Andover legend Chris Vetrano is willing to take on fellow all-time great Nicole Boudreau in one more 3-point competition. But if he loses, there will be no rematch.
"We said we'd do it so it might be coming up sometimes soon," said Vetrano with a laugh. "But if she wins again I'm done. Then she'll have everything."
For eight years, Vetrano sat atop the Andover basketball record books as the all-time leading scorer in school history with 2,090 career points before graduating in 2004.
But his reign came to an end Friday when Boudreau became the Golden Warriors' all-time top scorer by knocking down a pair of third-quarter free throws in a tournament victory over Acton-Boxboro.
And few were more proud of the accomplishment than the man she knocked down to No. 2 all-time.
"It's an unbelievable accomplishment and I am so happy for her," said Vetrano. "Anyone who can score over 2,000 points is doing something right and she is a tremendous competitor. Oh, and she's lights-out from 3-point land too."
Vetrano and Boudreau have known one another since Boudreau was a youngster going to basketball camp and working with Vetrano, a counselor. And from a young age Vetrano saw the fire in Boudreau.
"I have been around her since she was young and she has the burning desire to get better and better," said Vetrano. "I would say it's her work ethic. I know she wants to be the best player she can be."
Over the years the respect — and friendly rivalry — between the two has only grown.
"Chris is obviously a great player and I know him well," said Boudreau following Friday's game. "We work out at the same gym and we would always go back-and-fourth about the record. He'd tease me and say I didn't have a chance at the record."
With her 20 points on Friday, Boudreau entered Tuesday's contest with a stunning 2,101 career points in four varsity seasons with the Golden Warriors. And she not only has the school record, but also bragging rights.
"We both have that competitive trash-talking fire in us," said Vetrano, who works for his father's company, Prime Time Sports, in Lawrence. "But now she has the record, the state championships, she has it all. She even beat me in a 3-point contest a summer ago. But I am really proud of her."
After a long and emotional ceremony when she scored her 2,000th career point, Boudreau declined a big celebration when she hit the school-record shot.
"Coach (Jim) Tildsley asked me if I wanted them to stop the game and I said no," she said. "I didn't know how many points I needed for the record, so I didn't know that (free throw) broke the record. I don't know how to explain the record, but it is so cool."
Her teammates and coaching staff were equally excited about her reaching the mark.
"It is such a big deal," said longtime friend and four-year varsity teammate Ally Fazio. "I am so happy and proud of her. It was a great night."
Tildsley, her longtime mentor, was also thrilled to see her reach the mark.
"What more can I say about her," he said after the game. "For four years, so has just been an incredible player. She does everything so well. She is intense, and all she cares about is winning.
"I am so happy she got the school record. She deserves it."
And Vetrano couldn't agree with Tildsley more.
"She earned it," said Vetrano. "People sometimes say stuff about boys basketball versus girls basketball. But if you score over 2,000 points you have done something really special."
Year of Graduation: 2012
Career points: 2,101*
Career 3-pointers: 348*
Times All-Scholastic: 2 (sure to make it three this year)
College: Headed to Boston College on scholarship
Hoops sibling: Twin sister Danielle a backup guard on basketball team
*— All stats heading into Central Catholic tourney game.
Year of Graduation: 2004
Career points: 2,090
Career 3-pointers: 337
Times All-Scholastic: 3
College: Two-year starter at Division 1 UNH. Averaged 15.6 points a game in two years at St. Anselm.
Hoops sibling: Brother Greg (class of 2006) scored 1,089 points for Golden Warriors.
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