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Windsor dominates Farmington to advance to CCC Tournament final

Farmington’s Nicholas Bergin (3) tries to get to the basket but Windsor’s Guan Davis (1) is blocking his path in Tuesday night’s CCC Tournament semifinal at the University of Hartford.

WEST HARTFORD, Feb. 27, 2024 – It was a little over a week ago when the Farmington High boys basketball couldn’t miss from three-point range. The River Hawks sank 15 three-point shots against Avon to win the Taft Cup with a 33-point victory in the regular season finale for both teams.

Things were a bit different in Tuesday night’s Central Connecticut Conference semifinal at the University of Hartford’s Chase Arena.

The River Hawks were taking three-point shots but few were falling. Windsor was grabbing rebounds and racing to the opposite end of the floor and sinking three-point shots. The Warriors hit 10 three-point shots and advanced to Thursday night’s CCC Tournament final with a 82-56 win over Farmington.

Windsor (20-3) will face defending CCC Tournament champion East Catholic, a 67-49 winner over Newington in the other semifinal.

The River Hawks (16-7) were hoping to earn a spot in the final for the first time since they joined the league. But they couldn’t keep pace with a Windsor team annoyed about a four-point loss at home to the River Hawks in late January.

“It’s tough to beat Windsor,” Farmington head coach Duane Witter said. “It’s really tough to beat a mad Windsor (team). They were locked in, ready to play and shot the ball very well.”

Anthony Williams led Windsor with 21 points but four other Warrior teammates also scored in double figures. Gyan Davis had 15 points, Kaiden James scored 13 while Jakeel Martin and Ji Gary each had 12 points. Gary hit four shots from three-point range.

“We really picked up our defense,” Williams said. “We let a kid score 20 in the first half (actually 19) and we shut him down in the second half. That was big for us.”

Farmington sophomore Angelo Maccarone had 19 points in the first half, including three shots from three-point range. He helped keep the River Hawks in the game.

Windsor led by eight, 29-21 with about five minutes left in the second quarter when Farmington went on a 7-0 run to cut the lead to one with 3:45 remaining in the second quarter.

David Hawkins hit a three-point shot, Maccarone raced to the basket on a break after the River Hawks controlled a rebound and Maccarone drove into the lane to score and cut the Warrior lead to one, 29-28.

But Windsor’s Kaiden James hit three shots in the lane in the final three minutes to help Windsor close out the half with a 10-2 run for a nine-point lead at halftime, 39-30.

“We didn’t transition. Windsor played fast and they got transition opportunities and they made a lot of threes,” Witter said. “They dominated the glass.”

Farmington picked up a few rebounds and stopped Windsor on their first two possessions of the second half. But the Warriors exploded for a 22-7 surge to put the game away.

“It’s been a tough stretch for us with a lot of games in a short amount of time,” Witter said. “We may have run out of gas but don’t take anything away from Windsor because they played great.”

Since the River Hawks trounced Avon, 77-43, Farmington earned a pair of CCC Tournament victories to advance to the semifinals for just the second time since they joined the league. The River Hawks beat New Britain, 41-39 and Manchester, 68-61 to earn a berth in the semifinals for the first time since 2019. Both were ranked higher in the CCC Tournament than the River Hawks. Manchester was the third seed with New Britain as the No. 6 seed.

Windsor is ranked No. 5 in the latest GameTimeCT top 10 poll with East Catholic being ranked No. 3.

Windsor 82, Farmington 56
At West Hartford
Farmington (56)
Harrison Hawkins 2-1-6, David Hawkins 5-4-16, Samuel Olivastro 1-4-6, Jahkai Veal 0-1-1, Caleb Smity 3-0-6, Angelo Maccarone 8-0-19, Hugh Murphy 0-0-0, Tyler Thompson 0-0-0. Totals 19-10-56
Windsor (82) Gyan Davis 7-1-5, Sean Evans 1-0-3, Kaiden James 5-2-13, Anthony Williams 9-3-21, Jaheem Franklin 1-0-3, Jakeel Martin 5-0-12, Ji Gary 4-0-12, Josiah Serrano 1-0-3. Totals 33-6-82
Farmington (16-7)         14  16  12  14  — 56
Windsor (20-3)              19  20  25  18  — 82
Three-point goals: Evans (W), James (W), Franklin (W), Martin (W) 2, Gary (W) 4, Serrano (W), H. Hawkins (F), D. Hawkins (F) 2, Maccarone (F) 3

2024 CCC Tournament
Thursday, Feb. 22
No. 1 East Catholic 96, No. 16 Enfield 49
No. 8 Conard 48, No. 9 Lewis Mills 46
No. 4 NW Catholic 70, No. 13 Middletown 62
No. 12 Newington 75, No. 5 Southington 48
No. 2 Windsor 76, No. 15 RHAM 60
No. 7 Bristol Eastern 58, No. 10 Glastonbury 51
No. 3 Manchester 69, No. 14 East Hartford 65
No. 11 Farmington 41, No. 6 New Britain 39

Saturday, Feb. 24
Quarterfinals at Enfield
Windsor 85, Bristol Eastern 59
East Catholic 67, Conard 50
Newington 65, NW Catholic 62
Farmington 68, Manchester 61

Tuesday, Feb. 27
Semifinals at University of Hartford
East Catholic 67, Newington 49
Windsor 82, Farmington 56

Thursday, Feb. 29
Championship at University of Hartford

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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