2015 All-Cape & Islands Girls’ Basketball Team

CAPE COD – There’s something to be said for winning 22 straight games. There’s also something to be said for a group of high school girls who energize an entire community with thrilling moment after moment, particularly when the snow banks outside are taller than most human beings and the gray, bitter shadow of winter looms heavy upon us all.

The Bob Buscher-coached Falmouth High girls basketball team provided such a thrilling ride not just for Falmouth folks, but for basketball fans across the Cape who were increasingly interested in what the Clippers would achieve next.

Taylor Miller - Falmouth High School 2014-15 Player of the Year Sean Walsh/ sports file photo

Taylor Miller – Falmouth High School
Player of the Year
Sean Walsh/ sports file photo

Loaded with first-rate talent like sophomore point guard Jenni DiCecco, senior co-captain Alexa Johnson and freshman Olivia Ferraro, to name just a few, one player who anchored the basis for much of the team’s success was junior center Taylor Miller.

By season’s end, Miller had averaged a double-double for the season, pouring in 343 total points, hauling down 239 rebounds and hammering 76 blocks. She averaged 14.91 points per game and 10.39 rebounds, but what set her apart was a physical presence that drew opponents’ attention away not merely by sheer necessity, but just as importantly because she owned the paint.

With soft, strong hands and nimble feet, Miller controlled the inside game like no other individual player on the Cape this season, forcing double- and even triple-teams and, thus, freeing up her teammates to weave their magic on the perimeter. It was an almost impossible offensive set-up to defend.

It was almost heartbreaking to see the virtual beating Miller took beneath the basket in the Clippers’ last game as she exerted every possible ounce of energy just to retain ball control as the gauntlet she was subjected to was allowed free-reign.

Regardless, what could not be clawed away from the talented junior center, was that she had provided a type of leadership by example most teams do not benefit from. On a team of leaders, she led. In a talented Atlantic Coast League, she was in a league of her own. But from a distance, one could still espy a tiny glint in her eyes, and it was the glint of a champion, it was the glimmer of heart every team needs to fulfill a dream. In short, there are few female basketball players like her in the state, never mind on Cape Cod.

For her superlative performance this season, Taylor Miller is our first-ever Cape Cod & The Islands Female Player of the Year.

2014-15 All-Cape & Islands Girls’ Basketball Coach of the Year

This was our most difficult decision, even with input from coaches and a smattering of game officials and knowledgeable Cape basketball aficionados. The girls’ varsity basketball scene on the Cape has grown leaps and bounds the past 25 years, no pun intended, but in the past five years or so it has also grown increasingly more competitive and faster-paced. Truth-be-told, there were many names looked at and many worthy candidates whose personalities and character and ability to teach exemplified everything one hopes a good coach will be.

Gus Adams - Falmouth Academy 2014-15 Coach of the Year Sean Walsh/ Sports file photo

Gus Adams – Falmouth Academy
2014-15 Coach of the Year
Sean Walsh/ Sports file photo

But one coach whose success stood just a hair above some others in some regards, and who was clearly respected and admired by his players, made the absolute most of what talent he had and was a consummate professional in nearly every reasonable regard was Falmouth Academy’s Gus Adams.

Coach Adams took a team with virtually no depth and finished with the second best record on the Cape at 19-4, drew a #4-seed in the Division 4 South Sectionals and in the quarterfinals upset a very-talented Upper Cape Tech team.

The comeback from a 24-3 deficit in the semifinals versus an undefeated Greater New Bedford Voke team to within two points was one of the most incredible exertions of sheer willpower revealed by any team this winter – boys or girls – and it was a testament to Adams’ ability to calm his team’s nerves and get them to visualize that possibilities can indeed become realities.

In Falmouth Academy’s first-ever venture into the wild postseason hoop madness that is the MIAA, Adams did a superlative job. The work-ethic he exemplifies and integrity of what he brings to the court each night helped put Falmouth Academy onto an entirely different map.

For that, and not that alone, Adams is this year’s 2014-15 Cape Cod & The Islands Girls’ Basketball Coach of the Year.

First Team, All-Cape & Islands

Guard – Kendall Currence, Freshman, Falmouth Academy
Guard – Jenni DiCecco, Sophomore, Falmouth High School
Forward – Haylee Whiteley, Senior, St. John Paul II
Forward – Meaghan Fitzgerald, Senior, Sturgis East
Center – Taylor Miller, Junior, Falmouth High School

Second Team, All-Cape & Islands

Guard – Alexa Johnson, Senior, Falmouth High School
Guard – Krystle DiBona, Senior, Upper Cape Tech
Forward – Eliza Van Voorhis, Senior, Falmouth Academy
Forward – Kaia Whiteley, Sophomore, St. John Paul II
Center – Carly Whiteside, 8th Grade, Barnstable High
Center – Lizzie Thayer, Nantucket
Guard – Jess Tierney, St. John Paul II
Guard – Amber DiBona, Upper Cape Tech
Guard – Erin Hill, Martha’s Vineyard

Third Team, All-Cape & Islands

Forward – Dasia Green, Upper Cape Tech
Guard — Molly deBettencourt, Martha’s Vineyard
Forward – Mariah Duarte, Martha’s Vineyard
Forward – Katie Fox, Nantucket
Guard – Claire Mackay, Nantucket
Forward – Mia Crawley, Barnstable
Forward – Emma Nemes, Sturgis East
Guard – Abby Criser, Dennis-Yarmouth
Guard – Savannah Thomas, Nauset
Forward – Marielle McEnaney, Nauset
Guard – Jane Earley, Falmouth Academy
Guard – Shannon Crowley, Sturgis West
Center – Victoria Alberico, Cape Cod Academy
Guard – Becca Rowe, Sturgis West
Guard – Olivia Ferraro, Falmouth High School
Guard – Sarah Buscher, Falmouth High School
Forward – Carly Whittle, Sandwich High School
Forward – Renee Moore, Bourne High School
Guard – Jordan Hue, Mashpee High School
Forward – Alexandra Hill, Upper Cape Tech

The 2014-15 All-Cape & Islands Girls’ Basketball Team selections were made based on feedback, input and data from coaches, game officials, game reports, news accounts, witnessed performances, etc.

The list was compiled by sports editor Sean Walsh who may be reached via email at [email protected] or follow him on Twitter @coachwalshccbm

In tomorrow’s Sports, meet the 2014-15 Boys’ Ice Hockey All-Cape & Islands Team and 2015 Player of the Year. Friday: the 2014-15 All-Cape & Islands Girls’ Ice Hockey Team and 2015 Player of the Year.

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