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Mattiello scores 15 as Raiders beat St Paul by a 71-66 final on Friday night in Torrington.

POSTED January 11, 2020
BY Timothy W. Gaffney
Twitter: @TimothyGaffney

TORRINGTON: It’s been an interesting start to the 2019/2020 basketball campaign for the Torrington boys basketball team, to say the least.

The Raiders have taken on Holy Cross (a 70-66 loss), Farmington (a 83-57 loss), Seymour (a 72-65 win) in games that saw them play well enough to have been encouraged by the development of a team that is a new one form a year ago when they lost all five starters.

Over their next two games though, they didn’t play well in losses to Naugatuck (73-48) and Crosby (97-57), making tonight’s second contest against visiting St Paul an important one, one that could help determine what kind of campaign this is going to shape up to be.

After scaring their home fans with a rough fourth quarter, the Raiders held on to beat the Falcons by a 71-66 final behind a balanced scoring attack led by Justin Mattiello (15), Nick Balducci (14), Joe White (14) and TJ Calabrese (10).

Determined to leave the nightmare of the Crosby performance behind them, the Raiders pulled off a 20-2 run over the last five minutes of the first quarter to blitz the visitors in a barrage that featured five, three-points, three of them by Mattiello with Ben Smith and White contributing the others.

It was still a 15-point lead at the half and a 13-point lead entering the final frame before the visitors turned up the pressure on defense and climbed to within two on several occasions late before the Raiders made just enough from the free throw line (7 of 16 in the fourth) to secure the win.

Torrington 71, St Paul 66

At Torrington

St Paul        13 18 16 19 66

Torrington  28 18 14 11 71

St Paul (66): Jack Noli 3-0-7, Rudy Otero 0-0-0, Will Barton 6-5-17, AJ Brooks 5-4-14, Noah Waters 8-0-21, Thomas Lorenzetti 3-0-7: Totals: 25-9-66

Torrington (71): Charlie Mathieu 1-0-3, Nick Balducci 5-2-14, Justin Mattiello 4-3-15, Ivan Aybar 0-3-3, Joe White 6-2-14, TJ Calabrese 4-2-10, Ben Smith 3-1-9, Jacob Groebl 0-1-1, Brian Ballesteros 0-2-2. Totals: 23-14-71

3-pointers: (SP) Noli, Waters 5, Lorenzetti. (T): Mathieu, Mattiello 4, Balducci 2, Smith 2, White 2

Records: St Paul 2-3, Torrington 2-4

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