MERIDEN — The Platt and Maloney boys basketball teams spent the first Friday night of 2019 on their respective sides of town pulling away from CCC South-Colonial Division rivals Berlin and Middletown.
Tonight, they’ll switch opponents and look to keep it rolling on the road. Platt (5-2) is at Middletown (1-4). Maloney (5-4) is at Berlin (3-2). Both tip off at 6:45 p.m.
You’ll note the numbers. The Panthers and Spartans are sporting winning records a year after both missed out on the state tournament. Platt has been steady right out of the gate, while Maloney has found the groove after opening 2-4.
Malcolm Andrews (16.8 ppg.), Tre Carter (16.2) and Roemello Leary (13.0) are leading the Panthers. Vincent Martinez (16.5) and Divine Ransom (8.0) are the top scorers for Maloney. Both teams, though, have been getting widespread contributions.
Platt and Maloney will both be back home on Friday night for crossovers — the Panthers against E.O. Smith (1-4), the Spartans against South Windsor (0-7). And since it’s never too early to look ahead: mark next Friday, Jan. 18. The rivals go head to head at Platt.
In the meantime, other roundball games to watch this week:
■Cheshire (2-3) home vs. Hamden (4-2) tonight at 7 p.m.
The Rams, sparked by a game-opening 22-0 run that spilled into the second quarter, posted their first-ever SCC victory over Hillhouse, 51-44, on Friday night. Hillhouse was ranked No. 10. Can coach Dan Lee’s Rams keep it rolling against another perennial SCC powerhouse?
■Sheehan (5-2), which took the opening Battle of Wallingford 60-46 on Friday, has a big week ahead. The Titans are at Wilbur Cross (2-2) tonight, then return home to host Shelton (4-1) on Wednesday and Amity (4-2) on Friday. The Titans, like Maloney, are riding a three-game winning streak.
Lyman Hall (1-4) looks to rebound at home tonight against Daniel Hand (3-3), coached by LH alum Jimmy Economopoulos.
The first distaff Battle of Wallingford was also won by Sheehan, 50-42. Coach Mike Busillo’s Titans, now 4-1, are home tonight to host Career (2-3), the team with whom they split last year’s SCC Housatonic banner.
Later in the week, on Wednesday and Friday, Sheehan and Lyman Hall (2-4) take turns visiting Hillhouse (5-1) and Shelton (4-3). It’s a good bet that by week’s end Lyman Hall senior Kailey Lipka (971) will surpass 1,000 career points. Sheehan’s Liv Robles enters at the week at 910.
There is a Silver City rivalry game on this week’s docket: girls hoop, Platt (1-6) at Wilcox Tech (1-4), Wednesday at 6 p.m. The Panthers won the first meeting 41-17 on Dec. 17.
All told, Wednesday is shaping up as a pretty cool hump day. Platt wrestling is home for a big CCC South dual match with Middletown, which was ranked No. 9 in last week’s state poll. Maloney, meanwhile, crosses the northern border to take on Berlin.
In hockey, Sheehan (6-2) and JBWA (4-2) tangle in a key SCC/SWC Division III game at Danbury Ice Arena on Wednesday at 8:40 p.m.
JBWA has won four straight. Not only that, the Joel Barlow-based co-op has scored 10 goals in two of those games and eight goals in the two others.
Sheehan is filling the net, too, while goaltender Tyler Robertson has been barring the door at the other end. Saturday night’s 5-0 win over the Redhawks in Norwich marked the third shutout of the season for Robertson and the defense, which has allowed just nine goals in eight games
Offensively, Anthony Romano led the Titans in Norwich with a pair of goals. Joe Romano, Joe Richo and Luke Festa had single strikes.
Also heading west on Wednesday is the Lyman Hall Co-op (4-2), which faces New Milford (3-3) at the Canterbury school at 7 p.m. (Sheehan will be there, against the same opponent, on Friday at 7:30.)
The Trojans have won three straight. Matt Pettit, with his second hat trick in three games in Saturday’s 6-4 win vs. Westhill-Stamford, has nine goals and eight assists on the season. Kyle Roberts (6 goals, 13 assists) hit the 150-point plateau for his career.
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