November 29, 2006

Mariners Set Sail for League VII Title Southampton Boys' Basketball Preview

"We're definitely looking to get back to playing traditional Southampton basketball, winning the league title and representing Suffolk in the Class B championship," said Mariners head coach Herm Lamison as he commented on his team's goals this season.

"Ball handling, quickness and perimeter shooting are some of our biggest strengths and I think that we can at least win the League VII title."

The Southampton boys' basketball team managed to go a respectable 8-6 in League VII last season and with several key players returning along with the development of some of the younger players, the Mariners have the opportunity to hang another banner on their wall this February.

Troy Pender, Southampton's athletic senior point guard, started most of the team's games last season and was an All-League and All-Conference player. Pender is a terrific ball distributor and Lamison believes that he has the potential to be one of the best point guards in the area. "We're looking for a lot of leadership from him this year."

Nick Epley, a returning senior small forward who led the team in scoring last season, averaging 17 points per game, is one of the best shooters in the league. In one game last season, Epley made a school-record 10 three-pointers. "We're looking for leadership and direction from Nick," Lamison said.

Jason Halsey, yet another Mariners football standout, returns for his senior season. "Jason plays with a lot of heart and energy and he gives us a lift off the bench on both offense and defense," remarked Lamison.

Steven Andrews, a senior, is a strong, accurate outside shooter who gets to the basket and finishes. He and Epley will be two of Southampton's top shooting threats this season. "With Steven and Nick shooting the ball from the perimeter it will loosen things up."

Alex Antilety, a 6'4" sophomore, is a first year varsity player who has shown early on that he'll be a contributor with his strong footwork in the post coupled with above-average shooting skills.

Kyren Miller, another sophomore, can play both guard spots and is fearless going to the basket. "By his appearance you wouldn't think he was ball player, but he can really play," said Lamison.

Dwayne White, yet another first year varsity player, is a versatile swingman that can rebound and finish as well as shoot from the outside. Two more juniors, Jeff Brown and Yakasen Morton, will also see action this season. Brown, up from the junior varsity, can play both forward spots, shoots the ball well and has shown that he can defend and rebound while Morton is a player who works very hard and is poised for a big year. "He's a hawk on the defensive end and can hit a long range shot," Lamison said. "Yakasen's got lots of energy and he's our defensive stopper."

The Mariners hope to travel to Orlando Florida for several days in the middle of December to take part in the Wide World of Sports tournament before hosting East Hampton in Southampton's first non-league game on December 27.

"Our focus this season has to be on rebounding and not turning the ball over as much," Lamison said. "We can't give teams second opportunities. If we can make that commitment, everything else will take care of itself."

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