Coach Tom L’Italien of Pentucket saw the game in light of Thursday’s losing game against Triton. His team saw this game as a chance to reaffirm their place.
“We weren’t thrilled with the way we played yesterday,” he said of the Triton game. “Our motto all year long as been, ‘Better today than we were yesterday,’ and that’s what we wanted to do, we wanted to play a better game.”
“We knew Newburyport would be hungry, they needed a game, but it’s a really credit to our kids that we showed up with a good mindset, we flushed yesterday and we lived in the now.”
L’Italien also shared credit with the five graduated seniors of last year’s team for this year’s success.
“They would not let us quit last year,” he said. “Those five seniors busted their humps and they have a small piece of this, too.”
He planned to work the team on “a few minor things” that he wouldn’t specify on Monday’s practice, but was largely satisfied with Pentucket’s performance.
Pentucket will be back in action on Tuesday when the Sachems host North Reading, but first, the team will celebrate the 20th anniversary of the program’s 1994 state championship at a ceremony this afternoon at the high school.
Newburyport, meanwhile, faces Triton on the road this Tuesday.