Category Archives: Ipswich

Grace Romine shines in relief in Triton’s 13-4 win over Ipswich

Grace Romine pitched four shutout innings in relief for Triton
Triton struggled in the field early on

(Byfield MA) Triton can hit and they can score runs.

Today the relief pitching of sophomore Grace Romine kicked in as well to help the Vikings defeat Ipswich, 13-4, on Friday afternoon.

Grace came in for starter Mallory Johnson in the top of the fourth inning.

First batter Grace faced (Rowan Galanis) dropped down a perfect run-producing bunt to give the Tigers a, 4-3, lead.

After that? Ipswich didn’t get a run or a hit the rest of the way, in fact, Grace retired the last ten batters she faced.

“Grace pitched well,” said Triton coach Alan Noyes afterwards.  “She pitched well in a loss to North Reading a few weeks ago.  She’ll probably get the ball when we play Newburyport on Monday.”

Kyla Story had four hits

The Vikings (6-5) had hits in every inning and scored in every inning.

“They’ve got good hitters,” said Ipswich coach Paul James post-game.

Kyla Story, Haleigh Harris, and Natalie Indingaro led the Triton attack.  Kyla had four hits and four RBI.  Haleigh contributed three hits and two RBI, while Natalie had two hits and two RBI.

“We do a lot of hitting,” explained Coach Noyes.  “We put in forty-five minutes to an hour every day we practice.”

The Tigers, however, looked strong in this one into the fourth inning.

“We had it close,” recalled Coach James. 

Triton errors and hit batsmen put the visitors into numerous scoring situations during the early innings and they capitalized four times.

However, despite some shaky plays, the Vikings also had some defensive gems that limited the Ipswich run production.

Catcher Haleigh Harris has the ball ready for incoming Rowan Galanis

Twice in the first four innings, Rowan Galanis was thrown out at the plate. 

In the second inning, it was a throw by centerfielder Izzy Oldoni that got the Ipswich senior. 

In the fourth inning, when Cassidy Smith tried to steal second, the throw went directly to shortstop Kyla Story instead.  Kyla returned the throw to catcher Haleigh Harris catching Rowan trying to score from third.

In the third inning, rightfielder Natalie Indingaro made a nice running catch to rob Maya Williams of a hit.

The Vikings had eight doubles off starter Annabel Morris and those big hits accounted for seven runs driven in.

Senior Gabby McKendry had a two-out, two-run single during Triton’s six-run sixth inning.

Rowan Galanis safe at second

Junior Lexi James had two hits and scored three times for Ipswich.

The weather was warm, and the threatening clouds didn’t turn into anything.

The seniors from both schools were honored afterwards.

Freshman Kyla Story continues to impress me with her hitting and her fielding.  I’m not the only one.

Coach James: “Triton has a great shortstop.”

Coach Noyes: “At the start of tryouts she hid in the corner.  She’s come into her own.  She’s the real deal.  She had a big game against Lynnfield.”

I asked Kyla afterwards about the game: “Our energy got up after a while.  I’ve been practicing a lot.  I play in the middle infield for the Northeast Hurricanes.”

(All of the pictures above and below will enlarge considerably if you click on them.)

Senior Izzie Reiniger
Catcher Katie Bekeritis
Natalie Indingaro – two hits, two RBI
Grace Romine pitching
Paige Leavitt slides in safely
Rowan Galanis out at home in the second inning
Lexi James scored three times
Catcher Haleigh Harris chats with new pitcher Grace Romine
Ipswich bench
LF Emily Johnson
1B Gabby McKendry
Katie Bekeritis on base
1B Cassidy Smith
2B Maya Williams
Ipswich box
Triton box

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Amesbury scores ten runs in the first inning and defeats Ipswich 15-5

Shortstop Shea Cucinotta saw his first action today in Amesbury’s big win
Evan Stein scores the second Ipswich run

(Amesbury MA) Ipswich was coming off their first win.

Amesbury was coming off two tough late-inning losses.

Two teams trending in opposite directions.

And Ipswich kept trending in a positive direction with a three-spot in the top of the first inning.

But that’s where it ended for the Tigers.

Amesbury responded with ten runs in their half of the first inning and cruised from there to a 15-5 victory.

Luke Arsenault had 3 hits and 2 rbi

The mercy rule kicked in during the Amesbury fifth inning.

“We needed this after last week,” said AHS coach Joel Brierley afterwards.  “However, we didn’t plan on beginning the way we did today.”

“We started today thinking that we would win,” said shortstop Shea Cucinotta post-game.  “You just can’t take a team for granted.  But we did pull together and get a victory.”

Special game for Shea because it was his first of the season.  The Cape Ann League All-Star has been missed by the Indians (5-3) for sure.

“Now we have Shea back as well as our senior catcher (Tim Gilleo),” said Coach Brierley.  “So we have a couple of weeks to put everything together before the tournament.”

The Amesbury hitting has been good and continued to be just that today.

The Indians had fourteen hits to go with the fifteen runs in only 4+ innings.

Drew MacDonald started for Amesbury

Eight of the nine AHS starters had hits.  Luke Arsenault had three hits, while Trevor Kimball and Jake Harring added two hits.

The biggest hit in the game may well have been Jeremy Lopez’s in the big first inning.  The Amesbury senior cleared the bases with a two-out triple to right.

That opening inning had all sorts of nightmarish ingredients for the Tigers (1-8).  There were two outfield errors, two hit batsmen, and two walks.  That’s a mix that will get a team in serious trouble for sure………and it did in the visitors.

Ipswich was coming off an exciting 9-8, last-inning, win over Pentucket.  Their bats were still hot at the outset of today’s game. 

Two batters in they had a run after Finn MacLennon doubled and Evan Stein singled.  A few batters later Wes Smith drove in another run with a single.  A fielder’s choice (Jake Reily) led to the third run.

Jeremy Lopez drove in 3 runs and scored 2 runs

Great start for Ipswich but it didn’t continue.  AHS starter Drew MacDonald pitched clean innings in the 2nd and 3rd innings.  Tiernan Bentley took care of things in the 4th and 5th innings.

The Indians needed a run in their fifth inning to activate the mercy rule.  They got what they needed.  Will Arsenault doubled.  Josh Sorgini’s fielder’s choice moved Will to 3B.  Tiernan Bentley’s single brought home the game-ending run.

“We came out here and we wanted to have some fun today and that’s what we did,” explained Drew MacDonald.

Drew claimed that he knew the source of Amesbury’s good hitting.  “We’ve been having Jeremy’s older brother throw some BP.  I think he’s our good-luck charm now.”

Cade Wetter pitched for IHS

Shea Cucinotta was excited to be playing again after being injured playing football.  “It was great to go out there with the boys.  I missed it.  Getting in for the next half of the season is going to be real good.  I was a little rusty out there today, but it feels good to be moving again.”

Ipswich finished with six hits.  Wes Smith had two of them to go with an RBI.

The Indians added three runs to their ten runs in the second inning.  Jake Harring’s double brought in two of the runs.

AHS coach Joel Brierley

Ipswich had single runs in the fourth (Finn MacLennon rbi) and the fifth (Drew Lane rbi).

Jake Harring, Shea Cucinotta, Jeremy Lopez, Drew Scialdone, Aidan Donovan, and Luke Arsenault each scored twice.

Jake Reily started for Ipswich and gave way to Drew Lane in the first inning.

The weather was splendid.  Temperatures were in the 70’s with a nice breeze.

There will be a tournament at the end of the season.  “It will be different this year because any team, no matter what their record is, can be in the tournament,” said Coach Brierley.  “We want to be over .500 and deserve to be there.”

The tournament won’t START until June 15th.  Amesbury gets out of school on June 17th.  “Our guys are completely okay will playing after school is over,” said Coach Brierley.

Amesbury faced Ipswich at Ipswich a week ago.  Drew MacDonald pitched a complete-game three hitter with seven strikeouts.  AHS won, 11-0.

Nice running catch by Amesbury CF Cam Stanley.

(All of the pictures above and below will enlarge significantly if you click on them.)

Ipswich dugout
Tiernan Bentley did some late-game pitching and hitting
Donovan Landry pitched for AHS
Drew Scialdone had a hit and scored two runs
Amesbury dugout
Cam Stanley makes a nice catch in CF
Trevor Kimball had two hits and an rbi
Both teams wait for the new pitcher
Tim Gilleo
Drew MacDonald scores the 4th Amesbury run
Shortstop Nate Baise and baserunner Jake Harring
Shea Cucinotta
Shortstop Shea Cucinotta and baserunner Evan Stein

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Excellent pitching and hitting send Amesbury past Ipswich 15-0

Alana Delisle allowed 1 hit to go with 14 K’s
Ella Delisle had a HR and 4 RBI

(Amesbury MA) Consider yourselves warned future opponents.

Amesbury has a terrific softball team.

Ipswich (2-3) found that out today losing 15-0 on Monday afternoon via the mercy rule.

The Indians (3-0) have a brand-new field to play on and unlike their nearby former field, this one has a fence.

“This is the first time we’ve had an actual fence,” said junior Liv DeLong afterwards.  “It was really exciting to see three home runs go over it.”

Liv had one of the long ones and Ella Delisle and Ella Bezanson had the other two.

AHS had fifteen hits and all of the Amesbury starters scored at least one run in the 4 ½ innings played.

Ella Bezanson had the first of 3 Amesbury homers

The Indians had a six-run second inning and a seven-run fourth inning.

And then there was the pitching of AHS starter Alana Delisle.

Amesbury coach Jacqui Waters told me afterwards that she had originally planned on using several of her pitchers in each game.

Today she couldn’t do it as Alana put on a show.

“She was on fire,” said Coach Waters, “I wasn’t taking her out.”

Alana struck out fourteen Tigers and allowed just one hit.

“She took control of the whole game with fourteen strikeouts,” said Coach Waters.  “She was outstanding.”

“Alana was awesome today,” said her sister Ella, who was the catcher.  “Everything she had worked.”

The combination of Alana’s pitching and an offense, that on this sunny afternoon had hits and loud outs, made it tough for Ipswich.

Cassidy Smith dropped in the only Ipswich hit

Leftfielder Alexa Eliopoulos and shortstop Lexi James made outstanding plays in the field, but the sheer volume of tough chances made it difficult for the visitors to stop the runs from coming.

SS Lexi James made a nice running catch

The Indians didn’t bunt, just hacked away.  Ella Bezanson and Izzy Levasseur each had three hits for Amesbury.  Ella Delisle had four RBI.

Alana struck out the first eight batters she faced before walking Piper Reily in the third inning.

In the Ipswich fourth, Cassidy Smith dropped a short popup over Alan’s head and just in front of charging shortstop Liv Levasseur.  That was the Tigers first and only hit.

One thing I didn’t learn about today was the quality of the Amesbury defense.  Not one ball got out of the infield.  Alana got an assist on the final out of the game but there were no other infield chances other than Cassidy Smith’s hit.

Impressive, to say the least.

Liv DeLong celebrates a home run

The new field has bleachers beyond centerfield although most spectators chose the 3B/LF foul territory to view from.

Coach Waters: “We owe this field to the alumni.  They raised some money.  The infield cost $16,000.  We needed a new field.  The other one was a mess.  Mayor Gove came through with funds for the backstop and all the fencing.  We have a brand-new scoreboard which is not in yet.  It was a gift from the Newburyport Institution for Savings.”

Alana Delisle: “Today was really fun.  Ella did a great job catching.  Everyone hit.  Ella calls the pitches. I just throw them.”

Ella Delisle: “I’ve been catching her my whole life.  Her curve was moving really well.”

LF Alex Eliopoulos made several nice catches in the outfield

The Indians haven’t given up a run yet in three starts.  Liv Delong had fifteen strikeouts in the season opener against Rockport.

Coach Waters informed me that there will be a state tournament following the regular season.  How far can the Indians go?

(All of the pictures above and below will enlarge considerably if you click on them.)

Alana Delisle
Lauren Celia
Caroline Spencer in for a grounder
Ella Delisle celebrates her 3-run homer in the fourth inning
Grounder up the middle
Lexi James
Annabel Morris set to pitch
Piper Reily
Veronica Deacon
Liv Levasseur
Amesbury pre-game gathering
Ella Bezanson
Julia Campbell
Liv Levasseur
Alana Delisle pregame

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Emily Meleedy hits/pitches Newburyport to 10-5 win over Ipswich

Emily Meleedy had a two-run homer in Newburyport’s four-run second inning
Emily Meleedy

(Newburyport MA) Ipswich coach Paul James knew that he’d seen something special.

“She’s legit. No doubt.”

The Tigers coach was referencing Newburyport’s Emily Meleedy.

Emily had plenty to do with the (3-0) Clippers, 10-5, win over the Tigers on Wednesday afternoon at Pioneer Park.

At the end of the fourth inning, the home team was ahead, 9-1. 

By then, Emily had a double, home run (over the centerfield fence), and a single, driving in five runs and scoring three times.

The two batters ahead of Emily in the batting order (Emma Keefe & Cali Caponigro) were also very productive early on as Newburyport built their big lead.  Emma and Cali both reached base three times and each scored three times.

Emily also pitched.

Emily Meleedy struck out seven Tigers and allowed six hits

Through four innings the NHS freshman allowed just one hit (Kate Bekeritis) and struck out five.

Lexi James was part of the Ipswich comeback in the 5th inning

Credit Ipswich for putting a four-run rally together in the 5th inning.

“We were down early but we didn’t quit,” said Coach James.  “We got the game back closer.”

The Tigers (2-1) started making solid contact and getting on base. 

“It took us a couple of times around to get used to the pitching,” said Coach James.

Eight Tigers came to the plate in that 4-run fifth with Lexi James, Kate Bekeritis, and Cassidy Smith getting RBIs.

But the damage was limited to four runs.  Again, we find Emily Meleedy playing a big role.  She assisted on an out at first, caught a popup, and struck out the last batter of the inning.

Piper Reily (2 hits) throws to first

Emily struck out seven in the game and ended three innings with strikeouts.

Ipswich had two hits in the 6th inning but ran into a double play on a fly ball to douse a promising chance to score.

RF Keira Dowell ended the game with a nice running catch in foul territory.

The infield surface at Pioneer Park was hard and bumpy.  Both teams struggled making plays on grounders as they tried to figure out hops.

“I thought that we played a sloppy game,” said Newburyport coach Bob Gillespie afterwards.  “We were much better in the first two games. But we can correct the mistakes.”

“We had some struggles, but we pushed through,” said Emily Meleedy.

The Tigers finished with six hits.  Freshman Piper Reily had two of them.

The Clippers started four freshmen and an eighth grader (Sophie Lavallee).

The Tigers started three freshmen.

Cali Caponigro – 3 hits, 2 runs

“We’re a young team and this was a huge building game for us,” said Coach James.

Emily Meleedy: “I was throwing mostly fastballs.  I have a good team to back me up.  It feels good to hit a homer.  I play club softball in Salisbury.  On the club team I pitch and play shortstop.”

Little bit of rain early but that was the end of it.

Parking at Pioneer Park is nearly non-existent.  There were two other games going on at the same time.  I don’t know the parking solution, but there were cars in harm’s way when I left.  Be careful over there.

(All of the pictures above and below will enlarge considerably if you click on them.)

Emma Keefe – 2 hits, 4 runs
Sophie Lavallee
CF Dakota Duncan
Pitcher Annabel Morris
Piper Reily scores a run in the 5th inning
Emily Meleedy goes down for a low pitch
Annabel Morris takes a swing as Cali Caponigro catches
Sophie Lavallee caught stealing by Lexi James
LF Maya Williams comes in for a ball
Bad-hop grounders were the order of the day
SS Lexi James sets to throw to first
Cali Caponigro scores in the first inning
Near catch by 3B Piper Reily
Maddie Della
Keira Dowell mobbed after game-ending catch

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Chase Dwight puts on a show in scrimmage against Ipswich

Chase Dwight pitched four shutout innings

(Groveland MA) Impressive.

Chase Dwight had a 3-run homer in the 4th inning against Ipswich
Chase Dwight in the midst of the HR celebration

Pentucket sophomore Chase Dwight pitched four shutout innings and drilled a 3-run homer.

Chase’s shot over the fence in left center in the 4th inning off Ipswich relief pitcher Jake Reily scored Joe Lynch and Andrew Melone.

It was only a scrimmage so overreacting in any direction is folly.

However, it seems quite certain that Chase Dwight will play a prominent role for the Sachems in the Cape Ann League regular season which starts later this week.

The Monday afternoon event was played at Groveland Pines.

Shortstop Ethan Hunt takes charge on an infield popup

The prevailing winds there made every ball in the air toward right field an adventure for the fielders.  Several drives that way either sliced away, or dropped in front, of fielders.

That same wind turned things from cool to cold for those of us spectators.  I lasted four innings.

Chase Dwight and catcher Joe Lynch

As is the habit with a scrimmage, there were no numbered uniforms worn or rosters available.  I took pictures but won’t be putting names to most of them.

I do plan to post the unnamed ones on Instagram (mcclellandmiscellanea) asking for IDs.  Once I get the names, I will add that picture to my online blog (McClelland Miscellanea) coverage of the scrimmage.

(All of the pictures will enlarge considerably if you click on them.)

Senior Andrew Melone
Kyle Ventola
Bryce Winter
Finn MacLennan
Evan Stein
Will Baise
Cade Wetter
Trevor Kamuda scores for Pentucket against Ipswich
Kyle Ventola at the plate
Will Roberts
Ipswich starter Will Baise
Jack Wile
Cade Wetter
Jake Reily
Brad McGowan

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Ipswich sweeps Pentucket on the road in season opener for both teams

Megan Reading (23), Anna Mossler (11), Meghan Wallace (27)

Lou Roesler – 9 digs for Ipswich

(West Newbury MA) Some might call it rebuilding.

Others might prefer reloading.

Ipswich girls’ volleyball started their 2021 season with a three-set sweep over Ipswich (25-15,25-18,25-12) on Monday night.

The Tigers (1-0) reached the Division 3 state semifinals last season.

“We graduated seven seniors from that team (16-7) but the newcomers to this year’s team blew us away in practices and in the game today,” said senior captain Lou Roesler.

Rachel Alleva

“It was a great season opener,” said Ipswich first-year coach Staci Sonke post-match.  “Obviously we had a little bit of rust to shake off because a lot of these girls hadn’t played in six months.  We had four really good seniors (Jillian Gregory,Anna Mossler,Gabrielle Ring, Lou Roesler) giving us a good foundation out there tonight.”

Pentucket is only in its second season of having a team.  With plenty of enthusiasm, but little experience, the Sachems took their lumps going 0-16 in that first season.

Starting this season with the likes of talented/experienced Ipswich was not an ideal matchup for the home team.

But they gave it their best and had good starts in all three sets.

Pentucket coach John McNamara

“We battled, but we gave away a lot of points,” said John McNamara, Pentucket’s first-year coach.

“Ipswich is very good,” he said. “They’re solid.  We had stretches where we made multiple mistakes in a row and all of a sudden you spot them six points.  They’re going to keep that lead.”

“Pentucket gave us a good run in the first set,” said Coach Sonke, “and it was nice to get our groove back in the 2nd and 3rd sets.”

“We’ll get better,” said Coach McNamara, “but we have a lot of work to do.”

Coach Sonke also saw work ahead for her team.  “There are still things to improve on.  The idea is to stay consistent out there.”

These are some of the Ipswich numbers: Jillian Gregory 6 aces, Kendra Brown 7 assists, Meghan Wallace 6 kills, Lou Roesler 9 digs.

Ipswich coach Staci Sonke

Lou Roesler: “I was really excited to get back on the court after Covid.  During the summer, I set my expectations low and prepared myself for no season.  The reality that we would actually play came around Christmas.  I have been accepted at a number of colleges.  I am interested in humanities and environmental studies.”

It was interesting to see senior basketball players, Megan Reading & Mackenzie Currie, giving volleyball a try for the first time for Pentucket.

This story will be linked on Twitter (@mcclellandpeter) and pictures will appear later on Instagram (mcclellandmiscellanea).

All of the pictures above and below will enlarge considerably if you click on them.

Macey Rodrigues-Cowl leads the Sachems onto the court

Arielle Cleveland and Mackenzie Currie

Megan Reading

Ready for a return

Meghan Wallace

Arielle Cleveland block

Jillian Gregory

Meghan Wallace (6 kills)

Block at the net

Nicole Zahornasky

Kendra Brown (7 assists)

Ally Cacciapuoti

Anna Mossler dives

Anna Mossler and Meghan Wallace at the net

Lou Roesler – backrow hit

Anna Mossler serves the match winner

 

 

 

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Great start, strong finish earns Ipswich 52-48 win over Pentucket

James Davis (Pentucket) and Charlie Henderson (Ipswich) were part of a very close game

Kenny Lee covered by Will Wertz

(West Newbury MA) The Ipswich Tigers started with shutout defense and ended with consecutive offense.

That combo was enough to defeat Pentucket, 52-48, on Thursday night at Pentucket.

The Tigers (5-4) scored the first nine points of the game while the Sachems (2-6) had eight turnovers. Nick Daly (20 points) got a layup four minutes into the opening quarter to get Pentucket on the board.

“We gave the ball away too much,” explained Pentucket coach Ed Hickey afterwards.  “It’s our Achilles Heel right now.”

Despite the lousy start, and later in the third period trailing by ten (36-26), the Sachems were far from finished.

Silas Bucco (10 points) eludes Evan Stein

Senior Silas Bucco and junior Nick Daly took the home team on their collective backs after their team went down ten. They led the Sachems on an impressive 15-3 segment.

During the exciting comeback, Silas had six points while Nick had seven including a three that put Pentucket on top, 41-39, with 4 ½ minutes left in the game.

“I think we lost that ten-point lead because we got too rushed on offense, while defensively our rotations broke down a little bit,” explained Ipswich coach Alan Laroche.

For the next two minutes there were ties and lead changes with no indication of the final outcome.

The Sachems’ Kenny Lee set up teammate Ryan Tedeschi for a three from the left corner and then made a layup himself in traffic to boost the Pentucket margin to three (48-45) with 2 ½ minutes left.

Those would be the last points the Sachems would score.

“We had opportunities down the stretch to make shots and win the game,” said Coach Hickey.  “We just didn’t get it done tonight.”

Meanwhile, the Tigers put consecutive offense together scoring the last eight points of the game to get the win, 52-48.

Aidan O’Flynn

“We had a nice run down the stretch,” recalled senior Aidan O’Flynn.  “We came through thanks to Ray’s clutch performance.”

Sophomore Ray Cuevas (26 points) had a 12-point final quarter.

In the 2 ½ minute, run to victory, Ray set up teammate Nikhil Walker for a layup, made a three, and blocked a shot.

Ray Cuevas (26 points) puts up a three

“Ray had a nice game,” said Coach Laroche.  “He’s really starting to come into his own offensively.  He’s finding where he can get his shot.”

Nikhil Walker made two free throws, with thirteen seconds left, out of a tense one-and-one situation.

Nikhil Walker about to make the 2nd of two free throws with thirteen seconds left

“His two made free throws took some of the pressure off us in the final thirteen seconds,” added Coach Laroache.

I asked Aidan O’Flynn if he was surprised that Nikhil made the two shots: “Not at all, he’s a clutch free throw shooter. He practices them a lot.  I wasn’t surprised he made both.”

Nick Daly (20 points)

It certainly dampened Pentucket’s chances when high-scorer Nick Daly fouled out with 1:22 left.

“Nick had a big game,” said Coach Hickey.  “Losing him hurt us.”

Coach Hickey: “The kids competed.  They played hard.  It just didn’t work out for us.”

Coach Laroche: “It’s been a nice season.  I told these kids that I wish I had them for twenty games because I think we could have done something in the real tournament.”

Silas Bucco had ten points for Pentucket and Will Wertz had the same amount for Ipswich.

I saw both teams defeat Triton by a point.

Coach Laroche: “We’re making the best of what we’re allowed to do.  It’s awesome that we’re allowed to be here right now.”

Ipswich box

Pentucket box

The story will be linked on Twitter (McclellandPeter).  It will also be posted on Mascores.  Tomorrow some of the pictures will show up on Instagram (mcclellandmiscellanea).

(All of the pictures above and below will enlarge if you click on them.)

Michael Perlitch guards Nikhil Walker

Ray Cuevas (26 points) in for two in the last quarter

Nikhil Walker hustles for a rebound

Nikhil Walker (9 points) elevates to get an inside shot

Fighting for a rebound

CJ Condon guards Will Wertz (10 points)

Nick Daly puts up a shot in close

Reilly Dillon

Nick Daly shoots in the lane

Paul Wertz (23) challenges Chase Dwight’s layup try

CJ Condon defends

Aidan Tierney

Owen Tedeschi

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Fast start key as Amesbury gets 39-23 win versus Ipswich

Riley Daly (16 points) even with tight coverage

Avery Hallinan (18 points) even against a good Ipswich zone defense

Liv DeLong (10 points) on the baseline

(Amesbury MA) Sometimes the start can finish a team.

That’s what happened to Ipswich as they fell to Amesbury, 39-23, on Tuesday night in Cape Ann League play.

“We got off to a slow start,” said Tigers coach Chris Tolios,” and dug ourselves a hole we couldn’t get out of.”

Amesbury (2-1) had nine unanswered points to start the game.

Early in the second quarter the Indians put eight straight together.

When those two collections of consecutive offense were over, Amesbury was in front, 19-5, four minutes into the second quarter.

The two teams were even the rest of the way but the ship had sailed on the Tigers.

McKenna Hallinan looks to pass

A tight Amesbury man-to-man defense saw to it that Ipswich (1-4) stayed double digits away thereafter.

Avery Hallinan had eighteen points to lead the Indians.  Twice in this one (in the 2nd quarter) she hit from long-range.

Amesbury had five 3’s in the game.  “We hit three’s,” said Amesbury coach Gregg Dollas afterwards, “and we needed that against their tough zone.”

Riley Daly (16 points) paced Ipswich.

“McKenna (Hallinan) did a great job covering her,” said Coach Dollas.  “Riley is one of the best players in the CAL.”

Riley Daly gets to the basket

Riley was tightly covered on the perimeter and was confronted with extra defenders when she tried to get to the basket.  Somehow, even with the special attention, the Ipswich senior made shots.

I have seen all three Amesbury games, and the biggest improvement tonight was their passing.

“The ball movement was greatly improved,” agreed Coach Dollas.

And it needed to be against a well-organized Ipswich zone.

“Riley does a great job in the middle of that zone,” said Coach Dollas.  “She’s so athletic and she made it tough for Avery who lives in there.”

The heavy traffic, however, didn’t seem to deter Avery too much when passes did get inside.  She was willing to absorb contact, attempt layups, draw fouls, and collect points.

“We had good ball movement,” explained junior Gabby Redford post-game.  “Definitely better than last game (Lynnfield).  We passed well and got good looks out of it.”

Gabby Redford (22) finds a teammate for a layup

Gabby had several assists.  “I looked up and they were cutting through, so I got them the ball.”

Carter King (12) on defense

Coach Dollas: “He (Chris Tolios) does a terrific job with his kids.  They hang around in every game.”

Coach Tolios: “Amesbury played good physical defense.  We just couldn’t get anything going offensively.  We work a lot on defense in practice.  Our girls don’t quit.  Even when the ball is not going into the basket you can still play hard defense.”

Gabby Redford: “I have been thrown off by the way the season has gone.  Last year we had so much more practice and time to prepare.  Now everything is rushed.  I am still very happy to be playing.”

Covid-19 concerns have affected both teams.  Amesbury had its first five games postponed.  Ipswich hadn’t played in thirteen days.

Ipswich coach Chris Tolios

Liv DeLong notched ten points for Amesbury.

Only three players scored for Ipswich.

Usually low-scoring games indicate a plentiful amount of turnovers, but not this time.  Why?  Ipswich kept the ball in Riley Daly’s hands as much as possible while Amesbury lessened their tendency (in the first two games) of panicking under pressure.

Amesbury box

Ipswich box

This coverage will be linked in Twitter @mcclellandpeter and should appear on Mascores.  I plan to also post some of the pictures on Instagram @mcclellandmiscellanea.

(All of the pictures above and below will enlarge considerably if you click on them.)

Alyssa Pettet (14) moves up to guard Riley Daly

Julia Moseley

Sami Kimball

Ava Horsman blocks McKenna Hallinan’s shot

Carter King tangles with Avery Hallinan

Avery Hallinan rebounds

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Ipswich holds off Triton 53-52 in OT

Ipswich celebrates after edging Triton

(Byfield MA) “I was afraid that they might call a foul, but I got all ball.”

That was how freshman Will Wertz explained it after his last-second block preserved Ipswich’s, 53-52, win over the Triton on Friday night.

The Vikings (1-3) had just three seconds to work with but perfectly executed an inbounds play to give Dylan Wilkinson (17 points) a look from the right corner.

Dylan Wilkinson (17 points) to the hoop

Despite the loss, Triton coach Ted Schruender wasn’t totally surprised by the way things went.  “You had two evenly matched teams so it could have gone either way.  We were hot and then they were hot.”

There were nine lead changes early into the second half.

Then the Vikings, led by Dylan Wilkinson and Kyle Odoy (16 points) turned up the heat defensively (four Ipswich turnovers) and strung twelve straight points together in a 3 ½ minute segment of the third quarter.

The showcase performance sent the home team up, 36-26, with three minutes left in the third quarter.

Ipswich wasn’t done, however.

Kyle Odoy (16 points) splits two Tigers

“We really showed resilience tonight,” explained Ipswich coach Alan Laroche.  “We were down ten and didn’t stop believing that we could come back.”

And back the visitors came.

Triton’s, 42-32, lead vanished as Ipswich heated up.  The Tigers (2-2) had three’s from Charlie Henderson and Aidan O’Flynn putting twelve straight points together and regained the lead, 44-42, with four minutes left.

Ipswich took a two-point lead with twenty seconds remaining in regulation (Ray Cuevas layup) but senior Kyle Odoy (16 points) had a tying layup with eight seconds left to force OT.

Nikhil Walker (11 points) looks to convert a rebound

The Vikings built up a four-point lead in the first minute of overtime and still had that margin (52-48) in the last minute and had the ball.

Ipswich, however, did everything right in that last minute and pulled out the exciting win.

Charlie Henderson (14 points) started things for the Tigers in that pivotal last minute getting a steal and a layup.  Then it was solid Ipswich team defense that forced a 5-second violation as Triton tried to inbounds the ball.  Still trailing by two (52-50) Ipswich was able to get Ray Cuevas (13 points) a 3-point shot which he cashed to get the Tigers in front.

Ray Cuevas stops Kyle Odoy on the baseline

“Ray is a great player,” said Coach Laroche.  “We try to get him as many looks as we can.  Screens were set for him and he used them.”

“All game long I was struggling for downtown,” said Ray Cuevas afterwards.  “You keep shooting and sooner or later they fall.  I knew that last shot was going in.”

In it went and then Will Wertz’s block sealed it for the Tigers.

“Will didn’t shoot very well tonight but he came up big for us at the end,” said Coach Laroche.

Nikhil Walker excelled on defense and added eleven points for Ipswich.

Charlie Henderson double-teamed

Despite the loss Coach Schruender was optimistic: “These guys work hard and we’re going to get better.  I’m just happy that we’re out here playing.  We’re hoping for no interruptions in the future.”

This was the second overtime loss for the Vikings this week.

Triton box

Ipswich box

The link to this coverage will be on Twitter (@mcclellandpeter).  I also expect to post pictures on Instagram (mcclellandmiscellanea).  The story/pictures should appear on Mascores too.

(All of the pictures above and below will enlarge considerably if you click on them.)

Coach Alan Laroche pregame with Ray Cuevas and Nikhil Walker

Jayden Halecki (40) in a crowd of Vikings

Nick Dupuis

Aidan O’Flynn

Kyle Odoy and Will Wertz

Dylan Wilkinson shoots over Charlie Henderson

Kyle Odoy finds an opening to the basket

Zach Liebert at the line

Board battle

Quintin McHale at the line

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Abigail Gillingham (17 points) leads Newburyport by Ipswich 39-24 in CAL opener

Senior Abigail Gillingham (17 pts) led all scorers

Leah Metsker and Gabby Loughran trap Ava Horsman

(Newburyport MA)  The Newburyport Clippers were good defensively all night.

The offense took a while to kick in.

But when it did, the visiting Ipswich Tigers were in trouble and fell to the Clippers, 39-24, on Tuesday night at NHS in the Cape Ann League opener for both teams.

Senior Abigail Gillingham (17 points) collected nine points in Newburyport’s game-turning, 16-point unanswered streak in the second half.

Jennie Tarr’s shot-clock buzzer beater had the Tigers within one, 21-20, with 1 ½ minutes left in the third quarter.

Riley Daly drew plenty of Newburyport attention

Ipswich coach Chris Tolios was pleased with the rally: “The girls played hard.  We went into the final quarter only down three points against one of the best teams in the Cape Ann League.”

And the Tiger’s top returning scorer (Riley Daly) hadn’t scored a point yet!

“We had missed a ton of shots,” explained Newburyport coach Karen Grutchfield post-game.  “I don’t think that our shot selection was great.  We didn’t take what they gave us.”

None of that had to do with the 4th quarter, however.

The Clippers began to make shots and make it look easy.

Newburyport huddle

“When things got ugly, we did recover,” admitted Coach Grutchfield.

The Clippers made shots inside and outside and Ipswich couldn’t match them down the other end.

Key basket (Abigail Gillingham) in the sixteen-point streak was scored after three straight, offensive putbacks.

Sydney Turner’s layup from Makenna Ward ended the NHS run five minutes into the 4th period with the score now, 37-20.

The Clippers defense was tough throughout.

“Our team strength is our lockdown defense,” explained Abigail.  Newburyport has length and allowed few open shots from anywhere.

Emma Foley steals from Riley Daly

It seemed as if almost every Ipswich possession in the first half had Coach Chris Tolios counting down the final seconds so that the Tigers would get off a shot before the thirty-second clock went off.

Ipswich was quicker on offense in the second half and that was how they rallied to make things interesting in the third quarter.

“Newburyport made plays at the end that we couldn’t make,” added Coach Tolios.

Coach Grutchfield was pleased with the win but added, “offensively we’ve got a lot of work to do against zone defenses.”

It wasn’t hard to miss the novelty of the situation.  The doors were locked. There were no spectators.  Everyone had a mask on.  There were some rule adjustments especially on free throws.

Maddie Duffy gets off a shot for Ipswich

The game was extremely quick.  I think it lasted just an hour.  I think that half-time was five minutes long and the teams didn’t leave the court.

There was a bigger picture.

Coach Tolios: “At the end of the day we were playing basketball.  We’re lucky to be here.”

Abigail Gillingham: “All of us have made the decision that we have to make the most of what we’ve got.  We’re grateful that we even get to play.  We’ll work through the rules and make something great out of it.”

Newburyport box

Ipswich box

(The story and pictures will be posted on Mascores and the link to it on Twitter.  May post some pictures on Instagram.)

The pictures above and below will enlarge if you click on them.

Referee

Makenna Ward

Ipswich coach Chris Tolios

Battle under the basket

Jennie Tarr

Freshman Olivia McDonald set to play defense

Deidre McElhinney

Ava Horsman eyes the hoop with Brela Pavao defending

Jennie Tarr beats the 30-second clock with a three

Jackie Doucette looks to pass

Abigail Gillingham was hot from the outside

Riley Daly

Maddie Richard defends Jackie Doucette

Battle for the ball

 

 

 

 

 

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