Prep returns to LL quarters as a team
Updated 3:25 pm, Friday, March 9, 2012
Fairfield Prep boys basketball coach Leo Redgate has been telling anyone who would listen to him that his aim this year was a deep state tournament run.
The Jesuits are doing just that again in 2012.
Prep's role players combined for 36 points in the Jesuits' 62-53 win over Westhill on Thursday at Alumni Hall.
A year after winning five straight Class LL tournament games and reaching the state final, Redgate has been adamant all season about getting his team in a position to do that again in 2011-12.
"My goal the whole season has been to get the team prepared for the state tournament," Redgate said. "I think it's a matter of how you finish."
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The Jesuits are now 7-1 in the state tournament under the second-year coach, and will host a quarterfinal contest Monday against No. 14 New Britain at Alumni Hall.
"I think it's great to play here," Redgate said. "I'm happy for our seniors."
Terry Tarpey led all scorers with 26 points, 13 rebounds and six blocks, and credited a desire to continue his high school career as continued motivation.
"I didn't want this to be my last home game at Prep to be a loss," Tarpey said.
"(Matera) played an outstanding defensive game on Dobbinson," Tarpey said. "I think that's why we won."
Dobbinson attacked Prep's defense in the first half and early in the second, wrecking havoc driving to the basket and dishing the ball. Dobbinson had four points and three assists in the first 18 minutes, and Westhill built a 33-27 lead.
But Matera's defense, combined with Vikings standout Chris Walters' third-personal foul, ignited Prep. The Jesuits went on a 29-6 run after Walters picked up his third, as Tarpey-- as well as, Ryan Blake, Tim Butala and Ben Sullivan-- rebounded and scored on the nine minute, 46 second spurt.
"When they double and triple Terry, we have guys who can step up," Matera said.
"We've got guys who make Tarpey better," Redgate said. "We're a team."
Prep allowed the Vikings to score just one field goal over that stretch as it turned that six-point deficit into a 56-39 lead late in the fourth, showing patience on the offensive end, as well.
"We wanted to make them work on defense," Redgate said. "When we run our stuff the way we're supposed to, we're tough to beat."
Dobbinson also did not record an assist after the first minute of the second half and did not score until the 2:01 mark of the fourth quarter when Prep held a 15-point lead.
"You have to learn his tendencies," Matera said. "Once I did that, it was done."
Despite a 21-3 record, Prep's schedule and opponents have been criticized by outsiders, but Redgate is content letting fans of other leagues sleep on his club.
"I'm proud of the schedule we play," Redgate said. "We play some good teams, it's just no one knows anything about them and that's OK."