SOUTHINGTON - For the first time since 2013, the Southington boys basketball team has won a game in December.
In a tough back-and-forth battle with Farmington, the Blue Knights came out victorious Thursday evening, 49-45.
“We want to compete in every game. Right now we’re 1-1, and we competed in both,” Southington head coach John Cessario said.
Last Monday, Southington went into overtime, but was one possession short as it fell to Glastonbury 59-57.
“We want to compete in every game,” Cessario said. “It’s an unbelievably difficult conference and for us to actually do this this early … It was our first win in four years before Christmas, so we’re thrilled to have these guys [get] some of [the] results that they are working hard [toward] in practice.”
The back-and-forth battle started early for the Blue Knights, as they ended the first quarter tied 8-8 with the Indians.
With the game a little too close for comfort, the Blue Knights know there are things they must work on as a team.
“We started a little rough defensively,” forward Andrew Lohneiss said. “We didn’t stop the ball enough on transitions. At halftime our coach got on us about that. So after that, we really made it a point to stop the ball and I think we improved in the second half.”
As the second quarter rolled around, the Indians outscored the Blue Knights by two, 12-10.
Lohneiss was the leading scorer of the night with 16 points, but teammate Ryan Gesnaldo was right behind him with 15 of his own.
As for Farmington, Jake Styulier and Makhi Hankins each scored nine points.
“We need to rebound the ball significantly better,” Cessario said. “We did improve on our perimeter defense, but I still think that can get better. But, to execute against the 2-2-1 and 1-3-1 that Farmington put up against us, I think we’re going to see a lot more of that. There are a lot of guys out scouting us. They’re going to try to do that to us. We have to get better against those defenses.”
Lohneiss agrees with coach Cessario, that the Blue Knights defense can use some work.
“I think defensively we need to work on some things,” Lohneiss said. “Like stopping the ball and transitions, the first half was really bad, overall just defense. Our offense was pretty efficient and we can score when we want to, but defense can always be better.”
Lohneiss continued, “For this year I’m just looking forward to keep getting wins and keep moving on, honesty, because last year it was all about just trying to improve and getting better.”