Bunnell routs ND-Fairfield for 3rd straight SWC championship

WESTON -- It was billed as No. 1 against No. 2, a pair of heavyweights battling for a piece of hardware and a place in history. But, it wound up as anything but that.

Instead, it turned out to be a showcase for Bunnell, and Notre Dame-Fairfied hated every minute of it.

Top-seeded Bunnell claimed its third straight SWC boys basketball title Friday, overwhelming the second-seeded Lancers, 75-58, from the opening tip at Weston High.

"We got a lot of layups early on," Bulldogs coach Pat Yerina said, "and we finished. That was the key, and we didn't give them second shots.

"One shot, done and go."

Bunnell (19-4) scored 13 straight points to go up 15-2 in the first quarter, and it got worse from there for ND-Fairfield. The Lancers, who shot an ugly 2-for-16 in the first quarter, trailed from start to finish.

"When you shoot the way we shot to start the game," Lancers coach Vin Laczkoski said, "and then you start hanging your heads, you don't deserve to be in the game.

"They beat our (butt), and I really don't know what else to tell you. Give Bunnell credit, they jumped on us early. I don't think we made a jump shot the whole first quarter."

Bolstered by point guard and tournament MVP Ryan Pittman, who finished with a team-high 22 points, the Bulldogs sliced through the paint for a flurry of easy buckets. They closed the second quarter with a 20-6 run and led comfortably at halftime, 41-20.

"Ryan played probably one of the best games of this year," Yerina said. "He's played some great games, and ... he just played phenomenal tonight. All our other guys stepped in."

It all added up to a markedly different result than the last time the two teams met on Feb. 16. The Lancers won that 67-56, and they're one of only two SWC teams -- Kolbe Cathedral is the other -- to beat the Bulldogs in league play over the last three seasons.

"The difference was, we didn't knock down shots in the first game," Pittman said. "This game we got off to a quick start. We got back on defense this time."

The Bulldogs didn't let up, either, leaving ND-Fairfield without an answer.

"They went after us," Laczkoski said. "When you start missing shots and hanging your head, you don't deserve to play.

"Was that my team out there?"

Guard Jake Heaton led the Lancers (17-6) with 25 points, and Jordan Pettway scored 16. The Lancers played the entire second half without forward Jesse McIntosh, who needed to be helped off the court after injuring his knee in the second quarter.

ND-Fairfield hopes to bounce back as the No. 6 seed in the Class M tournament, which tips off Monday. The Lancers will play host to No. 27 Windham Tech.

Forward Donte Peeler finished with 14 points for Bunnell, and Aaron Samuel scored 11.

"Give Bunnell all the credit in the world. ... They played their butts off tonight," Laczkoski said.

dbonjour@ctpost.com; twitter.com/DougBonjour


Jordan Pettway 6 3-4 16 CJ Davidson 2 0-0 5 Jesse McIntosh 1 0-0 2 Colin Burke 1 0-0 2 Jake Heaton 8 8-14 25 Ryan Keeley 0 2-2 2 Clay Westerman 0 0-0 0 Woodley Monnexant 0 0-0 0 Justin Pederici 1 0-0 2 Jordan Genias 1 0-0 2 Nori Davis 0 0-0 0 Andrew Allen 0 0-0 0 Tom Coleman 0 0-0 0 Kyle Federici 0 0-0 0 Damion Medwinter 1 0-0 2. Totals 21 13-20 58

BUNNELL (19-4)

Ryan Pittman 9 2-4 22 Jake Wilson 0 0-0 0 Brett Bogdwicz 0 2-2 2 Rashaad Spain 4 1-2 10 Nick Nolting 0 0-0 0 Aaron Samuel 4 3-6 11 Josh Vazquez 0 0-0 0 Jaylon Eggleston 1 0-2 2 Nick Giannoni 1 0-0 2 Donte Peeler 7 0-2 14 Zhyaire Fernandes 3 0-0 6 Pat Gough 3 0-0 6. Totals 32 8-18 75.

ND-FAIRFIELD 4 16 13 25 -- 58

BUNNELL 15 26 23 11 -- 75

3-pointers: NDF -- Pettway, Davidson, Heaton; B -- Pittman 2, Spain.