Tomasic helps West jump out to an early lead
Lakota West senior Rachel Tomasic knows this rivalry well and she didn’t want to end her senior year with a losing record against Lakota East.
The senior piloted the Firebirds’ on a 15-1 run to begin the game with eight first quarter points. The early lead proved to large to overcome, as Lakota West defeated its inner-school district rival, 52-35, on Wednesday night.
Overall, West has dominated the rivalry, winning 22 and dropping only four since the teams met for the first time in the 1997-1998 season.
However, the dominance hasn’t been there in recent years as East had won three of its last four against West heading into this latest matchup.
Tomasic, who was one of only two seniors to grace the floor Wednesday night, played in two of those losses.
“To defeat East as a senior is awesome,” said Tomasic, whose career record against East is now 2-2. “You know these are your last shots to really leave it all on the floor.”
The win is extra special for the senior, who actually remembers being able to shoot baskets at halftime during this rivalry as a member of her youth team.
“I remember being so nervous to be on floor at halftime,” Tomasic said.
“Now, to be a senior and to know that this is me on the floor and there are still girls coming in and playing at halftime and that I am being looked up to – is really neat,” Tomasic said.”
After this season, Tomasic, who scored a game high 11 points, will likely not play basketball in college.
“Rachel is a girl that had to make a decision to not play college basketball and tell the Division I coaches that she wasn’t interested because they were all over her,” Lakota West head coach Andy Fishman said. “She has other things that she wants to do with her life, which I commend her for … she is just having fun.”
Besides being interested in a modeling career, Fishman recently wrote a letter of recommendation to Harvard for Tomasic.
In addition to her performance in the game, Lakota West played great team defense.
During the 15-1 Lakota West run to begin the game, Lakota East committed seven turnovers and missed its first 11 shots from the floor.
“We weren’t getting shots because we kept turning the ball over and that is a credit to them,” Lakota East head coach Nikki Drew said of the early run. “They came out and pretty much punched us in the face and we weren’t prepared for it. When you have a lot of young kids, things can collapse quickly.”
While West played two seniors in the game, East had none and played seven sophomores, a freshman and a junior.
The young team falls to 5-9 overall and 4-4 in the Greater Miami Conference. Meanwhile, West – No. 5 in The Enquirer coaches’ poll – improves to 10-2 overall and 6-2 in the GMC.
Lakota West (10-2, 5-2 in GMC) – Wells 0 1 1, Staples 4 0 8, Adams 3 1 7, Cannatelli 3 3 9, Whitaker 1 0 2, Tomasic 4 1 11, Aull 2 0 5, Wasan 4 0 8. Totals 21 7 52.
Lakota East (5-9, 4-4) – Satterwhite 2 3 7, Rodgers 2 0 4, Wills 3 0 6, Thomas 1 0 2, Goodwin 2 4 10, Franklin 1 0 2, White 2 0 4. Totals 13 7 35.
Halftime: Lakota West 26-16. 3-pointers: LW 3 (Tomasic 2, Aull); LE 2 (Goodwin 2).