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BOYS BASKETBALL 2019-2020
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Retired Numbers - Michael McMahon (Class of 1985) #31; Jerry Gambardella (Class of 2000) #21
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Westies fall to Law
West Haven loses opener 55-52
By MIKE MADERA
(December 21, 2019) - With plenty of optimism surrounding the West Haven boys basketball team, opening day could not get here fast enough for the Westies. Unfortunately for West Haven, the ending was not what the Westies were looking for.
In a tight contest, Jonathan Law had just enough at the end to defeat the Westies 55-52 in the season opener in Milford Saturday evening. Even at 20 at the half, Law took a 4-point lead to the final quarter.
The Westies connected on just one field goal in the first quarter, that coming from Javaun Cahoun. Three-pointers by Shea Sheffield and Tyrese Hargrove in the second quarter led to the halftime tie.
Sheffield added a pair of 3-pointers in the third, and two more in the fourth, but it was not enough for the Westies.
Sheffield led the Westies with 20 points, including five 3-pointers. Khalel Francis and Hargrove each had nine points, while Malcolm Duncanson finished with eight.
Westies top Weaver
Duncanson leads way in 73-55 victory
By MIKE MADERA
(December 23, 2019) - The West Haven boys basketball team picked up its first win of the season in impressive style Monday evening. With eight players in the scoring column, and three in double figures, West Haven defeated Weaver 73-55 at West Haven High.
Malcolm Duncanson led the way with 17 points, Marlin Walker had 11, and Khalel Francis scored 10 in the victory. Laron Holmes and Mustapha Baio each scored nine for West Haven.
With a four-point game at the half led by West Haven 37-33, the Westies took control with a 20-10 run in the third quarter. Duncanson had seven points in the quarter, Francis added six, and Devin Clark-Harrington had four of his eight points in the quarter.
West Haven (1-1) led 16-15 after one quarter behind a balanced attack as six different players scored. Duncanson led the way with four points, while Holmes and Baio each had three in the quarter.
Westies top Career
WH improves to 2-1 with 65-63 victory
By MIKE MADERA
(December 27, 2019) - The West Haven boys basketball team improved to 2-1 with a 65-63 victory over Career. The win was West Haven's second in a row,
Read about the victory from Joe Morelli of GameTimeCt below:.
Tyrese Hargrove and Malcolm Duncanson had 14 and 12 points, respectively, for West Haven, which held off Career despite missing nine free throws in the fourth quarter.
“That made the game harder than it needed to be,” West Haven coach Tyrese Sullivan said. “Always happy about a win, way we won no, not happy, thought we made a few silly plays down the stretch.”
The game was tied at 43 heading into the fourth quarter. A 16-7 run gave the Westies (2-1) some breathing room.
West Haven led 63-55 with under a minute left, but missed several free throws. Jose Guzman-Ortiz hit back-to-back 3-pointers, the last with a eight-tenths of a second remaining,to make it 65-63. West Haven was fouled with no time showing on the clock — but it’s the horn that signifies the game being over.
The Westies missed another free throw, but there wasn’t nearly enough time for the Panthers (0-3) to get a shot off. West Haven shot 13 of 30 from the line overall.
“We didn’t execute down the stretch. I’ll take the responsibility for that as the coach,” Sullivan said. “I have to prepare them better and we need to keep our continuity. That’s on me.”
Saveeon Avery and Damon Williams both had 19 points while Guzman-Ortiz added 16 to lead Career.
Green Knights top Westies
WH improves to 2-1 with 65-63 victory
By MIKE MADERA
(January 3, 2020) - The West Haven boys basketball team felt as if it was up to the test entering Friday evening's contest with cross-town rival Notre Dame. Unfortunately for the Westies, Notre Dame was too much to handle in a 76-66 Notre Dame victory at Alumni Hall at Notre Dame.
Read about the contest below from Sean Patrick Bowley of GameTimeCt.
By Sean Patrick Bowley
Notre Dame-West Haven’s boys basketball team faced, perhaps, its biggest test of the young season when it played host to crosstown rival West Haven and its new coach Ty Sullivan.
Despite missing its starting and backup forward, which allowed Notre Dame to just about have its way inside for most of the game, the Westies still proved a formidable opponent, nearly fighting all the way back from a 21-point, second-half deficit.
But Notre Dame has Zach Laput, who poured in 26 points and helped the Green Knights beat back this challenge, 76-66, at Alumni Hall’s Tonelli Court Friday night.
“We lost a bit of composure,” said Notre Dame coach Jason Shea, whose No. 6-ranked team improved to 5-0. “But we were able to tough it out. I think Laput getting to the basket was a big key and Ben (Carroll) early in side in the second half. I thought that was the difference in the game.”
Carroll, Notre Dame’s junior forward, added 13 points and Kairon Hooks and Marquise McDuffie combined for 21 as the Green Knights built a 10-point halftime lead and a 21-point advantage toward the end of the third quarter.
But West Haven quickly turned things around. Led by forward Laron Holmes’ 15 points and 14 from guard Shea Sheffield, the Westies whittled that lead down to a mere six points.
Sheffield, who’d hit a 3-pointer at the buzzer to end the third quarter, dropped his fourth 3-pointer of the game (and West Haven’s seventh 3 of the night) to pull within 61-55 with just over 5 minutes remaining.
But Laput immediately countered with a basket and the foul to push the lead back to nine. West Haven never truly threatened again.
“It was one of those games you wish you had three more minutes in,” said Sullivan, whose team fell to 2-2. “Maybe the outcome might have been a little different.”
Laput scored 10 of his points in the final quarter, including hitting on four of five foul shots down the stretch. Overall, Notre Dame made 14 of 19 free throws. Hooks had eight rebounds.
“We played hard, but we’ve just got to be better with the ball,” said Laput, who also had six assists and was being watched by both Brown and Sacred Heart University. “We were too sloppy. Film session on Sunday’s probably going to be rough for us. But it’s fine. A win is a win.”
It didn’t help that West Haven was playing without 6-foot-5 senior center Randall Gonzalez, who injured his shoulder during a 65-63 victory over Career the week before. Sullivan said he’ll be out for much of the remainder of the regular season.
“We were without our starting center and our backup center tonight. So size definitely hurt us,” Sullivan said. “But overall, I’m proud of my guys. They played hard. I think this was maybe one of the closest games they’ve played this year — they score a lot of points. We’re going to get better.”
Malcom Duncanson finished with 10 points and Khalel Francis had nine as West Haven’s guards often gave Notre Dame fits throughout.
“It’s just a matter about getting better,” Shea said. “Like I told the guys, it’s nice to win and learn from wins. But we’re certainly going to spend a lot of time on film. This can’t be who we are, we have to get a lot better.”
Back in the win Column
WH tops Cheshire
By MIKE MADERA
(January 7, 2020) - The West Haven boys basketball team got back to its winning ways with a 60-56 victory over Cheshire Tuesday evening at West Haven High. With the win, West Haven improved to 3-2 on the year.
West Haven had four players in double figures, led by Malcolm Duncanson and Marlin Walker with 14 points each. Shea Sheffield scored 13 points and Laron Holmes scored 10.
Cheshire jumped out to an early 19-9 lead after one quarter, but the Westies held the Rams to just 16 points over the next two quarters. West Haven hit on only three field goals in the opening quarter, before going on an 18-7 run in the second quarter for a 27-26 lead at the half.
Walker and Sheffield each scored five points in the quarter, while Duncanson added four to help turn the game around.
West Haven pulled away with another big run, this one 19-9 in the third quarter for a 46-35 lead. Holmes drained three field goals, Duncanson had five points, and Sheffield drained a big 3-pointer.
The Westies were outscored 21-14 in the final quarter, with all but five points coming from the free throw line.
Westies top Prep
Big second half key to win
By MIKE MADERA
(January 9, 2020) - The West Haven boys basketball team won its second straight contest and improved to 4-2 on the year with a 70-61 road victory over Fairfield Prep Thursday evening.
Laron Holmes led three players in double figures with 15 points, while Malcolm Duncanson added 11, and Marlin Walker had 10.
Despite leading after one quarter of play, led by Duncanson’s five points, the Westies trailed at the half by six.
West Haven’s offense awakened in the second half, including the third quarter when Walker drained a pair of key 3-pointers and Duncanson and Tyrese Hargrove each scored four points.
The Westies closed out the game in the fourth quarter draining ten free throws, getting a big 3-pointer from Shea Sheffield, and nine points from Holmes.
Westies rally past Hall
Duncanson leads WH to 63-61 victory
By MIKE MADERA
(January 13, 2020) - With its third straight victory, the West Haven boys basketball team improved to 5-2 on the season Monday evening. West Haven’s latest victory came at Hall, where the Westies posted a 57-51 victory.
The Westies had three players in double figures, led by Marlin Walker with 18 points. Malcolm Duncanson and Laron Holmes each scored 15 points, with Walker draining four 3-pointers. Shea Sheffield finished with eight points, including a pair of 3-pointers.
West Haven trailed 14-12 after one quarter despite six points on a pair of 3-pointers by Marlin Walker, and 23-22 at the half.
West Haven got things going in the third quarter to take a 41-38 lead with a 19-15 advantage. Duncanson had nine of his points in the quarter. West Haven hit seven free throws in the final quarter to pull out the six-point victory.
Westies run past Law
WH improves to 6-3 with win
By MIKE MADERA
(January 17, 2020) - The West Haven boys basketball team has won four of its last five contests. The fourth win came Friday evening in a 58-43 home victory over Jonathan Law.
Read about the win from Joe Morelli and GameTimeCT below.
Ty Sullivan knows full well the importance of his West Haven High boys basketball team faring well in this stretch of games.
With a loss to Amistad in its rear-view mirror, and games next week against SCC contenders Hamden and Notre Dame-West Haven, the focus Friday night was on Law, and a victory was much in need for the Westies’ program.
West Haven got the victory it needed, defeating Law 58-43 at home.
“This one was very important because they beat us to start the season, so we definitely owed them,” junior captain Malcolm Duncanson said. “We have a big week next week.”
Said Sullivan: “It was almost a make-or-break game after the last two, Amistad and Hall. I don’t believe we deserved to win that game (at Hall, 63-61) and Amistad was another poor showing in front of our home crowd. But I’m proud of our guys, they showed some resilience tonight.”
The Westies (6-3) took the lead in the second quarter, took control in the third quarter, then spread out Law in the fourth and went to work to finish the Lawmen off.
“A couple of our guys gave maximum effort, but that’s not enough for us,” Law coach Jamie Anderson said. “We need eight or nine guys to give us maximum effort every time they are on the floor.”
As Duncanson noted, Law won the first matchup between the two SCC schools 55-52 back in the season opener on Dec. 21. As Anderson noted, “We caught them at the right time (back in December).”
Antonio Brown led Law with 12 points while Noah Tutlis added 10. West Haven was able to bottle up everyone else, including senior guard Diontae Eady, who finished with four points.
“We challenged guys like Malcolm and Shea (Sheffield) that ‘If you want to be considered one of the top players in the state, you have to step up to the challenge against top players. I feel like (Amistad’s) Eli Blackwell won the last battle. I challenged Malcolm personally to step up to Eady tonight and I think he did a good job.”
Eady sat out the first quarter for what Anderson called “a violation of team policy.” Eady started the second quarter, but he struggled to get into the flow and took some turns on the bench the rest of the way.
“When the bell rings, you have to be ready to go. We didn’t have that from every guy,” Anderson said. “I couldn’t put my finger on why they weren’t.”
Law dominated the first quarter with a 10-0 run to take a 14-4 lead.
Law (6-3) expanded the lead to 17-4 early in the second quarter — then West Haven began its rally. All told, it was a 21-2 run for the Westies, establishing a 25-19 lead.
“Coach had faith in us,” Duncanson said. “We knew shots would fall as long as we stayed aggressive and stayed confident.”
The Westies got up by 10 at one point in the third quarter, then into double digits for good early in the fourth after spreading out Law. Duncanson had seven points and a pair of assists in the final quarter.
Shea Sheffield and Laron Holmes scored 11 and 10 points, respectively, for the Westies.
When everything clicking together, it frees everybody up,” Sullivan said. “Our shooters start to hit shots, the lane starts to get wider. … We can make this good win turn into a great week ahead of us. That’s what we are looking forward to.”