Banner year: Dartmouth High basketball shines at unveiling of Indian banner
The Dartmouth High boys’ basketball team rolled past Apponequet on Jan. 31 at a game where school officials also unveiled a new banner honoring the school’s Indian logo.
The banner features the logo — designed by former football star and Aquinnah Wampanoag tribal member Clyde Andrews in the 1970s — with the words “Welcome to Dartmouth” and “Home of the Indians” written above and below it in bold, green letters.
Andrews spoke about the logo during a brief ceremony held at halftime to officially unveil the banner, emphasizing that the symbol belongs to all of Dartmouth.
“It’s everybody’s,” he said. “It’s yours, mine, ours — the school’s, the town’s.”
Also speaking during the ceremony was Veterans Advisory Board Chair Chris Pereira, who helped lead a campaign to keep the Indian logo at Dartmouth High amid calls to replace it early last year.
“With it being the 50th anniversary of Clyde’s design, it’s only fitting that we be together tonight, united as one,” he said.
The Indians basketball team went on to win the game 67-60 over the Lakers to advance to 13-1 on the season.
The team’s thus far near-perfect season has been led by first-year head coach Nick Simonetti, a 2014 graduate of Dartmouth High who scored more than 1,000 points in his own high school career and who previously served as an assistant coach for the team.
Simonetti said that he was happy with the way his team has played this season and hopes to keep it up through the remainder of the regular season and into the playoffs.
“I’m proud of how we’ve played, they’ve taken everything that I’ve implemented so far,” he said. “So we’ve just got to keep going and hopefully when we get into the tournament… I’m hoping that momentum carries over.”
Simonetti said that the strength of the team has been its passing and whole-team approach, which seeks to avoid contested shots and find free runners.
“We’ve done a great job of not jacking up poor shots or anything like that,” he said. “We’ve done an awesome job moving the ball around — five, six passes around looking for an open man, whoever it might be.”
Simonetti added that even with the emphasis on teamwork, the team is not without its standouts, and perhaps none more prominent than 6’7” center Hunter Matteson.
“He’s been averaging about 25 [points] and 10 [assists] a game,” Simonetti said of the junior. “He’s been dominating inside, outside. He’s been great and it’s awesome to have someone that’s six-seven.”
Despite the team’s strengths, Simonetti said they could still stand to turn up the heat a little on the court.
“I think our intensity just needs to pick up for every single game,” he said. “We just came back from a ten-day break, so in these last seven games our intensity needs to rise a little bit and carry over into the tournament.”
The team’s next game will be at home against Brockton (8-4) on Friday, Feb. 3.