DANVERS — When Duncan Moreland's jump shot is falling, the Beverly boys basketball team is extremely tough to beat.
Still without a loss this season, the Panthers have been tough to beat on a bad night, too. But Tuesday evening in Danvers, Moreland got going early from all over the court and powered the visitors to a convincing 72-47 triumph.
Moreland scored 28 points including a pair of triples, grabbed six rebounds, dished out four assists, swiped two steals and had a pair of blocks in what was an all-around dominant performance from start to finish.
While Panthers' head coach Matt Karakoudas praised his senior captain's output, he'd like to see a more balanced attack moving forward.
"We're happy with the win but we're not happy with the way we performed. It was just a real ugly game at times for us on both sides of the ball," said Karakoudas. "We can't try to rely on Duncan scoring 28-30 points a game because when you get into the tournament teams are going to lock him down and do their best to contain him and other guys are going to have to step up. Tonight we didn't have a lot of guys other than Duncan get going so that can be a problem going forward."
Moreland had it going from the get-go. The 6-foot-2 swingman dropped 10 points in the first quarter without missing a shot, helping his team build a 15-6 lead after one.
The Falcons responded in the second to close the gap a bit, as Jared Berry (16 points, 3 rebounds, 3 assists) started finding his way into the lane and drawing contact. Danvers' hot free throw shooting kept them within striking distance at the break (34-20), as 12 of those 20 points came from the charity stripe in the opening half.
In the third, Danvers continued to push, reeling off seven straight points to cut the deficit to just seven. But without calling a timeout, Beverly responded in a big way to push the lead to 17 after three and all but seal the deal.
"I thought it was a good effort, it just wasn't a clean night for us," said Danvers' coach Chris Timson, his team now 3-8 on the year.
"We struggled a little bit, and that's what a good team does to you; they put you on edge a little bit and you get kind of frustrated."
With that being said, the sophomore Berry was a clear bright spot in the setback, and Timson took notice.
"I think he's just getting better as the year goes on," said Timson. "We're giving him the ball a little bit more and he's doing good things when we run pick and rolls for him; he's making better decisions. He's still got a lot to learn but he's improved a lot in the last couple of weeks and it's showing in his game."
For Beverly, junior big man Austin Ayer (8 points, 3 rebounds) turned in some quality minutes off the bench. He was active in the post and played some good defense at times on Danvers' big man Max Beuvelet (10 points, 11 rebounds). Jack Crowley (8 points, 7 rebounds, 2 assists, 2 steals and a block) also contributed, while freshman Gabe Copeland canned a couple of first half triples to help build the gap. Senior point guard Damian Bouras chipped in with 11 points, four rebounds, four assists and a steal as well.
"We're just trying to improve every game because we have (undefeated) Lowell coming up, we got (Lynn) English coming up and then we got the tournament coming up," said Karakoudas. "We need to get better each and every night. But overall we're happy we got the W; I'm not going to act like we're not happy with a 25-point victory, it's just that we're looking for more than just the final score."
Chris Perez added seven points for Danvers, while senior Mike Goodwin saw some increased minutes and played well in them, scoring seven points as well. The Falcons were without two key rotation players in Andrew Metivier and Daury Margarin.
Beverly 72, Danvers 47
at Danvers High School
Beverly 15 19 17 21 — 72
Danvers 6 14 14 13 — 47
Beverly: Duncan Moreland 9-8-28, Damien Bouras 4-2-11, Jack Crowley 4-0-8, Austin Ayer 3-2-8, Gabe Copeland 2-0-6, Nick Braganca 2-1-5, Zack Sparkman 2-0-4, Cam Jones 1-0-2.
Danvers: Jared Berry 4-7-16, Max Beuvelet 4-2-10, Chris Perez 3-1-8, Mike Goodwin 2-2-7, Thomas Lisi 2-0-4, Colin Kelter 0-2-2.
Halftime: 34-20, Beverly
3-pointers: B, Moreland 2, Copeland 2, Bouras; D, Berry, Perez, Goodwin
Records: B 8-0, D 3-8