Local girls basketball teams find out paths through state tournament

Published on Wednesday, 22 February 2017 21:55
Written by MICHAEL WOOLFSON

STAFF WRITER

The CIAC released the brackets for the girls basketball tournaments on Wednesday and five New Britain area teams will be participating.

New Britain, Berlin, Newington, Southington and Goodwin Tech have all had good enough regular seasons to make it and now each team’s potential path through the state tournament is clear.

Class LL is where the majority of the local teams will be doing battle, as three of the five qualifying teams in the area are in that bracket.

Newington is the area team that finished the regular season with the best record at 13-7. The Indians enter the tournament having won seven straight games, not including a loss in the opening round of the CCC tournament, and 11 of their last 12.

Newington, which earned the 19th seed, will open tournament play at E.O. Smith next Tuesday at 6 p.m.

The Panthers finished the season 15-5 and are the No. 14 seed. If the Indians win that game, they will likely face off with No. 3 seed New London (18-2) in the second round.

The team with the second best record in the area was Southington, which earned the No. 23 seed with its 12-8 record.

Like Newington, Southington finished off its regular season on a hot streak, winning six of its last seven games. The Blue Knights were eliminated in the first round of the CCC tournament, but will look to bounce back in their first round game at Ridgefield on Tuesday at 7 p.m.

The Tigers enter the tournament with a 16-4 record and are the 10th seed. If Southington wins, a grudge match with seventh-seeded Hall is possible as long as the Warriors take care of Danbury in the first round. The Blue Knights split the season series with Hall.

The final area team in the Class LL bracket is New Britain, which will be opening up the tournament at home tonight, hosting Manchester in the qualifying round. The game starts at 5:15 p.m. for No. 29 seed New Britain (11-9).

Unlike Newington and Southington, the Hurricanes enter the tournament having traded off wins and losses in their last eight games. The final game of the season, though, New Britain defeated Hartford Public 82-9 and will look to use that as a springboard for the tournament.

Manchester was the last team to qualify for the tournament and finished the regular season 8-12. If the Hurricanes win their qualifying round matchup, they will be visiting Middletown on Tuesday at 7 p.m.

In Class L, Berlin is the lone area team to be represented. The Redcoats finished the season 9-11 and earned the No. 23 seed. Berlin started the season 0-6, so it has finished strong to find itself in the tournament.

The first opponent for the Redcoats will be Woodstock, on Monday at 7 p.m. in Woodstock. The Centaurs finished the season 12-8, which was good enough to earn the No. 10 seed.

If Berlin were to pull off the upset in the first round, it will take on the winner of the No. 7 vs. No. 26 matchup between Torrington (15-5) and Naugatuck (7-13).

The final local team to qualify for the tournament is Goodwin Tech, the lowest seed (No. 33) in Class M.

The Gladiators will have to play in the qualifying round on Friday night at Waterbury Career Academy, starting at 6 p.m.

Both Goodwin Tech and WCA finished the season with 8-12 records, but the Spartans have won three of their final four games, while the Gladiators lost five games in a row before clinching a postseason berth in their finale against O’Brien Tech.

The winner of the qualifier will have to take on top-seeded Suffield (18-2) on Tuesday.

Michael Woolfson can be reached at 860-801-5203 or mwoolfson@newbritainherald.com On Twitter: @Bigwoolf5



Posted in New Britain Herald, Berlin, General Sports, Goodwin Tech, New Britain, Newington, Southington on Wednesday, 22 February 2017 21:55. Updated: Wednesday, 22 February 2017 21:58.