Another fourth quarter explosion, this time, breaks Wave through

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Zak Swetye had a slammin’ opening round at states. Courtesy Darien Athletic Foundation

BOYS BASKETBALL

Updated 10:41pm — Darien began the the Class LL playoffs with deja vu. Except, unlike the Wave’s unlikely ouster from FCIACs a week ago, a gigantic fourth quarter, this time, saw them through.

We were led by our team defensive effort.

— Riley Stewart

The Wave scored as many points in the second half as West Haven scored all game, beating the visitors 70-54 in round one on Monday.

Trailing 22-16 at the half, the Wave poured it on the rest of the way, led by Alex Preston with 21 points, going 7-for-8 from the line.

Darien scored 32 points in the fourth to shut down the 20 seed.

“We did not come out strong in the first-half, scoring only sixteen points, but our coaches Charoy Bentley, Marc Fields and Greg Langston pumped us up and got us ready for the second half,” said senior Riley Stewart. “We were led by our team defensive effort and good performances by Jack Richter and Zach Swetye putting us into the second round.”

“We had a rough first-half offensively,” said Bentley. “Coming out of the first-half we wanted to try to create turnovers to get easy points offensively.”

The Wave (No. 13, 15-6) will play at East Hartford (No. 4, 19-2) in the second round 7pm Wednesday.

West Haven closes out the season at 11-10.

Swetye scored 15 points — including four 3-pointers — while Theo Moore had 12 points, Will Rolapp nine, Richter five, Stewart, Jack Tierney, Quinn Fay and Andrew Darby two each, and Carter Scott and Williams Henry chipped in with contributions all around.

“After a timeout, the coaches reminded the players that this may be their last game,” Bentley said of the second-half tune-in given to the team. “That sparked some fire into them. At one point we had five seniors out there. That’s the group that opened the lead up: Alex Preston and Theo Moore’s post play; Riley Stewart and Jack Richter’s aggressive defense; Zak Swetye hitting big time threes.”

Wave scoring totals were 25 12-14 70; West Haven 17 17-21 54.