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February 18, 2014

In the Paint: North Shore boys teams geared up for postseason play

(Continued)

The Bad: This isn’t a done deal yet; Marblehead still needs to win one of its final two games to qualify. They play Manchester Essex tonight (8 p.m.) in the first round of the Brad Sheridan Memorial Tournament. If they don’t do it then, they’ll have to beat either Malden Catholic or Concord Carlisle tomorrow to qualify.

The Outlook: Marblehead should find a way into the tourney, which will be a big boost for the program in coach Mike Giardi’s return to the sideline. Once the Magicians are in, they figure to be a tough out; they could be a bit of a sleeper in the bracket.

DIVISION 3

Swampscott (4-14)

The Good: The Big Blue drew a tournament berth under the Sullivan Rule, going 3-2 against teams in Division 3 or lower. Make no mistake about it, this is a great opportunity for Swampscott and first-year head coach David Born. Swampscott is leaning heavily on some young players (sophomore Joey Ragusa and freshman Andre Reeves, in particular) and this is a transition year for Div. 3 North, with Danvers moving up and Hamilton-Wenham and Bishop Fenwick moving down.

The Bad: Swampscott saw some of the Div. 3 North iron earlier and didn’t fare well with losses to Arlington Catholic and Watertown.

The Outlook: Swampscott may not be ready to play with the big boys of the bracket, but could make a little noise if they get the right draw.

DIVISION 4

Hamilton-Wenham (16-2)

The Good: The Generals are a deep, talented team that is riding a 12-game win streak as it heads into its season finale at Amesbury tomorrow (6:30). Henry Eagar had a fantastic senior season, scoring more than 17 points per game, and junior Jimmy Campbell is a do-it-all player for H-W. The emergence of freshman Marcus Zegarowski at the point guard position has been huges.

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