PATERSON, NJ - Taylor Brown led a balanced attack as the Lady Ghosts cruised to a 42 – 24 victory over the West Milford Highlanders in the opening round of the Passaic County Tournament on Saturday.

Using a suffocating defense that limited West Milford to one point in the third period and the penetrating play making ability of guards Kayla Diaz, Nia Adams and Desiree Sallis, the fourth-seeded Lady Ghosts kept 13th-seeded West Milford off-balance all game, limiting them to 24 percent shooting for the game .

The Eastside girls collectively played good team defense, and Taylor Brown and Jarim Smith took care of any individuals that their teammates missed. Brown had four blocks and Smith three rejections.

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“We’ve gotten better on defense…we are a young team and sometimes a young team has to have responsibility on defense,'' said coach Ray Lyde,  Jr. “Sometimes it is tough to sprint to close-out …put a body on someone. When we become more disciplined as a team, defense will improve.”

The Lady Ghosts team-oriented defense and balanced scoring did not leave West Milford room for error. It showed as the Highlanders were constantly beaten to loose balls or lost the ball due to turnovers.

Coach Lyde stated, “We swung the ball around the perimeter and looked for the best shot …that’s why we had balanced scoring.”

Kayla Diaz (8 points), Nia Adams (9 points) and Desiree Sallis (8 points) led the balanced attack. Amber Kitening added 4 points for the Lady Ghosts.

In the second half, West Milford and senior Michelle Coye (6 points) got shots, when guard Dana Wong (4 assists) drove and passed to the perimeter shooters. West Milford scored 17 points in the fourth quarter but it was too little too late.
 
The Lady Ghosts (11-8) will advance to a quarterfinals match up with fifth-seeded Wayne Hills next Saturday at 11 am at the Passaic County Tech gymnasium.