The size, depth, athleticism, and skills of the Pinkerton Academy boys’ basketball team are making that contingent an opponent to be feared this winter. And the Alvirne High Broncos and Manchester Central Little Green both had front seats for fine Astro performances last week.
Coach Peter Rosinski’s academy squad – coming off a 2014-15 season during which it went all the way to the Division I title game but lost to the undefeated Londonderry High juggernaut – looks like it has every intention of getting back to the championship round and showed as much against both Alvirne and Central.
The local cagers drove their divisional record up to a strong 4-1 with a manhandling of the struggling Alvirne side from Hudson in Derry Tuesday, Jan. 12. The 78-52 bashing was the visiting team’s fourth straight defeat and made it 1-4 in the division.
The host academy side led 17-10 after one quarter, 37-19 at halftime, and 60-40 bounding into the last period.
The winners had four players finish in double figures in points paced by Brennan Morris with 23, Matt Rizzo and Tommy Romick with 16 apiece, and Ben Olson with 10.
And in the impressive and somewhat surprising 61-43 trouncing of the previously undefeated Manchester Central Little Green in Derry last Friday night, Jan. 15, the hosts saw their opponent grasp a 15-11 lead following a high-speed first quarter and then put the defensive clamps down in outscoring the Queen City opponent by a 31-10 margin during the next two periods.
Rosinski’s roster outscored frustrated Central by a stunning 17-2 in the second quarter, holding the Little Green to one shot per trip down the floor, and Central wasn’t hitting any of its shots.
So Pinkerton grasped a 28-17 lead at halftime – with senior forward Romick having scored a dozen points already – and the hosts had every reason to feel pleased with the effort they had put forth so far.
“The keys for us in that second quarter were our play at the defensive end and our going strong to the basket,” said Rosinski.
The PA lead sat at 17 points at 42-25 after three periods had been completed, and the host’s advantage never slipped below double digits.
Romick and Morris each netted a big 21 points to pace the potent PA attack, with Olson contributing eight and Rizzo popping home seven.
“We did a good job tonight, but I think we can play even better,” said Rosinski. “We did a better job of valuing the ball.”