MacArthur eyes conference repeat


The MacArthur girls’ basketball team is in line for a possible repeat conference title powered by strong depth and chemistry.

The Generals (13-3) closed the month of January riding an eight game winning streak and have posted victories in 11 of 12 games after an 0-2 start. All the wins but one have been in double digits with different players leading the way in each contest.

“I've been around a while and the chemistry on this team is better than any team I've had,” ninth-year head coach Dave Radtke said. “The older kids really have taken the younger kids under their wing and there is no selfishness.”

MacArthur’s team-oriented approach is evident in its latest triumph—a commanding 61-33 win against New Hyde Park last Friday— in which five players recorded six points or more led by 14 from Ava Angiuli and 10 from Marissa Cardon.

The dominating win, which improved the Generals to a perfect 8-0 in Conference A-1, also featured seven points apiece from Sara Kealey and Lexi Thompson and six by Ani Angelakis.

The New Hyde Park victory was MacArthur’s first game in six days and followed a 57-45 win at Jericho in which three players registered double figures paced by Cardon’s 16, 11 from Thompson and 10 by Angiuli.

“Teams can’t just focus on one player,” said Radtke of his many scoring options with his fast-paced offense. “I've coached against some teams and they stand around waiting for one player to score and we don't do that. I've given the girls free rein and said 'if you're open shoot the ball.”

While most of MacArthur’s wins have not been closely contested, the General also showed ability to win a game that came down to the wire with its 55-52 victory against Calhoun on Jan. 10 that propelled the Generals into first place in league play. Kealey hit a clutch free throw down the scratch to help MacArthur hold off Calhoun’s comeback attempt. Cardon led the offense with 18 points followed by 10 each from Angiuli and Meaghan Campbell.  

“That win showed a lot because in years past when it got real tight towards the end we would panic,” Radtke said. “They stepped up and hit some big shots.”

MacArthur takes the court for the first of its remaining four games Wednesday against Mepham at 7 p.m. before a road game at Long Beach Friday at. 5 p.m. The remaining schedule is highlighted by a rematch with Calhoun in North Merrick on Tuesday evening at 7 p.m. that could decide who captures the conference title. 

“We won the conference last year so it'd be nice to go back to back because that's never been done in school history,” said Radtke, who also led MacArthur to a league championship during an abridged 2021 season played without a postseason due to the Covid-19 pandemic. “I don’t want to put the cart before the horse but somebody is really going to have to play an A game to beat us.”