Andrew Lohneiss sank his third three pointer of the game in overtime, and Southington shooters went 8-for-8 from the free throw line. On Friday, Dec. 29, the Knights outlasted New Canaan, 54-48, to capture the title at the Shelton Holiday Tournament.
Since losing their opener, the Blue Knights have gone 3-0, including wins over Shelton and New Canaan in the holiday bracket.
Now, the Knights are entering 2018 with their best New Year record (3-1) under Coach John Cessario.
The victory over New Canaan wasn’t easy. Southington saw an early eight point nearly evaporate by the break. With a 16-11 run in the third quarter, New Canaan led by one going into the final frame.
But Southington battled back—mainly with their poise. New Canaan shooters came back with 10 three pointers, but Southington answered at the charity stripe, converting 13 of their 16 free throws in the fourth quarter and overtime.
Lohneiss led the way with 20 points, including five points in overtime. Ryan Gesnaldo finished with 14 points, going 4-for-4 on the free throw line in overtime. Adam Hunter and Jeremy Mercier scored six points apiece.
Southington reached the finals with a 67-57 win over the host team on Wednesday. A 20-8 run in the second quarter erased an early deficit and gave Southington the lead for good.
Lohneiss led the way with 20 points. Gesnaldo and Tim O’Shay scored 10 points apiece, and Mercier added eight in the victory.
Now, the Knights will look to build their momentum with games against Bristol Central (1-3) and Hall (0-4) this week.
For this week’s box scores, click here: (southingtonobserver.com/2018/01/02/weekly-scoreboard-for-the-jan-5-edition). To contact sports writer Brian Jennings, email him at BJennings@SouthingtonObserver.com.