Tag Archives: Pentucket

Whittier Tech (7-0) still undefeated after 62-57 win over Pentucket in boys basketball

Justin Reyes (26 points)

Will Angelini (26 points)

(Haverhill) Undefeated Whittier Tech (7-0) broke away from Pentucket (3-3) in the final three minutes and defeated the Sachems, 62-57, in a nonleague game at Whittier.

Pentucket lost despite having a nine-point lead in the first half and getting big numbers from Will Angelini (26 points) and Corey McNamara (21 points).

The remarkable thing about Will’s points is that he didn’t score any during the last 1 ½ quarters thanks to a concentrated Wildcat defense.  With Will under control, Whittier’s scoring duo of Justin Reyes (26 points) and Ryan Grant (15 points) took over.  Between them, the two juniors tallied seventeen of Whittier’s points in their final game-winning run (23-10) over the last twelve minutes.

I saw Ryan Grant last year when Pentucket won, 63-52.  He’s a clever dribbler always looking for his shot or a chance to penetrate.  He put seven points together and took the Wildcats from a 49-46 deficit late in the 3rd period to 53-53 tie 2 ½ minutes into the final quarter.  His two free throws, three minutes later, gave Whittier the lead for good, 57-55.

Justin Reyes (6-3), kept the ball away from the dangerous Will Angelini over the final 1 ½ quarters, converted two rebounds, and took a steal in for a 3-point play down the stretch.  The slender lefty put back three other rebounds successfully earlier in the game.

Corey McNamara (21 points) drives while the two coaches (Tom Sipsey & Leo Parent) watch

The Sachems became one-dimensional (Corey McNamara) late in the game.  And it seemed that every time Corey had the ball he had multiple defenders flying at him.   He put up nine points late but it just wasn’t enough to hold off the Wildcats.

Trailing, 61-57, with a minute left, the Sachems had at least three shot attempts to get closer before Justin Reyes got a rebound, was fouled, and scored the final point of the game.

Good crowd on hand to watch the unusual girl/boy double-header.  The Pentucket girls won a close one in the first game.

The Whittier staff recovered nicely after having no rosters available at game time to provide them at halftime.

To say that Will Angelini (6-6) had it going in the first half is an understatement.  The Wildcats were unable to defend his fall-away jumper in the lane area.  The senior collected twenty points in a remarkable half of basketball.

Whittier Tech box score

Pentucket box score  (Corey McNamara should total 21 points)

(The pictures above and below all enlarge if clicked on.)

Ryan Grant breaks with Parker Kelly pursuing

Justin Reyes drives on Tim Freirmuth (20) and Will Angelini

Will Angelini triple-teamed

Corey McNamara launches 3

Will Angelini (51) looks to block

Gio Gomez in Sachem traffic

Justin Reyes elevates

Ryan Grant (15 points)

Noel Dragon drives

Leave a comment

Filed under Pentucket, Whittier Tech

Pentucket Holds Joe Mussachia to Twelve Points but Loses to Manchester-Essex 69-63

Sean Nally (#5) paced Manchester-Essex with 21 points. His defender (Corey McNamara) put up 20 points for Pentucket.

Joe Mussachia (#22) and John Modlish scramble for a loose ball in the last minute of play.

(West Newbury) Highly touted Joe Mussachia looked like just your average Joe from where I was sitting until late in the game when he hustled after a bad pass, got fouled, and nailed both free throws.   Those free throws gave Manchester-Essex (10-4) the cushion they needed to defeat Pentucket (8-5), 69-63, on Monday night in entertaining Cape Ann League play.

Joe (12 points) came in with a 25 points per game average but the combination of John Modlish and Will Angelini either denied him the ball or forced him into turnovers for most of the night.  Joe had only six points through three quarters.

The Hornets got off to a horrible start trailing 9-0 while having more turnovers (7) than shot attempts (4).  They also got a steady earful of tough love from Coach Duane Sigsbury.

Sean Nally – led all scorers with 21 points

Turns out that ME has plenty of other scorers – Sean Nally (21 points), Chris Bishop (15 points), and Jason Stasiak (11 points).  They sure needed them against the Sachems.

Pentucket was led by Corey McNamara (20 points) and Will Angelini (16 points).

The special coverage on Joe Mussachia left openings for the Hornets’ other shooters. That nine-point deficit had shrunk to, 31-29, by halftime.

Will Angelini – 16 points and solid defense

Pentucket showed solid offense throughout the game because: (1) they ran organized offense and used their size advantages to lose their defenders on screens and cuts to get open looks and (2) Will Angelini (16 points) has a turnaround shot that even a tall defender like Joe Mussachia never came close to blocking.

Will would later foul out with 1:45 left and trust me that hurt the Sachems on both ends of the court thereafter.

The Hornets finally took the lead early in the third quarter on a head-scratching sequence all involving Sean Nally (5-10 junior).  On the first possession he missed two free throws.  The next possession he hits a 3 from the left hand corner.  The next possession he nails a 3 from the right hand corner and gets fouled and makes that free throw.  Who can predict shooting??

Anyhow, that little collection of offense put Manchester ahead 38-35 with six minutes left in the 3rd quarter.  The lead would expand to 53-43 as Adam Jackson, Chris Bishop, and Jason Stasiak strung together seven straight points.

Credit the Sachems, led by Corey McNamara they went on a 12-2 run into the final quarter and evened things at 55-55.  Corey hit a couple of 3’s during the rally.

Parker Kelly’s two free throws tied the game again at 57 with 6:15 to go.  The next points registered were a three by Chris Bishop with 5 ½ left.  The Hornets would never trail again although Pentucket came painfully close.

A rebound conversion by Parker shortened the Sachem deficit to 65-63 with fifty-six seconds left.  Sean Nally got called for an offensive foul but, with a chance to tie, John Modlish’s jumper rimmed out.

ME tried to hold onto the ball but a dangerous pass bounced around near midcourt.  Both John Modlish and Joe Mussachia went after it hard but the foul was called on John with twenty-one seconds left.  If the foul goes the other way, John is shooting free throws for a tie. A steal there and Pentucket was off to the races for a tying basket or free throws.  Needless to say, the Pentucket partisans weren’t thrilled with the call.

Joe Mussachia hits clutch free throws in last minute.

Joe made the two free throws and ME had the win.

Alex Porter (8 points) was back with Manchester-Essex after missing a number of games with an injury.

One of the neat matchups to watch was Chris Bishop covering Corey McNamara.  Pentucket’s motion offense had Chris fighting over and under screens to stay with Corey.

Joe has signed to attend Division 3 powerhouse Amherst.

Pentucket was 8-for-8 from the foul line.

ME shot over 50% (25-for-49) from the floor.  Included in that shooting was 6-for-11 from 3-point territory.

There are numerous lefties in the Hornet starting lineup.

Both these teams should make the MIAA tournament.  Manchester-Essex should do very well in Division 4 especially if Joe becomes not your average Joe.

(I keep my own stats.  I take my own pictures and create my own captions.  I also draw my own conclusions.  Any mistakes are unintentional.)

Leave a comment

Filed under Cape Ann League, Manchester-Essex, Pentucket

Pentucket Rebounds From Squeaker First Meeting and Routs Masco 50-33

Masco’s Brooke Stewart (#32) calls for the ball against Pentucket’s tight defense.

(West Newbury) I didn’t see Pentucket’s 61-60 squeaker over Masconomet on December 29th at Masco.  In fact, I didn’t see all of this afternoon’s rematch in which Pentucket was a 50-33 winner.

Missing some of today’s girls’ game was my mistake – I believed what I read in the Newburyport Daily News.  (Masco at Pentucket 3PM)

Anyhow, I missed the first quarter and only scripted the second half.  I’ll rely on Mike Grenier’s game story from the Salem News for what I missed.

This is what the quarter totals looked like:
Pentucket  16  13   12    9   =   50
Masco           9    6     4   14   =   33

Masco (7-3) put up 10 points in the last 4 ½ minutes of the game but struggled mightily to make shots before that.  The tall, pesky Pentucket defense was part of their problem.  The rest was just an overall inability to make shots.  Credit the Sachem defense but what about Masco’s 5-for-17 from the foul line with a number of those being one-and-one’s.

The Sachems (7-1) hadn’t played in nine days (loss to North Andover) and appeared to have all sorts of defensive energy stored up.  Pentucket coach John McNamara had those practice days to bring his normally effective defense back to its normally effective self.  What could be tougher than facing a well-rested, heavily-drilled,  Pentucket pressure defense on their court?

Masco’s Brooke Stewart had 24 points during the last meeting but this time had few openings and no easy shots and ended up with thirteen points.

Brooke (6’ junior) had plenty of company everywhere she went.  Tess Nogueira gave her the same denial coverage I saw her effectively put on Newburyport’s Beth Castantini.  Brooke had nothing but low percentage shots available even when she actually got the ball.  In this game, she didn’t have teammates to share the scoring load and loosen up the defense she faced.

I looked at Masco playing man-to-man defense for the 3 quarters I watched.  I read that in the 61-60 game Pentucket struggled against the Masco zone defense.   That 16-9 start in this one may have forced Masco away from zone defenses.

The Sachems have many players capable of getting to the basket against man-to-man defenses.  In a game the home team won by seventeen points, you can only imagine what the separation might have been if Pentucket had shot better than 19% (7-for-36) in the second half.

A stat comparison shows Leigh McNamara, Vicky Cahill, and Sarah Higgins totally 35 points in the one-point, first game win.  Versus Masco a second time, those three total eleven points and Pentucket wins by seventeen.  Point?  Nicole Viselli will usually score the most points but after that the Sachem scoring weapons are varied and numerous.

Every team knows that Pentucket will attack defensively and tirelessly.  Court vision and accurate passes are the two solutions but the Sachems size and hustle make those two a tough task.

Masco coach Bob Romeo chats with Chelsea Nason in the second half.

Masco was clearly victimized by that defense in their fatal four-point third quarter.  First seven possessions; five turnovers and three missed shots.  A Brooke Stewart layup was followed by four more turnovers and two more missed shots.

Pentucket wasn’t a whole lot better with the ball either.  They did get six points but they too, during this same six minute segment, had six turnovers and missed nine shots.

Maybe the sun was in their eyes.  It poured in for the entire game, making one end difficult to defend on and the other one hard to see the basket or anything else.  I’m guessing that the folks who scheduled an afternoon game at Pentucket failed to consider the sun factor.

Brooke Stewart defends another of the area’s top scorers, sophomore Nicole Viselli.

Two of the top scorers in the area (Brooke Stewart and Nicole Viselli) were in the game.  Nicole led all scorers with seventeen points.

Junior Julia Simonetti (#14) defends Alex Moore of Pentucket

I once again met the gentleman who misunderstood what I do and embarrassed himself (and me) at Newburyport. He came over to talk to someone near me.  When I got a chance I asked him if he was “scouting.”  He looked a bit stunned and left.

(I collect my own stats and usually check them with newspaper coverage, take my own pictures, write my own captions and draw my own conclusions.  Any mistakes I make in doing so are unintentional.)

Leave a comment

Filed under Cape Ann League, Masconomet, Pentucket

Rugged Defense and Streaky Offense Get Pentucket Girls Past Newburyport 41-28

Sarah Higgins (31) and Molly Rowe (12) are involved in one of the numerous collisions this highly-contested game produced.

(Newburyport)  On a night when their offense was anything but perfect, Pentucket continued perfect (3-0) with a, 41-28, struggle at Newburyport (1-2) on Monday night.

The Sachems in-your-face, full-court defensive approach paid its usual dividends in the early going.  For the first 10 ½ minutes the visitors forced thirteen turnovers and 2-for-13 shooting from the Clippers.

Pentucket tallied the first nine points (Vanessa Cahill-4, Nicole Viselli-5) before Newburyport answered with jumpers from Haley Johnson and Sam Leahy.

Alyssa Nogueira, Haley Johnson, and Nicole Viselli wait on a first half free throw.

The Sachems followed with ten unanswered points (Leigh McNamara-1, Tess Nogueira-2, Sarah Higgins-4, Alyssa Nogueira-3) and had the breakout lead (19-4) that they seem to get against most Cape Ann League opponents in recent years.

Newburyport trailed at the half, 24-11.

For seven minutes of the third quarter the Clippers mauled the Sachems defensively.  In a game of give-and-take they were dishing out the “gives.”  And Pentucket was clearly rattled.   The Sachems had only one point (Vanessa Cahill free throw) to show for twelve possessions with turnovers in seven of those possessions!

Sam Leahy paced the Clippers with 14 points including 12 in the second half.

But the Sachem defense during the same segment only allowed two Sam Leahy baskets.  So despite the stretch of bad offense, Pentucket still led 25-15 with 1 ½ minutes left in the 3rd quarter.

This game got away from Newburyport during the next two minutes of playing time.  Pentucket went on a 10-0 run and the Clippers didn’t have the scoring firepower or the time to recover.

Victoria Castiglione put in a three off the backboard and then Nicole Viselli took over.  In the last minute of the 3rd she hit a three and two free throws.  She started the 4th quarter by assisting on Leigh McNamara’s layup.

Later Nicole assisted on Tess Nogueira’s layup, followed with an old-fashioned three-point play, and closed with a free throw.  At this juncture, with 4:20 left Pentucket was up 41-19.  They didn’t score again and the Pentucket backups yielded the last nine points of the game.

Sam Leahy paced Newburyport with 14 points including 12 in the second half.

Nicole Viselli ended with 16 points and was very important in the second half after Newburyport closed to ten points.

Tess Nogueira (32) shadows Beth Castantini (10).

It was apparent early on that Pentucket was intent on denying Beth Castantini (18 points vs. Amesbury last game) the ball.  Tess Nogueira and Leigh McNamara combined to hold Beth to 4 points and believe me, things got pretty rugged in the process.

The shooting by both teams was anything but pretty.  Newburyport never made a three and ended up 11-for-51 (21%).  Pentucket was 3-for-14 on three’s and 13-for-58 (22%) overall.  The Sachems were also a scary 10-for-25 from the foul line.

I continue to think that the stat that makes Pentucket successful is turnovers.  I wonder when the last time was that they lost that battle.  This time Newburyport had 30 while Pentucket had 18.  However, despite the turnover disparity Pentucket didn’t get as many pick-layups out of the turnovers, as they generally do. Credit the willingness of Newburyport to get back fast, after a giveaway, for limiting breakaway Sachem shots.

There was a memorable moment in this game for me.  I was sitting under the basket scripting the game in the second half and occasionally taking pictures when I could.  A gentleman standing nearby yells to me that I can’t scout that way.  I try to ignore him because I’m trying to script the game so that I can write this game up for this blog.  I’m guessing he’s a Pentucket parent mistaking me for a scout for a future opponent (Masco? Ipswich?).  He did end up with the name of this blog but I didn’t end up with any sort of apology from him for his unnecessary outburst. Maybe after he reads this coverage I’ll get an apologizing email at 85peterjulie17 at gmail dot com.

(I keep my own stats, take my own pictures, and provide my own opinions.  Any mistakes are unintentional.)

Leave a comment

Filed under Newburyport, Pentucket

Terrific Free Throw Shooting by Newburyport Girls Not Enough In 63-57 Loss To Tritonn

Jen Rock (19 points) faces pressure from Alyssa Leahy and Haley Johnson.

Molly Rowe (11 points) was part of the fine free throw performance (24/29) turned in by Newburyport.

(Byfield) Newburyport’s excellent free throw shooting (24/29 – 83%) wasn’t enough to offset poor shooting from the floor (16/57 – 28%) and they fell to Triton, 63-57, in the first round of the River Rival Tip-Off Classic on Thursday night.

Triton (1-0) faces Pentucket (1-0) on Saturday night for the championship while Newburyport (0-1) takes on Amesbury (0-1) in the consolation game.

The Vikings Jen Rock was the key to their win.  The talented senior put up nineteen points and did most of the ball handling for Triton in the second half.  Even when Newburyport double-teamed her she stayed away from turnovers.

The Clippers got off to an early 9-6 lead after 3 ½ minutes but two minutes later a layup by Alyssa Conley (23 points) gave Triton the lead (12-10) for good.

A ten-point run in the second quarter, fueled by points from Jessica Canning, Jen Rock, Vanessa Eisen, and Laura Mills gave Triton, what turned out to be, its biggest lead (29-15) of the game.

The Clippers undertook the road back in the third quarter.  A jumper by Sam Leahy (14 points) at the end of that quarter and a rebound putback by Beth Castantini (18 points) to start the 4th sent this one into the “anyone’s game” category at 43-41.

The teams traded baskets before Newburyport missed two opportunities to tie.  Triton followed with seven points (Alyssa Conley 3 plus 2 free throws along with a Jessica Canning jumper) in less than a minute to build up a 9-point margin (52-43) with 5 ½ to go.

Triton followed with a stretch (3 ½ minutes) of 1-for-6 free thrown shooting including two misses on the front end of 1-and-1’s but on this night Newburyport had little to show for outside attempts.  The rest of the way they could never get into the position of having the ball and a chance to tie.

Beth Castantini had an adventure of a game.  I had her for 2-for-23 from the field.  She didn’t make an outside shot until early in the final quarter.  However, she had the good sense to take the ball to the basket and draw fouls.  At the line she was a remarkable 14-for-16 including nine straight at end as the game tightened.

Junior Molly Rowe (11 points) did most of the ball handling for Newburyport.  She hit the only three that the Clippers made all night.

Gregg Dollas made his debut as Clipper coach.  His continued ties to Triton were evident afterwards as students presented him with a banner.

Players from the 2009-10 Pentucket state final team.

Watching the Pentucket/Amesbury game were three key parts of the 2009-10 Sachem state final team. A check of the program reveals that opponents this season will have more McNamara’s, Viselli’s, and Lane’s to contend with.

After being in the Georgetown gym last night what a treat to be at Triton – great lighting and plenty of good seats.  Nice place to hold a doubleheader.

(I keep my own stats.  Take my own pictures.  Make comments without consulting anyone.  Any mistakes are unintentional.)

Leave a comment

Filed under Newburyport, Triton