After beating its third straight winless opponent, this time a 62-22 rout of Winthrop Tuesday night in the DHS field house, the undefeated (7-0) Danvers High girls basketball team gets its biggest test of the season Friday night playing at 6-2 Saugus.
The Falcons will need to be at their best to preserve their unblemished record. They certainly have not in their last three wins over Beverly, Salem and now Winthrop, but coach Pat Veilleux is confident they can raise their game to the level necessary to return home from Saugus with victory No. 8.
One reason is the improved play from his bench, which has gotten some good playing minutes of late. A perfect example is No. 4 guard Lydia Runnels, who showed promise last Friday at Salem and looked even better against Winthrop, leading the way with nine points, nine assists and six steals. She and fellow junior Sarah McCarriston give Veilleux a solid second pairing to support backcourt starters Nicole White and Siobhan Moriarty.
Eleven Falcons scored against an undermanned, under-sized and under-experienced Winthrop crew. It was 20-0 after the first quarter. ‘Nuff said.
Yet, the Falcons will need to shoot better from the floor and the foul line Friday, as well as play a tighter zone defense, and rebound better at both ends to defeat a Saugus team that got beat by double figures by Lynn Classical Tuesday night.
Freshman center Cheyenne Nessinger hadd 11 points and seven rebounds against Winthrop, while Sarah Unczur added 10 points.
Bottom line: The Falcons find out just how good they are — or can become — Friday night (7 pm) at Saugus.
The Danvers High boys remain winless, but Justin Roberto continues to show why he is one of the highest scoring players in the region. Roberto had 29 points in a heartbreaking final-second loss to Salem last Friday and added 28 Tuesday in a 75-70 loss at Winthrop. Sean Rooney scored 24 for the Falcons, who might have pulled out the win at Winthrop with better foul shooting.