NEW CANAAN, Conn. — The boys and girls basketball teams at St. Luke's in New Canaan won regular season titles in the Fairchester Athletic Association and will be the top seeds for the upcoming league playoffs.
The boys finished the regular season with a 73-72 win over Greens Farms Academy of Westport to finish 12-0 in the conference. The Storm are 17-1 overall.
Senior Joel Boyce scored the winning the points with seconds left in the contest. Lost in the drama of the game was a new school scoring record set by Walter Whyte. He scored 22 points and passed Pat Powers as the leading scorer in St. Luke's history. Powers graduated in 2002 with 1,355 career points.
"We were down with under 20 seconds to go and, as we always talk about, it came down to some key hustle plays,'' coach Drew Gladstone said. "It started with John Wisdom fighting for a loose ball and ended with an offensive rebound and putback by Joel. We were down by eight at one point and our guys never flinched. This goes down as another game that makes us battle-tested and it came at a perfect time.”
On winning the FAA regular season title for the second consecutive year, Gladstone said: “Winning the regular season championship is a great feeling. It gives us a nice boost of confidence going into our last two games and playoffs and puts us in a favorable position for the tournament. Outside of that, the feeling in the locker room is that we have a ton of unfinished business and the team wants to win the FAA tournament championship next. When you get a taste of something good, you can either be satisfied or just get hungry for more and our guys are absolutely hungry for more.”
In the girls game, St. Luke's held on for a 72-59 win over Greenwich Academy. The teams came into the contest tied for the best record in the conference. St. Luke's took an 18-1 overall record into Wednesday's game against King.
“This was all about heart and resiliency,'' coach Matt Ward said. "Both teams played hard and they came at us a few times and cut our lead to single digits. We dug in, made a big shot or got a big steal and pushed the lead back to double digits right away. To get a win like that, in that environment, when we struggled at times offensively, and against a good team, says a lot about the character of our girls and our team.”
Ward, who is in his first season, added, “This league is filled with tremendous student-athletes and terrific coaches, so to be undefeated and win the regular season is a tremendous accomplishment. To get the No. 1seed and be able to play all of our FAA tournament games at home is special. We have a lot of basketball left to play and we are excited to finish out the regular season this week and head into FAA tournament play.”