By PHILLIP MONTEZUMA
The Malden High School boys basketball team started off their season with a bang, winning their first game against Winthrop on Dec. 11, 2012, 98-48. Sophomore Anthony Gilardi dropped 45 points in the game to surpass senior teammate Terrance Massineuve’s 43 points in last season’s opening game against Westfield. However, Gilardi’s score is just three points away from MHS’ all-time record of 48 scored by one player in a game, which had happened before Don Nally became the head coach. The record of most points scored in a game by a single player in MHS history is held by Bill Hanifan.
Nally stated, “Anthony was in the zone. The ball just seemed to be flying off his hands.” Nally feels that Gilardi did not force it, his points were just in the flow of the game. Gilardi had hit eight three-pointers in that opening game. Gilardi knew he was in the zone after he had hit his third three pointer. “It felt great, I had been working hard on my shot,” said Gilardi. On Gilardi’s performance, senior co-captain Rodney Morton stated: “I think it set off the season just right as a team, we’ve been working so hard together and also individually it was unbelievable. It showed hard work pays off.” Gilardi put on another show against Belmont, scoring 28 points in a 77-59 victory. Gilardi is not intimidated by being the only sophomore on the team as he also played on the varsity team as a freshman. In which he had a spectacular season proving he deserves to be on this team. He is grateful of the seniors’ support, “I love them. We are all like brothers, we [have] each other’s back, always.”
Morton has also been having a great season so far as the team’s leading scorer. Morton had back-to-back 20 point games earlier in the season, before following that performance with 41 points in the Greater Boston League opening game against the undefeated Somerville on Jan. 7, 2013, crushing them at a final score of 84-51. Morton said, “It felt good [that] I could help my team to get our first GBL win on the road, it’s tough. [It] gave us hope we got a clear run at the title after overcoming Somerville at the time.” Others who are doing very well this season so far include seniors Willy Metellus, Massineuve, Jason Surpris, and junior Bryan Mitchell. Nally cannot choose one team that seems to be their biggest competitor in the GBL because he feels that the whole league is talented. MHS currently has a 6-2 record after beating Winthrop, Westfield, Swampscott, Belmont, Somerville, and Boston English. However, the team fell short to Wakefield, 70-49, in the annual Christmas Tournament, and to Everett on Jan. 11, a well anticipated game, 61-52. The team put on a show agaisnt Boston English on Jan. 14 infront of a huge Malden crowd. The boys will keep on pushing towards their goal of winning the GBL and making it back to the state tournament.