Top Performers of the Week: Basketball Players Star in State Tournaments

Multiple local basketball teams are in the midst of making strong runs in the CIAC Tournaments. A number of boys and girls players have had impressive tournament performances.

Girls Basketball

Enfield has been the top-performing area squad, defeating Westhill, Bristol Eastern and Southington to advance to the Class LL Tournament semifinals. Junior guard Danielle Delano was outstanding for the second-seeded Eagles in the first round against Westhill and in the quarterfinal triumph over Southington. Delano scored 15 points and earned seven rebounds and six assists in the first contest and scored 22 against Southington in a 54-43 win. Fellow junior Mary Baskerville dominated the paint against Westhill, earning a double-double with 15 points and 10 rebounds and smacking five blocks.

RHAM got strong games from several players on its way to the Class L quarterfinals. In the No.5 Sachems first round blowout of Northwest Catholic, junior Anna Barry had a great all-around night with 16 points, 10 rebounds, eight assists and six steals. Senior forward Sydney Masna led the team with 20 points in the win, while junior guard Gretchen Kron scored 16. In RHAM’s second-round  takedown of Barlow, junior center Katie Shea led the way with 15 points, while Masna and Kron scored 14. Kron put up 19 in the Sachems quarterfinal loss to Capital Prep.

In Class M, Suffield senior guard Kelly Carrucci was a beast in the top-seeded Wildcats first-round win against WCA in Class M, scoring 20 and grabbing 17 rebounds. Suffield defeated Weston in the second round before being upset by Waterford in the quarters. Glastonbury junior guard Aleigha Partee scored 16 points to lead the Tomahawks to a first round win against South Windsor in LL. GHS lost in the second round to Stamford.

Boys Basketball

The last few games have been a lot of fun for East Catholic. First, the Eagles captured the CCC Conference Championship last week with a semifinal win against Middletown and a hard-fought finals triumph against Weaver. Senior guard Mike McGuirl and sophomore guard Joe Reilly averaged 19.5 and 18.5 points in the two games, while junior guard Jamil Hornesby scored 17 to help beat Weaver.

East Catholic, which is seeded third in the LL Tournament, then defeated Enfield and Hamden in the first two rounds before beating Fairfield Prep 66-48 in the quarterfinals. McGuirl and Reilly are both averaging nearly 20 points in the tournament, with the pair scoring 26 and 23 against Hamden and 16 apiece against Fairfield Prep. Junior guard Matt Veretto has also been outstanding. He recorded a double-double (17 and 10 rebounds) in the first win and scored 15 against Hamden, and led the Eagles in points with 20 in the quarters.  Hornesby put up 17 in the second round. East Catholic will battle No. 2 Hillhouse in the semis Tuesday.

In Class M, No. 10 Tolland has advanced to the quarterfinals behind star senior guard Andrew Jaworski. He scored 20 points in the Eagles first-round defeat of Granby, and then proceeded to have one of the best tournament games of any player, scoring 39 to spearhead a win over St. Joseph. Tolland will travel to No. 2 Plainfield tomorrow night for the quarters.

Senior forward Ben Nigro had an excellent game for Suffield in the team’s tough first-round loss to St. Joseph, scoring 23 points. South Windsor’s Kewan Smoot scored 22 and reached the 1,000-point mark in the team’s LL first-round loss to Hall. Manchester’s PJ Buccheri and Enfield’s Jordan Archer both played well in LL first-round losses. Buccheri scored 17 against Simsbury, and Archer put up 17 on East Catholic.


No. 9 South Windsor was outstanding in their 8-2 win at North Branford in the opening round of the Division II Tournament behind the trio of John Russo, Andrew White and Jackson Buccigross. Russo, a sophomore, scored four goals while senior White fired in two. Buccigross, a junior earned four assists. The Bobcats will face top-seeded East Haven in the quarterfinals Saturday.





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