Warriors clinch state tournament berth with 64-52 win over Tewksbury

THE WARRIORS discuss a few matters during a time out of a recent game. The WMHS boys' basketball team clinched a state tournament berth with a 64-52 triumph over Tewksbury last night in the Sixth Annual Brad Sheridan Tournament which was held at Marblehead High School. (Donna Larsson File Photo)

THE WARRIORS discuss a few matters during a time out of a recent game. The WMHS boys’ basketball team clinched a state tournament berth with a 64-52 triumph over Tewksbury last night in the Sixth Annual Brad Sheridan Tournament which was held at Marblehead High School. (Donna Larsson File Photo)

Published in the February 23, 2017 edition.


MARBLEHEAD — They’re in!

It came down to the final game of the regular season for the Warriors, but they clinched a berth in the state tournament in boys’ basketball as they defeated Tewksbury by a 64-52 score last night in the Consolation Game of the Sixth Annual Brad Sheridan Memorial Tournament at Marblehead High School.

Wakefield finished the regular season with a 9-9 overall record (10-10 if the exempt games against Malden are counted) as it gained entry into the postseason on its fourth attempt. The Warriors lost two close games to Burlington and Watertown last week and lost by 20 to Pope John XXIII in the first round of the Sheridan Tournament on Monday.

The Warriors came out and played a strong game, especially on the defensive side for the entire 32 minutes. Wakefield led 16-12 after the first quarter and built up the advantage to 40-29 at halftime. Wakefield had a 21 point lead after three quarters, 55-34.

Tewksbury outscored the Warriors, 18-9, in the fourth quarter which made the final score a little closer than the game was.

The Warriors were led by senior captain Kobey Nadeau who had his best game the season. The forward recorded a game high 27 points and hauled down 17 rebounds to lead the way. Nadeau also had two assists.

“Kobey was the engine that drove us,” said head coach Brad Simpson. “It was too bad he broke his leg. We saw the real Kobey tonight. He’s been good all year and we’ve seen glimpses of him like this. He’d have a good game and then need to rest.

“I’m very happy,” added Simpson. “We started off 0-4 and then we went 9-3 after that. We then lost three tough games in a row. We lost to a good Burlington team which qualified for the state tournament and to Watertown which won our division (the Middlesex League Freedom). Pope John outplayed us.”

Nadeau wasn’t the only senior that has a strong game. The Warriors also good efforts from senior guard John Evangelista, senior captain Alex McKenna, and senior guard Andrew DeLeire off the bench.

Evangelista recorded 13 points including two three-pointers. The senior also had 10 rebounds.

DeLeire netted nine points and received the Sportsmanship Award presented to a player on each team in the non-league tournament. DeLeire also turned the ball over just once, while having four assists, two rebounds, and a steal.

McKenna recorded just two points, but had a strong floor game with seven assists, two rebounds, and two steals.

“We’re excited about getting into the state tournament after starting the season 0-4,” said McKenna.

The Warriors got off to a good start recording the first nine points of the game. Nadeau scored on a layup, junior Joe Carmilla-Smith scored on the fast break, Nadeau got a hook shot to fall, and Evangelista had a three-point play with a basket and free throw with three minutes left in the first quarter.

Tewksbury scored its first points of the game with 2:41 left and that came from junior guard Brandon Winn (a team high 19 points) as he sunk a trey. In fact all 12 Redmen points in the first quarter were from behind the three-point arc. Winn recorded two, while junior guard David Giuggio (16 points), and senior guard Dan Priest both netted one trifecta.

Carmilla-Smith scored on a pass from McKenna with 2:23 left which made the score 11-3 at the time. Evangelista scored on a runner from Nadeau to make the score 11-6 with 1:52 left. After two Tewsksbury treys, the lead was down to one, 13-12. However, Evangelista got a three-point to fall which gave the Warriors at 16-12 lead after one quarter.

The Redmen stayed in the game in the first quarter due to their ability to hit the trey, but they didn’t get their next field goal until there was 4:17 left in the second quarter as Wakefield built up its lead.

After two Winn free throws to start the second quarter, Wakefield went on an 11-0 run to open up a 27-14 lead with 5:01 left in the first half. McKenna sunk two free throws, Nadeau scored from along the baseline, Evangelista got a trey to fall through the cylinder, Nadeau recorded a layup and then two foul shots to extend Wakefield’s lead to 13.

Adam Pacheco, a sophomore guard, sunk two free throws and the Giuggio canned a trey to cut the lead to 27-19 with 4:17 left. DeLeire, who was perfect 7-for-7 from three throw line, sunk two foul shots get the lead back up to 10.

After three Tewksbury freebies, Nadeau scored a pair of inside baskets. Winn scored from the baseline and Giuggio to cut the lead down to six, 33-27, with two minutes left in the second half. Nadeau and Giuggio traded foul shots before Wakefield closed out the first half by scoring the last five points. Senior forward Zach Price scored on a pass from McKenna, Nadeau made one of two free throws, and DeLeire sunk two foul shots as Wakefield led, 40-29, at halftime.

The Warrior defense was stifling the third quarter as it held Tewksbury to just five points. Guiggio and junior forward Masyn Lorick each scored baskets. Giuggio also made one of two free throws aftera  technical foul was called on Nadeau for a delay of game with 4:22 left in the third quarter.

Other than that, the quarter was all Wakefield. Andrew Miller, a junior guard, sunk three out of four foul shots (Wakefield went 19-for-24 as a team from the charity stripe for the game) which gave the Warriors a 43-29 lead at the time.

After Giuggio’s basket, the Warriors went on a 6-1 run. Nadeau drove to the basket and putback his own miss. In between, Evangelista scored on a layup after a steal. Wakefield led 49-32 with 2:29 remaining in the period. After Lorick’s hoop, DeLeire recorded a three-point play with the assist going to Nadeau. DeLeire made the field goal and free throw. The final basket of the third quarter was a three-pointer by Nadeau with 33.3 seconds left which put the Warriors up by 21 points after 24 minutes had been played.

Nadeau scored the first basket of the fourth quarter on a pass from DeLeire to give Wakefield its biggest lead of the contest at 23 points, 57-34, with 7:26 left.

“I felt really good. I knew I needed to do big things to help us win the game get to the state tournament,” said Nadeau.

The Redmen didn’t quit, however, and didn’t fall behind by an even larger margin. The lead hovered between 20-22 points for the next several minutes until Tewksbury began to chip into the lead. The Warrior advantage got down to 12 points which was the final score of the game.

Wakefield didn’t score a point in the last 2:38 of the game as Price final two Warrior points. The Warriors and Redmen also put in the bench players to finish out the game.

DeLeire had two free throws, Carmilla-Smith had a layup, and Nadeau hit one of two shots as well in the fourth period.

“I knew if we came out and played well tonight, we’d be in it and have a chance to win,” said Simpson. “This was very gratifying.”

The Warriors will now rest and prepare for the state tournament. The seedings are being done tomorrow and Wakefield will find out who it will face in its first postseason contest which will be most likely be played sometime next week.


Brad Sheridan Memorial Tournament

At Marblehead High School

Consolation Game

WAKEFIELD 64, Tewksbury 52


Tewksbury (52) — Lorick 1 0 2; Guiggio 4 5 16; S.Catanzano 1 0 3; Ciampa 0 0 0; M.Catanzano 0 0 0; Priest 1 0 3; Winn 6 4 19; Kelly 0 1 1; Wilson 2 0 6; Stein 0 0 0; Brincklow 0 0 0; Pacheco 0 2 2. Totals 15 12 52.

WAKEFIELD (64) — Nadeau 10 6 27; McKenna 0 2 2; Price 2 0 4; Evangelista 5 1 13; Miller 0 3 3; Carmilla-Smith 3 0 6; DeLeire 1 7 9; Shannon 0 0 0; Connor 0 0 0; O’Brien 0 0 0; Cusack 0 0 0. Totals 21 19 64.

Score by Quarters — Tewksbury 12-17-5-18 — 52. WAKEFIELD 16-24-15-9 — 64.

Three-point FGs — Tew, Giuggio 3, Winn 3, Wilson 2, J.Catanzano 1, Priest 1. Wak, Evangelista 2, Nadeau 1.