BRISTOL - In a young season already loaded with schedule changes, high school athletes know nothing in front of them is guaranteed.
The St. Paul boys basketball team learned that first hand, having played three games over the first three weeks of the season when it was supposed to have at least twice as many results behind them. Fortunately for junior guard Jamie Leggett, his performance in Monday night’s win over Wilby will be with him forever.
Leggett posted a triple-double in his home gym Monday and finished with 40 points, 14 rebounds and 10 assists as he led the Falcons to an 88-65 victory. St. Paul’s record is now 3-0 this season behind one of its captains contributing to more than half his team’s points in a highly efficient effort.
“My teammates put me in a great position to succeed and our coaches put us in a great position to succeed,” Leggett said. “It feels good knowing that I contributed in a positive way in the game and helped my team get a win.”
Leggett, whose primary focus is helping his team win in any way possible, was unaware of his monstrous stat line until he exited the game for the final time. He knew he had an effective game as a scorer, but did not know the full scope of his impact on the game until Erik Suzio, his teammate and co-captain, filled him in.
“Obviously it feels good when you’re hitting shots and everybody is playing well,” Leggett said. “Most importantly, we won. That’s all that was really on my mind was winning.”
With 32 minutes of total game time in a high school basketball game, scoring 40 points requires shooting at a high percent with a significant amount of shots taken in a short amount of time. To finish the game with such large numbers while not playing the entire game is a testament to Leggett’s effectiveness during his time on the floor.
“It was pretty neat to observe,” St. Paul coach Steve Phelps said. “The great thing about Jamie is he does not aspire to score 40 a night. It kind of happened for him and in addition to that, the completeness of it was just helping in all facets of the game. That’s his priority, to make the guys around him better.”
Of his 14 rebounds, Leggett grabbed eight offensive boards and six defensive boards as he made his presence felt in this game with his effort as much as his skill. Especially being a guard, Leggett displayed his all-around ability and his willingness to play anywhere on the floor.
“He willed himself to be active on the offensive boards,” Phelps said. “Over the last year he’s dedicated himself not only in the gym, but outside of the gym, he’s probably put on 15 pounds and he’s gotten stronger.”
Leggett also finished the game perfect on his seven free throw attempts and will look to continue that efficiency as the Falcons progress through their season.
“I’m really confident in us,” Leggett said. “I think we can make a statement and we look to make a statement every day.”
Matt Hornick can be reached at (860) 973-1811 or email@example.com.