Playoff-bound Panthers look to ‘get going’


The Johnston boys basketball team is grinding through the Division II dogfight and is nearing the home stretch of the regular season.
After dropping three straight contests to the division’s top-three teams (Lincoln, St. Ray’s, Tolman), the Panthers would bounce back to collect a pair of wins against Rogers and Cranston West. The team then took on Burrillville on the road on Monday night and the Broncos would grab the win, taking control of fourth place while Johnston was bumped to fifth.
With three games remaining in the regular season, the Panthers will be urgent to win against opponents that are behind them in the standings in hopes of jumping back into the top four and clinching better seeding for the playoffs.
The Panthers most recently played Burrillville and the Broncos would take control early and walk away with the 64-54 win. Branden Testa led the Panthers with 16 points while Neari Vasquez added 14. Jayden Testa and Mike Carlino each reached double figures with 10 points each.
“Division II is very competitive, the top eight or nine teams can beat each other on any given night. The Burrillville game was our worst of the year, we just came out flat. That’s a tough environment at the Bronco Dome, they do a good job with their home court advantage,” said Johnston coach Mike Bedrosian.
Johnston erased an early deficit to Cranston West the prior game and would roll to a 71-55 win. Jayden Testa had a monster outing, leading the way with a game-high 33 points, including seven 3-pointers. Carlino finished with 12 points while Branden Testa chipped in 10.
“Every night from here on out is going to be a rock fight. We need to be locked in, firing on all cylinders. We can’t just be turning it on and turning it off which is what we have been doing. Every game is like a playoff game so we have to bring it,” said Bedrosian, who has been stressing starting games faster. “It’s going to be about how we start games. Starting fast. Even in games that we’ve won, we haven’t been doing that. Cranston Wes jumped out to a 12-0 run. We’ll figure it out, they have the experience, no game is going to be too big for them. The Burrillville game was a kick in the butt for them, we need to get going.”


No comments on this item Please log in to comment by clicking here