Boys' basketball beats Dedham, bench players play big role in win

The Newtonite

by Jonny Levenfeld

Sparked by stellar bench play and contributions from younger players, boys’ basketball, 10-2, notched another victory in a 86-52 rout over Dedham, according to coach Paul Connolly.

The Tigers went into Friday night’s matchup without a key starter in senior Korey Mui, who was out due to an ankle sprain. However, the Tigers were still able to overcome Dedham thanks to big performances from sophomores Sam Jefferson, Tommy Mobley, and Brett Stanton.

Mobley, who was last week’s Bay State Conference Player of the Week, poured in 22 points and added 6 rebounds. Stanton scored 12 points along with 5 rebounds and 4 steals.

“Brett has made big contributions since coming off a knee injury to start the season,” said Connolly.

Jefferson scored 13 points coming off the bench. “Sam is a first year varsity player who continues to hit timely threes for our team,” said Connolly.

The Tigers started the game slowly and played Dedham even in the first quarter, according to junior Jack Boucher, a captain with seniors Seamus Bruno and T.J. McNicholas. “Then coach went to the bench and our bench players played very well.”

A timely three-point shot from McNicholas at the end of the first half gave the Tigers an 11 point lead, and back to back steals from Stanton to start the second half helped boost the lead.

When asked what the key to the team’s success has been lately, Connolly said, “We have an unselfish, team-first approach. Our leaders have stepped up and set the tone everyday in practice.”

According to Boucher, one concern for the team going into the season was the team’s lack of size, and early on in the season rebounding was a problem. However, hard work in practice has definitely paid off for the Tigers. “Boxing out drills everyday in practice have helped us improve tremendously.”

According to Connolly, the team has several key match-ups coming up. The Tigers visit conference rival Wellesley Tuesday, Jan. 29, and host Weymouth Friday, Feb. 3. The Tigers also have a rematch at home Sunday, Feb. 3 with Brockton, who eliminated the team from postseason contention last year in the MIAA Division I Sectional Semifinals.

Boucher hopes that their recent momentum will help the Tigers going forward. “All in all, we have had a good start and playing tough NN basketball is a good reason as to why we are 10-2 right now.”