The Oceanside girls basketball team wanted to put its best foot forward in the Mariners’ home-opener Friday night and the hosts did that with a solid 48-37 win over visiting Belfast.

The game was close before Oceanside slowly pulled away in the second half.

It was the Mariners’ second win in three games this season, while the Lions dipped to 1-1 on the young campaign.

Having two wins early in the 2011-12 campaign is a positive for Oceanside, when one considers that Rockland earned one victory in 2010-11, that being at Belfast late in the season. Of course, Georges Valley did win 10 games and split two postseason games last winter.

Rockland and Georges Valley combined to form Oceanside this year, which should, ultimately, give the Mariners more depth, experience and overall talent.

The combination of former Tigers and Buccaneers proved more than enough to declaw the visiting Lions Friday night. However, the win did not come without a hard-fought 32-minute battle.

The Mariners won with balanced scoring and connecting both on 3-point shots and free throws. Keying Oceanside were Phoebe Ferraiolo with nine points; Brooke Dugan and Emily Gould, both eight; Jill Bradbury, seven; Payton Billingsley, five; Hannah Plourde, four; Jenn Denault, three; and Kennadi Grover and Rachel Frye, both two.

Oceanside received 3-pointers from Bradbury, Denault and Billingsley. The Mariners made 9-of-15 foul shots (60 percent), led by Dugan’s 4-of-4.

Oceanside trailed 15-10 after the first quarter and 24-21 at halftime. However, the Mariners took control over the final 16 minutes by outscoring the Lions 27-13 during that time.

For Belfast, Katrina Lapham tallied 11 points; Ashley Littlefield, eight; Lexi Nelligan, six; Makayla Cummings and Emily Blood, both five; and McKenzie Thibodeau, two. The Lions did not make a trey, but did connect on an impressive 19-of-26 foul shots (76 percent), including 7-of-8 from Lapham and 5-of-6 from Blood.

Belfast was led in the first quarter by eight points from Littlefield and four from Nelligan. Lapham and Cummings both tallied four points in the second quarter to help the visitors maintain a three-point halftime cushion. Dugan’s four points and Denault’s trey helped the Mariners keep pace in the first half.

Over the final 16 minutes, Belfast was held to two field goals, but did make 9-of-14 foul shots. Ferraiolo’s nine points, Gould’s six and key 3-pointers from Bradbury and Billingsley paved the way for the Mariners to pull away for the victory in the second half.

Village NetMedia Sports Director Ken Waltz can be reached at 207-594-4401 or by email at kwaltz@villagesoup.com.