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Stellar defense helps Simsbury hand Avon first loss of the year

Simsbury’s Aidan Riordan (4) moves up the court after grabbing a key rebound late in Thursday night’s win over Avon.

AVON, Dec. 23, 2021 – The Avon High boys basketball team was on a roll coming into Thursday night’s CCC West contest with Simsbury.

The Falcons had won three straight games to open the season and had sunk 21 three-point shots in the last two games, including 15 three-point shots in a 33-point rout over Bulkeley-Hartford in game two.

Visiting Simsbury gave up just seven points in the second half and two points in the fourth quarter as the Trojans improved to 3-0 with a 38-27 victory over Avon.

“We played defense,” Simsbury head coach Greg Stillman said. “The way to win today was to dig in defensively. I am proud of our guys. We held them to two points in the last 14 minutes (of the game). It is as good a performance that I have seen against a very good Avon team. It’s a good Christmas present.”

Simsbury (3-0, 1-0 CCC West) is off to their best start since the 2017-18 season when the Trojans began the year with a 6-0 record. Avon was averaging 60.6 points in their first three victories of the season.

“We went ice cold in the second half,” Avon High coach Kris Pedra said. “That is a credit to Simsbury. They coach their boys well on the defensive end. We got some looks but they didn’t fall and that’s a credit to them.”

Aidan Riordan led the Trojans with 15 points while Anthony Simpson added six. Isaac Aguilar had 11 points to lead the Falcons (3-1, 1-1 CCC West) while Tyler Brokenshire had 10 points – all in the first half. Avon was trying for their first 4-0 start since 1998 when the Falcons went undefeated in the regular season with a 20-0 mark.

“We identified the guys who can shoot on their team. We committed to it and did a good job ,” Stillman said.

With the win, Simsbury continues their recent mastery over the Falcons. Since Avon joined the CCC in 2016, the Trojans have won seven of the eight games between the two schools. Avon’s most recent win came in the 2019-20 season.

Simsbury returns to action on Tuesday night they travel to Tolland while Avon takes next week off from game action. The Falcons return to the hardwood on Tuesday, Jan. 4 when they travel to West Hartford to challenge Conard.

Simsbury 38, Avon 27
At Avon
Simsbury (38)
Nick Cordani 1-0-3, Giovanni Marchetti 0-0-0, Miles Moody 0-1-1, Nate Beizer 1-0-3, Alex Pepper 2-0-6, Keenan Willison 2-0-4, Aidan Riordan 5-4-15, Anthony Simpson 2-2-6. Totals 13-7
Avon (27) Alan Brockman 0-0-0, Jadd Eldah 1-0-2, Isaac Aguilar 3-5-11, Cameron Dawiczyk 0-0-0, Aiden Srb 0-0-0, Luke Coppen 0-0-0, Aarsh Moza 1-0-2, Tabor Engle 0-0-0, Emmett Borenstein 1-0-2, Tyler Brokenshire 4-0-10. Totals 10-5
Simsbury (3-0)                           6  13  13  6  — 38
Avon (3-1)                                 10  10    5  2  — 27
Three-point goals: Brokenshire (A) 2, Cordani (S), Beizer (S), Pepper (S) 2, Riordan (S)

Gerry deSimas, Jr., is the editor and founder of The Collinsville Press. He is an award-winning writer and has been covering sports in Connecticut and New England for more than 40 years. He was inducted into the New England High School Wrestling Hall of Fame in 2018.

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