Sandwich High School athletic director Neil Murphy announced last week that Sandwich resident and longtime youth and AAU basketball coach John Tzimorangas will be taking over as head coach of the Sandwich High School boys’ basketball program for the coming season. Tzimorangas will begin his tenure on December 14 when the boys’ team starts practicing for the winter 2021 season.
Tzimorangas takes over for retired coach Dennis Green. The longtime coach of the Blue Knights’ boys’ program decided to step down from his position due to health reasons. Green leaves behind a disciplined and talented group of players who are inspired to play in his honor.
Murphy said that Tzimorangas, who takes over an interim role with hopes of becoming the full-time skipper, is well qualified and a great candidate to take over the program. “We are excited for him,” Murphy said. “John could easily be the guy in the long term...you hate to see anyone step down like Dennis had to.”
Tzimorangas said that he has long hoped to be the person to succeed Green and that the two had had conversations about that prospect in the past. He said that he’s been very impressed with the program that Green built up, and that he hopes to build on it and make the Sandwich boys’ basketball team a powerhouse for years to come.
“I told Dennis that some day, when you’re done, that I’d like to do this,” the new coach said. “This isn’t exactly the way you’d want to do this, but I’m happy to step up. Dennis is such a nice man, and he did a great job with the kids here.”
When Murphy posted the position, Tzimorangas said that he knew right away that he was going to apply for it. He put together a résumé and sent it in, and followed up quickly.
“I didn’t have to think about it for five seconds,” he said enthusiastically. “I told Neil that I’d be interested and that I wanted a shot.”
Tzimorangas has been a longtime volunteer with Sandwich Youth Basketball and developed the South Shore Warriors AAU program, which he led to two appearances in the national championships in Orlando, Florida. He was named the winner of the 2019 PCA New England Double Coach Award for basketball and has dedicated countless hours to the improvement of the hoop scene in town.
Bolstering that scene going forward is his main goal, he said. Through building a program both at the high school and at the youth level that leads up the ladder to the varsity squad, he said that he believes that Sandwich can follow the blueprints that have helped to make towns like Marshfield and Scituate such annual contenders.
“I want to keep Sandwich kids in Sandwich and I don’t want to see them leave and go play elsewhere,” he said. “Sandwich High School has so many great opportunities outside of athletics, and I want to see kids that love basketball stay to play here, but also to take advantage of those opportunities.”
Tzimorangas said that he is excited to take over now because he has a good rapport with many of the current seniors and juniors who will make up the 2021 varsity roster. He said that he believes that they have what it takes to make a splash from the get-go.
“What’s great about this group is that they love to play. They’ll play anywhere and at any time,” he said.