Basketball players

Plymouth basketball players start their college journey

There’s nothing quite like having a little piece of home away from home when you’re not in college. Plymouth-born Teja Andrews, Kylee Grassi and Caroline Tripp resumed Tuesday night when Andrews’ UMass Dartmouth Corsairs women’s college basketball team hosted Grassi and Tripp’s Bridgewater State University team.

The Corsairs moved away in the fourth quarter to defeat the Bears, 82-71, to go 6-2 this season. Andrews, a second-year guard, is one of the first options off the bench for head coach Matt Ducharme this season. She had seven points in 19 minutes of action.

Tripp is now in second year at BSU, while Grassi gets a few minutes on the bench as a freshman. Tripp is recovering from an ankle injury and missed Tuesday’s game, but Grassi had two of his five shots in seven minutes off the bench for the Bears.

The trio saw a lot of action against each other in high school with Andrews playing at Plymouth South and Grassi and Tripp teaming up together at Plymouth North. All three said they enjoyed reconnecting with each other after the game and were thrilled to have the opportunity to replay a full roster of basketball games this season after losing most of last year in due to COVID-19 restrictions.

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“We only played nine regular season games last season, eight in a shortened regular season, then one in the playoffs,” said Andrews, who had a career-high 23 points on Nov. 9 at the time. of a victory over Clark University. “This year is so different and it feels like a real basketball season again. We don’t play with masks anymore and we can be together more to do things as a team. It’s so much better and so much more normal than last year.

Plymouth North graduate Kylie Grassi gets a few minutes on the bench as a freshman on the Bridgewater State University women's basketball team.

This year is also different in the amount of pressure Andrews takes in each game. At Plymouth South she was sometimes asked to carry the full offensive load and then had to come back on defense to cover the other team’s bigger threat. Things are different at UMass-Dartmouth. She averages 24 minutes per game off the bench, but Andrews now has more weapons around her to get the job done.

“This is one of the biggest differences between high school and college. The amount of talent on the basketball court at any one time is much higher. Every player you face is a good basketball player, so you have to raise your own talent to reach their level, ”said the Biology Major. “I’m here to adapt to the role they want me to play. I’ll do whatever they want me to do to help the team.

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Grassi and Tripp also commented on high school’s adjustment to college basketball.

An ankle injury has limited Caroline Tripp (second from left) for the Bridgewater State women's basketball team so far this season.

For Tripp, the season started off with a backhand as she sprained her left ankle less than a minute after her first game of the season. She could be back in training with the team as early as this week as the Bears prepare to travel to Florida for a holiday basketball tournament later this month.

“The ankle is getting there. It’s frustrating not being able to play, but I have to wait until I’m healthy and ready to play again, ”said Tripp.

Grassi made a quick impact with BSU, winning a spot giving the team some quick points off the bench. She scored three points Thursday in a 74-73 win over Brandeis University and scored a career-high nine points against Claremont-Mudd-Scripps earlier this season at the NYU Tip-Off Classic.

“Growing up I always knew I wanted to play college basketball and the time has finally come. It’s great to be back with a basketball team once again, ”said the first-year forward. “It’s definitely more intense than any high school or AAU team I’ve been involved with, but I love it.”

Email the reporter at [email protected] and you can follow him on Twitter, @ DavidWolcott1.