Lawrence responds, tops Hewlett


Rookie head coach Katie Dascher took advantage of a lengthy bus ride back to Lawrence Jan. 4 following a lackluster performance in a Nassau Conference A-5 girls’ basketball defeat at Friends Academy.
“It was our first game since the holidays and we only had one practice, but a game is a game,” Dascher said. “We were flat and I talked to the girls on the way home about playing with more intensity or else we’re just not going to compete.”
The Golden Tornadoes responded to the directive and put together two spirited practices that ultimately led to a 44-34 non-league home victory over neighboring Hewlett last Saturday. Senior point guard Andie Adams, who earlier in the season became Lawrence’s all-time leading scorer, poured in a game-high 22 points and grabbed 10 rebounds, and recent eighth-grade call-up Giana Torres and senior Daniela De La Cruz chipped in 8 points apiece.
“We have six seniors and they led us in practice on Thursday and did a great job,” Dascher said after the Golden Tornadoes improved to 4-6. “I definitely noticed a change,” she added. “This was the best first half we played all season. We fought for every loose ball, defended and rebounded.”
Juniors Brianna Ruta (15 points) and Izzy Betancur (10) scored in double figures to lead the Bulldogs, who slipped to 2-8. The visitors raced to a 13-8 lead after the opening quarter but were outscored in each of the last three stanzas, including by a 16-8 margin in the fourth.

“I still believe in our team and potential,” Hewlett head coach Anthony Scro said. “There’s no reason why we can’t be a playoff team, but we have work to do. We absolutely have to cut down on turnovers and convert our fast-break opportunities.”
The Bulldogs, who had a tough time from the foul line going 9-for-26, are 0-3 in Conference A-3 and will look to get in the win column this week with crucial matchups against Roosevelt and Glen Cove. Scro said senior captains Emily Erdos (12.5 points per game) and Jordyn Ziarno are providing the type of leadership it takes for a team to be successful.
“We have to go through growing pains,” Scro said. “We’re dealing with a learning curve and building chemistry game by game. All of the girls are playing more minutes than last season and I’m seeing glimpses of our ability. We just came back from 12 points down to beat Valley Stream South.”
Lawrence also knocked off Valley Stream South, 36-34, on Dec. 20 with Adams accounting for 29 of its points. Two weeks earlier, she scored her 1,050th career point in a win over Roosevelt to surpass 1999 graduate Danielle Moorer as the program’s all-time leading scorer.
“Andie is a quiet leader who lets her skills to the talking,” Dascher said. “She’s led us in scoring every game and she’s been earning trust in her teammates and making that extra pass.”
Moving forward, Dasher said Torres will join Adams, De La Cruz, Kaitlyn Walsh and Amrosia Frye in the starting lineup. “Gianna has elevated our energy level,” the coach said of Torres.