SUMMIT, NJ - There's no place like home and for the Summit Lady Hilltoppers basketball team, getting home couldn't come soon enough. Head coach Brian Erickson's team opened the 2010-11 season with four games (two non-conference and two tournament contests) all away from the friendly confines of the Lady Hilltoppers' home gym. During those first four games Summit struggled at times but looked great at others. Erickson knows he doesn't have a big team - the tallest member of the squad is senior Jasmine Sondi at just 5-feet-9-inches - but he certainly has a speedy one. Not only is Summit quick all over the court, they play a fierce, in-your-face style of defense that has shown flashes of brilliance already this season, including several occasions during Tuesday night's dominant home victory over the visiting Lady Vikings of Parsippany Hills.
Junior guard Kelly Osmulski led all scorers with 15 points and junior point guard Kate Martino added 12 points and was a force all over the floor as the Lady Hilltoppers cruised to an 18-point victory over Parsippany Hills, 53-35. The win raised Summit's record to 3-2 on the young season but even more critical than the victory was the maturation of Erickson's young team so early into a new campaign. Gone is last year's record-setting leader Emily Cristaldi and the new-look Summit squad entered Tuesday night's game searching for its identity. Following a victory that saw a little bit of everything out of the Lady Hilltoppers - steals converted into easy fast break points, dominance on the glass - Erickson believes that his team had not only discovered its identity but had also found a bona fide leader in Martino.
"There's no doubt about it, she's the catalyst out there," Erickson said of Martino, his 5-foot-3-inch point guard. "She sees things before they happen and her play certainly makes her teammates on the floor with her and our team as a whole that much better."
Full story will be available later today...