DANBURY — The only two remaining undefeated FCIAC boys basketball teams went head to head Tuesday night.
A.J. Konstanty and Lucas Basich propelled Staples to a 70-58 win over Danbury.
Konstanty had 20 points to help lead Staples to the win, while Basich contributed 19 points, including five 3-pointers.
“They stepped up and made big shots,” Staples coach Colin Devine said. “Konstanty, our big fella, finished layups. Danbury did a really good job of trying to double our point guard Jake Thaw and he kept finding (Konstanty) for open layups.”
It was a game of streaks from the beginning, as Staples got off to a 6-0 start before Danbury turned around for a six-point run of its own with the first quarter ending 17-16 in Staples’ favor.
In second quarter, both teams essentially matched each other shot for shot. But with seconds to go before halftime and his team trailing by two, Basich drained his third 3-pointer from well beyond the arc to give Staples a 32-31 lead at the break.
“That shot was huge for the mentality of the second half,” Devine said. “It was a game of runs, we started up the game 6-0 and we found ourselves down in the second quarter. We took care of the basketball, made our free throws and in the second half that was that.”
“I practice those all the time,” Basich said. “Those are just shots that I will stay in the gym afterword and just practice for hours.”
Staples broke out in the third quarter, outscoring the Hatters 22-12 to take a 54-43 lead behind another couple more clutch three-point shots by Basich.
Staples 32, Danbury 31 #ctbb
Lucas Basich drains a 3 to send Staples to the locker room with a lead pic.twitter.com/mrpa8Ay6sR
— Will Aldam (@AldamWill) January 8, 2020
Staples never let Danbury get closer than eight points the rest of the way.
“We knew Danbury was a very athletic and tough team,” Devine said. “Casey Bock does a great job and we thought if we could survive their pressure and play good defense we had a good chance at winning the basketball game.”
Staples (6-0) now sits alone as the only undefeated FCIAC team left and will put its perfect record on the line again against Trinity Catholic Friday.
“Staples has had some troubles in the past, but right now we are starting off the season pretty great,” Basich said. “I think we have a lot chemistry going on and it is leading into the game. We are all hitting shots and it is just fun.”
Danbury (4-1) will look to bounce back against New Canaan on Friday.
“We know it is going to be a good fight,” Danbury coach Casey Bock said. “The way the league is, there is a lot of parity, so every night is going to be like this. We knew it was going to be a tough game and unfortunately we didn’t get it done. We just need to get better. We have to keep working on things and as the season goes on we have to progress and keep getting better.”