were unable to penetrate it which led to a CSI fast break for a Samantha Flecker fast break for the first points of the game.
As the quarter wore on, Brooklyn began to pick apart the Dolphins’ defense which led to a 7-0 run. The Bulldogs started to get inside and convert high percentage shots which helped give them a 9-4 lead heading into the second quarter. Brooklyn rolled out a 2-3 zone which stifled CSI’s potent offense. Pasaturo, CSI’s all-time leading scorer, struggled to find the bottom of the net. Samantha Flecker, Victoria Crea, and Angelique Price stepped up to keep Bulldogs from getting too far ahead. Flecker and Diana Todaro were powerful under the rim, extending the Dolphins’ offensive stays while limiting Brooklyn’s.
Each team slightly increased their shooting percentages in the second quarter and Flecker was able to bring the Dolphins within one when she drained a corner 3-point basket. CSI was unable to cash in on several offensive opportunities. Chanel Jammott gave Brooklyn a 9-point lead, their largest of the game up to that point when she created space and sank a mid-range jumper. Brooklyn College finished the second quarter on a 15-4 run which sent the Dolphins into the locker room at the half in a 12-point hole. CUNYAC’s Rookie of the Year, Taylor George, nailed a 3-point shot at the buzzer to keep the momentum on their side.
Flecker came out of the locker room and set the building on fire which helped the Dolphins go on a 14-1 run and take a 30-29 lead. Flecker was on a mission and Brooklyn was forced to call two timeouts to adjust their game to account for Flecker. Brooklyn would eventually adjust, however, their once 12 point lead had diminished. Down by two, with two minutes left in the third quarter, Pasaturo used her quick hands to create a fast break and convert the layup herself to knot the game up at 33. Brooklyn replied with a 10-0 run which put them in the driver’s seat for the rest of the game as the Dolphins played catch-up.
Halfway through the Brooklyn run, Head Coach Tim Shanahan was tossed from the game in the third quarter for arguing a pair of calls that went against his team. The momentum stayed with the Bulldogs as the Dolphins began to unravel. Brooklyn would stay locked in as the Dolphins now had the time against them. The Bulldogs were able to stretch their lead to 18, the largest lead of the game before the Dolphins made one last late push. CSI went on a 10-0 run to close out the game, however, it was too little too late.
The Dolphins will now hope to get an at-large bid to participate in the NCAA Division III Tournament come March.