NEWINGTON – The No. 7 Newington Nor’easters (16-5) secured their 10th victory over the last 11 games on Thursday night over the No. 10 Middletown Blue Dragons 66-54. The win pushes Newington through to the Central Connecticut Conference Quarterfinals on Saturday at Enfield High School.
The Nor’easters played a complete game from start to finish and it showed in their box score. Junior Lebron Beckford led four Newington players who scored at least 13 points. Gavin Gray and Adam Alexander trailed with 14 while Avery Mickens scored 13.
Within the first four minutes of the game Newington jumped out to a 15-5 lead forcing a timeout from the Blue Dragons (13-7).
By the end of the first quarter Newington found themselves ahead 19-11 and extended things by the end of the first half. Middletown went into the locker room down 11 points despite slowing down the Nor’easters’ offense some.
The third quarter was Middletown’s biggest spark of the night, outscoring Newington 17-14 in the frame. The Dragons applied more pressure and forced a few turnovers to give themselves life ahead of the fourth.
Middletown continued to creep up on the Nor’easters, closing the gap to just five points with under six minutes to play. However, a right-corner 3-pointer for Beckford and a converted and-1 from Mickens put Newington back in the driver’s seat and they never looked back.
The Dragons were led by Quadir Murphy’s 13 points and Branden Torres’ 10 in the loss.
The Nor’easters coasted to the 12-point victory and will now turn their attention to the No. 15 Conard Red Wolves. After an upset over No. 2 Northwest Catholic, Conard gets Newington at 7 p.m. this Saturday from Enfield High School.
For further analysis on this game, read the Feb. 25 Weekend Edition of the New Britain Herald