Sabrina is back to lead Sullivan West to victory
ROSCOE, NY — The Sullivan West Lady Bulldogs’ double-trouble “tall twin” sister act of Sabrina and Josephine Martinez is back in action.
On January 26, Sabrina went down hard at Tri-Valley, and some folks thought she might be sidelined for rest of the season.
But with the resilience of youth, that enviable ability to bounce back from adversity, she returned to the floor a few days ago in a game against Port Jervis, and on Tuesday, February 6, continued to shake off the skull-knocking encounter with the floor with a vengeance, as Martinez led her team to a 48-29 victory over the home team Lady Devils of Roscoe/Livingston Manor.
The non-league game was marked by trio of Big Kahuna moments: the aforementioned return of Sabrina to the fray, senior recognition night at Roscoe, and a Hail Mary three-pointer at the third frame buzzer by Lady Devils’ Madison Ackerly, in a last ditch effort that Tom Brady of the Patriots would have been proud to own.
“I will probably never do that again… it was kind of a good feeling,” said Ackerly of her one-in-a-million bucket from mid-court, a shot heard round the world—well, at least Roscoe—that electrified the fans and her teammates.
Back in 1995, Madison’s mom, Christy Rhodes, graduated from Roscoe, a year before the creation of the Women’s National Basketball Association (WNBA), and during the game against the Lady Bulldogs, she watched her daughter Madison play the game of hoops at her high school alma mater.
“It’s both heartwarming and heartbreaking, because I wish I could be on that court too… I love seeing her play,” said Rhodes, noting that if the WNBA had been around in her day, she more than likely would have continued her basketball career.
“I get to live vicariously,” she added.
As a sidelight, Christy took to the court in her day in the post position, and today her daughter follows her in that slot, as well as being coached by Becky Ahart, helmswoman of the Lady Devils (6-10 overall, 0-1 league), who has been coaching varsity hoopsters for 28 years.
Reflecting on her former coach, Rhodes recalled, “Becky is a amazing person and coach, always drove me to do better, which is a coach’s job, but she took it to another level.”
Now that’s a perfect example of the tradition of high school sports in rural America: dedicated coaches putting kids first, and student athletes following in the footsteps of their parents.
Before the start of the non-league game, three senior captains stepped up the plate as the stars of senior recognition night at Roscoe: Rosalyn Trautschold, Camille Hondromaras and Mara Marshall LeRoy. (For more on this story and photos, visit www.riverreporteronline.com).
Sullivan West outpaced the Lady Devils in the first frames (12-4, 11-6), while in the third period Roscoe/Livingston Manor fought back 13-8, aided in large measure by Ackerly’s last-second wing-and-a-prayer 3.
In the final frame, the Lady Bulldogs slammed the gate on the home team, outscoring them 17-6.
Sullivan West’s leading scorers: Sabrina Martinez (20), Josephine Martinez (10) and McKinley Bernitt (10).
Roscoe/Livingston Manor: Madison Ackerly (12 points including a couple of 3s) and Lindsey Rau (10 points including a 3).
At the free-throw line: SW 16/25 (64%), RLM 4/7 (57%).
Pat Donovan, coach of the Lady Bulldogs (8-6 overall, 0-3 league) said Roscoe has always “been a tough place to play… Becky does a good job with those girls.”
Ahart said, “It was a good game, Sullivan West played good defense and offense… we were in it and came back to within an eight-point margin.”
For more on this story and more photos, visit http://riverreporter.com/sports/senior-recognition-night.