PARSIPPANY, N.J. - Chatham's boys basketball team showed the rest of Morris County that they are back again and they did it in strides, beating Parsippany Hills 71-40.
The Cougars demonstrated that they have not missed a step from last year's team as they took a 25-0 lead and almost kept Parsippany Hills scoreless in the first quarter.
But Vikings' Kyle Annese hit a bucket falling down giving Parsippany Hills two points and getting a derisive cheer from the Vikings' student section.
With that blazing start, the Cougars would glide the rest of the way on Friday night en route to the victory over Parsippany Hills in the 2012-13 season opener.
A pair of seniors led a balanced offensive attack on Friday night for the Cougars with Joe Timmes scoring 20 pointsvand Sam Carson tallying 13.
One of the reasons for the fast start was Chatham's full-court press that kept Parsippany Hills off balance in the first half.
"We have a deeper team so we can run a lot of players out on the floor," Timmes said.
While Friday's game was just a regular season game, other schools will be looking to gun down the Cougars along the way as the Morris County Tournament gets closer. Chatham defeated Mt. Olive in the MCT final last season.
"We know that other teams will be gunning for us since we won the county championship and have a lot of players returning," Timmes said.
And Carson agrees with his teammate.
"We definitely take it as a challenge," Carson said. "It's nice to play a real game. Scrimmages are fun, but they don't count."
Timmes showed that his work on beyond the three-point arc was really working, hitting five behind the three-point line.
"I've been getting a lot of shots in the morning and after school," Timmes said, who added that he gets to school around 6 a.m. if he does not have a test that day.
Carson said he has definitely been looking forward to this season after missing most of the 2011-12 season with a foot injury. He did return for the county final against Mt. Olive last season.
"I'm definitely excited, but I was also a little nervous," he said.
It was Danny Winschuh who hit his lone field goal of the first half that gave Chatham a 25-0 lead in the first quarter.
And Carson hit back-to-back buckets late in the second quarter to continue the onslaught in the first half and give the Cougars a 37-8 lead.
Chatham (1-0) travels to Morristown on Tuesday.