The Newport boys basketball team hadn’t won a game heading into Tuesday night’s final test before the holiday break, and with unbeaten Hopkinton in town, chances of ending that winless drought were relatively slim.
Nonetheless, the Tigers headed into tip with as much enthusiasm as ever despite an 0-3 start to the season, and refused to make things easy on their heavily favored opponent. And making matters worse for the home team was the absence of its leading scorer in Jesse Stiffler, who won’t be available until after the break.
The Hawks made sure to pounce early, hustling their way to a 22-9 advantage after the first quarter with help from some precision shooting from beyond the arc.
Newport kept battling though, benefitting from solid play from some of the teams younger players including junior Ty Richardson on their way to a 75-52 defeat. Richardson led the Tigers with a team-high 15 points, including three crowd-pleasing 3-pointers.
Sophomore Ethan Houde added 12 points for Newport with help from some quick feet an impressive mid-range jump shot, while Noah Woods also finished in double figures with 10 points. Junior Guard Cam Cyr led Hopkinton with a game-high 24 points.
Coach Greg Pickering’s team saw six players figure their way into the box score in all, which is something that will undoubtedly help his squad going forward.
The Tigers will try and earn that first win of the season Jan. 5 when they welcome rival Stevens to down.