Dr. I wants to see you at the Sun
(A bonus edition of state basketball tournament related) Idle Thoughts, while waiting for spring sports, warmer weather and the CIAC’s first state tournament start time of 6 a.m.:
• Dr. Idle, Dr. I to his close friends, rather enjoys championship weekend.
Not necessarily because it’s championship weekend, but because the state comes to us, not the other way around.
(Never forget the Waterford-New London state semifinal baseball game in Bristol one year.)
Folks from other more urbane parts of the state may even see we have indoor plumbing here in our isolated, idyllic corner of Connecticut.
Happy driving, y’all.
• Waterford will be playing Sunday’s championship game without one of its most loyal fans watching in person: Marianna McGuirk.
Marianna’s grandson, J.J. Brennan, plays for the Lancers. She won’t be at Mohegan to watch him because she’s in Rockford, Ill. watching her granddaughter, Mia Brennan, play for UConn Avery Point in the national junior college championships.
So think a happy thought for a very busy grandma (and wonderful person).
• FYI: We here at The Day and theday.com regret to inform you that we’re unable to livestream the Waterford championship game. The CIAC has exclusive streaming/broadcast rights.
If you want to watch, go to the CIAC’s home page and click on the link to the NFHS Network.
You’ll have to pay a fee to watch.
(We give it to you free here at America’s Most Underrated Website because, well, we rock.)
(But you already knew that.)
• The old Dr. I would have said something snotty about all the people who criticized our local basketball officials during the season.
But oh, how Dr. I has grown.
So we’ll leave it with mere congratulations to Eastern Board 8 members Tony Nocito, Dave Cruz and Rich Radicioni (alternate Roger Warner) who not only earned a state championship game, but were awarded The Biggie: The Division I final Sunday at 6 between unbeaten Notre Dame of Fairfield and Sacred Heart.
• Looking forward to seeing our guy (and fellow Xavier High grad) Tim Kohs coach his Mercy Tigers in Saturday’s Class LL girls’ final.
Last time Mercy made the finals: 2013. Kohs drew up the best buzzer beater in tournament history. Mercy advanced the ball the length of the court in 3.5 seconds. Maria Wesleyj caught a pass. The “j” at the end of her surname is ironically silent, because it was her ‘j” at the buzzer that gave Mercy a 54-53 win. Tremendous.
• Avoid ticket lines by purchasing advance tickets by using this link: http://ciacsports.com/site/?p=12183
(And then thank Dr. I as you breeze past the long line).
• Two former Connecticut high school playing greats will be coaching this weekend: South Catholic grad John Pinone (Cromwell) and St. Joseph grad Chris Watts (Notre Dame of Fairfield).
In Dr. I’s high school days, Xavier played in a league with South Catholic, St. Joseph, St. Thomas Aquinas, St. Bernard (with the aforementioned Radicioni), Northwest Catholic, Fairfield Prep, East Catholic and Notre Dame of West Haven.
(Some of our ECC schools, if faced with that lineup, would have opted out of their entire schedules).
• Trivia: What do Mikey Buscetto, Walker and Payton Sutman, Liam Spellman, Tyler Peretz and Eric Pinch have in common?
(And don’t say they all play for Waterford).
Answer: They all have a parent or parents who are (or have been) coaches, almost all at the varsity level.
• If you’re near press row, say hi to Joe Morelli and Sean Patrick Bowley of GameTimeCT.com.
They work their ascots off to bring the state the best high school sports coverage on one website.
• Don’t forget to think a happy thought about Mohegan Sun, too.
The good folks in Neon Uncasville give the CIAC the building rent free and feed the kids and coaches after each game.
It’s called being a good neighbor.
• Waterford’s Unified Basketball Team will be playing at halftime of the Waterford-Avon game.
The Lancers are coached by Colleen Lineburgh, the mother of Waterford assistant Tim Lineburgh.
Some in the 06385 call Colleen the “Jim Calhoun of Unified Basketball.”
• Finally: Get out there and support the kids. All of them. Great weekend of basketball, nice places to eat and shop and there’s always the Wheel of Fortune slot machines.
This is the opinion of Day sports columnist Mike DiMauro
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