To coin a phrase from a well-known Hollywood movie franchise, the Everett High boys basketball team came back “fast” — and “furious”— last Friday night, in their opening game in the MIAA Division 1 State Basketball Tournament.
But the solid, second-half comeback was still not enough in the end, as the visiting Crimson Tide were bounced out in round one, 66-54 by North High School of Worcester.
Head Coach Stanley Chamblain’s Tide squad finished the season at 16-5 overall, as undefeated Greater Boston League champs (14-0), but disappointed with an early exit in the first-ever, true statewide tournament.
The 16th-seeded North Polar Bears improved to 20-2 overall with the win on Friday night, but were eliminated themselves three nights later, 76-48 at the hands of #1 seed, unbeaten BC High (22-0).
North took no prisoners in the first half Friday, building a commanding 19-point lead late in the second quarter to lead 47-28 at the halftime break.
“Everett is a good team, and I knew we just needed to handle their press. We did a good job in the first half and got some easy transition baskets,” said North head coach Al Farriss, in an online report. “Then in the second half, they made a couple of adjustments, and we went back to our old ways, getting in the corner, turning the ball over.”
Everett roared back, causing a whopping 20 turnovers over the final quarter, getting to 50-43 with 12 minutes left to play.
But North held on, cut down the turnovers when it counted and also held the usual high-scoring Everett squad (usually in the high 60s) in a lower-scoring mode in the 12-point victory.
North’s Oscar Pizarro led the way for the Bears, with 18 points, including two three-pointers.
One key shot in the fourth quarter started an 11-2 run that pushed the North lead to 61-45 with 3:13 to play; a burst from Everett never did recover.
The Polar Bears got a game-high 19 points freshman Ty Tabales, who drew six fouls, and a double-double from Gio Okla scored 16 points.
Everett was led by Roger Vasquez’s 17 points, 13 from John Monexant and 12 by Steven Cordero.