DANBURY - The New Britain boys basketball team will have to wait another season to try and reach the semifinals of the state tournament.
Just three days after their improbable comeback in the Division II state tournament second round, the Hurricanes looked poised to add another important win to their tournament run. They just weren’t able to carry that momentum over.
Hampered by a lack of consistent shooting, seventh-seeded New Britain fell to No. 2 Immaculate in front of a raucous crowd in the Division II quarterfinals 56-41 Monday night.
It was the program’s first quarterfinals appearance since the 2013-14 season. The Hurricanes haven’t reached the semifinals since the 2004 tournament.
“We executed against everything that they did defensively,” New Britain head coach Kurt Reis said. “But we couldn’t score inside and we didn’t play disciplined basketball. We took a lot of bad shots. [Immaculate] is a good team and at this level that’s what’s going to win the game.”
Immaculate’s Jack Woods had a game-high of 14 points, but the Hurricanes’ Thameen Dupree wasn’t far behind, finishing with 13 points of his own.
Maurice Turner was the only other New Britain player to finish in double figures. He scored 10.
Although the Hurricanes took the lead heading into the second quarter, Isaiah Payton hit a 3-pointer with 22 seconds left in the first to give the Mustangs the momentum they needed.
Payton finished his night tying Dupree with 13 points.
Immaculate soon took the lead for the first time at the start of the second and did not relinquish it for the remainder of the night.
Both teams traded baskets throughout the remainder of the half, but the Mustangs were able to keep a safe lead over New Britain and went into the halftime break up nine.
The Hurricanes’ 8-2 run midway through the third quarter got them to within five, 33-28, but not before Payton could hit another 3 for the Mustangs.
Immaculate was able to sustain its lead with a 7-2 run to start off the final quarter and closed out the game with an 8-2 run in the final minute.
The Mustangs will continue on in the tournament and will play No. 6 Glastonbury (17-5) in the semifinals on Wednesday. New Britain finishes its season 17-6.
Shelby Iava can be reached at (860) 801-5096 or firstname.lastname@example.org
Division II Quarterfinals
No. 2 Immaculate 56, No. 7 New Britain 41
At Immaculate HS (Danbury)
New Britain 11 9 10 11 - 41
Immaculate 10 19 9 18 - 56
NEW BRITAIN: Maurice Turner 3-2-10, Thameen Dupree 5-1-13, Deshawn Clark 2-0-4,Nyzaiah Diaz 4-0-8, Daniel Kownacki 3-0-6. Totals: 17-3-41.
IMMACULATE: Isaiah Payton 5-0-13, Mike Basile 4-3-11, Jack Woods 6-0-14, Quin Guth 3-0-7, Ronan Doherty 4-2-11. Totals: 22-5-56.
3-Point Goals: Turner (NB) 2, Dupree (NB) 2, Payton (I) 3, Woods (I) 2, Guth (I), Doherty (I).
Records: Immaculate 18-4, New Britain 17-6.