It was a big week for Big Blue basketball. After coming off a tough loss to their heated rival, the Saugus Sachems, last Friday, Coach Justin Fucile and the varsity boys' squad knew they had an opportunity to redeem themselves.
At home this past week, they faced Marblehead, Beverly, and Revere, all in a matter of five days. With a win in all three games, Swampscott would have ended the week with an even, .500 record.
On Monday, Val Temin returned from a broken middle finger injury, and set a tone down low early for his team's play in the first quarter against Marblehead. Swampscott, who could have used Temin's presence in the paint against the Sachems, took advantage of his ability to balance the floor on offense as well as his ferocity on the defensive side.
However, it was Stephen Bowers who took control of the game against the Magicians, scoring 28 points, with 18 coming in the second half, leading his team to a 54-47 victory over Swampscott's biggest enemy. Dan Trentsch finished with 11 points in the win, while Ryan January and Joey Ragusa, two underclassmen, competed well for their debuts in the starting lineup for Swampscott.
Wednesday resulted in a heartbreaking loss for Swampscott. With the final seconds expiring in overtime, Cam Rogers of the Beverly Panthers fired a buzzer-beater jump shot at the top of the key which fell as the final horn sounded. Despite Chad Nelson's 20 points and Bowers' 19, the Panthers were too strong for the Blue in the final seconds, winning 66-65. Coach Fucile was quick to point out the efforts of Ragusa and Nelson in the loss.
Against Revere, Swampscott was unable to keep up with the up-tempo offense run by the Patriots. Although Temin and Trentsch combined for 45 points, Revere outscored the Big Blue, 22-16, in the fourth quarter and took a strong 73-66 victory over Swampscott on Friday night. The Patriots, led in points by guard Tommy Sor and forward Michael Ciambelli, hit a majority of their shots from behind the three-point-line, and found open men down low on multiple occasions. Ciambelli was able to execute with contact, completing a total of four three-point plays for the Patriots.
A Trentsch layup off a pick from Nelson put the Big Blue up, 61-60, with 5:11 remaining in regulation. However, a Ciambelli basket-and-foul sparked a 16-5 run for Revere that clinched the victory for the Patriots, in which Revere showcased its ability in the perimeter and interior. Once again, the Big Blue defense could not hold up to its opponent’s versatility on offense.
Swampscott falls to an overall 3-7 record, going 3-4 against conference opponents. Next week, they travel to Peabody to take on the Tanners on Tuesday night, and return home on Friday to face Lynn Classical.