New Canaan 4th Grade Travel Basketball Sweeps Doubleheader


The New Canaan Rams Black 4th grade travel basketball team took both games of a doubleheader on Sunday at the Brewster Sports Center, defeating Armonk 36-12 then knocking off the previously unbeaten Tri-State Thunder 31-27. Making the sweep especially impressive was the fact that only six players were available to play due to the games coinciding with the end of the NCPS winter break.

New Canaan came out strong against Armonk in the first game, building a 29-2 lead at halftime. Leading the way for NC was Matt Salmini, who made 7 consecutive baskets en route to a game-high 14 points. Salmini also pulled down a team-leading 9 rebounds as New Canaan dominated the glass on both ends of the floor. Andrew Rittenberry chipped in with 4 points and seven rebounds and Cooper Dinan scored 4 points with 5 rebounds and an assist. Connor O’Donnell dished out 3 assists and had 3 rebounds while running the point for New Canaan.

In game 2, the Rams faced a daunting task as the Thunder came into the game having won all 5 of their contests, including a 20-point victory over New Canaan less than a month earlier. The Thunder picked up right where they left off, scoring the first six points of the game. The Rams fought back behind the efforts of Daniel Rogers, who scored New Canaan’s first 4 points to bring them to within 2. After withstanding another Thunder run, Blake Wilson pulled the Rams to a 14-12 halftime deficit by scoring 8 points in the first half.

After an inspiring halftime speech from head coach Schuyler Livingston, New Canaan pulled ahead in the second half. Wilson was lights-out, scoring 10 second half points—with a team-high 18 overall— and shooting an impressive 6-9 from the free throw line. Rogers was also clutch down the stretch, hitting all 4 of his free throws to help New Canaan maintain the lead. Rittenberry, Salmini and Dinan came up with several key defensive rebounds in the second half while O’Donnell and Wilson thwarted the Thunder full court press with expert ball handling, enabling the Rams to burn the clock en route to their biggest win of the season.

New Canaan improved to 4-3 in the BSC League and 8-3 overall, solidifying its chances to earn a postseason spot in the Brewster Super League playoffs.

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