More conferences crowned tournament champions — FCIAC: Danbury 41, Wilton 29 - Danbury’s 3rd straight title, Hatters, top seed in Class LL, held Wilton to 5 fourth-quarter points; SWC: Lauralton Hall 45, Kolbe 36 - Lauralton’s 3rd straight title; they’re moving to SCC next year; CSC: Capital Prep 95, Prince Tech 51 - State No. 1 Prep remained unbeaten; NCCC: Avon 42, Bolton 26. Two more finals tonight: ECC: Norwich Free Academy-New London; Berkshire: Thomaston-Lewis Mills (rematch of CPTV Sports’ 2013-14 season opener).
The first night of conference tournament play produced one upset in the CCC: 15th seed Glastonbury defeated No. 2 Bristol Central, 63-59. Maloney, the 11th seed, eliminated No. 6 East Catholic, 72-69 . . .In the SCC, No. 11 Branford defeated No. 6 Hand, 50-46. . . .@NHRJoeMorelli noted that Xavier beat West Haven three times this season by a total of five points following Xavier’s 33-30 SCC victory.
The conference tournament season wrapped up Friday night with three finals and one dramatic finish — Shoreline: Cromwell 41, Morgan 40 (OT) - Nicole Rojas’ late layup won it after the No. 9 Panthers rallied, scoring 15 in the fourth quarter after being held to single digits in the first three . . ECC: Norwich Free Academy 53, New London 45 - No. 7 NFA won its third consecutive league title; Berkshire: Thomaston 46, Lewis Mills 37: Bears also got a three-peat and a Twitter shoutout from their student section (h/t @RAOffTheRecord). . Next up: the state tournaments begin Monday in Class LL and M (weather permitting).
@CTWrestling reported Danbury had the team lead after the first night of the State Open wrestling, with New Milford and Xavier close behind. The event continues Saturday at the Floyd Little Athletic Center in New Haven. . Simsbury won its third straight SCC Division I girls hockey title, defeating East Catholic/Glastonbury/South Windsor 3-2 in overtime two days Branford/North Branford/East Haven won the Division II title with a 4-0 win over Notre Dame-Fairfield Wednesday. . . Boys basketball teams had Friday night off before conference tournament play kicks into gear Saturday afternoon. . . @JohnHoltWFSB reported Logan Marchi, a one-time UConn recruit and all-state quarterback at St. Paul-Bristol before transferring to Gilbert-Winsted, will attend East Coast Prep in Great Barrington, Mass.
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Johnson and Wales spoiled the University of Saint Joseph’s Senior Day with a 65-56 women’s college basketball win in West Hartford February 22. CPTV Sports covered the game and will show the broadcast premiere Thursday February 27 at 9:00 pm. Before the game, USJ honored seniors Devon Diliberto of Waterbury, Mary Hyde of Derby and Shauna Sullivan of Rocky Hill. The Blue Jays finished the 2013-14 season with a 12-14 record after losing to Rivier 79-62 in the first round of the GNAC tournament February 26. For more on the Blue Jays, go to USJBlueJays.com.
The next few days will be full of conference tournament finals involving the state’s top teams, starting Wednesday night. CPTV Sports will have LIVE coverage of the CCC final between No. 6 Weaver-Hartford and E.O. Smith-Storrs at 7:00 pm from New Britain High. E.O. Smith won the last meeting, 58-57. (The live broadcast will be preceded by premieres of the semis, starting at 3:00pm). Other Wednesday conference finals — SCC: No. 3 Mercy vs. No. 5 Career; NVL: Holy Cross vs. St. Paul. . . . Other conference final matchups determined by Tuesday semifinals — FCIAC: No. 4 Danbury-Wilton; SWC: No. 3 Lauralton Hall-Kolbe Cathedral; Shoreline: No. 9 Cromwell-Morgan; Berkshire: Thomaston-Lewis Mills. The last two will be rematches of regular-season games seen on CPTV Sports, as are the SCC and NVL finals.
State No. 3 Crosby and No. 4 Sacred Heart won their NVL regular season finales; Crosby is the top seed and Sacred Heart No. 2 for the NVL tourney. The Waterbury rivals, who split their regular season series (the visiting team won both), could meet for the third time season in the league final. . . E.O. Smith clinched the outright CCC East title with a 52-31 win over Rockville.
Darien maintained its No. 1 spot in the GameTimeCT.com state coaches/media poll despite losing to No. 4 Notre Dame-Fairfield. ND-Fairfield, which knocked off Darien and No. 2 Notre Dame-West Haven, moved from sixth to fourth.
As expected, the CIAC revised the playoff format for the 2014 season. Eight champions will be crowned instead of four, sparking a lot of comment on Twitter. The organization will keep four enrollment divisions (LL, L, M, S). After the eight teams in each class are selected, they will be split into two groups of four by enrollment and seeded into separate brackets based on points. There will be a 10-day gap between Thanksgiving and the semifinals. Under the previous system (four divisions of eight, starting with quarterfinals), playoff teams were playing three games in 10 days. Kyle Brennan mapped out what the 2013 playoff brackets would have looked like under the new system.
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State No. 6 Weaver High jumped out to a 17-point third quarter lead and held on to defeat E.O. Smith-Storrs 58-49 in the CCC tournament final shown LIVE on CPTV Sports Wednesday night. DeJane “Snoop” James led Weaver with 21 points . . . No. 2 Mercy-Middletown routed No. 5 Career-New Haven 56-32 in the SCC final. Maura Fitzpatrick led Mercy with 20 points a week after Career edged Mercy in double OT. . . . Holy Cross-Waterbury defeated St. Paul-Bristol 48-38 in the NVL final. . . No. 7 Norwich Free Academy and New London advanced to Friday’s ECC final . . Two finals of note Thursday: FCIAC — No. 4 Danbury-Wilton; SWC — No. 2 Lauralton Hall-Kolbe Cathedral . . The CIAC released the brackets for the state tournaments, which begin Monday. The top seeds: Class LL: Danbury; Class L: state No. 1 Capital Prep-Hartford; Class M: Holy Cross; Class S: St. Paul.
State No. 7 Greenwich defeated Bassick, 65-57 as the FCIAC wrapped up its regular season. Greenwich is the second seed and No. 2 Bridgeport Central first in the FCIAC tournament that starts Saturday.
The No. 4 Notre Dame-Fairfield boys continued their hot streak, routing Xavier, 9-3. . . No. 2 Notre Dame-West Haven edged Hamden. . . The two top-rated teams in CIAC Division III lost. No. 1 Masuk lost to Westhill, 5-2; No. 2 Newtown fell to Wethersfield 5-1 (h/t @CTHSHockey) . . . . Pairings for the single-division girls state tournament were announced. The event is run by the SCC and FCIAC as girls hockey is not a CIAC-sanctioned sport.
Torrington is the only state team in the MaxPreps’ preseason rating of the nation’ s top 100 softball teams. Torrington senior pitcher Sydney Matzko (23-1 last season) will attend the University of North Carolina next fall (h/t @PWallaceSports).
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Weaver High jumped out to a 17-point third-quarter lead and held off E.O. Smith in the fourth for a 58-49 victory in the CCC girls basketball tournament championship game February 26 in New Britain. CPTV Sports showed the game LIVE and will replay it several times in upcoming days.
DeJane James led Weaver with 21 points; McKenna Dale had 17 for E.O. Smith, which trailed 40-23 before cutting the Beavers lead to 45-40. Weaver is the No. 3 seed in the CIAC Class L tournament, where unbeaten Hartford city rival Capital Prep is the top seed. E.O. Smith is the 10th seed in Class LL. Read the game story by The Hartford Courant’s Lori Riley here.
CPTV Sports will be following boys and girls postseason hoops the next few weeks, concluding with the state finals March 22-23 at the Mohegan Sun Arena.
Weaver and E.O. Smith-Storrs advanced to the CCC tournament final that will be shown LIVE on CPTV Sports Wednesday at 7:00 pm. The broadcast premieres of Weaver’s 65-51 semifinal win over South Windsor and E.O. Smith’s 59-55 upset of top-seeded Farmington on Monday will be shown before the final, with Weaver’s win at 3:00 pm and E.O. Smith’s at 5:00 pm. . . . Two other conference tourney finals will be rematches of games that were seen on CPTV Sports earlier this season. In the SCC, Career meets Mercy for the third time — Mercy won a LIVE game on CPTV Sports in January before Career came back with a double-OT win last week — and in the NVL, St. Paul-Bristol takes on Holy Cross-Waterbury (HC won the televised game).
The top 10 remained the same — and the top four unchanged — in the GameTimeCT.com state media poll, with unbeaten No. Fairfield Prep still firmly at the top. . . No. 7 Greenwich escaped with a 59-58 overtime win over Trinity Catholic-Stamford, knocking Trinity out of the FCIAC tournament for the first time since 1997 . . The SCC tourney field is set with Prep as the top seed; The New Haven Register’s Joe Morelli noted that Cheshire’s win over Shelton gave the SCC four unbeaten division champs for the first time. . . Morelli also updated the list of state coaches with 500 wins after E.O. Smith-Storrs’ Ron Pires hit the milestone over the weekend. . . .The Stamford Advocate’s Scott Ericson tweeted a photo of a touching moment from Stamford’s pregame ceremony to honor a longtime manager before its game against No. 2 Bridgeport Central, which Central won 74-53. . .Bristol Central clinched a share of the CCC South with a 37-34 win over Bristol Eastern.
Wilton native Kristine Lilly, who played a record 362 games for the U.S., was elected to the National Soccer Hall of Fame. . . . No. 6 Notre Dame-Fairfield broke open a close game to rout East Haven 6-3 in boys hockey. . . .Dave Ruden of The Ruden Report noted the CIAC will meet Tuesday to finalize its much-scrutinized playoff plan for the 2014 season. . . Two NFL linebacker prospects from the state — Khairi Fortt of Stamford and Kevin Pierre-Louis of Norwalk — had impressive performances at the league’s scouting combine in Indianapolis.
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Capital Prep-Hartford is still a solid No. 1 in the GameTimeCT.com girls basketball state coaches/media poll with some slight changes underneath. Lauralton Hall moved to second, trading places with Mercy-Middletown, which moved to third after losing for the first time this season (to Career in double OT). The postseason is underway for state girls, with conference tournaments in the quarterfinal and semifinal stages. The CPTV Sports team will be at New Britain High Monday for the CCC semifinals between No. 6 Weaver and No. 8 South Windsor and No. 10 Farmington and-E.O. Smith. We’ll cover the CCC final LIVE Wednesday at 7:00pm, preceded by broadcast premieres of the semis at 3:00 and 5:00 pm. . . . .RHAM-Hebron’s Sarah Veilleux scored her 2,000th career point and had 38 in a 64-57 loss to South Windsor in the CCC quarterfinals Saturday. Veilleux is now 14th on the state’s all-time scoring list with 2,009 (h/t the Willimantic Chronicle’s @RMZalusky).
On Saturday, E.O. Smith-Storrs boys basketball coach Ron Pires earned career win no. 500 (WFSB video) . . .The CIAC released the seedings for the State Open wrestling meet Friday and Saturday in New Haven. . . The Wethersfield High boys hockey season-ending schedule is a testament to how tough it’s been for athletes, coaches and administrators to work around the weather this winter. Wethersfield has 10 days to play its remaining six games, according to Kevin Pataky of MaxPreps (@KPatakyPhoto). Two have yet to be rescheduled. . . Trinity College’s women’s squash team won its third national championship and first since 2003, defeating Harvard, 5-4.
On the final day of the Games in Sochi, Russia, the U.S. four-man bobsled team won the bronze medal riding a sled partially built in Connecticut and sponsored by Whelen Engineering of Chester, according to The Harford Courant’s Lori Riley. . . .Zach Schonbrun of The New York Times wrote about the impact Connecticut athletes had in the Games and on the state in the past two weeks.
The high seeds won and form held for the most part through the early rounds of the conference tournaments throughout the state. One exception was in the NVL tournament, where sixth-seeded Wolcott beat third seed Sacred Heart 44-43 in OT. Joe Palladino of the Waterbury Republican reported Wolcott coach Jane Geddes made it to the game after spending the night at the hospital with her husband, who had been injured at work . .. The CPTV Sports team will be in New Britain Monday night for the CCC semifinals. Two good matchups, with Weaver and South Windsor meeting for the third time this season and second on CPTV Sports, with top seeded Farmington against E.O. Smith in the other game. On Wednesday, CPTV Sports will show the broadcast premieres of the semis at 3:00pm and 5:00pm and the final LIVE at 7:00pm.
The No. 1 and No. 2 teams in the GameTimeCT.com state coaches/media poll lost Saturday. Top-ranked Darien’s 18-game unbeaten streak was ended by No. 6 Notre Dame-Fairfield’s 2-1 victory at the Webster Bank Arena in Bridgeport, and No. 3 Notre Dame-West Haven shut out No. 2 Fairfield Prep 3-0 on the strength of goalie Wade Conlon’s 29-save effort. ND-Fairfield principal Chris Cipriano proudly noted on Twitter the win came three days after his school defeated ND-West Haven.
Newtown pulled off a surprise in the Class LL meet, winning the team title over Danbury, which was third behind Xavier-Middletown. Danbury was first, Xavier third and Newtown fourth in the most recent Norwich Bulletin state coaches poll. . .No. 2 New Milford comfortably won the Class L title . . . .No. 8 Ledyard won its 20th class title in winning the Class M meet. . . .No. 10 Windham won Class S. Chuck Banning of the New London Day reported Montville’s Jake Caskey broke his nose while winning the 138-pound title and outstanding wrestler for the meet . . The State Open is Friday and Saturday at the Floyd Little Athletic Center in New Haven.
A rough end to the Games for Hamden native Jonathan Quick, who allowed five goals on 21 shots in the last two periods as Finland defeated the U.S. 5-0 in the bronze medal game. Quick was coming off a superb 36-save effort in the Americans’ 1-0 loss to Canada in Friday’s semifinals. . .Four-time Olympian Julie Chu of Fairfield and the U.S. women’s hockey team will carry the flag in the Closing Ceremonies today. . . .Follow WNPR.org for reviews of the Games as they come to a close in Sochi.
In CPTV Sports’ LIVE Friday night game, Norwich Free Academy defeated Woodstock 54-45 at home in an ECC Large Division matchup. NFA’s Marcus Outlow, an All-State running back who will play football at Boston College, scored 24 points to surpass 1,000 for his career. NFA is 13-7; Woodstock 16-4. YouTube highlights below; read the game story by the Norwich Bulletin’s Marc Allard here . . .Elsewhere in the ECC, high scores were again the rule. Ledyard topped 100 for the second game in a row in a 101-44 win over Fitch-Groton. Meanwhile, Montville defeated Lyman Memorial-Lebanon 92-48 — the New London Day’s Ned Griffen (@MetalNED) noted it was Montville which lost to Ledyard 124-46 earlier in the week . . . Kolbe Cathedral-Bridgeport handed Notre Dame-Fairfield its first SWC loss, 68-67, on Jordan Foster’s layup at the buzzer . . . . State No. 2 Bridgeport Central endured a three-hour commute to Manchester for its game against Cheney Tech according to Fox CT videographer Freddie Mathis (@Lidvision). Central shook off a slow start to win, 96-68. . . .Mild upset in the Hartford area as Glastonbury topped Simsbury 75-71 with Jalen Ollie making two free throws to clinch it for the Tomahawks (11-7). Simsbury is 15-4; the Trojans’ EJ Crawford topped the 1,000-point mark for his career.
Saturday will be one of the busiest girls basketball days of the season with conference tournament play in full swing throughout the state. On the final day of the regular season, Lewis Mills clinched a three-way tie for the Berkshire League title with a 58-43 win over Terryville. . . .The two-day CIAC class championships began in all four divisions.
A heroic effort by Hamden native Jonathan Quick in goal wasn’t enough as the U.S. lost to Canada 1-0 in the men’s hockey semifinals in Sochi, Russia. Quick made 36 saves, but couldn’t stop Jamie Benn’s redirection of Jay Bouwmeester’s pass from the point 1:22 into the second period. . .As the Games wrap up, follow WNPR.org for reviews of the last two weeks.