With the season having been interrupted due to the recent COVID-19 spike, the Saugus High School boys’ basketball team resumed play after an unexpected three-week hiatus with a tough loss at unbeaten Beverly last week. The Sachems regained their competitive juices on Tuesday at home but fell short in an overtime thriller against Greater Lawrence Tech.
A clutch three-pointer by Ryan Mabee with less than a second showing on the clock forced overtime. The tying shot came about off a steal with the Sachems trailing by three in the final seconds. However, it was the visitors who pulled out a 61-57 win by outscoring the Sachems in the overtime session.
Saugus found itself looking up at a 21-10 deficit after one period. The Sachems only managed to dent that lead by one heading into the intermission, as they trailed 34-24 at the break. A slow comeback took place in the second half with Saugus decreasing the disadvantage to five after three quarters.
Ben Tapia-Gately also netted a clutch shot from beyond the arc to help Saugus force the game to OT. Center Tyrone Manderson led the hosts with a strong 17-point, 10-rebound effort. He was aided by 12 points and seven boards from Tapia-Gately and eight points from Mabee. Also contributing for the Sachems were Mark MacEachern with seven points and five boards and Jeury Barbosa with five points and four rebounds.
For the second game in a row, the Sachems were hurt by the opponent’s transition game. That element especially reared its head in overtime, as Saugus committed some costly turnovers that led to transition baskets for Greater Lawrence.
Tuesday’s contest was the second time the two squads had faced each other this season. The Sachems came away with an 18-point win in the season opener at Greater Lawrence back on Dec. 15.
To make up for the COVID postponements, a busy schedule of games now awaits. Saugus took on Essex Tech in a home contest on Thursday (after press deadline), and host Marblehead Friday night. The Sachems then play at Danvers next Tuesday.