Fairfield Prep eliminated in SCC semifinals
For the Fairfield Prep boys basketball team, playing in its first SCC semifinal game since 1995, things went well for a half.
Then the wheels came off.
Top-seeded Career of New Haven shot 60 percent from the field in the second half as the Panthers blitzed the fifth-seeded Jesuits 65-44 in front of 1,856 in the SCC semifinals on Tuesday night at TD Bank Sports Center.
"I thought this would be a good barometer of where our club is," Prep coach Leo Redgate said.
The Panthers lost to No. 2 seeded Hillhouse, 55-43 on Wednesday night in the SCC finals.
Prep was led by junior Terry Tarpey, who scored 12 points and added 10 rebounds. He was the only Jesuits' player in double figures.
However, Prep hung tough for the first 16 minutes. The Jesuits played to a 14-14 tie at the end of a quarter, as senior center Matt Daley scored all five of his points. However, Daley picked up his second foul with just 1:07 in the first, and did not score after that.
"It took him out of the game," Redgate said of Daley picking up his second foul so early.
The Jesuits last led at 19-18 with 4:56 to go in the second quarter. Career closed the half on a 10-1 run to take a 28-20 lead into halftime.
"We fell asleep," Redgate said. "It was not that they did anything that we haven't seen before."
The Panthers then outscored Prep 20-8 in the third quarter, closing on a 16-4 run, and never looked back.
"I felt that going into the second half, from the first half, we stuck with our plan, which was defense," Career coach Larry Kelley said. "I think we are faster with five guys than they are with three."
"They did a great job," Redgate said of Career.
Redgate was agitated by the officiating crew, so much so, that he picked up a technical foul after senior guard Robbie Bier was ripped to the ground with 5:58 remaining in the fourth.
"I was very disappointed with the attitude of some of the referees," Redgate said. "If they were bad both ways, it wouldn't be a problem."
Redgate and the Jesuits will now look to the Class LL tournament, and he has a feeling that the Panthers may be waiting for them.
"I'm very confident that they will win the states," Redgate said. "But, I think we can also win the states."