Since taking over the Mashpee High School girls’ basketball program three years ago, Head Coach Chris Tresca has had one goal above all others—building a program that is recognized for being competitive and respected.
While the Lady Falcons did not qualify for the MIAA state tournament in 2020 they were very close, and nearly got the job done despite some key injuries that shortened their bench down the stretch. Mashpee had a chance to get in all the way to the end of the season before a loss to Bourne knocked them out on the last day of the season. MHS needed four wins over their last five games to qualify, and won three of their first four. The tank was empty on the last night.
They didn’t get in but they certainly were competitive, and the Falcons were respected. Every team that played against them knew that it was not going to be an easy night because Mashpee fought for 32 minutes each game.
The Massachusetts Basketball Coaches Association took notice of what the Falcons have been doing and awarded Tresca as the Division 4 Girls’ Coach of the Year for the 2019-2020 season. It is the first time that a Mashpee girls’ coach has won the honor, and also it is Tresca’s first time being honored with the award.
“Truthfully, it was unexpected. I look at the list of the winners in the other divisions and it is humbling,” the coach said. “Personally, it means a lot. To be a part of the resurgence of this program has been special and to be considered one of the bright spots on the Cape, and in the South Shore League, in girls’ basketball is great.”
Perhaps more than anything, Tresca has brought stability to a program that was lacking just that. He was the third head coach for the girls in three years when he took over in 2017. The team was reeling and did not have the competitive spark that is required to compete in a league like the SSL. With a group of young players stepping up, the coach helped turn things around. They went to the tournament in 2019 and won a game, losing in the south quarterfinals by a single point. They followed that up with a 10-win season this past year and just missed the tournament.
With a core that is still young, Tresca believes that the pieces are in place for his Lady Falcons to continue to climb and compete in the competitive D4 field.
“The girls that we have that come out are hard-working,” he said. “The overall culture is still very young, but on the positive side much of the team has multiple years with varsity experience. They’ve played in a lot of big games already.”
Tresca’s fourth season with the program will begin this winter. The expected start date for girls’ basketball will be a little later than usual due to the COVID-19 pandemic, which has already pushed the fall season’s start back three weeks into mid-September.
“As a history teacher, right now there’s a lot going on that is right in my wheelhouse...we live in an interesting world,” he said. “I’m hopeful that everything is back to normal, whatever that is, so that we’re playing basketball.”