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MILFORD — Defense, specifically Jonathan Law full-court press, turned things around when the Lawmen defeated Brookfield, 60-41, in the season opener for both clubs.

“We predicate everything we do on defense,” Law head coach Jamie Anderson said after his SCC team’s victory over the Bobcats from the South-West Conference. “Our guys give 100 per cent nonstop, that’s how we do things. A couple years ago we instituted 60 or less (that) is where we want to be to be competitive and win more games. The number (41) is great for us.”

Brookfield, led by Andrew DiLascio’s ability to go to the basket and Steven Cioffi’s long-range shooting, took leads of 15-12 after one quarter and 24-19 at the half.

Law’s press was effective but failed to produce points in the first two periods. All that changed after intermission.

The Lawmen forced 10 third-quarter turnovers — that led directly to 11 points — and a 40-33 advantage after three quarters. Diontae Eady scored 12 of his 29 points in the frame. Jon Vitale had 7 of his 14.

“First half was a slow start,” said Eady an All-State selection as a junior. “We controlled the tempo, started running our offense We got into our rhythm, got into our press and got the lead back up. We like to play help defense. That is what we focus on the most. We’re not really an offensive team, so we stay in help. I love these guys; this is my team.”

Law had trouble filling out the scoresheet in the first half, with Eady putting up 9 points in the opening frame.

DiLascio had 8 points in the first, and Cioffi seemingly stepped further back on each made 3-pointer to close the half with 12.

In Law’s 21-9 run in the third, Eady had three steals and was joined in the takeaway department by Brian Felag (who drew a pair of charges in the game), Jake Faller and Noah Tutlis.

“This was a really good test for us today today, coming all the way over to Milford,” Brookfield head coach John Fleming said. “We were only able to get one scrimmage in with the weather. For us this was kinda getting thrown to the wolves. They are an experienced team, a very good team.

“For us we lost five starters last year, so I’m starting all juniors. So hopefully we’re going to get better as the season progresses. We are going to learn a few things from this and continue working hard.”

Felag, Justice Smith and Tutlis helped Law extend its lead in the final quarter.

“We graduated five seniors,” Anderson said. We have a lot of guys that got a lot of reps. Our preseason was short, so we haven’t had a lot of time to go over our sets in game situations. We have a lot of guys that can shoot and know the game.

“On defense, our guys will go all day.”

william.bloxsom@hearstmediact.com Twitter: @blox354

PLAYERS OF THE GAME

Law’s Diontae Eady was unstoppable going to the basket and scored 29 points. Jon Vitale ran the offense, was the definition of stout on defense, and made key free throws (6 for 6) to help Law take the lead.

QUOTABLE

“We like to play help defense. That is what we focus on the most. We’re not really an offensive team, so we stay in help. I love these guys; this is my team.” — Law’s Diontae Eady

Law 60, Brookfield 41

At Jonathan Law

Brookfield 15 9 9 8 — 41

Law 12 7 21 20 — 60

Law (1-0)

Jon Vitale 3 6-6, 14 Diontae Eady 14 1-1, 29 Ru Akhtar 0 0-0, 0 Brian Felag 2 0-1, 4 Noah Tutlis 1 3-4, 5 Justice Smith 3 0-0, 6 Jake Faller 1 0-0, 2 Colin Buchner 0 0-0, 0 - Totals: 24 10-12, 60.

Brookfield (0-1)

Andrew Dilascio 4 4-4, 12 Steven Cioffi 7 0-0, 16 Zakary Droukas 3 0-0, 7 Brian Rawlings 0 0-0, 0 Harrison Albanese 2 0-0, 4 Connor Walls 1 0-0, 2 Mitchell Kessler 0 0-1, 0 - Totals: 17 4-5, 41.

3-pointers: L—Vitale 2; B—Cioffi 2, Droukas 1