BRISTOL - With a 9-6 lead midway through the first quarter, Bristol Centralâ€™s Jaekwon Spencer caught fire behind the arc, knocking down three 3-pointers in the first quarter to help the Rams set the tone early against Plainville.
The 11-point first quarter from Spencer and a pair of 3-pointers from teammate Noah Plantamuro led Bristol Central to a 24-10 first quarter and the Rams never looked back in a 74-59 win on Tuesday night.
â€śOur number one goal tonight was to dictate tempo,â€ť Bristol Central head coach Tim Barrette said. â€śYou could see their strategy right off the bat was they wanted to hold the ball, move the ball, hold the ball, and you canâ€™t do that once we get the lead, so that run early allowed us to play ahead and allowed us to play at a much faster pace than Plainville wanted to tonight.â€ť
Spencer finished with a game-high 29 points and featured an all-around offensive game by scoring from wherever he wanted and playing unselfish basketball, looking for his teammates.
â€śI normally â€¦ donâ€™t come out as good as I did tonight,â€ť Spencer said. â€śSo I usually need to start out on the inside. But I came out good on the outside, so they came out and I took the advantage to go right by them and finish in the inside.â€ť
Plantamuro added 16 points for Bristol Central including five 3-pointers.
â€ś[Plantamuro] doesnâ€™t take a drill off in practice,â€ť Barrette said. â€śHe shoots every shot in practice like itâ€™s a game shot and itâ€™s paid off for him in the first seven games this year.â€ť
In the second quarter Bristol Central had five different players score as the Rams outscored the Blue Devils 17-12 in the frame.
Plantamuro added another six points in the second.
Plainvilleâ€™s Pierre Ramirez scored five points in the second and knocked down a three.
The Rams led 41-22 at the end of the half.
To begin the second half, Plainville came out strong with a bucket from Dane Stephens, followed by a nice pump fake by Ben Dougherty drawing Spencer out of position as Dougherty drilled a three to get the Blue Devils out to a 5-0 start in the quarter.
However, whenever Plainville generated any offensive momentum, the early deficit came back to hurt as the lead was too much to overcome.
â€śWe donâ€™t match up with them in a lot of different positions,â€ť Plainville head coach Jim Dinello said. â€śBasketball is a game of matchups and we tried zone, a little bit of man, a little bit of three quarter, trap, and they had an answer for everything, but thatâ€™s what talented, well-coached teams do. They deserve a lot of credit.â€ť
The Blue Devils outscored the Rams 18-14 in the third quarter and then played an even fourth quarter, 19-19, behind 13 fourth quarter points from Dougherty, who finished with 25 points for Plainville.
For the Rams, it wasnâ€™t the best defensive effort down the stretch, but the win is the third straight for Bristol Central, which is now 4-3 on the season.
â€śDefensively tonight we were poor,â€ť Barrette said. â€śI wasnâ€™t pleased with the effort. I didnâ€™t think we rebounded the ball well. I got a lot of guys some minutes tonight and we have a game tomorrow, so we were trying to spread out some minutes tonight.â€ť