HARTFORD, February 7, 2020 – The Sports Science Medicine Academy boys basketball team isn’t blessed with the tallest players on the floor. Despite no players over 6-foot-1, the Tigers won their first 15 games of the season, in part, due to the speed of their guards and the team quickness.
Canton decided to take the ball to the Tigers on Friday night. The Warriors, led by 6-foot-3 Matt Rose with a team-high 21 points and another 11 points from 6-foot-3 Jack Rose, handed SMSA their first loss of the season, 68-49.
A health dose of rebounds, a few steals and solid inside defense helped Canton (15-2, 11-2 NCCC) earn the win on the road. The Warriors are one game behind the Tigers (15-1, 12-1 NCCC) and each have one conference game remaining on Tuesday night. SMSA is tied for the lead in the league with Somers (14-3, 12-1 NCCC).
Matt Rose pulled down 12 rebounds with Jack Rose grabbing nine. The Warriors made shooting difficult for the Tigers, who connected on just one of 16 three-point shots.
The Warriors scored 12 of the first 14 points in the game. Canton got out to a quick 17-9 lead after one quarter and made life difficult for the Tigers with few uncontested baskets. In the second quarter, SMSA cut the lead to four, 19-15, but Josh Burke and Colin Mackin hit jumpers to push the Canton lead back to eight with 3:41 left in the first half.
Canton led by as many as 11 points in the second quarter after Silas Sawtelle pulled down the an offensive rebound and scored for a 29-18 lead with 1:35 remaining in the quarter.
SMSA tried to rally in the third quarter and cut the lead to six, 34-28 with 5:35 remaining. But Jack Rose took a nice feed from Ryan McGoldrick to complete a fast-break and then Mackin scored on a layup, was fouled and sank the foul shot to push the lead to 11.
Off an assist from Jack Rose, Burke sank a jumper with 2:36 left in the quarter and Mackin finished off a 9-0 Canton run off an assist from Burke with 50 seconds left in the third quarter as the Warrior lead swelled to 15 points.
The lead never dropped below 11 points the remainder of the game. Burke had 16 points for Canton while Mackin chipped in with seven. Elon Munroe scored 22 points for the Tigers while Alsharif Bogar added nine.
The win gives Canton a sweep of all three Hartford-based schools (SMSA, Classical, HMTCA) and each win came on the road. The Warriors close out the NCCC portion (14 games) of the regular season on Tuesday when they host Windsor Locks beginning at 6:45 p.m.
Canton 64, SMSA 49
Canton (64) Chris Tenczar 1 2 4, Colin Mackin 3 1 7, Matt Rose 7 7 21, Silas Sawtelle 1 0 2, Josh Burke 7 2 16, Ryan McGoldrick 1 0 3, Jack Rose 5 0 11. Totals 25-12
SMSA (49) Ukhi Greene 3 3 9, Elon Munroe 7 7 22, Alsharif Bogar 4 1 9, Alex Kosky 2 0 4, Trejon Daniels 1 2 4, Anjay Atiles 0 1 1. Totals 17 14 49
Canton (15-2) 17 12 16 19 — 64
SMSA (15-1) 9 15 9 16 — 49
Three-point goals: McGoldrick (Ca), Jack Rose (Ca); Munroe (S)
NCCC boys basketball standings
Coventry at Somers
SMSA at HMTCA
Windsor Locks at Canton
Granby at Stafford