By Frank Costagliola and Chris Scott
The CSI women’s basketball team is heading into the 2015-2016 season looking forward to taking next step, after losing in the Con Edison semi-finals last season.
“Basically, we came out against Brooklyn ice cold. We were ready, we just came out flat, Couldn’t buy a shot,” said Head Coach Tim Shanahan. “ It was 20-2 at one point, a horrible start. Eventually we got back on track and got as close to six, at one point.”
While the end to last season was a disappointment, this season looks promising. Head Coach Tim Shanahan, has produced nothing but success for the girls during his 4 year tenure. He has never a losing record as the Dolphin’s head coach and is a big reason why the Dolphins have enjoyed a tremendous amount of success over that past three seasons.
Head Coach Shanahan’s unique style of coaching is what makes him so successful. He doesn’t believe in running too many drills like most coaches do, but rather finds playing scrimmages amongst each other is more practical.
“Sometimes, the best competition you’ll have is your teammate, and I want everyone to know the plays. They handle it and they play. It’s a unique style. I don’t use a whistle, I just use my voice,” Said Coach Shanahan. “I believe the best way to teach, is as you’re playing. Others mention to me all the time ‘Hey, that’s a different way of doing things.’ but it works for me.”
CSI opens up the season with a home game against St. Joseph’s Long Island, on Saturday, November 14th at 2 p.m. The Golden Eagles underperformed last season, with a 6-18 overall record and a 1-10 record on the road. The Dolphins on the other hand were an effective team in home games last season, with a 8-3 record. This is winnable game for the girls and can be a positive way to start the season.
The Dolphins were one of the best teams in all of CUNYAC last season. They had a 12-4 record against division opponents and were dominant in both home and away games. They average 69.3 points per game while holding their opponents to only 60.6 points per game.
Thanks to CUNY rookie of the year, Christina Pasaturo, the Dolphins have one of the most potent offense players in all of CUNYAC. Pasaturo led her team in scoring last season, averaging 15.0 points per game. She will have to elevate herself to the next level because the team’s next best scorer, Myhre, graduated. Coach Shanahan is more than confident that she is capable of taking her game to the next level.
“A lot of people were surprised by the play of Christina Pasaturo last year, but I knew how good she was.” Said Coach Shanahan.
The Dolphins overall are one of the better offensive teams in the league. The girls averaged 16.3 assists per game, while their opponents only averaged 12.3. If they can move the ball effectively as well as they did last season, you can expect them to score a ton of points this season.
It’s undeniable that the Dolphins are a great offensive team, but their rebounding is an area that needs the most improvement. Last year the girls averaged about seven rebounds less per game than their opponents. The girls struggles to rebound came from their lack of size down in the paint. They seemed to have addressed that issue this season. They made three new and important additions to the roster that can help improve their rebounding numbers.
“I got another three big girls to join the team. For the first time in my coaching career I have size to play with. Nicole Vierno from St. Joseph by the Sea has the size and I love the way she plays. Rosa Perone from Moore Catholic is another big kid at 5’11-6’0. And off-the radar, Mary Nnamani was a pleasant surprise. I had no idea about her, she was just on campus and tried out for the team.” Said Coach Shanahan
A team’s offense is only as good as a team’s defense. If Dolphins can rebound the ball more effectively this season, they can really separate themselves as one of the best teams in the division.
Although the Dolphins struggled on the boards, the girls defense was otherwise solid last season. They averaged 10.6 steals and 3.3 blocks per game last season, while their opponents averaged 9.1 steals, 3.3 blocks and 23.4 turnovers per game. If the girls can create turnovers as effectively as they did last season, they can expect positive results.
The upcoming season is looking bright for the Dolphins. Led by rookie of the year Christina Pasaturo and the new additions of size in the frontcourt, the Dolphins look to have the makeup of a team that can make a championship run this season.