Torrington: Beating your rival is always a special thing.
Beating them twice in one year? Icing, cherry on top and whipped cream time.
That’s what the Torrington boys’ basketball team just accomplished in a 73-63 win over Naugatuck behind 26 points from Will Parkhouse and 22 from Isaac Fenn, who is becoming a genuine force inside.
In their first meeting, back on January 17, the Raiders pulled out a 68-63 overtime win after blowing a big second half lead as the Greyhounds pressure forced a barrage of turnovers.
Tonight, after jumping out to a 10-0 lead halfway through the first quarter, the ‘Hounds roared back to get the lead down to just one at 13-12 as the frame ended.
Typical street fight, NVL battle with two teams that knew each other well.
Naugatuck would take their last lead though with just under five minutes to play at 23-21 before the dynamic duo of Parkhouse outside and Fenn inside would stretch the lead as the half came to a close.
Tied at 23 after a Luca White layup, Fenn powered his way inside for the bucket and the lead.
On their next possession, Parkhouse got free on the left side for a three-pointer to extend the lead to 30-23.
Fenn finished his impressive quarter with two more strong moves from down low.
The junior’s footwork and determination, along with his confidence, has grown each time he takes the floor this season. It was 32-25 at the break but the Raiders knew what was coming.
“The last time we played them,” Fenn said, “We turned the ball over so many times against their trap. This time, we stayed calm and worked our way through it.”
It didn’t hurt that Parkhouse started the third by draining a long three to put the lead into double digits at 35-25.
Sure enough, the Greyhounds put on their half court ball trap that slowed the Raider offense by speeding it up, leading to fast shots that were not falling.
The visitors would get to within six at 37-31 but baskets by Finn and Parkhouse kept the aggressive ’Hounds from getting closer.
Naugatuck was led by Jalen Francis who had 25 points but just two in the final frame, and Khaden Moore who scored 24,
Torrington scored 27 in the third with only four coming from players not named Parkhouse or Fenn (Luca White had 4).
The lead was 59-47 as the final quarter got underway. The Greyhounds would get within six on multiple occasions, but the Raiders had answered each time.
Torrington improved to 11-6 (9-5 in the NVL) while the Greyhounds fell to 9-6 (8-6 in the NVL).
The Raiders are off until next Tuesday when they start a brutal stretch to end the regular season,
They travel to take on Crosby next Tuesday, will be at Waterbury Career Academy next Friday before ending the regular season with a match up against Holy Cross on Tuesday, February 20.
They lost to each of these teams the first time around but were competitive against Cros until late, same with WCA.
A second half collapse against Crosby made for an ugly final score but the Raiders held the Bulldogs to just 57 points.
Should be a fun end of the 2023/2024 regular season campaign.