Orange Life Sports Writer
Bouncing back from Friday’s 50-43 loss to Cheshire, the Amity boys basketball team pasted Lyman Hall 49-39 Tuesday night in a Southern Connecticut Conference Housatonic Division contest that was played in Woodbridge. With the victory Amity upped its overall record to 11-3 and kept pace with Cheshire for the top spot in the Housy with identical 5-1 records. The struggling Trojans drop to 1-13 overall and deeper into the Housy cellar with its 0-6 record. It clearly was not one of the Spartans’ better outings, but they did play well enough to win.
“At times our play was uninspired and we didn’t run our offense properly,” Coach Jeff Nielsen said. “We settled for poor shots, especially in the first half. By the third and fourth quarters, our play picked up. We didn’t settle for threes and jump shots. Instead we began looking to score on lay-ups.”
With Remi Farrell and Matt Lettick leading the way, the Spartans hit six of their first nine shots and jumped off to a 15-3 lead. Zac Campbell ignited the offensive outburst with an early three and Dave Ryan ended it with a buzzer- beating three at the end of the first quarter. Farrell dropped in five of his 12 point total and pulled off four of his nine rebounds in the opening session.
According to Nielsen, “Remi is really starting to assert himself. He’s becoming more aggressive at the offensive and defensive ends of the court. He’s learning how to play the post and how to establish a good defensive balance between being smart and being aggressive. His overall play is much better now than it was at the start of the year.”
After hitting only one of its nine shots in the first quarter, Lyman Hall’s play improved in the second session. While Amity’s offense cooled off, the Trojans, led by Alex McKay (who dropped in six of his 11 points), outscored the Spartans 10-7 in the second quarter and reduced their deficit to nine points (22-13) at the break.
Campbell (who tossed in seven of his 18 points) during the third quarter, kept Amity comfortably ahead but the Trojans refused to be blown away. Thanks to consecutive threes by Devin Cruz and Chris Ames, Lyman Hall trailed by only 10 points (35-25) after 24 minutes of action.
When Farrell stuffed a put back dunk down into the cylinder with 45 seconds left in the game, Amity had its biggest lead of the night (49-34). The gritty but outgunned Trojans ended the game with a three ball from Ames and a final lay-up by freshman guard Will Shields.
Nielsen added, “In the second half, our defense was decent and we started getting the ball inside to Zac. We knew that Cruz (17 points) and McKay could score, so we tried to keep them in check. The result was, we walked away with another win.”
The winners ended up hitting 20 of their 49 shots from the floor (41%) while Lyman Hall canned only 16 of 47 (34%). Led by Lettick (10 points and 10 rebounds) Amity also outboarded the Trojans 36-28.
Amity played without the services of Gardner Broderick, who was sidelined by the flu. Ryan replaced him in the starting line-up.
The Spartans visit Sheehan Friday at 7 p.m.