CIAC CHAMPIONSHIP SUNDAY: Sacred Heart raises fourth straight basketball banner, Meriden’s Gaiter scores team-high 24

CIAC CHAMPIONSHIP SUNDAY: Sacred Heart raises fourth straight basketball banner, Meriden’s Gaiter scores team-high 24

Record-Journal
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Isaiah Gaiter, seen here in action last season when he was at Platt, scored 24 points Sunday to lead Sacred Heart-Waterbury to its fourth straight state championship. The Hearts defeated Notre Dame-Fairfield 75-53 in the Class L final at Mohegan Sun Arena. | Dave Zajac/Record-Journal

UNCASVILLE — For the past three winters, the Sacred Heart-Waterbury boys basketball team won a state championship with the hefty help of a player from Meriden.

Make it four straight.

With three-time champ Mustapha Heron now ensconced at Auburn University, Isaiah Gaiter became the latest Silver City dynamo on the Hearts. He scored a team-high 24 points in Sunday’s 75-53 victory over Notre Dame-Fairfield in the CIAC Class L championship game at Mohegan Sun Arena.

Gaiter, who played at Platt last season, also grabbed 11 rebounds in the last of this year’s eight CIAC basketball finals.

Sacred Heart, the No. 1 seed, won its ninth state championship and finished unbeaten at 25-0. Notre Dame, the No. 2 seed, came away at 22-3.

The game was a rematch of last year’s Class M final, won by Sacred Heart 101-49. Notre Dame, also a finalist in 2015, has now lost three straight state finals and four overall.

Brookfield 63, Bloomfield 60: A put-back in the paint by Lucas Joshi with four seconds to go in the Class M final lifted the Bobcats to their first-ever state hoop title.

Brookfield, playing in its first-ever state boys basketball final, held on after Bloomfield, a five-time finalist dating back to 2002, closed a 46-39 deficit heading into the fourth quarter.

This game was a matchup of the lowest seeds to reach the finals. Brookfield was the No. 11, Bloomfield the No. 8. Both teams finished 19-6.

Austin DaSilva paced the Bobcats with 19 points, 11 rebounds and six assists. David Albanese also chalked up a double-double with 14 points and 12 rebounds.

Cameron Gleichauf added 11 rebounds as Brookfield out-rebounded Bloomfield 53-40.

The Warhawks put four players in double figures: Josh Moore-Henry led the way with 14 points and Dexter Lawson was good for 12. Chris Rose and Jordan Pruitt kicked in 11 apiece.

Girls basketball

Daniel Hand 50, Holy Cross 45: The No. 2 Tigers outscored the top-seeded Crusaders 19-7 over the final 11½ minutes to claim the Class L championships.

Holy Cross led for much of the game, including by as many as 10 in the second quarter. Hand, however, made the Waterbury school pay for its 26 turnovers, turning them into 19 points.

Juniors Gabby Egidio and Emma Sullivan scored 12 points apiece to lead Hand (22-3). Egidio also had six steals. Senior Idalis Miranda had a team-high nine points and four steals for Holy Cross (23-2).

The title was the second in girls basketball for the Tigers, who earned their first in 1999 against Killingly in their only other state championship appearance. Holy Cross was playing in its first state final since beating Career in 2007 to win Class M. The Crusaders are now 1-4 in state finals.


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