BCHS Basketball Dolphins Need Time to Jell On Court
Jim Malone has never prepared for a Beach Channel/Channel View boys varsity basketball season without having the services of two key players.
But that’s what the Dolphins coach has had to do for most of the practices held in November while senior forwards Demitrius Pelt and Jahvari Josiah were currently helping the football team reach the PSAL Bowl championship.
Though Pelt and Josiah returned for the PSAL Queens AA opener on Tuesday, the Dolphins showed their lack of cohesion and experience late in their game against Forest Hills.
The visitors came back in the fourth quarter to narrowly defeat Beach Channel 54-52.
Beach Channel had maintained a narrow lead going into the fourth quarter. Senior Kevin Marmolejos connected for three of his 14 points to give the Dolphins a 47-43 lead.
The Rangers then responded by pushing up the tempo, and employed a full court press to harass the Dolphin guards. They scored the next nine points in a row and had a 52-47 lead with 42.3 seconds left in the game.
“I was wishing to steal one of those games. The press hit us, we threw the ball away and we made stupid turnovers,” Malone said.
Beach Channel will be a team in transition as they incorporate three starters, along with host of new players. Marmolejos, the senior shooting guard who scored a team high 14 points, knows his team must handle the pressure of late game situations.
The 6-2 guard, who the top scorer returning from last year, says he is ready to have the added responsibilities of producing points and leading the team.
“I got to shoot more. I wasn’t shooting. I was teaching a lot, telling people where to go,” Marmolejos said. “I got to be more aggressive going to the basket, scoring and playing defense.”
The team may need a while to integrate Pelt, who scored 8 points per game last year and the athletic skills of Josiah into the offense. They will have to increase their scoring contributions to replace the 16 points and 8 rebounds produced last year by former center Christopher Thompson.
Christopher John will have added responsibilities at the point guard spot to replace the steady Khalil Bratton.
One positive in the defeat to Forest Hills was the 11 points scored by first year junior Ismail Abdullah. But there are six new players on the roster that will look to get some playing time.
“We’ll get it down.
We’ll get better,” Malone insisted about his team. “We usually do.”