Saturday, December 30, 2017

A LOOK AT LOCAL HOOPS: Four local girls teams sit at 5-1

The St. Paul, Sacred Heart, Crosby and Holy Cross girls basketball teams all have something in common after the first six games of this season.
Each of those four teams has posted a record of 5-1.
St. Paul took part in a holiday tournament -- one of many throughout the state -- in Fairfield and played against both public high schools, Warde and Ludlowe. The Falcons lost to Warde, but beat Ludlowe to improve to 5-1. Janessa Gonzalez and Aidrianna Lopez led the way in both games. Gonzalez made the all-tournament team after tallying a total of 37 points in two games. Lopez had eight rebounds in the Warde game, then posted 11 rebounds against Ludlowe.
Sacred Heart topped fellow city school Kaynor Tech 50-22 on Saturday at home to get to 5-1. The one Heart loss was by five points at St. Paul on Dec. 21. Sacred Heart has won two straight games since that loss. Aamya Rivera, Hayley Tucker and Treasure Coleman have paced the Hearts of late.
Crosby has already mastered the art of the close win, with three of its five coming by four points or less. The Bulldogs have won four straight games, including victories of 45-41 over Torrington, 47-43 over Seymour and 33-30 over Oxford. Tiahna Pulliam-Bishop has been the top scorer, though she's had help from Gina Vergeli, Erica Soares and Shyan Perez at some point during the win streak. Crosby won against Seymour on the road in overtime.
Holy Cross is on a three-game winning streak after a lopsided loss to Mercy. The Crusaders have been bolstered in the middle by the play of Aiyana Ward and Meah Austin. When one leads in scoring, the other leads in rebounds, and a double-double is practically expected for each of them. Allie Brown dished out eight assists in the most recent victory, 55-41 over Lauralton Hall on Friday.
Ignore the current record of Kaynor Tech, which is 2-6. The Panthers won the tech school holiday tournament for the third straight season by claiming wins over Abbott Tech on Wednesday and Goodwin Tech on Friday. Sarah Wisniewski has been a standout player for Kaynor Tech, and she was tournament MVP. Maggie DeSantis had strong contributions in both games for the Panthers.

BOYS BASKETBALL
Waterbury Career Academy and Holy Cross are both 3-0, and each side has done it with some solid play.
The Spartans blew out Oxford to open the season, then held a high-scoring Torrington side to 63 points in a 16-point home win. WCA passed its first road test of the season with an 86-68 victory over Seymour on Wednesday. Marquan Watson has been a double-double machine. Strong efforts have also come from Jadan Battle, Matt Torres, Chad McKoy and Langstun Racine.
The Crusaders turned an expected showdown at Seymour into a 93-62 victory in the season opener. Holy Cross' offense scorched the home nets in a 106-49 home opener against Derby. Wednesday's game at Naugatuck was much closer, but the Crusaders took a 69-62 victory. Sacred Heart transfer Mikey West has scored in bunches, but with plenty of help from Nyzair Rountree, DeAndre Wallace, Jack Greene and Kyle Moser.
Bristol Eastern improved to 3-1 on Saturday with a 57-50 home win over Platt. The Lancers also own victories over RHAM and Berlin. Eastern led much of the way in its lone loss against Watertown, but couldn't hang on. The Lancers have reached 3-1 with a balanced attack.

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