Cardillo checking in from snowy Bridgeport following the Harbor Yard Classic at the Webster Bank Arena.
In Game 1, Central ran by Trumbull with ease, 89-64.
In Game 2, St. Joseph demolished Bassick 85-51.
For what it’s worth, Central travels to Trumbull to play St. Joseph on Feb. 8. First one to 90 wins?
A couple quick thoughts and observations.
* On Wednesday I visited St. Joseph practice and asked Quincy McKnight who he thought the best player in the area was. He said Central’s Tyler Ancrum.
Ancrum was at it again — he always seems to shine under the lights at the WBA — scoring 25 points. He, along with Shaquan Bretoux (27 points) are developing into a deadly 1-2 offensive scoring punch for the suddenly white hot Hilltoppers.
There’s no doubt in my mind, if he keeps it up Ancrum should be an all-FCIAC first team selection.
* McKnight, as per usual, dominated proceedings at Webster Bank. They might as well rename the court after him since he puts up standout performance after standout performance there.
Friday he piled up 29 points, including a ferocious first-quarter dunk in traffic, along with a couple step-back 3-pointers. What’s impressive about McKnight he seems to get a little bit better every game. Tip-ins, alley-oop layups, cuts to the rim … he scored just about every way imaginable.
Only a junior, it’ll be fun to see how far his talent takes him.
As for why he’s so good at the Arena?
“It’s a big court. It’s a college court so it’s preparing me for what’s next,” he said.
* Suddenly Bassick looks like a team in crisis, losing its third straight game. Losses at Ridgefield, Central and a neutral court to St. Joseph aren’t eye-popping, although the Cadets really ran the Lions out of the gym Friday night. There was an element of on the one hand, Bassick didn’t exactly play awful, and that St. Joseph couldn’t miss, yet at the same time a 30-point blowout loss to a rival never goes down smoothly.
Bassick has won the last two FCIAC titles, but the road back to the playoffs won’t be easy this year, as crazy as that sounds. The Lions (8-5) still have to play Trinity Catholic, along with road games at Wilton and Staples as well as a potentially tricky matchup with Greenwich. Oh right, Bassick’s next game is Tuesday on the road against Bridgeport rival Harding.
“We’re in a funk,” Bassick coach Bernie Lofton said. “We have to fight our way out of it. We’ve seen how crazy the FCIAC is this year is, where anyone can win, so hopefully we can play our way into it. We have to win to get in. You can’t take it for granted.”
* For those scoring at home in the last month I’ve covered eight high school basketball games at the Arena. One more and I think I get a voucher for a free footlong hot dog in the concourse.