With the holiday break just about over, area schools will get back into the full swing of the winter schedule this week, which will feature a number of interesting matchups.
While most of the action is set to begin Tuesday, Berlin girls basketball will get things underway tonight when it travels to Maloney to take on division opponent Platt. Neither team has done particularly well in the early going (Berlin 2-4, Platt 1-4) and this matchup could offer the Redcoats a chance to start the new year off building some momentum.
It will be the first two CCC games for Berlin this week as they host a tough Wethersfield (4-2) team on Thursday.
But Tuesday is when the real fun begins with 11 boys and girls basketball games slated to take place, most of which will be against conference opponents.
The New Britain and Southington boys basketball teams will both be looking for their first wins of the year. Both are 0-3, but have much different degrees of difficulties in opponents.
The Blue Knights travel to Glastonbury to take on the Tomahawks, who are also winless. The Hurricanes, on the other hand, will take on division-leading Bristol Central (3-1) in what will be no easy task.
New Britain will also host Platt (2-2) on Thursday with Southington playing at home to a 4-1 Windsor squad.
This will also be a very important week for the Newington boys basketball team. The Indians have three games set up and will need to play well. Newington is just 1-4 at this point, far from what is was last season, and a good week could go a long way.
Up first will be an OK Bristol Eastern team (2-2) on Tuesday, followed by winless Plainville on Thursday before a difficult home game against 5-1 Weaver to close out its week on Saturday. The Indians will need to win two out of three - more than plausible - to right the early season struggles and hopefully find a groove.
For the girls, Newington will have its hands full as its difficult early schedule will find little break. The Indians (2-4) take on division-leading Bristol Eastern (5-2) in what will be a telling game for the team to see how it will continue to stack up against some of the better competition in the CCC. It will also take on an up-and-coming Plainville team (3-3) on Thursday.
New Britain (3-3) will have a chance to get back on track and build some momentum as it takes on some of the worst teams in the CCC this year in Bristol Central (1-5) on Tuesday and Platt on Thursday.
Southington (3-2) will take on divisional opponent Glastonbury on Tuesday. Normally not a notable matchup, but the Blue Knights will have the chance to hand the Tomahawks (5-0) their first loss. They will follow that game with a trip to Windsor on Thursday.
Wrestling also picks up and is set to feature plenty of excitement on the mats beginning Wednesday, mostly notably Platt at Berlin and Southington at Farmington. The Redcoats have many young wrestlers still trying to learn their way at the varsity level and the always good Panthers should be a test to see just where they are at.
The Blue Knights, meanwhile, will travel to Farmington. Southington has faced little resistance during dual meets this season, led by its core four of Paul Calo, Shaun Wagner, Tagan Welch and Austin Abacherli. This team has a chance to be really good and this will be an interesting test.
On Saturday the wrestling tournaments continue, giving coaches, players and others a chance to see what the local wrestlers can do against other opponents not confined to the CCC.
Berlin and Plainville will take part in the Bristol Central Invitational, while Newington and the Blue Knights will be participants in the Greater Hartford Open, an event where Southington was among the top teams last year.
New Britain will take part in the Rockville Invitational.