With only 39 seconds left in regulation, Co-Captain Andrew Reavis ’17 made his second of two free throws to tie the game at 69-69, sealing Andover Boys Basketball’s 20-point comeback against Tabor. After Andover’s massive comeback forced overtime, the team ultimately fell by a tight margin of 77-73. Earlier in the week, Andover beat St. Sebastian’s School 66-53. This week’s games brought Andover’s record to 6-10.
After falling to Tabor 57-47 earlier this season, Andover’s second matchup against its New England Preparatory School Athletic Council (NEPSAC) Class-A rival on Wednesday was crucial to the team’s seeding for the playoffs. Heading into the game ranked seventh in NEPSAC Class A, Andover could have potentially moved towards securing home-field advantage in the early rounds of the playoffs if it had secured the win.
At the beginning of the game, Andover came out slow, trailing by 20 points at one point, but the team was able to bring the score to 29-38 at the end of the first half.
During the second half, Andover played with increased intensity on the defensive end, which led to easy opportunities on offense to fuel its comeback. The team was able to keep scoring and eventually close the score gap. With only seven minutes left in the second half, Andover reduced Tabor’s lead to just four points. Key 3-pointers from Sam Jefferson ’16, and strong drives from Co-Captain Danny Evans ’16, Matt Wesoloski ’16 and Reavis aided the team in its comeback.
During overtime, Andover’s exhausted starting lineup played its best, but was ultimately overcome by Tabor. In the extra period, Andover fell by four points.
Due to inclimate weather, Andover’s Friday game against Thayer was canceled, which only heightened the team’s anticipation for its game against St. Sebastian’s on Saturday.
Unlike its game against Tabor, Andover came out strong, overwhelming St. Sebastian’s offensively and defensively to take a 16-point lead early in the first half. Andover’s discipline, however, soon faltered. St. Sebastian’s fought back into the game, reducing Andover’s lead to only four points by the end of the first half.
Reavis said, “We moved the ball really well [and] had a really strong offense. And we played well on Saturday and were also good on defense. I think we were up 24-9 to start it out. Then after they came back, we got really into the game towards the end of the second half and closed it out really well.”
Andover came back in the second half with a strong offense and an energetic defense. Jefferson scored four 3-pointers and netted a total of 23 points. Andover deftly cut through St. Sebastian’s defense and ended the game with a 13-point lead. The victory was a true team effort, with every starter contributing double digits.
Keeping the playoffs in its sights, Andover looks forward to its next game against Williston Northampton on Friday.