NewburyportNews.com, Newburyport, MA

Sports

February 12, 2013

Getting their hands dirty

Streaking Newburyport squad has date with Pentucket

NEWBURYPORT — It’s only natural for Newburyport girls basketball coach Gregg Dollas to let his mind wander.

Dollas’ team is riding a five-game winning streak while playing its best basketball of the season, and the Clippers’ next two opponents include teams that defeated them earlier this season. Dollas surely wants to settle the score with these opponents, especially after his team’s last victory came against a Hamilton-Wenham team that beat his Clippers in December.

But then Dollas looks at the schedule, and remembers tonight’s game is against defending state-champion Pentucket, owners of a 17-1 record. The Sachems eliminated the Clippers (10-6), along with five others teams, from state tournament play last season.

“I’ve realized I can’t worry about Pentucket all year,” Dollas said. “I’ll drive myself crazy. I only think about Pentucket a day or two before we play them.”

The short-term focus appears to have paid dividends for Newburyport over the last two weeks. The Clippers have not lost since they were 5-6 Jan. 21, when they were on the outside looking in at a state-tournament berth. Dollas settled his troops in hopes of making another late-season push, which has become a Newburyport staple in his three seasons as coach.

“The girls have settled down a little bit,” Dollas said. “We came out of the shoot a little too fast for ourselves. We weren’t focused on the little things as much as we have been lately. Also, we had a tough schedule.”

Newburyport started with losses in five of its first eight games, although each loss came against a tournament-qualifying team. Ipswich (14-2) posted two victories over Newburyport, and Pentucket (17-1), Hamilton-Wenham (11-5) and Masconomet (12-4) each bested the Clippers once. Until the Clippers beat Hamilton-Wenham Thursday night, they had yet to record a victory against a team with a winning record.

Text Only | Photo Reprints

NDN Video
Pitch Invading Morons Cause Chaos - @TheBuzzeronFOX Tiger Woods: 1 on 1 3 Questions with Gary Payton: Kevin Love, Andrew Wiggins and Derrick Rose Players Only: Marcus Mariota's Course Load at Oregon How We Almost Got Johnny Cowboy Donald Sterling Loses The Clippers For Good - @TheBuzzeronFox Franklin talks leaving Vandy Staten Island Man's Emotional Dunk Over NYPD Car - @TheBuzzeronFOX Michael Jordan OK With LeBron James Wearing No. 23? - @TheBuzzeronFox The Cornhuskers have gone...Loco? McNabb: Two games is not acceptable for me Ortiz, Price Feud Is Upsetting To Children - @TheBuzzeronFOX MLB Trade Deadline Talk: Price, Stanton, Kemp Tony Romo will be a full-go for camp Teammate's Advice For Johnny Manziel & Josh Gordon - @TheBuzzeronFox Helfrich praises Mariota's commitment to improve Hillary Clinton Blamed Bill's Affair With Monica Lewinsky On Abuse He Suffered As A Child Diamond Stone, Malik Newman, Josh Jackson and others showcase talent First impressions of Giants' new up-tempo offense Athletic Gaines: Where LeSean McCoy, Kenjon Barner, and more prepare for NFL season
Special Features