Boys basketball: Chukwu, Prep charge past East Hartford

Paschal Chukwu recorded a triple-double and the top-seeded Fairfield Prep basketball team routed visiting East Hartford, 73-46, on Thursday night in the second round of the Class LL state tournament.

With the victory, the Jesuits (25-0) earned a spot in the Class LL quarterfinals on Monday night — where they will host No. 9 seed Hillhouse High (20-5) at 7 at Alumni Hall. Hillhouse, the defending Class LL state champions, have lost to Prep three times this season, including most recently in the SCC championship game earlier this month. The Academics earned their spot in the quarters with a resounding victory of their own, trouncing No. 25 seed Harding High, 77-47, at the Floyd Little Athletic Center.

Chukwu was an unstoppable force for Prep, notching 24 points, 13 rebounds and 12 blocked shots. Thomas Nolan added 18 points and Keith Pettway had 16, as the Jesuits pulled away by outscoring the Hornets, 30-14, in the third quarter. East Hartford, the No. 16 seed, took its only lead of the game, 23-22, on Avondre Murphy’s putback of a missed free throw by John Jenkins with under a minute left in the first half.

Nolan then sank a 3-pointer from the right corner with 14 seconds left, as the Jesuits took a 25-23 lead into the half. From there, the Jesuits never trailed again.

Fairfield Prep also eliminated East Hartford (14-8) last year in the Class LL tournament, posting a 78-75 win in the Class LL semifinals.

For the full game story, check out next week’s Sun.

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