Today’s games are listed below.
Oliver Ames, 8 @ Foxboro, 0 – Final
Milford @ Taunton, 4:45
King Philip @ Foxboro, 3:15
Stoughton @ Mansfield, 3:30
Today’s games are listed below.
Oliver Ames, 8 @ Foxboro, 0 – Final
Milford @ Taunton, 4:45
King Philip @ Foxboro, 3:15
Stoughton @ Mansfield, 3:30
Today’s games are listed below.
Foxboro, 2 @ Walpole, 2 – Final – After allowing a late goal on Monday in a draw against North, Foxboro scored in the final minute on Tuesday to earn a point on the road at Walpole. Lauren Miley got Foxboro’s first goal, finishing a free kick from Erin Foley. With less than a minute to play, Neve Taylor scored off a Lindsey Resnick pass (the same combo from Monday’s game) to rescue a result for the Warriors. Keeper Allie Sougaris had another strong game for Foxboro.
Mansfield, 6 @ Sharon, 0 – Final – Mansfield built a big lead early with four goals in the first quarter, then tacked on two more in the final quarter to secure a win over Sharon. Lola Varricchione opened the scoring for the Hornets, Kristina Kipp scored back-to-back goals, and Ella Palanza capped Mansfield’s first quarter scoring to make it 4-0. Danni Cuzzi and Rose Maher each scored once in the fourth quarter while Ava Adams finished the game with two assists.
Foxboro, 3 vs. Walpole, 0 – Final – After a tough five-set loss on Monday, Foxboro bounced back with a clean sweep on Tuesday, taking down Walpole, 3-0 (27-25, 25-23, 25-17). Alyssa Cloherty dished out 28 assists and added six digs and four aces, Ava Kirk had a big day with nine kills, and Mallorie Meyer finished with 13 digs, five kills, four aces, and two blocks.
Canton, 38 @ Sharon, 20 – Final – Canton’s top runner was Sam Vail (third overall), who ran a career best of 18:28 over the 5K course at Ward’s Berry Farm. Luke Darling (18:42) and Austin DiBiasio (20:06) also ran career best times for the Bulldogs.
Stoughton, 49 @ Foxboro, 15 – Final
Oliver Ames, 19 @ Mansfield, 38 – Final
Milford, 20 @ Franklin, 43 – Final – Milford’s Sydney Kalil took first place by nearly a minute but Franklin followed with 11 straight runners to get the win over the Scarlet Hawks. Ashley Tighe and Abigail Baker were Franklin’s top two runners, taking second and third overall, respectively. Alex Batla, Fiona Morrison, and Carli Walbert rounded out the scoring for Franklin with fourth, fifth, and sixth place finishes.
Girls Cross Country
North Attleboro, 31 @ Taunton, 26 – Final – Taunton used a one-two finish to collect a close win over visiting North Attleboro. Emersyn DePonte crossed the finish line in 20:04 to take first and Colby Dunham followed at 20:13 for second overall.
Canton, 44 @ Sharon, 18 – Final – Sophomore Tahlia Weaver was Canton’s top runner, taking third overall and finishing in 22:59. Johanna Bouwmeester (23:46) and Klara Redquest (24:12), who placed eighth and 10th respectively, also had strong races for the Bulldogs.
Stoughton, 36 @ Foxboro, 21 – Final
Oliver Ames, 18 @ Mansfield, 45 – Final
Milford @ Franklin, 3:45
Milford, 160 @ Franklin, 142 – Final – Franklin bounced back from a loss on Monday by taking down division foe Milford at Franklin Country Club on Tuesday. CJ Steel had third birdies and Tyler O’Brien had two, each finishing at 35 for the day to earn medalist honors. Brendan Collins (three birdies) and Jack Hagerty (two birdies) both finished at 36 to round out the scoring for the Panthers. Anthony LaPierre and David Fleming each shot a 39 for the Hawks while Jacob Hipilito, Tyler Caldon, and Eric Farrell each shot a 41.
Oliver Ames, 154 @ Canton, 163 – Final – Oliver Ames stayed atop the standings in the Davenport division, securing a win on the road over Canton at Blue Hill Country Club. Battling the wind and rain, as well as the Bulldogs, the Tigers had a strong showing. Senior Michael McGinnis and sophomore Braden Shapiro each shot a 38 on the day to share medalist honors for OA, while juniors Lucas Riley and Ryan Smith each finished with a 39. Canton’s Huck McCready had a team-best round of 40 while Brendan Tourgee, Joey Ryan, and Gavin McMahon each shot a 41.
North Attleboro, 161 @ Taunton, 183 – Final – North Attleboro senior Jake Gaskin had a great performance, battling the elements to card a medalist round of 36 to lead the Rocketeers to a win on the road over Taunton at Segregansett Country Club. Sophomore Tyson Laviano added a 40 in the win, Ishan Kohli added a 41, and Jordan Paradis rounded out the scoring for the visitors with a 44. Taunton sophomore Alex Dias had a strong showing, shooting a team-low round of 42.
By HockomockSports.com Staff
Attleboro sophomore Julia Leonardo has been selected as the HockomockSports.com Player of the Week, presented by Morse Insurance, for Sept. 26 through Oct. 1. Leonardo is the fourth player chosen as Player of the Week for the 2022-23 school year.
Leonardo has been one the leading outside hitters in the league this season and has been one of the main reasons that the Bombardiers are off to one of the best starts in program history. This week, Leonardo powered Attleboro to a pair of wins, including a five-set thriller over previously unbeaten Franklin. The Bombardiers are now 9-1 at the midway point of the regular season.
“Julia’s performance against Franklin was nothing short of exceptional,” said Attleboro head coach Mary Katherine Runey. “She knew the level of competition we were up against and rose the the challenge. She was able to see the holes in our opponents defense and strategically place the ball with each attack. She set the tone for us defensively anticipating the next play and ensuring that no ball hit the floor untouched.”
On Wednesday, Attleboro dispatched Foxboro in three sets. Leonardo showed off her all-around game with 14 digs, nine kills, and four aces. It was Attleboro’s fourth straight win and third straight sweep. Friday night in Franklin, Attleboro got one of its toughest tests of the season, beating the Panthers 15-13 in the final set. It was Attleboro’s first win over the defending league champions. Leonardo was dominant at the net, finishing with a season-high 36 kills and chipping in with 20 digs. With the win, Attleboro, which reached the playoffs in 2021 for the first time in more than a decade, moved into a first-place tie with the Panthers and King Philip.
The Player of the Week, presented by Morse Insurance, is selected by the HockomockSports.com staff. Nominations can be submitted throughout the week up until Saturday night at midnight. There may be a poll posted on every Sunday with the nominations. The results of the poll influence the selection but do not strictly dictate the decision.
ATTLEBORO, Mass. – After four wins in its opening five games, Sharon had to run the gauntlet of division leaders (Oliver Ames, Franklin, and King Philip), so entered Monday night’s game at a chilly Tozier-Cassidy Field with three straight losses.
When the Eagles found themselves trailing by a goal midway through the opening half, things could have derailed and extended the losing streak. Instead, Sharon rallied.
Behind a second-half hat trick from freshman Jessica Li, a dynamic performance from senior midfielder Sofia Goclowski, and a resolute defense, the Eagles rolled off five straight goals and pulled out a 5-1 road win.
“We had that really tough stretch but I think the mindset remained really positive,” said Sharon coach Catherine Sullivan. “Even though those were losses, we played well and we were doing the things we wanted to be doing, so I don’t think they let those losses get to us. Same thing today, we were down but we were creating opportunities, we just have to be patient and it paid off.”
The first half was back-and-forth, with both teams able to find joy on the wings and scoring chances coming at both ends of the field.
Attleboro nearly grabbed the lead after just 30 seconds. Zenda Gjoni’s cross from the right was knocked down by Unnimaya Sajeev into the path of Alexandra Tetreault. Her shot from the edge of the box was right at Sharon keeper Kate Goloboy. Only a minute later, Sharon had its first look. Olivia Soby’s corner was palmed away by Attleboro goalie Alexis Campbell and defender Meghan Weibe’s shot was charged down.
Things settled down after a frenetic start, but at the midway point of the half Attleboro got back on the front foot. Presley Biller chipped a nice ball over the defense for Bethany Alves to run onto and the junior fired a shot inches over the bar. Just seconds later, the host took the lead when Jamie Davies found a bit of space outside the box, turned quickly, and looped her shot over Goloboy’s outstretched arm.
Goclowski and Li nearly combined for an equalizer a moment later, but after Li cut inside her marker she was unable to get much purchase on the shot. Li then teed up Leah Steinberg for a cross that was allowed to bounce inside the six, but it bounced over the head of Madeline Tajalli and Campbell was able to catch.
Autumn Simon made a long run down the left wing, carrying the ball more than 50 yards, but her shot caromed off the inside of the ear post. Carly Pinnix stepped forward and collected the rebound, cut inside the first defender, and forced Campbell into a two-handed diving save.
Less than a minute later, Simon would get a chance at redemption. Again, she got the ball on the wing and showed off her pace to beat two defenders, racing into the box on her left side and this time was able to squeeze her shot inside the near post to make it 1-1.
Attleboro started quickly after the break. Davies, who along with freshman Tatum O’Brien was causing problems down the wings, pressed her defender into a turnover 20 yards from goal. This time, the shot was right at Goloboy, who held on.
Campbell had to be quick off her line a couple minutes later. Olivia Landstein’s pass freed Li in behind the defense, but she was unable to get the ball out from under her feet and the keeper smothered the opportunity. Goclowski then got free for a long, 60-yard run with the ball through midfield, but in the end her shot went over.
The best chance for the Bombardiers to regain their advantage came in the 54th minute. Davies again created havoc down the right wing and her cross picked out Tetreault alone on the edge of the six, but she was unable to keep her header down.
“First half, I thought we had better run of play on the wings,” said Attleboro coach Steve Santos. “The second half we kind of got away from that a bit and it hurt us.”
He added, “We were off today with our touches. Try to send someone a through ball and hit a teammate on the back of the heel, we were just one step off today in our passing game.”
Three minutes later, it was Sharon that grabbed the game’s third goal. From the left side of the box, Soby floated a free kick into the breeze and it came back off the crossbar. The rebound came out to Goclowski just inside the 18 but her shot was charged down. Li reacted quickest to the loose ball and smashed her shot past Campbell.
“She’s somebody who knows how to move to get in behind their line but then she’s also great about coming back to us and really staying connected to our midfield,” Sullivan said of Li. “She’s super scrappy and we don’t have a lot of forwards who are willing to really mix it up in the box, so having that is really helpful.”
With 11 minutes to go, Goclowski doubled the lead. She took on three Attleboro defenders and her quick feet allowed her to split them and, just when it seemed like she might be clean through on goal, got her heel clipped. Goclowski took the penalty herself, burying the chance and making it 3-1.
Attleboro started pressing numbers forward to get back into the game. Alves set up Davies for a chance from the edge of the box, but Claire Baur got in the way.
With Attleboro on the attack, Goclowski suddenly found herself with open real estate in midfield and she took advantage. In the 74th minute, she won the ball in midfield, took the space in front of her, and played a perfectly weighted ball to Li on the right wing. She took a touch onto her left foot and lifted a shot over the keeper.
“In this stretch, a lot of teams know to mark her so Sofia’s been double-teamed and they’ve worked to take her out of it,” Sullivan explained. “She’s tough to shut down, and having her as our playmaker is just huge because she has such great field vision.”
As time was winding down, Goclowski created another opening. This time, she dribbled through a few players in midfield, picking up a nutmeg along the way, and found herself one-on-one with Campbell. The keeper stood tall and made the initial save, but the ball would work its way to the opposite side of the 18 where Li would hit it first-time on the slide and past the recovering goalie.
“She plays hard and she plays fast,” Santos said of Goclowski’s influence in midfield. “She got the ball and she had a couple of individual runs of what, 60 yards from one side to the other? After they scored, the momentum went their way and they played hard. They got to every ball.”
Sharon (5-4-0) will look to carry the momentum of the win into Thursday night’s trip to Stoughton. Attleboro (3-5-1) will try to bounce back when it travels to Kelly Field to face rival North Attleboro.
Today’s games are listed below.
North Attleboro, 0 @ Foxboro, 1 – Final – Foxboro broke into the win column, riding a first half goal to pick up two points against visiting North Attleboro. After a nice defensive play in the midfield by junior Ryan Flaherty, the Warriors were able to push forward into the attack. A nice run from senior Joel Gygi down the left side resulted in a cross that was parried by the keeper but right to senior Alex Penders, who blasted a low shot into the net for the lone goal of the game in the 23rd minute.
Attleboro, 1 @ Sharon, 1 – Final – Attleboro took the lead in the first half but Sharon found a late equalizer to split the points. Esvin Morales scored off of an assist from Alex Vecchioli in the first half, and the Bombardiers carried that lead late into the game before Sharon’s Adam Eastman headed in a cross with five minutes left to tie it.
Taunton, 3 @ Oliver Ames, 8 – Final – Oliver Ames had an offensive outburst to the tune of seven half goals on its way to a win over visiting Taunton. Sophomore Casey Milliken had a first half hat trick and capped OA’s scoring with his fourth goal in the second half. Andrew Martins added a first half brace (both assisted by Ryan Linhares), Mirray Dasilva had a goal and an assist, and Jason Zalis netted his second goal of the season in the win.
Milford, 9 @ Stoughton, 1 – Final – Milford’s offense was clicking on all cylinders in a big win on the road at Stoughton. Eduardo Santana had a big day with a first half hat trick, twice hooking up with Jonny Castro and one assist from John Borges. Castro had a third assist in the opening half, setting up Arthur Tome — who finished with a brace and two assists. Nate Dinis (from Nick Ribeiro), Marcello Alves (from Miguel De Olivera), Danny Da Silva, and Andre Baiano also scored for the Scarlet Hawks.
Franklin, 1 @ Mansfield, 0 – Final – Franklin scored the lone goal of the game just past the midway point of the second half to earn a hard-fought two points on the road against a tough Mansfield squad. Andrew O’Neill was there to pounce on the rebound of a shot from Will Kryzak in the 63rd minute for the lone goal of the game. “Mansfield really made us work for this one,” said Franklin head coach Fran Bositis. Mansfield applied a lot of pressure over the final 15 minutes but couldn’t find the equalizer. Mansfield coach Steve Sheridan praised his defense, highlighting strong performances from Brendan Flynn and goalie Liam Doyle.
King Philip, 3 @ Canton, 5 – Final – Click here for a Photo Gallery from this game. – Jake McCabe recorded a second half hat trick to lead Canton to an important two points against visiting King Philip. McCabe had an assist on Canton’s opener, just three minutes in, using a clever touch on a near post run to set up freshman Vlad Francoeur for an open night right in front. The Warriors leveled the match just under 10 minutes later as Andrew Seropian played a great through ball to Matt Crago, who tucked a shot past the keeper in the 12th minute. The Bulldogs went back ahead in the 29th minute as sophomore Owen Morrissey notched his first career goal by heading in a cross to the far post from senior Carson Eagles. In the second half, McCabe scored twice inside the first 15 minutes, racing onto a ball over the top and beating the keeper 1-v-1, and then off of a deflected throw-in in the 54th minute to make it 5-1. King Philip scored twice in the final 10 minutes, first off of a deflection for a goal to Deven Patel, and then in the final moments when junior Keagan Fletcher played classmate Jack Morgan through for a breakaway.
Sharon, 5 @ Attleboro, 1 – Final – Click here for a Recap and Photo Gallery from this game.
Canton, 0 @ King Philip, 3 – Final – Ella Pisani scored a brace and the KP defense was able to quiet Canton’s potent attack to pick up an impressive win and move alone into first place in the Kelley-Rex division. Addisyn Lamothe-Vaughn tapped in a corner, assisted by Kylie Menendez, in the 28th minute for what turned out to be the game-winner. Pisani would add a pair of second half goals to seal the win. The first came with 19 minutes to play, taking a pass from Menendez and firing a shot over the keeper from 25 yards. With two minutes left, Pisani tapped in a perfect cross from Heidi Lawrence. Lauren Casper got the clean sheet in net, making five saves. KP coach Gary Pichel made a point of praising his back line, Grace Lawler, Rihanna Mason, Rylie Wesley, and Lamothe-Vaughn for its play in the shutout.
Foxboro, 1 @ North Attleboro, 1 – Final – North scored in the closing seconds to rescue a point against Foxboro. Trailing by a goal late, Emma Pratt scored the equalizer on a rebound after a cross from Kaitlyn Joyce. The Warriors had the majority of possession throughout and took the lead when Neve Taylor found the back of the net from a Lindsey Resnick assist.
Mansfield, 0 @ Franklin, 0 – Final – Mansfield and Franklin were unable to find the back of the net and settled for a point apiece in a hard-fought game. Franklin coach Tom Geysen said that it was evenly matched and well-played by both teams, while Mansfield coach Kevin Smith said there was a playoff intensity to the match. Mansfield keeper Olivia Salisbury made four saves to earn her fifth clean sheet.
Stoughton, 4 @ Milford, 3 – Final – Stoughton rallied from a three-goal deficit and Makenzie O’Connor scored with just two minutes to play to secure a dramatic come-from-behind victory. Ava Baglione scored twice and Dani Atherton added a third to put the Hawks into a 3-0 lead. Shayla Ford scored once to get back within two before halftime and then added her second to make it 3-2 after the break. Bianca Casna tied the game for the Black Knights, before O’Connor, who also had an assist, fired in the winner.
Oliver Ames, 6 @ Taunton, 1 – Final – Jenna Gilman scored twice to lead OA to a big road win Emma Gavin, Mary Cross, Jolie Diaz, and Laney Carroll each added one for Oliver Ames in the win while Lucinda Li Cotter had three assists and Sophia Byron had one Jenna Nelson and Ali Manson also added strong performances for the visitors. Juliana Matos scored Taunton’s lone goal on an assist from Emily Calderon and keeper Ashlyn Hebert made eight saves. Taunton coach Dan Borges was happy with his team’s effort and aggression in the second half and the way the Tigers kept fighting despite being behind.
Foxboro, 3 vs. North Attleboro, 1 – Final – Foxboro junior Mary Collins scored twice and added an assist on the third as the Warriors earned a hard-fought win over North Attleboro. Jenny Gallagher opened the scoring for Foxboro on a pass from Collins, who then scored back-to-back goals for the Warriors. Mia Dinunzio and Mya Waryas had the assists on Foxboro’s second goal while Val Beigel and Dinunzio notched assists on the third tally. Beigel had a standout performance in the midfield for Foxboro while Waryas and Collins both played well offensively.
Mansfield, 0 @ Franklin, 4 – Final – Franklin scored twice in the second quarter, and then once in each the third and fourth, to pick up a win over visiting Mansfield. After a scoreless first quarter, the Panthers got on the board just over midway through the second when Haley Wernig buried an unassisted goal. The Panthers doubled their lead with a minute left in the half as Sydney Rogan set up Kaitlyn Carney to make it 2-0. In the second half, Wernig got her second (from Chloe Essam) with less than a minute left in the third, and Payten Crandall made it 4-0 (from Carney) less than two minutes into the fourth. Devon Barry had the shutout in net for the hosts.
Stoughton, 1 @ Milford, 0 – Final – Stoughton returned from a trip to Milford with its first win of the season, recording a 1-0 victory over the Scarlet Hawks. Carly Sanda scored for the Black Knights, converting a pass from Katherine Giroux. Kerry Driscoll and Cat Melo played excellent defense throughout the game to help seal the win for the Black Knights.
Canton, 5 @ King Philip, 2 – Final – Deadlocked at 2-2 at halftime, Canton used a strong second half to secure a key win on the road. Freshman Carolyn Schiavo had a hat trick to pace the offense while Audrey Koen and Ellie Bohane each scored once for the Bulldogs. Abby Macdonald and Mara Boldy (from Kelly Holmes) scored first half goals for King Philip.
Oliver Ames, 2 @ Taunton, 0 – Final – Click here for a Photo Gallery from this game. – Oliver Ames scored once in each half to emerge from a defensive battle with Taunton for the win. Erin Cottam scored both goals for the Tigers with Julia Maclaine recording the assist each time. Olivia O’Rourke had the shutout in net for the visitors.
Canton, 0 @ King Philip, 3 – Final – King Philip took care of business, earning a three-set sweep of visiting Canton (25-9, 25-14, 25-15). The Warriors continued to play well at the net with a balanced attack: senior Emily Sawyer (two blocks) had 11 kills while classmates Sami Shore (two aces) Ahunna James (nine digs), and Olivia O’Neil (five digs) each chipped in with six kills apiece. For Canton, Sally Hoban and Fatima Sidibay played well at the net while Kelly Schiavo and Zoe Scibelli played good defense.
Mansfield, 0 @ Franklin, 3 – Final – Taylor Lacerda and Makayla Kuykendall both had strong games as Franklin notched another 3-0 win (25-17, 25-17, 25-22), this time against a solid Mansfield squad. Lacerda had 11 kills in the win, adding five digs, a block, and an ace while Kuykendall recorded 16 digs, six kills, and four aces.
Foxboro, 2 @ North Attleboro, 3 – Final
Stoughton, 3 @ Milford, 1 – Final – Stoughton notched one of its best wins of the season, going on the road and grabbing a 3-1 win over the Scarlet Hawks. Patrik Oliveira anchored the defense for the Black Knights with 12 digs.
Oliver Ames, 3 @ Taunton, 1 – Final – Oliver Ames bounced back from a close first set loss to win three straight, taking a 3-1 decision (22-25, 25-7, 25-20, 25-21) over Taunton. Junior Sarah Hilliard continued her strong play at the net with 21 kills and three aces, sophomore Clare Kavoulis had 39 assists, Maddie Homer added 17 digs, Courtney Raymond chipped in with eight aces and five kills, and Addyson Smock finished with six kills and four blocks.
Sharon, 1 @ Attleboro, 3 – Final – After splitting the first two sets, Attleboro took two in a row to fend off a stiff test from visiting Sharon, 3-1 (25-8, 21-25, 25-13, 25-17). Julia Leonardo led the offense with 16 kills, nine digs, and two aces, Ellie Shelton added seven kills, and Addie Shelton chipped in with six kills and four aces. Natalie Brojek orchestrated the offense with 30 assists and added five kills as well.
Taunton @ Attleboro, 2:20
Franklin, 145 @ Oliver Ames, 144 – Final – The battle of the top two teams lived up to the hype as Oliver Ames earned a one-stroke win over Franklin in a non-league clash between division leaders. The Tigers’ top four of senior Michael McGinnis, senior Daniel Paul, junior David Rodgers, and junior Sean Kearns all shot a 36 at their home course of Pine Oaks for the win. Franklin’s Tyler O’Brien and Jack Hagerty shared medalist honors, both firing a round of 34.
Sharon, 188 @ Mansfield, 160 – Final – Drew Urban fired a medalist round of 38 to lead Mansfield to a win and a season-sweep of now division rival Sharon on the links at Norton Country Club. Nate McClean added a 39 in the win, Jason Friedman finished with a 41, and Hayden O’Connor rounded out the scoring with a round of 42 for the Hornets.
Milford, 168 @ King Philip, 151 – Final – Senior co-captain Gavin Croke shot an even par round of 35 to earn medalist honors and King Philip took down visiting Milford at Wentworth Hills. Croke had birdies on two and six in his medalist round. Ethan Sullivan added a 38 for KP while Cam Hasenfus, Jason Silva, and Evan Regan all came in with a 39.
Canton, 160 @ Stoughton, 173 – Final – Canton hit the road and came back home from Easton Country Club with a win over Stoughton. Brendan Tourgee earned match medalist honors, leading the way for the Bulldogs with a 38. Huck McCready added a 40 in the win and both Matt Anderson and Gavin McMahon shot a 41. Stoughton’s Mason Page and Colby Strunk each shot a 41.
NORTH ATTLEBORO, Mass. – When Cole Sidwell intercepted a pass inside his own 30 with 36 seconds remaining, the Franklin bench exploded onto the field assuming that the victory was sealed. But, two penalty flags sat on the Community Field grass and, after a lengthy discussion between the officials, off-setting penalties meant that North Attleboro would have one last chance.
Facing fourth and 13 from the Franklin 49, North quarterback Chase Frisoli dropped back one more time and fired a deep ball to Jovany Rivera down the right sideline. The North receiver had a step on the corner, but he just wasn’t able to haul in the pass.
After a giant exhale, the Franklin sideline exploded into life again, knowing that all it would take was one kneel down and the win was theirs. The Panthers survived Friday’s league opener 21-20, earning their first win at North since 1992.
“It’s two top 10 teams, Franklin coach Eain Bain said. “I don’t care if we won by half a point, as long as we get out of here with a win. We knew coming in here there would be adversity tonight, fortunately we took advantage of some things in the first half. As a team effort, I thought it was a great win.”
“We were there,” North coach Mike Strachan. “We had a good look at it on fourth and it didn’t go our way. I said at the beginning of the game it was going to be penalties and turnovers and we didn’t win that battle. At the end of the day, in a one-point game, that is what it is. You can’t turn the ball over like we did.”
North came into its league and home opener off a bye week, but the momentum of the opening two wins seemed to carry over to the first drive of the game. Frisoli (13-of-26 for 146 yards) converted third and eight with a 14-yard pass to Rivera (six catches, 89 yards) and then took off on a 20-yard keeper into Franklin territory. Nathan Shultz took a toss to the left side, broke a tackle, and streaked down the sideline for a 49-yard score.
It wasn’t the ideal start for a Franklin defense that was coming off a tough loss to Duxbury, but the Panthers turned things around after that tough first three minutes. Franklin sacked Frisoli seven times, including four in the first half, and forced a pair of red zone turnovers.
Bain explained, “When you can get pressure with your front then you can start getting creative using our second level guys to try and find a matchup, find something in protection we can go after. When we can do that effectively, it can cover up some mistakes we do on the back end.”
After Jack Nutter stuffed Shultz for a loss of seven. Franklin got great field position for its second possession, starting at its own 49, but a penalty and a Kaiden Leary sack forced third and 16. Jase Lyons was able to hit Derek Dubriske for 23 and the first down. Three plays later, the same combo connected again, this time for a 24-yard touchdown on the left sideline to tie the game.
Franklin again had great starting field position. A 17-yard completion to Luke Davis (four catches, 57 yards) moved the ball into North territory. Following a holding call, Lyons (12-of-17, 188 yards), who completed his first seven throws, found Dubriske (four receptions, 66 yards) for 18 and another first down. On the next play, Davis got the ball on an underneath out route, threw a head fake to lose the closest North defender, and raced down the sideline for 31 yards and a 14-7 lead.
North’s offense was finally able to get things moving late in the second quarter. Frisoli hit Jack Munley on a drag route across the middle for 13 down to the Franklin 38. A 15-yard penalty for too many men moved North even closer. On third and 10, Greg Berthiaume broke through the line for a first down run, but as he pushed for extra yards the ball popped loose and Bobby Padula recovered for the Panthers.
It was a big missed opportunity to get right back into the game. Garrett Portesi’s punt pinned North back inside its own 10. Jay Gulla sacked Frisoli on second down and North was forced into another punt that was returned to the 30. Franklin needed only one play to double its lead. Lyons threw one up for Grayson Hunter at the goal line and the 6-foot-4 tight end out-jumped a pair of North defenders, pulling in the 30-yard score.
North looked ready to mount an immediate comeback when it got into the red zone on its first third-quarter drive, but Sidwell was able to intercept Frisoli’s pass at the goal line and keep the hosts off the board.
“They’re very quick,” Strachan said of the Franklin defense. “They did some good things up front, they did a lot more stunting this week than we saw last week. They’re physical. They came to play. They had a chip on their shoulder from last week and it showed.”
After the defense did its job and held the Panthers to a three-and-out, North got the ball back at the Franklin 31. Facing fourth and five, Frisoli was able to hook up with Rivera for six yards to keep things moving. Berthiaume was given the ball on three straight carries, all of seven yards, including the final one that found the end zone to make it 21-14 at the end of three.
North got the ball back at its own 21 with 8:13 remaining and marched 79 yards in 13 plays, taking up six minutes. Again, Frisoli found Rivera for a fourth down conversion to keep things alive and then hit him again for 25 yards to the Franklin nine. After an eight-yard pass to Aidan Conrad, Frisoli punched it in with a one-yard sneak.
The hosts were an extra point away from tying the game with 2:16 to go, but a low snap led to confusion and an attempted pass that Franklin was able to snuff out to preserve a one-point lead.
It came down to one last play to decide which team would get off to a winning start in the Kelley-Rex, and it was the defending champion Panthers that left the happier team on Friday.
“Tell me the easy game in the Hockomock,” said Bain. “We’re just going to take it one game at a time. Records don’t really matter, it’s how you come to play that night.”
Strachan added, “The Kelley-Rex is like the Big Ten, there’s no easy week. It’s something that we’ve got to put this behind us as quick as we can and get ready for Milford.”