Dartmouth High boys basketball falls short in first game back

Jan 22, 2021

Basketball? More like mask-it-ball. 

Nearly a year after they last competed, the Dartmouth High basketball team returned to the court in a 54-40 loss to Bridgewater-Raynham to tip off the socially-distanced winter season. on Jan. 22.

Things were off to a slow start for Dartmouth, with the Indians scoring off of two free throws in the first quarter. The offense picked up a bit to end the half, as the Indians were able to get within four possessions at a 22-10 score.

After a mostly defensive third quarter — which ended 37-24 in favor of the Trojans — the Indians were able to find the bucket more throughout the fourth quarter, even getting within nine points with less than four minutes left.

Ultimately, Dartmouth couldn’t keep up with the Trojans and started the season off with a loss.

While acknowledging it was not an ideal start for Dartmouth, Head Coach Mike Grandfield said he liked the effort his team put in and kept the Trojans to only around 50 points.

“Our defense was much better than I thought it would be —  I thought we were rebounding much better,” he said. “Those were kind of my two big concerns and we did it.”

The coach added that he was especially proud of the team’s work following a three week gap between practices.

“We didn’t practice from Jan. 1 to Jan. 19 — with only three practices going into this,” he said. “Even with the first game jitters, once we adapted to it, I thought we did okay.”

The season was supposed to start on Jan. 5 in Bridgewater, but that game was postponed until Jan. 27. Then, on Jan. 11, the district announced it would pause all sports for a week after the town’s Board of Health announced 300 new Covid cases in Dartmouth in the week ending Jan. 8. 

“That’s how the season goes, you have to adapt on the fly,” the coach said.

Moving forward, Grandfield said he hopes to have his team get used to shooting more, noting “a lot of rust and fatigue” from his squad during their first game back.

“That stuff catches up to you,” he added. “Especially when you’re up against someone that fast and strong.” 

Despite the loss, players saw a lot of positives in their return to the court.

Senior Point Guard Cole Pimental said that despite the fact that playing with a mask on was “definitely not fun,” he was glad to be back on the court.

He added that despite having only a few practices, he thought his fellow teammates put in a great effort in their return to play.

“As the game went on, I think we did a lot better,” Pimental said. “We’ll definitely go after it tomorrow.”

The boys return to the court tomorrow for an afternoon game against New Bedford and are scheduled to host Durfee on Monday.