NEW PROVIDENCE, NJ - In the first round of the Union County Tournament, the New Providence Pioneers boys basketball team defeated the Hillside Comets, 89-72. Saturday’s game was perhaps the Pioneers’ best offensive showing of the season as the team improved to 18-3 and captured its ninth conference victory of the season.

 The Pioneers were gelling offensively from the game’s opening tip, and the Pioneers 10-0 run early in the game was evident of such. Dylan Bedder was particularly effective as the junior put on a clinic of how to score in the paint in the game’s opening quarter. Bedder finished with a game-high 28 points with 18 of those coming in his team’s 30-point first quarter. Junior Greg Meyers finished with 20 game points with four threes and Brian Kelly added 19 with seven coming from the foul line.

 The Pioneers never looked back after building an 11-point lead after one. The Comets were able to get the deficit down to eight in the second quarter but the Pioneers responded with a 6-0 run of their own. After the teams traded basket for the better part of the second quarter, the Pioneers had had enough and built a 15-point lead late in the quarter thanks to a few key baskets by Meyers.

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 Hillside had no intention of going away quietly. The Comets opened the quarter with a quick basket while still displaying the same tenacity on defense that kept them in the game during the first half.

 The Pioneers would settle down a short time later as senior Pat Trezza made his mark on the game finishing with two points, 8 rebounds and 10 assists. Trezza played a role in four consecutive New Providence points in scoring two and assisting the other two on an assist to Meyers for Meyers’ third three-pointer of the game.

Meyers would hit another three later in the third quarter to help his squad build a 20-point lead after three.  

 The Pioneers continued dominance in the fourth allowed for the bench to be emptied.

 New Providence, the eight-seed, moves on to face ninth-seeded Scotch Plains-Fanwood in the second round on Wednesday.