No. 4 New London rolls past Stonington 87-59 in 2nd round of Division III state tournament
New London — No other coach in the Eastern Connecticut Conference is better equipped to answer this question than Craig Parker at New London:
What should a state championship team look like at this time of year?
“A fine, oiled machine,” Parker, author of four state championship banners, said Wednesday night. “I’d say tonight, we were about a 75 percent oil grade.”
If this 87-59 win over Stonington qualifies as merely “75 percent,” this will be a fun two weeks in Whalerville.
New London, the No. 4 seed in the CIAC Division III state tournament, advances to Friday’s quarterfinals at Conway Gym against No. 5 Fitch. Game time is 6:30 p.m. The Falcons rallied for a 52-49 win over No. 21 St. Paul in Groton.
“We played fast tonight and that was our message to the team,” Parker said. “Play fast and with intensity. We needed to because I thought Stonington came out and played well.”
SaVahn Warren led the Whalers (19-5) with 24 points, while Xavier Goode had 15, Da’Shaun Phllips 13 and Julius Washington 12. New London played with three sophomores and two freshmen on the floor for much of the second half.
“I love how we played,” Warren said. “We played as a team. Even some of the guys off the bench got some buckets.”
This hasn’t been an easy week for the Whalers, left to digest their third loss of the season to St. Bernard in the Eastern Connecticut Conference tournament championship game.
“Not easy, no,” Warren said. “But we’re looking forward right now.”
Parker: “Having the week off helped the kids put it behind them. If we had to play this game a little quicker, maybe there would have been an effect.”
Luke Lowry and Robbie Scavello had 15 apiece to lead No. 20 Stonington (9-14) and Alex DePerry had 12. This was the second straight season New London ended Stonington’s season in the state tournament.
“We played young guys a lot of the night,” Parker said. “That’s how it is this time of year. They have to go through the journey. We’re here to guide them as best we can.”