Bristol Eastern boys face Central, take aim at impressive 16th win of season

The Bristol Eastern boys basketball team will take aim at its 16th win of the season on Monday night at home against Bristol Central in the regular season finale for both teams.

The Lancers are 15-4, the exact opposite of the 4-15 mark of the Rams. Eastern rebounded from a tough loss at South Windsor on Friday with a runaway home win against E.O. Smith-Storrs. The loss to South Windsor snapped a six-game win streak, but Eastern hopes to start another against its city rival Central. The opening tip is scheduled for 6 p.m. in the Thomas M. Monahan Gymnasium.

In the first meeting back on Dec. 27 during the Bristol Central Holiday Tournament, the visiting Lancers rallied for a 52-49 win over the Rams. Brady Bell canned a big 3-pointer off a Jordan Chisholm assist for a 47-44 lead in the fourth quarter. It was one of several big plays made by Eastern. There was the Ben D’Amato 3-pointer that gave the Lancers a 34-32 lead in the third quarter. At the beginning of the game, D’Amato’s first 3-pointer got Eastern on the board after Central ran off a 7-0 run. D’Amato’s trey near the end of the first quarter put the Lancers ahead, 11-9.

Zaveyn Tate’s defense was big for Eastern. The biggest play of all was a block inside in the fourth quarter with the score tied, 42-42. 

Central came up with some big plays in its own right. Carmelo Thompson’s steal and fast break bucket gave the Rams a 30-29 lead just inside five minutes left in the third quarter. The Lancers built a four-point lead late in the third quarter, but Mikey McMahon’s 3-pointer cut the margin to 36-35.

Eastern appeared to have the game put away when it led, 51-44, with a little less than two minutes to play, but Quincy Lawson nailed a big 3-pointer to make the score 51-47. Lawson had a big block in the final 30 seconds and Central trailing, 52-49, but when the ball was tipped back out toward midcourt, Eastern was able to control it.