Junior forward Nicole Chaet scored 12 points and grabbed 16 rebounds as the won their second straight game after an 0-6 start, trouncing Haverhill, 40-22 Friday night.
"We played really well defensively," said TMHS coach Mark Bradley after watching his team hold the Hillies well below their season average of 40 points per game. "We caused a lot of turnovers with our press and we contested a lot of shots. I'm real happy with the effort."
scored 10 points and had 10 rebounds. Twin sister Shannon Semenza added seven points while freshman forward Shannon Smith scored five points making her first career varsity start.
Haverhill came into the game sporting an 8-2 record, but Tewksbury jumped out to an early lead and led 20-8 at halftime.
"We had some real quality possessions in the first half," Bradley said. "They (Haverhill) have some pretty good players on that team, so I'm happy with the way we played, for the most part."
The Redmen now stand 2-6 overall, 2-4 in the Merrimack Valley Conference.
In much the same fashion as they did last year, the TMHS girls are showing significant improvement as the season progresses. In 2010-2011, the Redmen lost 11 of their first 12 games before turning things around and finishing the regular season with a 7-13 record.
"This is about the time we started getting a little more confidence last year," Bradley noted. "We're still young, so we do a lot of good things and a lot of bad things. But I would say we're seeing progress."
Tewksbury travels to Lowell on Tuesday and host Lawrence next Friday.
TMHS BOYS FALTER IN METHUEN
The Tewksbury High boys basketball team traveled to Methuen Friday night seeking to extend its modest Merrimack Valley Conference winning streak to three games while exacting some revenge for an earlier home loss to Methuen High.
None of the above happened.
Bearing little resemblance to the team that took in its previous two games, TMHS suffered through a cold-shooting, turnover-riddled effort and dropped a 68-46 decision to the Rangers.
Tewksbury's biggest problem was stopping Methuen senior forward Kyle Mansour, who torched the Redmen for a career-high 34 points in the game.
"He's a very good player," said TMHS coach Phil Conners of Mansour. "You have to stop him from getting the ball and we didn't do that. If he gets the ball in his hands down on the block, we're in trouble. We talked about it, but we didn't do it. We didn't execute."
Methuen ran off the final seven points of the first quarter to take a 19-10 lead after one period. Mansour and 6-foot-7 senior forward Ryan Freeman controlled the backboards in the second quarter as the Rangers extended their lead to 38-20 at the half.
Mansour then tossed in eight points in the first four minutes of the third quarter as Methuen went on an 11-1 run, and the game was out of reach.
"We get our energy defensively if we hit our first couple shots," Conners said. "But if we see a few misses, the confidence goes and we play less hard, which is what happened. It was a step back for us."
The lone bright spot for , who continued to emerge as a key to the TMHS offense pouring in a career high 18 points. Foley has topped his career best scoring total in three straight games, scoring 13 against Chelmsford, 16 against Haverhill and 18 against Methuen.
"The person who understands my offense the best is Sean Foley, and you're seeing the results of it," Conners said. "He's open all the time and he plays hard every single game."
Sophomore guard Kevin Dick added nine points for the Redmen while senior guard Anthony Chiccarelli had six. Freshman Alex DiRocco chipped in with five points and senior Chris Crawford added four.
With a critical MIAA Division 2 match-up looming Tuesday night against Wilmington, Conners and his team will look to move on and forget about the Methuen loss.
"We couldn't have a more important game coming up Tuesday," Conners said. "We need to win five (Division 2 games) to make the state tournament, so we have to put this game behind us, have a great practice on Sunday and get back after it."
Tuesday's game is a 7:30 start at Tewksbury High.