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Tournament rankings, Gaffney, Turina, Chiefs, Bears....

POSTED January 05, 2014
BY Rick Wilson
Twitter: @scribewilson

A Closer Look


                            Tournament rankings, Gaffney, Turina , Chiefs, Bears...


            Let’s hope the CIAC gets in right and moves the Nonnewaug girls basketball team out of Class LL.  The powers that be are trying to make the state tournament a fair test and put schools in their proper brackets (translation – get the schools of choice out of the lower brackets) and up where they belong, a much sought-after necessity. There was no bigger joke in the tournament last season than Capital Prep playing in Class S. Please.

            However, Nonnewaug (Class M a year ago) got moved up two classes in the shuffle and let’s be honest, the Chiefs don’t belong there. In an enlightening article in Saturday’s Waterbury Republican, Joe Palladino reports that the CIAC is reviewing Nonnewaug’s situation.  Get it right guys, the Chiefs don’t belong in LL and they will tell you that.

            And if I might quote my friend Mr. Palladino, “We are sure of only one thing: 11 weeks from now, me, you and everyone will wonder why in the heck the Sacred Heart boys are playing in Class S.”

Here’s a quick thought to toss around. The issue behind all of this is recruiting. Maybe instead of trying to compensate for that it is time to do something about it. No quick answers to a never-ending problem but maybe we need to start at the root of it all.  Just a thought.


            Condolences to Tony Turina and his family on the death of Tony’s brother, Charlie, this past week of cancer.  Charlie was an active sportsman in the area for many years before moving to California. A memorial mass is planned for Sat., Feb. 1 at 10:30 a.m. at St. Peter’s Church in Torrington and memorial contributions can be made to: Torrington Varsity Alumni Club c / 0 Andy Pace, 4 Lyme Place, Avon, CT 06001.


            Mr. Gaffney, who took a fall in his backyard recently, undergoes surgery to repair a torn quadriceps tendon on Tuesday. We wish the head of this operation luck and he thought Frito Lay was a tough gig. We also wish Mrs. Gaffney patience during the coming rehab period.


            Somebody should pull the plug on Cablevision and WFSB. The second grade it’s his fault, no he started it argument that is costing thousands of customer’s access to its CBS affiliate shows a lack of concern and consideration for the customer. So what else is new? Can anybody say Direct TV?


            How big is the ninth game of the season? For the two-time defending BL champion Thomaston girls, off the charts. The Bears have quickly found out that this year isn’t last year or the year before for that matter and after losing to Northwestern Regional Saturday night, with two losses this is a must win for the Bears as the travel to unbeaten Nonnewaug.

            Thomaston brings a 4-2 league mark into the game, two games behind the 5-0 Chiefs.  The Bears also trail Lewis Mills (one loss) and are tied in the loss column with Housatonic. Falling three games behind Nonnewaug could very well be fatal.

            And let’s give coach Adam Brutting’s Chiefs some credit here. While not really a surprise, most of the preseason discussion centered on Mills and Thomaston. The Chiefs were right in the mix last year and are a very good, young team with a nice mix of experience.

            If there is a team nobody was paying much attention to it is Northwestern Regional. Guess what? Coach Fred Williams’ team is 6-1. You know Thomaston hates to see the Highlanders coming having also lost to them twice last year. Williams’ team always seem to be there.


            It is never a good thing when high school programs fold. The cancellation of the Thomaston High wrestling program is however extremely unfortunate just from the perspective that in a decade of existence, the team only had one losing season, won a BL title, and finished second in Class S. The Bears produced a host of BL champions including Al Rice, one of the BL’s few four-time champions.

            What happened? The Bears lost some coaching continuity when John Perrucci gave up the job to become Thomaston High Principal two years ago and injuries and low numbers just ate at the team’s overall numbers.  Even winning is no insurance of a program’s existence in this day and age.


            This little tidbit of information from the pen of Mark Jaffee. Crosby’s Tyshon Rogers, (29.5), the NVL’s current scoring leader, is just 162 points shy of the all-time Bulldogs’ mark of 1,833 set by BJ Montiero. When you think of all the brilliance that has come out of Crosby particularly in the last decade that is saying something.


            Okay, I’m all for thorough investigations especially on a scholastic level but can we get the Ed Lopes situation cleared up. Lopes has been sidelined for a month now as coach of the Watertown girls basketball team due to complaints that reports have said have to do with playing time issues. At this point, a resolution needs to be had. It is getting to the point where this isn’t fair to anybody.

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