With a roster of freshmen and sophomores and not the biggest guys on the court, the Sandwich boys’ junior varsity basketball team finished the season with a winning record of 7-6.
“From my perspective we had a very successful season,” Coach Mike Duarte said. “We were young, but we surprised a lot of people. We were fast and undersized and sometimes we took a beating on the boards, but because of our up-tempo defense we were often able to handle the other team’s big men.”
The JV squad opened the season on December 17 at home with an 80-51 victory over Plymouth South.
“It was actually our highest scoring game of the season,” Coach Duarte said. “The team was ready to go.”
Dante Lambros led the scoring for the Blue Knights with a game-high 18 points.
“Tommy Megan came up big on steals,” the coach noted. “He had at least five. We pressed and Tommy dominated in that area.”
The month of January opened with a 55-42 loss on the second at Plymouth North. Cullen Kilduff and Kevin Marsh each finished with 11 points for the Knights, with Marsh, a swing player, who bounced back and forth between the JV and varsity scoring his 11 points in just two quarters.
Sandwich was back in the win column when they travelled to Dennis-Yarmouth defeating the Dolphins by a score of 62-46. Marsh led the Knights with 22 points.
“Mike Migliore also had a big game,” the coach said, “with eight points off the bench and six steals.”
The team dropped back-to-back games with Barnstable. Sandwich lost to the Red Raiders 61-49 in their first meeting, led by Lambros with a dozen points. In their next meeting SHS fell 62-48 with Connor Mangleson and Chris Sullivan each chipping in with five points off the bench.
Sandwich evened their record at 3-3 for the season on January 18 when they travelled to Nauset, defeating the Warriors by a score of 72-53.
“Everybody scored in this game,” Duarte said. “Dante (Lambros) led with 17 points and Riley Sorensen had 10 rebounds. Our center Cullen Kilduff went 8-for-10 from the line.”
On January 22, Marshfield dealt the team a 76-59 loss. “In spite of the loss, Will Bennett played a great game,” the coach noted. “He had 10 points and seven assists. Will is a heck of a player.”
The Knights got back to the .500 mark on January 25 with a 74-59 victory at Falmouth. Lambros led the charge with 16 points, Marsh added 12 and Kilduff had nine.
“Josh Condon came off the bench and put up eight points,” Duarte pointed out, “and Steve Galanis chipped in with four 3-pointers. Eighty percent of our kids were consistent from the 3-point line. We had a very good shooting team.”
The Knights ended the month with a trip to Martha’s Vineyard, falling to the Vineyarders by a score of 63-48.
“They have a player that’s 7-2 and goes 300 pounds,” Duarte explained. “We had issues putting bodies on him.”
Marsh led the Knights with 15 points, while Bennett had eight points and eight assists. Jack DeCoste came off the bench for SHS and knocked down a couple of 3-pointers.
February opened with an overtime victory for the Knights over Plymouth South. Riley Sorensen tied the game in the final seconds of regulation at 55-55. In the OT Bennett took over, giving the Knights a 62-59 victory.
“Will (Bennett) dominated,” Coach Duarte said. “He is so gifted. He scored eight points in the overtime.”
Bennett finished the night with 16 points and seven assists.
On February 5, Sandwich hosted Marshfield, defeating the Rams 77-72. Kilduff led the way with 15 points and Lambros tossed up 11.
“They both combined for over 20 rebounds,” the coach noted. “Chris Jones led the team in steals with five and Chris Sullivan came off the bench and hit two 3-pointers.”
The Knights improved on their winning record on February 8 with a 61-56 victory at home over Plymouth North.
“Plymouth North had three varsity players dress for the JV game,” Duarte said. “We pressed very well. Sorensen had a big game with 12 points and at least five blocks. Kilduff had 13 points.”
Mother Nature stopped the team’s two-game winning streak, dumping snow on the area and forcing the team off the court for two weeks.
“We lost practice to the storm,” the coach explained. “When we faced D-Y on the 21st they looked well oiled and we didn’t. But give our kids credit, they fought hard and didn’t quit.”
Sandwich lost their final game of the season to D-Y by a score of 54-43. Lambros led the team with a dozen points, Marsh added 10 and Megan came off the bench adding six. “We were fortunate to have some super athletes this year,” Coach Duarte added. “The varsity team is losing four seniors. We have a lot to be excited about in the future.”