by Izzy Smelkinson
The boys basketball team defeated New Providence 51–34 in the first round of the UCIAC in a very defense-heavy game.
Within the first minute, New Providence hit a three-point shot. However, this early lead did not hold for very long.
A set of foul shots scored by senior Scott Toresco and a three-point shot by senior Tri-Captain Keegan Hess started Westfield’s domination.
After a lot of back-and-forth play, Toresco scored three times during the first quarter to give Westfield an 11–7 lead.
Westfield wrapped up the quarter leading 15–9 after sophomore Danny Mitchell scored a three-pointer with 30 seconds left on the clock.
As the second quarter started New Providence raised its intensity in hopes of a comeback, but Westfield held strong and didn’t lose its lead.
As the New Providence players got more aggressive, WHS used its excellent teamwork to fight off the growing hostility of the opposing team.
According to Hess, “The main goal for [the] game was to maintain good team chemistry and win together.”
At the end of the half, WHS led 23–12, with a lot of impressive rebound assistance from junior Tri-Captain David Kane.
The second half started off strong with Toresco hitting two three-pointers and a set of foul shots early into the third quarter, making the score 32–18. However, as the quarter came to a close, the score was 35–24, and it seemed as though New Providence could make a comeback.
With the fourth quarter came renewed aggression from New Providence. While at one point Hess was thrown into the bleachers, WHS seemed determined to finish strong.
Hess, Toresco, Kane, Mitchell and senior Vincent Molinari hit nothing but net to finish the game with a score of 51–34.
Said Coach Daryl Palmieri: “I am happy with the energy that we played with in the first round and the kids are hungry for the next game.... We are just focusing on the second round now.”