2008-02-08 / Sports

Dolphins Turn The Page To Next Year

By Elio Velez

Jim Malone, the head coach of the Beach Channel Dolphins, has already accepted the fact his team would go through a rebuilding campaign.

Malone has guided an undermanned and inexperienced team through a tough season. It's been the first time in a long while since the Dolphins have been under the .500 winning mark.

And they tried their best to hang tough with a more talented squad as the Dolphins entertained visiting Martin Van Buren on Tuesday.

For three quarters, the Dolphins hinted at victory. In the fourth quarter, Beach Channel couldn't hang on to the relentless push Van Buren made. They exploded for a 16-3 run in the fourth quarter as Van Buren increased their record to 8-8 with a 64-50 win.

The Dolphins were toe-to-toe with Martin Van Buren for three quarters. But they couldn't hold on to a nine-point lead early in the third quarter. Four players scored in double figures for Martin Van Buren, who had too much depth and outran the Dolphins in the fourth.

Christopher Thompson scored 19 points and Yaquis Moss added 13 for Beach Channel, who fell to 3-14. Making the playoffs in the reformatted Queens AA Division last year with a 12-6 record was a good accomplishment. But sadly, there will not be a playoff appearance this season.

"We had kids come out of nowhere last year but we didn't have any kids materialize this year. There was a big gap" Malone said.

Moss agrees.

"This season has been real tough," Moss said. "Besides losing Rolando (Beckford), Devon (Saxon), Pete (Beckford) and now we have a really inexperienced team," Moss said about Saxon and Beckford, who were important veterans last year.

When Moss returns next year for his senior campaign, he will be part of a core group that believes the Dolphins will soon return to their winning ways in the AA Division.

"This is where I belong. This is where Beach Channel belongs. We belong in the AA in Queens. We compete here," Moss said.

"This is where we belong. If we work hard, compete and don't give up. We win."

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