The Whalers scored the first points in Friday’s boys’ basketball game against Stonington High School and never lost the lead as picked up its 13th straight win.
New London improves to 17-2 with the victory, while Stonington slips to 13-5.
“We’re in a pretty good spot,” said New London head coach Craig Parker. “Hopefully we’ll win the next one and go into the state tournament 18-2. We’ll see what happens.”
The closest Stonington came to taking the lead was in the early scramble for points in the first quarter, when a foul shot brought the score to 4-3. The Bears were able to keep the gap narrow by finding holes in the Whaler defense as several New London shots rebounded off the rim, but New London was still able to close the quarter with a score of 25-12.
Stonington again closed the gap in the second quarter, getting it down to 29-21, but a tighter Whaler defense let through only four more points after that point. New London coupled this with an offensive push and several breakaways that left the score at 51-25 at the half.
New London continued its strong showing in the third quarter, with the Bears trailing by 35 points halfway through the clock. Stonington regained nearly half of this deficit with improved accuracy as the game closed, but the Whalers were able to keep a buffer in place for the win.
The result is the New London’s closest win since Feb. 2, when the Whalers defeated East Lyme 82-68. Parker said he was displeased with a lack of flow and rhythm in the team in Friday’s game, and said this will have to improve if New London hopes to this year.
“We just need to always play hard,” he said.
Kris Dunn racked up 32 points for the Whalers, while Doug Henton added another 22. Jackson Donahue had 22 points for the Bears, followed by Casey Sartor with 12.
Prior to Friday’s game, New London was tied for fourth in the Class LL standings of the Connecticut Interscholastic Athletic Conference. Stonington was tied for ninth in the Class M division.
New London will close out its regular season with a home game against Woodstock Academy at 7 p.m. on Feb. 17. Stonington will play two more 7 p.m. home games, against Montville on Feb. 14 and Lyman Memorial on Feb. 17. CIAC will announce state tournament pairings on Feb. 29.