Former star player Joe Bertrand took over as the new boys’ basketball Head Coach last winter after his father and previous coach, Mark Bertrand, tragically passed away before the season. He was not only faced with having to deal with the personal loss but also having to endure the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic and a shortened season.
This year, Joe Bertrand will get an opportunity to lead his team through a full season. He has served on the Saugus coaching staff for over a decade and is better known as a 1,000-point scorer during his playing days for the Sachems.
Last year, Saugus finished 4-9 in the abbreviated campaign under Bertrand and his Co-Head Coach Bill Cahill.
Bertrand told the press in November that keeping a positive outlook will be one key to any success the team experiences in 2021-22. “We are going to be a team that is really positive. I really believe in the power of positivity,” he said. “We are not going to get down no matter how stressful [things get]; we are going to be positive – on the bench, on the court – and hope that good things happen.”
Led by senior players Ryan Mabee, Tyrone Manderson and Ryan Anderson, the Sachems have worked hard to improve their game, according to the coach. “I can see the commitment out of this team and I can’t wait to see them out on the floor,” Bertrand said. “They worked hard and they put in the time. I’m ready to see it pay off for them.”
Saugus opened its season at Greater Lawrence Tech on Wednesday and hosts Danvers on Friday (scheduled 7 p.m. tip off). The Sachems then move on to play Winthrop at home on Monday (another 7 p.m. start).