SOUTHINGTON -- Fairfield Prep's Leo Redgate insists that he doesn't keep stats or pay attention to them. His players don't focus on them either.
The Jesuits' coach doesn't need numbers to show that his point guard, Keith Pettway, has grown into a difference-maker.
"You'd have to be blind not to see his (development)," Redgate said Thursday at the CIAC's boys basketball luncheon. "He's listening, learning, he's making smart decisions, he's not forcing action. Those were all, quite frankly, the pieces that were missing.
"A lot of basketball is confidence between your ears."
Pettway was a dependable starter last year on the Jesuits' 24-3 team, but he's been more than that as a senior. He's one reason, his teammates say, why the Jesuits enter Saturday's LL final against Central (8:15 p.m. at Mohegan Sun Arena) as the state's only remaining unbeaten.
"Keith is arguably the best point guard in the state," shooting guard Thomas Nolan said. "Without him, we're not where we are today."
With Prep one win from its first state title since 1997, Pettway will duel Tyler Ancrum, the FCIAC Player of the Year. Having grown up in Bridgeport, Pettway's relishing the chance to face one of his longtime counterparts on the court.
"We go way back," Pettway said. "We like grew up together. We played basketball with each other all the time. It's going to be fun.
"He played on the Shehan Center (team). I played for the McGivney Center."
Pettway scored 26 points in the Jesuits' 71-47 LL quarterfinal win over Hillhouse, then drew praise following a 12-point outing in a semifinal victory over Greenwich.
"Putting him with (center) Paschal (Chukwu) was obviously the difference tonight," Cardinals coach Bill Brehm said Wednesday. "If they don't have a point guard, they're not going to be near the same team."