NEW PROVIDENCE, NJ - The New Providence Pioneers boys basketball team defeated the Brearley Bears, 69-29, and completed a week in which the team went 3-0. Saturday’s victory was the second time this season in which the Pioneers defeated Brearley by at least 40 points.
With the win, the Pioneers improved to 8-7 while the Bears suffered their 12th loss of the season and still have just one win.
New Providence had 11 players reach the scoring column on Saturday. The Pioneers were hitting on all cylinders and received strong play from all five starters: Brian Kelly, Greg Meyers, Will Faucher, Jackson Barletta, and Dylan Bedder. Kelly led with 16 points, while Barletta, Bedder and Meyers each chipped in with 8 apiece.
It was Barletta’s layup on the team’s very first possession got things rolling early for New Providence. Barletta’s layup was the start of an 8-0 run to begin the game as Faucher and Meyer both hit three-pointers to cap the run.
After Brearley responded to the 8-0 run with a basket of their own, the Pioneers promptly went on a 7-0 run to push their lead to 15-2.
It was evident from the first quarter that it would be a long day for Brearley. The Pioneers were crisp with their execution on offense and locking up on defense to the point where Brearley struggled to get shots off.
New Providence head coach Art Cattano attributed the victory to both momentum and an overall solid week of practice from his squad.
“It was a really good week for us,” Cattano said. “We know Brearley’s been struggling a little bit so basically it was about us playing well and doing what we needed to do to get this victory.”
Saturday’s contest was yet another in which Cattano used his entire bench. The Pioneer reserves played a big role in a second quarter in which the Pioneers extended their lead to as much as 26.
Cattano didn’t hesitate to heap praise on his bench after the game.
“We were able to get everybody in and wanted everybody that got in to play well,” Cattano said. “I’m glad all the kids that got in played well.”
Contrary to what the final score might indicate, the Pioneers had a sluggish start to the second half. The Pioneers opened the half with several missed shots but at the same time forced the Bears into missed shots which allowed them to keep a huge lead.
The Pioneers would eventually start rolling again offensively and extended their lead to 32 late in the third and never looked back.
The Pioneers will return to action on Thursday when they’ll face Roselle Park at Roselle Park.