Tag Archives: Cody Cannalonga

North Reading defeats Amesbury 68-55

Cody Cannalonga (28 points) had a memorable evening
Cody Cannalonga reached 1000 points for the Hornets

(Boston MA) Neither team had been playing well lately.

North Reading had lost three straight.

Amesbury had dropped three of their last four.

But that all changed for North Reading last night.

Under the bright lights of the Boston Garden the Hornets played, as Coach Joe Casey described it, “their best game of the season.”

Their defense was tight, and their offense flowed smoothly.

Andrew Boulas guards Cam Keliher

Along the way, senior Cody Cannalonga (28 points) crossed into the 1000-point club at North Reading.

The smooth senior needed fourteen points and he had those in the first half, getting the 1000th on a free throw.

No celebrating then but before the second half resumed the Garden announcer noted Cody’s accomplishment and he was duly recognized by the North Reading crowd, many of whom were there for this moment.

Quinn Riesenberg (18 points)

“Hollywood couldn’t have written a better script for us,” said Coach Casey afterwards.  “It was a perfect night for us and one that our kids will remember the rest of their lives.”

The Hornets (6-6) took the lead early, 6-5, on an Andrew Boulas layup 4 ½ minutes into the game and never trailed after that.

North Reading broke out on Amesbury misses and made open shots. 

“They had more energy than we did, and we didn’t make shots,” said Amesbury coach Tom Comeau post-game.

Matt Welch chased by Quinn Riesenberg in front of Coach Casey

The keys to success against the Indians (8-7) are containing next-level talents Cam Keliher and Matt Welch.  The Hornets were onto that tonight.

“The early lead gave us some confidence,” said Coach Casey.  “We really focused in on (Cam) Keliher and (Matt) Welch and did a really good job with them.”

“They played Matty and Cam real tough defensively and we didn’t have answers for it,” said Coach Comeau.

Nick Marden (9 points)

That “tough” defense truly kicked in during the second quarter when both players were held scoreless, and the Indians were limited to only eight points.

Senior Cody Cannalonga chose that quarter to go off against Amesbury registering twelve points.  His three-pointer in the last minute pushed the NR lead to double-figures (34-23).

Two free throws later, Cody joined the North Reading 1000-point club.

“Cody is a coach’s dream,” said Coach Casey.  “He is selfless and a good student.  He is an excellent leader and he comes from a terrific family.  He’s also only the third player in school history to score 1000 points.”

Cody Cannalonga gets to 1000 points

Cody will be going to Villanova where Coach Casey told me that Cody would be, “an intramural All-Star unless Villanova basketball coach Jay Wright finds out about him.”

The Hornets carried the double-digit lead throughout the second half.  Amesbury was able to get within ten points (62-52) late in the final quarter but no closer.

The score separation enabled both coaches to clear their benches and give all their players the Garden “experience.”

Coach Comeau reflected on the bigger picture: “It was a great experience for the kids and I’m glad we could give it to them.  Everyone got on the floor.  Everyone got to enjoy it.  Twenty years from now they won’t care if they won or lost.  It’ll be, ‘I played at the Garden.’”

Andrew Daileanes

Senior Quinn Riesenberg had eighteen points for North Reading including eight in the fast-start first quarter.  “It was the best game he’s played,” said Coach Casey.

It was interesting to be covering a game at the Garden this time of year.  Why?  Usually, when I’m at the Garden it is for tournament games but this was just a regular-season Cape Ann League game…….. in a very special setting.

“The loss wasn’t the end of the line at all,” said Coach Comeau.  “We do, however, have to get the ship right pretty quick.”  Ten wins assures a team of a tournament berth.  The Indians have eight wins with five games left.

Block attempt

The North Reading/Amesbury game was part of a ten-game, all-day event called the Andrew James Lawson Foundation Invitational. 

Some of the features I noticed, and was impressed with were, (1) the halftimes in which kids from the participating teams were allowed supervised to play on the court, and (2) team photos taken afterwards at center court.

I am suspecting that there will be many schools wanting to return next year to this event and others, on the outside, looking into getting involved next year.

Special thanks, from me, to Coach Comeau for allowing me to ride on the team bus.

North Reading  21   15   15   17  =  68

Amesbury          17     8   12   18  =  55

(The pictures will enlarge.)

Jake Hallinan shoots over Craig Rubino
Keegan Collins shoots
Cam Keliher (11 points) puts up a tough shot
Max LaPointe shoots
Matt Welch double-teamed
Matt Heidt
Sportsmanship
Logan Scribner shoots
Cody Cannalonga had twenty-eight points
Battle for a rebound
North Reading team
Amesbury team
Amesbury box
North Reading box

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Newburyport rallies to 72-64 win over North Reading

Finn Sullivan (10) led the Clippers in their strong finish
Finn Brennan (21 points)

(Newburyport MA) The Clippers dominated the final three minutes and that was enough to earn them a, 72-64, win over North Reading on Friday night.

“They crushed us on the glass over the last 4-5 minutes,” said NR coach Joe Casey afterwards.  “That’s what won them the game.”

Newburyport coach Dave Clay saw things a bit differently: “We won this game with defensive stops.  Those stops led to transition points.”

This game had plenty for both squads to cheer about.  The Clippers (6-4) led by six (23-17) after a quarter, but the Hornets (4-4) owned the middle quarters.  The visitors were ahead by nine (50-41) with 1 ½ minutes left in the third quarter. 

Andrew Boulas (20) paced the Hornets with sixteen points

Newburyport took the game over the rest of the way outscoring the Hornets, 31-14, to gain the victory.

“This group is resilient,” said Coach Clay.  “I’m proud of them keeping the fight in them.”

The tempo of this game was fun to watch because both teams had the same approach.  The defense was full-court, man-to-man and the attack was full-speed after misses.  Rebounds were heavily contested.

Neither team was shy about taking the ball to the basket.  The best of the passes were dropdowns by penetrators.

Craig Rubino guards Ronan Brown (12 points)

High scorer Finn Brennan (21 points) was on the receiving end of quite a few in-close passes.  “My teammates were getting to the rim and giving me easy dump-downs every time,” said Finn afterwards.

The Hornets were led by Andrew Boulas (16 points) and Cody Cannalonga (14 points).  Both players took the ball to the basket and often made the layup or got fouled.  Cody drained seven free throws.

The Clippers came out of a timeout after going down, 50-41, and finished the quarter with seven straight points including a Jack Fehlner three.

Scramble on the floor

Two-plus minutes into the last quarter Owen Tahnk cashed two free throws and the Clippers were on top, 55-54.

Finn Sullivan was the spark for the home team the rest of the way.  He contributed points, assists, and steals and gave the nearby active student section plenty to get excited about.

“The fans are so committed,” said Finn Sullivan afterwards.  “We love having them there.”

Logan Scribner makes a pass to a cutter

“Finn (Sullivan) gives us so much energy and passion on the court and it’s so contagious,” said Coach Clay.  “He’s quite an athlete and a fierce competitor.”

Finn connected on a three assisted by Jack Fehlner and then set up teammates Ronan Brown and James Scali for additional three’s.

The Hornets struggled to respond.

“Give them credit,” said NR Coach Casey, “they hit a couple of tough shots down the stretch.”

James Scali (9 points)

Ronan Brown (12) and Jack Fehlner (11) reached double figures for Newburyport.

Finn Brennan had nineteen of this twenty-one points through the first three quarters.  The Clippers 50-41 deficit late in the third quarter would have been much larger without the inside scoring of the tall freshman.

The Clippers hadn’t played in ten days. 

Finn Brennan at the line

Newburyport won the first meeting between the two teams on January 6th, 57-42.

I’ve done quite a few basketball games this winter and this was easily the noisiest one. 

Finn Sullivan: “We defended hard in the fourth quarter and did the little things you need to do to win.”

Newburyport     23   12   13   24   =   72

North Reading   17   16   17   14   =   64

(The pictures will enlarge.)

Chasing a loose ball
Owen Tahnk (22) gets a block
Finn Sullivan and Brian McKenna
Logan Scribner guarded by Henry Acton
John Jennings
Battle under the basket
Quinn Riesenberg in position to get a block
Alex Carucci
Newburyport student section
Newburyport box
North Reading box

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