NORTH ANDOVER — The North Andover boys basketball team returned to form on Sunday afternoon, defeating the visiting Reading Rockets 58-44.
North Andover was coming off its second loss of the season, a 57-48 loss to Methuen on Friday, and first-year head coach Paul Tanglis acknowledged that it was a good bounce-back victory for the Scarlet Knights. North Andover had won its previous five games.
“It’s always good to bounce back after a loss. We came in today to try to fix some mistakes,” said Tanglis. “I tell them that whether you win or whether you lose you have to come back with that same intensity and that sense of urgency that we talk about all the time.”
The Scarlet Knights set the tone of the game early, jumping out to a 7-0 lead and never trailing at any point in the game.
“I thought we did a pretty good job defensively. Reading is a big team, they’re tough and they’re physical,” said Tanglis.
Per usual, North Andover used its balance of scoring and defense to get the victory. There was no single player who dominated the stat sheet. Senior John Enright led the team in scoring with 15, Spencer Reeve’s five rebounds were big, and sophomore Wabissa Bede had another good all-around game despite getting into foul trouble early. He tallied ten points, four rebounds and four assists along with several steals.
Tanglis has some experience coaching against Reading and its head coach Paul Morrisey. Tanglis spent three seasons as Stoneham’s head coach in the Middlesex League, which Reading is a part of. Tanglis and Morrisey got together to make sure that this game was on their schedules this season.
“I got to know Paul (Morrisey) and we decided to meet up again, and it was a good time,” said Tanglis.
The Scarlet Knights will be looking to make another run in the Division 2 North tournament this year, but right now Coach Tanglis just wants his team to keep improving.
“It’s a big, physical league. We know that every night it’s going to be a dogfight,” he said. “We have to play hard, we have to play defense and we just have to keep getting better right now. We got a young group and it’s about just taking it one day at a time and continuing to work hard.”
North Andover travels to Dracut on Tuesday night.
North Andover 58, Reading 44
North Andover (58): Kyle White 6-0-13, Wabissa Bede 4-2-10, Brett Daley 3-0-7, John Enright 6-1-15, Spencer Reeve 1-2-4, Robbie Couyoumjian 1-0-3, Michael St. Cyr 3-0-6, James Testa 0-0-0, Jeff Warden 0-0-0. Totals 24-5-58
3-pointers: White, Enright 2, Couyoumjian, Daley
Reading: 12 13 11 8 — 44
North Andover (6-2): 16 20 14 8 — 58