PLAINVILLE - Plainville boys basketball senior Tyshawn Johnson made the first basket of every quarter in the Blue Devils’ game against New Britain on Monday, but not much else from his team’s offense came that consistently.
The Hurricanes left the Plainville gym with a 67-39 win to bring their record above .500 at 4-3. Tyrone Cummings led all scorers with 14 points for New Britain as an active participant under the basket. He missed some time earlier this season and his return makes a noticeable difference for this team.
Cummings was one of four players for New Britain who finished with at least 10 points in addition to Justice Carter (11), Xavier Goode (13) and Tyler Nolen (10). The Hurricanes were assertive on the inside, using their size and athleticism to score at the basket, which created openings on the 3-point line.
“We were going up and down because we had the tempo,” New Britain head coach Kurt Reis said. “We got the same shots in other games, but we just didn’t make them. I don’t know if it’s this gym maybe, I’m not sure, but when the ball goes in the hoop things become a lot easier.”
Plainville (1-6) struggled mightily to make shots in the first quarter and the result was a dominant quarter for New Britain. Nolen found success scoring from close and led the way with eight points, more than the Blue Devils notched in the same span. Three different Plainville players found the basket in the period, but the offense failed to convert consistently and built a double-digit deficit that the Hurricanes would continue to grow.
“We weren’t hitting shots, basically,” Johnson said. “We weren’t getting into sets. It was a lot of rushing shots.”
The Hurricanes ran a full-court press early in the game, which the Blue Devils were able to break smoothly. Plainville’s problems came in the half court with trying to create good shots with ball movement.
“New Britain’s athleticism really took over today,” Plainville head coach Scot Wenzel said. “We didn’t do a good job of controlling the pace of the game, they were going up and down the floor. They took it to us tonight.”
New Britain found its rhythm from behind the arc in the second quarter, draining five triples, highlighted by three from Goode, who was left open on several occasions and shot at a high clip.
“We shot the ball lights out,” Reis said. “I don’t think teams expect [Goode] to go off, but if he’s open and has his feet set, he’s a pretty good shooter.”
Plainville’s offense came together somewhat after the first quarter as it posted 12 points in the quarter, including five points and a made 3-pointer each from Johnson and Omarion Miller.
“We never got into any type of pace with what we wanted to do,” Wenzel said. “We got into what they wanted us to do, which was play fast and jack threes and that just wasn’t going to work. That created long rebounds and fastbreaks for them.”
The second half saw more of the same Plainville failed to find any rhythm and New Britain continued to run and score. Carter scored eight of his points after halftime as the Blue Devils shifted focus on defense to players that had already scored more.
“We attacked and kicked, attacked and kicked, it was open all game,” Carter said. “The middle was open all game. We put our shooters in the right spots to score and they knocked down shots tonight.”
Up next for the Hurricanes is a road contest against Avon on Thursday, looking to avenge a 66-55 loss from earlier this season, and the Blue Devils will travel to face Bristol Eastern the same day.
Matt Hornick can be reached at (860) 973-1811 or firstname.lastname@example.org
NEW BRITAIN 67, PLAINVILLE 39
New Britain 20 22 17 8 - 67
Plainville 6 12 14 7 - 39
NEW BRITAIN: Justice Carter 3-4-11, Tyler Nolen 5-0-10, Xavier Goode 5-0-13, Demir Kandic 4-0-8, Tyrone Cummings 5-2-14, Dontay Bishop 4-0-8, Tyler Czeremcha 1-0-3. Totals 27-6-67.
PLAINVILLE: Tyshawn Johnson 7-0-15, A.J. Lestini 2-0-4, Omarion Miller 4-0-10, Dylan Hall 1-0-2, Brennan Staubley 1-1-3. Totals 15-1-39.
Three-point goals: Johnson (P), Carter (NB), Miller (P) 2, Goode (NB) 3, Cummings (NB) 2, Czeremcha (NB).
Records: New Britain 4-3, Plainville 1-6.