Monomoy Girls Snap Skid, Get Back On Track With Lopsided Win Over Nantucket

by Brad Joyal
Monomoy senior Tatiana Malone, right, celebrates with classmate AJ Gates while sophomore Kiley Mawn (5) looks on after Gates made a basket during Friday’s lopsided win over Nantucket in Harwich. BRAD JOYAL PHOTOS
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HARWICH – After fourth-quarter struggles led to back-to-back losses to Barnstable and Wareham to start, the Monomoy girls basketball team was motivated to play a complete game.

The Sharks answered with their most dominant effort of the season as they cruised to a 53-24 victory over Nantucket after controlling the game from wire to wire.

“That was a good game,” Monomoy’s first-year coach Craig Andrews said. “It was good that I was able to get some of the younger players opportunities to play.”

Although Monomoy (2-4) was able to score at ease throughout the game, it was the team’s defense that helped set the tone and stifle Nantucket. The Sharks’ full-court press caused issues for the Whalers and repeatedly set up fast break opportunities that led to easy transition baskets.

“I think it helped to get those steals and find our roles on defense. That translated to offense,” said Kiley Mawn, a sophomore forward from Brewster who finished with 14 points, including three 3-pointers. “This was definitely a much-needed win to bring us back up.”

Senior AJ Gates led all scorers with a game-high 21 points. Seniors Karah Deveau and Susannah Brown and juniors Jojo Ready and Fiona Moore finished with four points apiece.

The win was especially gratifying because it helped snap a three-game losing streak that included losses to Nauset (62-49), Barnstable (62-45) and Wareham (49-46).

Andrews and the players viewed the latter two losses as winnable games; Monomoy fell to Barnstable after taking a 28-21 lead into halftime, then relinquished a late lead to Wareham in the final minutes.

“It was a tough week with some games that got away from us at the end,” said Gates, a Sandwich resident. “I think this was a much-needed win and it will boost our morale before [Dennis-Yarmouth] comes up.”

Still, even after a couple miscues, Andrews is confident about his team and believes it is a well-rounded group.

“It’s an enjoyable group,” he said. “We’re more of a complete team as far as anyone can do something. If we can get our minds right and execute, we’re going to be alright.”

Monomoy was scheduled to visit Dennis-Yarmouth on Tuesday after The Chronicle’s deadline, then host Sturgis West on Thursday and Sturgis East on Friday. Andrews said he’s hopeful the team should take care of business against both Sturgis teams to bring its record near .500 by week’s end.

“The anticipation is to be at least back to 4-5,” he said. “I think we’re going to be fine.”