Canton Squeaks Past Pembroke In The First Round

By Brian Hines, HockomockSports.com Contributor

CANTON, Mass. – After a mid-April matchup against the Pembroke Titans, the Canton Bulldogs knew their Division 2 South playoff matchup on Tuesday was not going to be easy.

“We played Pembroke earlier in the season and beat them 8-6,” said Canton head coach Bill Bendell. “We had some guys missing but they were good and we knew they were going to get better and they have a great coach. We knew it was going to be a dogfight when we looked at the seeding, we were like ‘Ah man, this is not going to be easy,’ there were some other matchups we would’ve preferred.”

The result for the Bulldogs on Tuesday was eerily similar to the first go around, as they pulled out an 8-7 victory in a hard-fought matchup.

The scoring came fast for Canton, as senior captain Charlie O’Connor took the opening faceoff and scored himself to give the Bulldogs a lead just eight seconds into the game.

“I wanted to set the tone for our team, make sure we had the momentum going our way,” O’Connor said. “I did what I could, ran down, they didn’t play me on the fast break and just took it to the net, shot and it went in.”

That wasn’t O’Connor’s only big play of the afternoon. After a strong defensive play by Gabe Galeotos and a clear by Brendan Albert with under a minute to go in the first half, Canton used a timeout with 29 seconds left to try and draw something up.

After the original shot was turned away, the ball laid unattended in the crease where O’Connor was able to play clean-up crew, scooping it into the net with one second remaining.

“The play right before halftime, we drew a couple things up, if they do this we’ll do this and we executed perfectly but they played really good defense, so they took away what we were trying to run,” Bendell. “Then our captain Charlie O’Connor knocked that ball in with one second left and that’s the game, that’s the game winner if you look at it that way.”

“I just brought out my inner hockey instincts almost,” said O’Connor. “Coach always says play to the whistle if the ball is on the goal line then poke it in…I poked it in and luckily, I kept my feet outside of the crease.”

The last-second goal gave the Bulldogs a 4-2 lead heading to halftime, forcing Pembroke to have to adjust during the break, which is exactly what they did.

The adjustments started with faceoff specialist Aidan Geary, who won eight draws in the second half to help bring the Titans get back into the game.

“[Geary] was really good and they made some adjustments,” Bendell said. “[Charlie] won the first one and scored and set the tone, that was huge, but after that, they really tightened that up and made it a battle. It was tough to get possessions.”

With those extra possessions, the Pembroke offense wasted little time getting back into the game.

After Mike Shaw (two goals, one assist) gave Canton a 5-2 lead, Pembroke’s Ryan Mulhern (two goals) scored in a five on five situation to pull the Titans back within two.

Canton then seemed destined to pull away yet again after a strong save from goalie Jack Connolly and a two-man advantage. However, the two-man advantage didn’t affect the Titans as Patrick Mulhern (three goals, one assist) scored with just over four minutes left in the third quarter.

The Titans then used their own man advantage with a Colin Newton goal and Michael Hendriksen added an even-strength goal just one minute later to cap a 4-0 run, which gave Pembroke their first lead of the game.

Canton then quickly answered when Kevin Albert (two goals, one assist) snuck one in just seconds after the faceoff to tie the game at 6-6 to end the third.

To start the fourth, Albert cashed in on another opportunity with 10 minutes remaining, only to have Patrick Mulhern tie the game just two minutes later. But with just over seven minutes remaining, a shot directed right to Albert who found Griffin Roach in front for what was the eventual game-winning goal.

“We’ve lost some one-goal games with these seniors so they’ve seen that,” Bendell said. “We were at D-Y a couple years ago and had them, then they beat us by a goal. We had Sandwich, it was tied late and they scored with under a minute left to beat us, so we survived and advanced just like they survived against us and advanced.”

Over the last seven minutes, the score remained 8-7 in large part due to Connolly in net. Connolly made four big saves in final minutes of regulation, including one with two seconds left that sealed the victory for the Bulldogs.

“He’s a beast, that was huge,” Bendell said. “The defense at the end of the game was clutch. You know the stick gets a little tight in those situations for some guys, but these guys thrive on that stuff. Jack doesn’t get discouraged, he might have a moment where he puts his head down for one brief moment but he’s still a sophomore, he’s a confident enough kid who plays varsity hockey, varsity football and varsity lacrosse so this is nothing new to him. He loves the spotlight and that was huge, that was clutch.”

Canton boys lacrosse (10-7) will now travel to face the No. 3 seed Sandwich on Thursday at 5:00 P.M.

“We just said to these guys, the first win of the playoffs is the hardest,” Bendell said. “We’ve done that trip before, it’s not an easy trip and they’re a good team. But now you’re playing house money, you got past the first round now we’re the lower seed technically so now the pressures on them to beat us and we’re a tough team, so we’ll see.”

Friday’s Schedule & Scoreboard – 05/18/18

Today’s games are listed below.

Baseball
King Philip, 4 @ North Attleboro, 11 – FinalClick here for a recap of this game.

Mansfield, 5 @ Braintree, 4 – FinalBraintree loaded the bases in the bottom of the seventh inning but senior Kyle Moran limited the damage and picked up the final out to secure the win for the Hornets. Moran inherited first and second with no outs but got the first out on a sacrifice bunt that advanced both runners. Back-to-back walks loaded the bases and scored a run but Moran made a nice grab on a line drive back to the mound and an induced a fly ball to left for the final out. Mansfield scored two runs in the third, Braintree tied it with two in the fourth, but the Hornets took the lead for good with two runs in the fifth. Kevin Dow (two RBI), Chris Jenkins (run), and Mike Hargadon (two runs) had two hits apiece for Mansfield. Dow made the start and struck out 11 in six innings of work with no walks and two earned runs allowed.

Oliver Ames, 0 @ Brockton, 8 – Final

Taunton, 4 @ Sharon, 6 – Final

Softball
Canton, 3 vs. Boston Latin, 8 – Final

Canton, 10 vs. Boston Latin, 5 – Final

Foxboro, 6 @ Mansfield, 10 – FinalAfter scoring only three runs in the last three games, the Mansfield offense clicked into gear with 14 hits and 10 runs to put an end to a three-game losing streak. Foxboro took a 3-0 lead in the top of the first, but Mansfield answered with two in the bottom half to get right back into the game and never looked back. Kara Bendanillo, Megan Letendre, and Mady Bendanillo each had three hits, including a third-inning homer for Mady, while Caty DeMassi had two hits and Ella Verheggen, Mary Muldoon, and Kerran Holmes each had one hit apiece. Sarah Cahill earned the win with four strikeouts and scattering six hits.

Franklin, 0 @ North Attleboro, 1 – FinalAnnabelle Hebard plated the game’s only run with a sixth-inning single to lift North Attleboro to the win in a rapidly played game. Ashley Cangiano reached on an error with one out in the sixth and Bella Erti followed with a double to move runners into scoring position before Hebard provided the clutch hit. Hebard had three hits for North and Abby Gallagher and Emily Nardelli each had one. Erti tossed a two-hitter, walking just one and striking out four, and got some help in the seventh with a nice catch by Emily Pastore. Jackie Cherry and Maddy White each had a hit for Franklin while Emily Valentino allowed six hits and struck out five for the Panthers.

Stoughton, 7 @ Oliver Ames, 2 – Final (10 inn.)Stoughton’s offense came to life with a five-run 10th inning to beat Oliver Ames on the road. Gina Carafa allowed seven hits while striking out four to earn the win in the circle, and helped her own cause with a solo home run in the second and an RBI single in the 10th. Karly Estremera and Lexi Baptista each had three hits for the Knights while Taylor Levine chipped in with two. For OA, Alexis Campbell was 3-for-5 with a run scored and an RBI, Caroline Mahoney (RBI) had two hits, and Sarah Tetrault scored a run for the Tigers. Freshman Emma Varella struck out three in a complete game effort.

Taunton, 2 @ Moses Brown, 0 – FinalTaunton scored a run in the first inning and tacked on an insurance run to beat Moses Brown, one of the top teams in Rhode Island. Freshman McKenzie McAloon had a two-out RBI single to give the visiting Tigers the lead in the first. Kelsey White, who earned the win on the mound, added an insurance run by scoring on a wild pitch in the final inning. White struck out 13 with just three hits allowed and no walks to earn her sixth win of the season. Jaime Brown (double), Liana Duarte (run), and Mackenzie Handrahan each had two hits for the Tigers while Jaylin Couto chipped in with one hit.

Boys Lacrosse
Canton, 11 vs. Abington, 2 – FinalCanton extracted some revenge from a season ago, knocking off Abington to qualify for the state tournament. The Bulldogs fell to the Green Wave in the final game last season and missed the playoffs. This year, the win qualified Canton and knocked Abington from postseason contention. After leading just 2-1 after a quarter, Canton dominated the second with seven straight goals to take a 9-1 lead into halftime. Mike Shaw led the offense with five points (goal, four assists), senior Joey Vaughan scored his third goal in the past two games, Nick Mackay and Brendan Albert anchored a great defensive effort. Sophomore Jack Connolly played another strong all-around game with 11 saves.

Franklin, 12 vs. Cohasset, 7 – Final

King Philip, 9 vs. Falmouth, 10 – Final

Mansfield, 19 @ Barnstable, 8 – Final

Taunton vs. New Bedford, 4:00

Girls Lacrosse
Canton @ Natick, 4:00

King Philip @ Bishop Feehan, 4:00

Oliver Ames, 17 @ Milford, 6 – FinalSofia Masciarelli recorded nine points to help Oliver Ames pick up its second win over Milford this season. Masciarelli had five goals and four assists while Ella Hogan scored four goals and Olivia Piazza and Chloe Kilkelly each netted three goals.

Taunton, 4 @ New Bedford, 11 – Final

Boys Tennis
Mansfield, 5 @ Oliver Ames, 0 – FinalMansfield won all five matches to pick up its first win over Oliver Ames this season. Luke Nickerson (first singles) and Max Bank (second singles) each won 6-0, 6-0 while Sam Donellan earned a 6-0, 6-1 win at third singles. Sam Schirmacher and Nilay Pangrekar picked up a 6-0, 6-1 win at first doubles while Dheeraj Valluru and Kai Schirmacher recorded a 6-2, 6-2 win at second doubles for Mansfield.

Taunton, 3 vs. Durfee, 2 – Final

Girls Tennis
Mansfield, 3 @ Norton, 2 – FinalMansfield pulled within one match of qualifying for the state tournament with a win over Norton. Sarah Doyle earned a 6-0, 6-2 win at first singles, Elizabeth Elsner picked up a 6-4, 6-1 win at second singles and the team of Tessa Garaufi and Samantha Sternbug emerged victoriously, 6-3, 6-3, at first doubles.

Taunton, 5 @ Durfee, 0 – FinalTaunton junior Jillian Pagliuca won her match at first singles for her 70th career victory, setting a new Taunton girls tennis program record. Pagliuca won 6-2, 6-1 to hit the milestone. Vanessa Rosa (6-1, 6-1) and Jocelyn Pagliuca (6-2, 6-2) rounded out singles wins for the Tigers. McKenzie Lucie and Samantha Martin won 6-1, 6-1 at first doubles and Amanda Pugh and Brianna Fevrier didn’t lose a game in a 6-0, 6-0 win at second doubles.


Roach Scores OT Winner to Lift Canton Past Scituate

Canton boys lacrosse
Canton junior Griffin Roach scored with 1:38 remaining in the first overtime to lift the Bulldogs to a dramatic victory over Scituate. (Josh Perry/HockomockSports.com)

Josh PerryFollowJoshPerry


CANTON, Mass. – With 50 seconds left in regulation, Scituate’s goalie made his first save of the night and the Sailors, who led only once, had the opportunity to win the game. Canton LSM Brendan Albert’s stick check knocked the ball loose as the clock wound down and he managed to flick the ball backwards off the sideline to be scooped up by Matt Martin.

That defensive stand forced overtime in Monday night’s Div. 2 South showdown at World War II Veterans Memorial Field, but the Bulldogs would need another stop if they wanted to have a chance at the win. Canton held on defensively for more than two minutes before snatching possession.

Click here for a photo gallery from this game.

Following a timeout, the Bulldogs put the ball in the stick of junior attacker Griffin Roach behind the cage with classmate Mike Shaw setting a screen to give Roach a step of space. That was all he would need. He drove towards the alley and spun back on his defender towards the goal and finished in traffic to lift Canton to an 11-10 victory.

“They’ve been shutting off Mike Shaw, so we thought lets play some two-man game with and what are they going to do?” said Canton coach Bill Bendell of the closing sequence. “There’s no one I want the ball with that’s better than Griffin Roach. It was like slo-mo, we’ve seen it so many times in practice. he bring it so high and then inside roll and buried it.”

About the defensive stand that set up the winning possession, Bendell raved, “If they don’t beat us in transition, then we’re going to be okay because 6-on-6 we’d been playing really well.”

It has been a difficult stretch of the season for the Bulldogs, who lost to division rival North Attleboro by two and Sharon by one. It was also the second straight overtime game for Canton, which lost to King Philip last time out in a game that was a mirror image of Monday night.

“We had that,” Bendell said of the KP loss. “We had possession for like three minutes in overtime and then they had it for 10 seconds and scored.”

He added, “We deserved this one. That’s why the celebration was probably a little excessive but it was all that monkey off our backs.”

Scoring was at a premium in the first half. Dan Cohen got the night started with a man-up goal off a Kevin Albert assist, ripping a shot from straightaway. Scituate scored 90 seconds later to tie it, but Canton regained the lead with six minutes left in the first. Charlie O’Connor raced straight off the bench and down the middle where he received a pass from David Allen and held it until finishing on the edge of the crease.

The Sailors tied it again three minutes into the second, but Roach scored his first of the night with a drive to the cage from the right side, spinning past his marker and flicking a shot over the goalie. Scituate hit the post and Canton missed a chance off a turnover when Kevin Albert’s pass sailed over Shaw’s stick.

Cohen opened the scoring in the second half to build a two-goal lead, but Scituate answered back with three straight goals to take its first and only lead of the night at 5-4. Sophomore Jack Connolly made a big save and outlet pass to Cohen for a transition goal that tied the game and stole back momentum. Connolly finished the game with 16 saves.

“He’s a monster,” said Bendell. “I thought he played out of his mind. That’s one of the reasons the zone can be so effective is he takes up a lot of the cage, he’s athletic, he makes clears very well and now we’re going the other way.”

Cohen added an assist on a man-up situation a minute later with a perfect skip pass to Shaw on the left wing and the attacker patiently picked the near post corner to make it 6-5. Nick MacKay forced a turnover at midfield with a minute left in the third and ran around in the offensive half trying to use up the rest of the clock, but then the long pole dodged past his tired marker and scored with three seconds left in the third.

Bendell said of Scituate, “They never went away. At one point we had a two-goal lead near the end and I thought okay this is going to be it. They kept coming.”

The teams traded goals to start the fourth quarter, with Cohen scoring his fourth of the night. Scituate then scored two in a row to even the score at 8-8. Allen struck the post with a rocket of a shot, but the carom went right to a teammate, Kevin Albert, who found the back of the net with a lefty shot on the run.

Again, Scituate tied the game and had the chance at the lead but Connolly made one of his four fourth quarter saves. Albert was again the player to step up and put the Bulldogs in front with a similar effort to his first goal.

“When things were stalling is when Kevin said, I need to make a play and he scored a couple of big goals,” said Bendell.

Things got nervy at the end, especially with the way things had been going in close games in recent weeks, but the Bulldogs were able to pull out a much-needed win. Bendell said, “In my head, I was thinking that I just hope our guys believe because we were close against North Attleboro, close against Sharon. We had those games in hand and let them slip away, so we needed this. This is karma.”

It was also a win over a potential playoff opponent. Bendell added, “We needed a resume win this year. Not to take anything away from the teams we’ve beaten but we didn’t have that marquee win. This is a good team that we beat. We can build on this.”

Canton (4-5, 6-6) will be back home on Wednesday against Taunton, now needing two wins in the final four games to seal a tournament berth.

Click here for a photo gallery from this game.

2018 Hockomock League Boys Lacrosse Preview

2018 Hockomock League Boys Lacrosse Preview
Foxboro’s Jake Addeche makes a save in the playoffs last season. (Ryan Lanigan/HockomockSports.com)

By HockomockSports.com Staff

2018 Hockomock League Boys Lacrosse Preview

Attleboro

2017 Record: 8-10
2017 Finish: Missed playoffs
Coach: Kevin Koppy

After coming up just one game shy of the postseason, Attleboro is aiming to make the playoffs for the first time in program history in 2018.

The Bombardiers doubled their victory total from 2016 to 2017, going from four to eight in the win column. Attleboro returns 11 players from last year’s squad and has a total of 12 seniors on the team. Now in its fourth year, interest in the program is growing rapidly with 17 combined freshmen on either varsity or the JV roster.

There will be a lot of experience on the defensive end for Big Blue. Junior captain Trevor Koppy is back for his third year as the Bombardiers’ starting goalie. He turned away 306 shots last year with a 64% save percentage. In front of Koppy, senior captain Dan Perry is back to anchor the defensive unit which features all seniors.

“Dan is a physical defender that has excellent field awareness and leads by example,” said AHS head coach Kevin Koppy. “He’s constantly hustling and fighting hard for loose balls.”

Perry is joined by classmates Jim Nordberg and Chris Reynolds on close defense while Matt Potter will man LSM and Matt Jiminez brins an extra long pole presence to the defensive unit. Another returner is senior Kyle Henry, resuming his role as the team’s primary faceoff man. Henry had a successful 2017 season in that role and Big Blue will rely on him to spark the offense once again.

Seniors Jimmy Burke and Aidan McKenna, junior Cam Littig, and sophomore Thomas Shipman return to the midfield for Attleboro. Big Blue will have some new faces on the attack with seniors TJ Infante, Shane Joubert, and Aidan Downey leading the way. Freshman Mike Strachan and Matt Perry will also be involved in Attleboro’s attack.

Canton

2017 Record: 8-10
2017 Finish: Missed playoffs
Coach: Bill Bendell

The Bulldogs found themselves in an unfamiliar position at the end of last season: on the outside looking in for the postseason.

Canton is looking to get back into the postseason this year after coming up just one game shy of qualifying. The Bulldogs won three straight to give themselves a chance but fell just short on the road against Abington in the final game of the season.

Using that as motivation, look for the Bulldogs to be right back in the mix this season. Leading the way will be senior captains Kevin Albert, Charlie O’Connor, and Griffin Roach. All three patrolled the midfield last season but could see time in other spots depending on how the lineup comes together.

O’Connor will step in to handle faceoffs but could miss some time early along with defensemen Brian Ghostlaw and Brendan Albert. Until Canton gets back to 100%, it will rely on senior Gabe Galeotos, junior George Kent, and sophomores Nick Mackay and Jace Emma to provide protection in front of sophomore goalie Jack Connolly. Connolly had a superb freshman season in the cage for the Bulldogs and will try to build upon that his season.

Junior Mike Shaw is back for his third year on attack for Canton, providing experience and leadership up front. Juniors Matt Martin and Dan Cohen, along with sophomores Chris Lavoie and David Allen will also figure into the Bulldogs’ offense this season.”

“We have a great group of kids this year with a nice blend of experienced players and new faces,” said CHS head coach Bill Bendell.

Foxboro

2017 Record: 11-9
2017 Finish: Reached D2 Central/East First Round
Coach: Matt Noone

It’s safe to say Foxboro head coach Matt Noone is optimistic about the 2018 season.

The Warriors graduated just three players total and return their starting goalie, the entire defensive unit, and top three scorers from a season ago. Foxboro’s record was a bit deceiving based on how much talent they had, with five one-goal losses and two two-goal losses. The Warriors were dropped in the opening game of the playoffs by just one goal after holding a multi-goal lead in the second half.

With so much of the line up back, Noone is hoping to turn those close losses into wins.

“We’re going to be a better team than we were last year,” Noone said. “We have to play within our system, and do the simple things…if we do that, we will be very good and very tough to beat. If they don’t, we’ll be losing those one-goal games again.”

It all starts with defense in Foxboro with Jake Addeche returning in the cage for his third season. Addeche (185 saves) is one of the best goalies in the region and will have a very experienced defense in front of him. Senior Pat Kaveny and junior Pat Stapleton will anchor the defense, both with equipped with plenty of skill and experience, while sophomores Ronnie MacLellan and Matt Lathrop each already have a year of varsity experience under their belts.

Junior Brendan Tully (24 goals, 15 assists) will pace the Warriors in the midfield (“His lacrosse IQ is off the charts,” Noone notes). Tully can help transition Foxboro from defense to offense, and his ability to keep possession helps the Warriors control the tempo. Tully is complemented in the middle by seniors Louis Blake and Mike Collins while both Shayne Kerrigan and Bobby Yerardi will be in the mix as well.

Offensively, the Warriors look to be well-balanced with Louis Piccolo (25 goals, 13 assists) back this year along with senior Mike Moses (18 goals, 20 assists), junior Pete Conley (15 goals, 23 assists) and senior Andrew Whalen.

Franklin

2017 Record: 16-5
2017 Finish: Reached D1 South First Round
Coach: Lou Verrochi

Expectations are high for the 2018 season based on the talent the Franklin Panthers boast this year.

“We return a very good team,” said FHS head coach Lou Verrochi. “We have a very good and deep bench too, we’re looking forward to the season.”

The long list of returning talent starts with All-American and 2017 HockomockSports.com Player of the Year Eric Civetti. Civetti (Rutgers commit) has been tormenting opposing defenses since his freshman year. He scored 70 goals and notched 24 assists as a sophomore, and then netted 79 goals and 21 assists last year, totaling 194 points between the two years. The Panthers will also boast senior Zach Alexander and freshman Matt Lazzaro on attack.

The midfield will be loaded with two talented lines available. Captains Kyle McEniry (10 goals, 21 assists) and Chase Tanner (29 goals, 10 assists) will be joined by the speedy Nitin Chaudhury (24 goals, 10 assists) on the Panthers first unit while Jake Davis, Johnny O’Glishen, and Owen Palmieri give Verrochi an incredibly talented second unit.

As if the midfield wasn’t loaded enough, the Panthers have 2017 HockomockSports.com Underclassman of the Year Jacob Alexander back to dominate the faceoff X. Alexander, who is committed to play at Bryant University, has dominated at the X for the past two years and really gives the Panthers an advantage in terms of getting possession. “He’s arguably the best FOGO in Mass,” Verrochi noted.

The defense will be anchored by junior Patrick Morrison (Rutgers commit) along with Trevor Raffin, Jack McGrath and Spencer Briggs. Sean Lazzaro will be our top LSM while the Panthers have plenty of talent as SSDM with Will Harvey, Ben Kolb, and Aaron Mollo in the mix. Backstopping the team in goal will be Colorado commit and captain Connor O’Rourke (169 saves, 64% save percentage).

King Philip

2017 Record: 13-9
2017 Finish: Reached D1 South Quarterfinals
Coach: Hal Bean

The Warriors will be looking to replicate the success they had in the 2016 season again this year.

After finishing 9-2 in league play (second in the Kelley-Rex), the Warriors had an impressive postseason run, competing with top-seeded and eventual sectional champ BC High in the D1 South Quarterfinals.

A big reason why KP has had a lot of experience over the past four years is goalie Paul Macrina. Macrina is now manning the cage at Drexel University, so there are big shoes to fill in the cage this season for KP.

King Philip also has to find replacements for the production lost by LSM Zach D’Amico, attack Tim Watson (56 goals, 28 points – second in the Hockomock League), and defenseman Connor Khung – the first two selected to the 2017 HockomockSports.com First Team and Khung apart of the Second Team.

All is not lost though as the Warriors have junior Colin DeVellis back to spearhead the attack. DeVellis was fourth overall in the Hockomock League in points last season, scoring 22 goals and notching 36 assists (58 points). Another key piece will be senior Nate Minkwitz, who can make an impact on both ends of the field. Minkwitz had 13 goals and five assists last season and will aim to improve on that. Expect LSM Wesley Bishop and midfielder Aidan Bender to factor in this season as well.

Mansfield

2017 Record: 12-7
2017 Finish: Reached D1 South First Round
Coach: Tim Frias

Mansfield returns a good amount of talent from last year’s playoff squad so the Hornets will certainly be looking to book a return trip as well as compete for a Kelley-Rex title.

The Hornets return one of the most dangerous attackmen in the area in senior Hunter Ferreira. Ferreira’s combination of size, speed, and strength – as well as finishing ability – make him a must-watch for opposing defenses. Most will dedicate two defensemen his way but Ferreira still finished fifth in the league in points with 34 goals and 19 assists. Ferreira will be joined by returners Aidan Sacco and Mike Reed, giving the Hornets an experienced three-headed monster on offense.

The midfield is also loaded with experience behind returning starters Joe Cox (19 goals, 14 assists) and Danny DeGirolamo (17 goals, 15 assists). Cox, who was named to the 2017 HockomockSports.com Second Team, muscles his way through opponents, while DeGirolamo can use his speed to cause problems. Haig Megerdichian, Brett Kessler, Connor Quirk, and Brad Grant will all see time in the midfield as well.

Tommy Donnelly will anchor the defensive unit but the Hornets will have some new faces in back. Dan Plugis and Chris Copponi will both see a lot of minutes for the Hornets in front of goalie Jack Munroe, who stepped in last season and impressed in the cage.

“Our strength this year will be at the midfield with lots of legs,” said MHS head coach Tim Frias. “We should be good in transition as well.”

Milford

2017 Record: 4-13
2017 Finish: Missed playoffs
Coach: Jacob Scordato

Milford hasn’t had a ton of success overall since it joined the Hockomock League, but new head coach Jacob Scordato is hoping to change that going forward.

Scordato takes over a team that had just four wins a year ago and is the third coach in the past three years for the program.

“Our players are focused on making our program a successful one,” Scordato said. “Boys lacrosse in the Hockomock is known for being a tough league, and Milford lacrosse is going to be making a lot of noise from here on out.”

Although the Hawks don’t have an incredibly deep roster, the optimism stems from the experience returning on offense. UMass Boston commit and senior captain Andrew Gallagher (16 goals, 7 assists) will be a key weapon up front along with junior captains Ryan Hazard (41 goals, 10 assists) and Josh Ligor.

Scordato also expects junior newcomer Brendan White, who has had successful football and basketball seasons so far this school year, to make a big impact on offense for Milford. Defensively, Milford will rely on senior captain and midfielder Chase Blanchette.

North Attleboro

2017 Record: 16-3
2017 Finish: Reached D2 Central/East Quarterfinals
Coach: Kevin Young

North Attleboro graduated a lot of talent from last year’s squad, so it’s no surprise head coach Kevin Young believes this season will be a big challenge for his young squad.

Although he expects it to be a challenge, the Rocketeers have built a strong program and will likely be in the mix for the division title with Foxboro. Big Red will be anchored by defenseman and captain Tom Lockavitch (Roger Williams commit) and senior LSM Max Fontes. Both Lockavitch and Fontes had tremendous junior seasons and were both honored by HockomockSports.com (first and second teams, respectively). Sophomores Brett Labonte and Will Yeomans will round out a strong defensive unit.

One of the biggest tasks will be filling the void left in goal with Hock MVP and long-time starter Dan MacDonald now graduated. The Rocketeers have three goalies in the mix with Young noting all are working hard to claim the starting spot. Junior Jack Puccio and sophomores Nate D’Amico and Jake McNeany will all be in the mix.

Captain Tommy Lindstrom (Springfield commit) will pace the offense with the help of sophomores Jack Connolly and Andy DeMattio. Faceoff specialist Jason McNeany (Cocker College commit) is also back and will be a key piece of the offense. Nick Ward, Damien Curtis, and Dan Conroy should carry the transition in the midfield with help from Ryan Rajotte and Matt McSweeney.

Oliver Ames

2017 Record: 8-10
2017 Finish: Missed playoffs
Coach: Ben Devlin

Oliver Ames nearly made it two straight years in the postseason but came up just one game shy of qualifying in 2017. So the goal is simple for the Tigers in 2018: get back to the tournament.

The Tigers return their top six scorers from last season, and now with a year more experience under their belts, should be ready to take on some of the top defenses in the league.

Assistant coach Ben Devlin takes over the reigns of the program, and the familiarity should help make for a smooth transition. Senior captains Eric LeBlanc (30 goals, 13 assists) and Owen Gallagher will spearhead the attack while senior captain Jack Lang will make an impact on both ends of the field while also handling faceoff duties. Junior Colin Bourne and sophomores Sam Stevens and Shane Kilkelly give the Tigers varsity experience in the midfield. Sophomore Frankie Ireland and freshman Remi Creighton will also figure into the mix on offense.

Devlin will have holes to fill on the defensive end but its excited about the skill that the Tigers have. Shane Murphy, Cullen Gallagher, and Matt Saba will be relied upon to carry the defensive unit while Rory Madden will handle LSM duties after missing last season. Nick Gillis will take over for Sean Cosgrove in net after impressing at the JV level.

“We are a couple years into rebuilding this program, which is difficult while playing in such a tough conference against some of the best players and coaches in the state,” Devlin said. “We’re young and inexperienced, but talented on defense. All I can ask is for my kids to play to their capabilities. If we do that I think we can win enough games this season to reach our goal.”

Sharon

2017 Record: 7-11
2017 Finish: Missed playoffs
Coach: Jon Shocket

New head coach Jon Shocket is excited and optimistic that the 2018 season will be a successful one on the lacrosse field for the Sharon Eagles.

Shocket believes the Eagles have the lacrosse IQ and skill to get back to the postseason after missing out on qualification by two wins. A big reason for the optimism is the senior class.

“I have a really good senior group,” Shocket said. “If everyone buys into the system and trusts the process, this should be a fun season. This year, we have to make better decisions and move the ball around. It’s about working as a team instead of as individuals.”

The Eagles have experience at all positions on the field, starting with returning goalie Johnny Greenberg. Greenberg enters his third year as the starting goalie and will have good size in front of him. Both Sam Spencer and Coleman Loftus stand at 6’2 and look to be key pieces in the Eagles’ defensive unit.

In the midfield, Jimmy Fitzhenry, Chase Waxman, and Spencer Hall give the Eagles a well-balanced and experienced group. The three provide a combination of speed, strength, and skill that will help Sharon transition from defense to offense. Junior Matt Callan will handle faceoff duties while freshman LSM Tyler Freidman will be in the mix as well.

Senior Brett Litner brings a strong shot to the offense and will be tough to stop on the inside. Classmate Kadin Nestler gives the Eagles speed on the outside and makes the move from midfield to attack this year. Freshman Drew Litner rounds out the Eagles’ attacking unit.

Stoughton

2017 Record: 4-12
2017 Finish: Missed playoffs
Coach: Pat Healey

After winning four games in its inaugural season at the varsity level, Stoughton boys lacrosse is hoping to continue heading in the right direction this spring.

The Knights picked up wins over Milford twice, Taunton, and Norton and will look to be in competition with those squads again this year. Leading the blue collar group will be captains Justin Ly, Sean Doherty, and Danny Nakhili. Ly is a three-sport athlete that is willing to do the dirty work, Nakhili provides a lot of leadership in the midfield and uses his speed to give the offense a boost, and Doherty will handle the faceoff duties and provide an offensive punch.

Twins Nate and Alex Wilson bring skill to the long poles, Marty Barrett and Josh Cohen will be key pieces on defense, and Charlie Morgan, Luke Bainton, and Mike Tracey will all be in the mix offensively.

“I’m hoping for more wins,” said SHS head coach Pat Healey said in an interview with Stoughton Media Access. “Last year we got four under our belt which is great for a first-year program. We brought up a lot of freshmen this year from the youth program. But baby steps, this is a tough league so we’ll do as best as we can.

Taunton

2017 Record: 0-18
2017 Finish: Missed playoffs
Coach: Brendan Chambers

Now in its third year as a varsity program, Taunton is aiming to progress day by day to continue to build the program.

The Tigers went without a win last season but bring seven starters back with another year of success on their belts. Junior goalie Ryan Williams returns in cage to give the Tigers a familiar face on the defensive end. Williams has been manning the cage for Taunton since the team moved to a varsity schedule.

In front of Williams will be junior Justin Demoga, a captain, that handles close defense. Head coach Brendan Chambers noted Demoga is great with positioning, takes a great approach, and is willing to learn and improve every day. Chambers noted Demoga will be tasked with menacing opponents’ best attack throughout the season.

In the midfield, junior captain Dylan Nichols provides leadership and experience for the Tigers. Nichols has the speed to make an impact on both ends of the field and Chambers is hoping for some offensive production out of the junior. Nichols will be joined by senior Chris Kanabayashi who will contribute to the offense with his hard shot.

Junior Noah Kuczewski is making the jump from JV to varsity and will be one of the Tigers’ main pieces on attack. Chambers is also relying on junior captain Joel Delgado, who put a lot of time in during the offseason to improve, to be an important part of the offense.

“Our goal this year is to continue to build on what we did last year,” Chambers said. “We want to increase our lacrosse IQ and try to be more competitive in all our games. Ideally, we’ll win a couple games and get better every day.”

2017 HockomockSports.com Football Awards

The 2017 Hockomock League Football All Stars

Below are the official 2017 Hockomock League Football All Stars, selected by the coaches in the league.

Hockomock League MVP

Kelley-Rex

Shane Frommer, King Philip

Davenport

Chad Peterson, North Attleboro

Hockomock League All Stars

Kelley-Rex Division

Cam Furtado, Attleboro
James Weir, Attleboro
Elvin Sam, Attleboro
Brian Kosicki, Franklin
Jake Noviello, Franklin
Shane Frommer, King Philip
Jack Piller, King Philip
Brendan Lydon, King Philip
Jack Webster, King Philip
Andrew Dittrich, King Philip
Will Shield, Mansfield
Hunter Ferreira, Mansfield
Danny DeGirolamo, Mansfield
Vinnie Holmes, Mansfield
Anthony Berksza, Oliver Ames
Jack Mills, Oliver Ames
Zakim Harrow, Taunton
Dan Murphy, Taunton

Davenport Division

Brendan Albert, Canton
Alec Ragusa, Canton
Devin Hassett, Foxboro
Mike Henri, Foxboro
Kade Treannie, Foxboro
Patrick Kaveny, Foxboro
Patrick Brogioli, Milford
Will Pointer, Milford
Neil Arquillano, Milford
Chad Peterson, North Attleboro
Ryan Clemente, North Attleboro
Sam Bullock, North Attleboro
Marion Bresko, North Attleboro
Aidan Harding, North Attleboro
Justin Ly, Stoughton
Alex Sjoquist, Stoughton
Ruben Gonzalez, Stoughton
Jason Joseph, Stoughton

Canton Snaps Skid, Wins Big On Thanksgiving

Canton football
Canton’s Alec Ragusa (center) is tackled by a pafourof Stoughton players, including Alex Sjoquist (right). (Ryan Lanigan/HockomockSports.com)
 
ByRyanLanigan_2016FollowRyanLanigan_2016
 
 
CANTON, Mass. – Canton head coach Dave Bohane and his team heard the whispers.

After a dominating win by Stoughton on Thanksgiving last year, and a shutout over Canton during the regular season earlier this year, the Black Knights had won seven of the past eight meetings, and for straight on the holiday.

“There was some local talk that this rivalry had lost some luster,” Bohane said. “I couldn’t disagree more.”

And by the the way the Bulldogs played on Thursday morning, neither could they.

In its best game of the season, Canton scored a 27-0 win over the Black Knights. It marked the first since on the holiday since 2012, and first win at Veteran’s Memorial Field against Stoughton on Thanksgiving since 2003.

Click here for a photo gallery from this game.

A suffocating defense limited the Black Knights to less than 100 yards, and became the first group to shut out Stoughton since October 2010.

“This rivalry has respect on both sides and we love to play each other,” Bohane said. “This rivalry is going strong, and today we came to play. These kids talk about this game all year long, this is part of the voyage of being a football player at Canton, you play Stoughton on Thanksgiving”

The Bulldogs’ defense looked as though it had been ready for this game all year, allowing just 36 yards total in the first half, with 27 of them coming on one play. It forced Stoughton into a three-and-out to start the game and the offense came through right away.

Highlighted by a 25-yard run from senior Alec Ragusa (15 carries, 102 yards, touchdown) and a 10-yard pass from sophomore Johnny Hagan to Ryan Lentol on fourth down, the Bulldogs marched 67 yards on nine plays.

Hagan capped the drive, eluding a pair of Stoughton defenders on a 22-yard scramble into the end zone. Owen Lehane’s first of three successful extra points put Canton up 7-0 with 4:33 left in the first quarter.

After trading punts, Stoughton’s third drive of the game was halted by a turnover on just the second play. After Justin Ly scampered for 27-yards on first down, the Black Knights fumbled on their next play, and Ragusa quickly scooped it up and sprinted 45-yards for a touchdown and a 14-0 lead with under a minute left in the first quarter.

“It had been eight quarters in a row that we were shutout by them so you start second guessing yourself but we stuck together as a team and as a staff,” Bohane said. “Coach Burke’s defenses are always among the best in the state, and we get to see it every year. We just stuck with what we do.”

Stoughton’s offense continued to struggle to move the ball against the Bulldogs. On third down of its next drive, junior Evan Gibb was sacked by Ragusa and the Knights were forced to punt.

Canton took advantage of a short field two series later. It took the Bulldogs just five plays to cover 34 yards, with Ragusa capping the drive with his first rushing touchdown of the day from four yards out. Junior Brendan Albert put an end to Stoughton’s final drive of the half with a sack on third down. Canton took the 20-0 lead into halftime.

The Bulldogs’ defense held Stoughton to just three first downs all game, and didn’t allow a third (0-for-8) or fourth (0-for-1) conversion. Canton took advantage of its defense right away, scoring on its first drive after Stoughton was forced to punt to start the game.

The Black Knights’ defense came up with a big three-and-out stop to open the second half but Canton’s defense responded with a huge stop on third and one and got the ball back for its offense.

Click here for a photo gallery from this game.

The offense rewarded the defense with its longest drive of the game, covering 70 yards in nine plays before finding the end zone again. Sophomore Gersom Rivera (nine carries, 66 yards) got the drive started with a 32-yard dash, and, despite a holding penalty, Hagan moved the chains with a 21-yard run of his own.

The Bulldogs went with four straight running plays, the last a QB option that Hagan kept and extended over the goal line while being tackled to make it 27-0 late in the third quarter.

“I don’t like talking young, but we are young and I think we made our fair share of young mistakes during the year,” Bohane said. “The first game against Stoughton we made every mistake and we only lost 12-0, it was a frustrating game. We had a steady improvement all season. Today I thought we stayed clean and that helped us get the momentum. Stoughton is a real good team, but we just kept plugging away.”

Stoughton’s offense moved into Canton territory for the first time on the final play of the third quarter, but three plays into the final frame, the Black Knights were forced to go for it on fourth down. Canton senior Tony Harris jumped the quick out-route and intercepted the pass, returning it 29 yards to get the Bulldogs the ball back.

“We were up 20-0 on them a couple years ago and we managed to lose the game, so we’re always on edge…but the defense played phenomenal,” Bohane said. “Coach Carew does a great job for them with the offense but we just kept plugging away. He makes adjustments, we make adjustments. The kids played great. We don’t have a lot of mottos and we don’t use cliches, but we say Gang Green on defense and pursue the football. Overall we base everything on being tough and I thought our kids were tough today.”

Canton football finishes the season 5-6 overall, with half of their losses coming by less than six points. Stoughton finishes the season 6-5.

Click here for a photo gallery from this game.

Football: 2017 Davenport Division Preview

2017 Davenport Football Preview

By HockomockSports.com Staff

2017 Davenport Football Preview

Canton

2016 Record: 3-8
2016 Finish: Missed playoffs
Coach: Dave Bohane

Key/Returning Players: Brendan Albert, Jr., LB; Alec Ragusa, Sr., FB/LB; Jude Albert, Sr., OL/LB; Kearvens Theodore, Sr., OL/DL; Chris Benjamin, Sr., OL/DL; Tony Harris, Sr., SE/DB; Johnny Hagan, Soph., QB; Kyle Fitzgerald, Soph., FS; Ben Seaman, Jr., LB; Gersom Rivera, Soph., RB; Jack Connolly, Soph., OL/DL; Christian Walker, Sr., TE;

Outlook: The Bulldogs have a solid handful of experienced players back this season and will be looking to mix in a good amount of youth during the 2017 season.

While Canton will have plenty of seniors on the field, head coach Dave Bohane expects a good mix of juniors and even sophomores to get plenty of playing time. The youth starts under center as sophomore Johnny Hagan takes over as the team’s starting quarterback. He’ll have two big targets to work with in Tony Harris and Christian Walker as well as a versatile backfield that features Alec Ragusa and Gersom Rivera.

On the defensive side of the ball, a group of experienced linebackers, including Ragusa, Jude Albert, Brendan Albert and Ben Seamen will anchor the Bulldogs. Kearvens Theodore will be a big piece on the defensive line, alongside Chris Benjamin and Jack Connolly. Sophomore Kyle Fitzgerald will take on the responsibility of being a starting safety but will have plenty of experience in the secondary with seniors Cordell Smith and Marquise Montes manning the corners.

“Getting off to a good start is always important, and equally important is those later weeks,” Bohane said. “We have to keep bodies fresh and keep ourselves in a position to make playoffs. It’s a tough league, everyone we play will be a really good football team. We’re young but athletic and competitive, and I think that will make a difference.”

Foxboro

2016 Record: 5-6
2016 Finish: Missed playoffs
Coach: Jack Martinelli

Key/Returning Players: Teddy Maher, Sr., SS/WR; Phil Dure, Sr., CB/WR; Louis Piccolo, Sr., FS; Devin Hassett, Sr., QB/SE/FS; Jake Addeche, Sr., WR/CB; Patrick Kaveny, Sr., DE; Mike Henri, Sr., RB/SS; Matt Pond, Sr., LB; Mike Luong, Jr., RB; Matt Suess, Sr., OL/DL; Anthony Capachietti, Sr., RB; Hunter Williams, Jr., OL; Andrew Longa, Jr., OL; Kade Treannie, Sr., OL.

Outlook: Foxboro is looking to ride the strength of a deep senior class to get back to the playoffs after missing out a season ago and also get back into the Davenport division title hunt after winning it two years ago.

The Warriors boast 35 seniors and have a handful of experienced juniors that are back after winning five games last season. Under center, senior Devin Hassett and junior Liam Foley are both in the running to take snaps. Hassett is also an option to catch the ball, giving the Warriors some flexibility on the offensive end. A strength that Foxboro will rely on on the offensive side of the ball is their playmaking ability at the skill positions. The Warriors boast multiple capable ball carriers (Mike Henri, Mike Luong, Anthony Capachietti) and pass catchers (Teddy Maher, Phil Dure, Jake Addeche) that can make things happen. Seniors Matt Suess and Kade Treannie and juniors Hunter Williams and Andrew Longa will see time on the offensive line.

Defensively, Foxboro will be looking to improve after giving up just over 29 points per game against division opponents a year ago. The Warriors will be relying on quickness and an aggressive demeanor to make plays on the defense end. Louis Piccolo, Maher, Hassett, Addeche and Henri are all likely candidates to see time in the secondary while Pat Kaveny (defensive end) and Matt Pond (linebacker) will lead the front seven.

“Chemistry amongst 35 seniors and a return to ‘old school Foxboro football’ will personify the 2017 season,” said Foxboro head coach Jack Martinelli.

Milford

2016 Record: 6-5
2016 Finish: Reached D2 South Quarterfinals
Coach: Anthony Vizakis

Key/Returning Players: Ryan O’Toole, Sr., RB; Matt Curran, Sr., QB; Patrick Brogioli, Sr., OL/DL; Tyler Joyce, Sr., TE/DE; Cullen Burns, Sr., OL/DL; Kayden Kelley, Sr., WR/CB; Will Pointer, Sr., RB/LB; Shapel Feaster, Jr., RB/CB; Matt Annantuonio, Sr., RB/CB; David Abbatinozzi, Sr., OL/DL; Brendan White, Jr., TE/S; Josh Ligor, Jr., OL/DL; Chris Rivera, Sr., RB/LB; Jacob Eosco, Sr., OL/DL.

Outlook: First year head coach Anthony Vizakis is looking to the past as he begins his first season with the Scarlet Hawks. Vizakis is hoping the 2017 Hawks will pull from the tradition of the program as they look to get back to the playoffs once again this year.

It will certainly be a challenge as Milford graduated some of the most talented players in the league, from all different parts of the field. One constant is that the Hawks return quarterback Matt Curran for his senior year. Another familiarity for Curran will be running back Ryan O’Toole, who saw a lot of time last year alongside Blake Hill in the backfield. Receiver Kayden Kelley and tight end Tyler Joyce are also back after getting plenty of reps on the offensive end as well. Seniors Patrick Brogioli and Cullen Burns are two returning starters from the Hawks’ offensive line.

Defensively, the Scarlet Hawks will be looking to continue what they did in 2016, allowing just a shade over 17 points per game. While it was impressive that Milford allowed just 28 points total against Sharon, Canton and Foxboro, the Hawks will need to make a leap to try and halt the offensive firepower of North Attleboro and Stoughton. It will start up front with a tough line and then an athletic group of linebackers. Will Pointer and Chris Rivera will be two of those linebackers while Shapel Feaster and Matt Annantuonio will join Brendan White as members of the secondary.

“Milford football prides itself on the tradition of having ​​physically, and mentally tough football players,” Vizakis said. “That tradition is alive and well, and the energy and intensity coming out of our locker room and onto the practice field thus far has been infectious.”

North Attleboro

2016 Record: 9-2 (Davenport Division Champions)
2016 Finish: Reached D2 South Final
Coach: Don Johnson

Key/Returning Players: Chad Peterson, Sr., QB/P; Zach DeMattio, Sr., RB/LB; Sam Bullock, Sr. OL/DL; Brad White, Sr. OL/DL; Mario Bresko, Sr., SE/DB; Ryan Clemente, Jr., OL/DL.

Outlook: With two straight league titles under its belt, North Attleboro isn’t planning to slow down anytime soon. With record-breaking quarterback Chad Peterson back under center for his senior season, the Rocketeers look to be the early favorite for another Davenport title.

After two straight impressive season, Peterson will look to lead this year’s Rocketeers to their second straight Davenport title and another deep run in the playoffs. While playmakers Bobby Mylod and Nick Rajotte are gone, Peterson will have running backs Zach DeMattio and Adam Eberle to work with and receivers Mario Bresko, Omar Jasseh and Ryan Gaumond when he drops back to throw. Junior Ryan Clemente already has a year’s experience under his belt and could be one of the most dominant lineman in the league this season. Sam Bullock, Brad White, John Bradley, Geoff Wilson, Jack Puccio, Aidan Harding and Joe Larkin will all be options alongside Clemente on the offensive line.

One of the biggest reasons for North’s success a year ago was its very impressive defense, which allowed just under 12 points per game (Hockomock League best). Big Red will have to replace some big names and might have to overcome some inexperience early on, but head coach Don Johnson notes there is good competition among the front seven and secondary. Bresko is one player that has experience in the secondary while DeMattio (linebacker) and Bullock (defensive tackle) will anchor the front seven.

“The team has worked hard in the offseason,” Johnson said. “We are confident that our strong scrimmage schedule (Marshfield, Braintree and Bridgewater-Raynham), and a Week 1 non-league game versus defending D2 Super Bowl champion King Philip, will help us prepare for the ultra-competitive Hockomock League schedule.”

Sharon

2016 Record: 6-5
2016 Finish: Missed playoffs
Coach: Dave Morse

Key/Returning Players: Austin Dodes, Sr., WR/DB; Drew Naisuler, Sr., TE/DE; Coleman Loftus, Jr., OL/DL; Chris Gong, Jr., WR/DB; Sam Spencer, Jr., TE/LB; Aaron Strong, Jr., RB/LB; Jeremy Ruskin, Jr., QB.

Outlook: The 2017 version of the Sharon Eagles might be on the young side, but head coach Dave Morse is hoping that youth injects some energy into his squad.

The Eagles started and finished the 2016 season strongly, going 3-0 to begin and then closing with a win over Hopkinton and then a Thanksgiving Day win over rival Oliver Ames to finish over .500. Now, the Eagles will be trying to repeat that success while improving their league record. Junior Jeremy Ruskin is back under center after taking over late in the season last fall and will have senior Austin Dodes and tight end Drew Naisuler available as pass catching options. Junior Aaron Strong saw some carries last year and will likely be a feature back this season.

Defensively, the Eagles were one of the stingiest units in the entire league (just over 18 PPG). The Eagles held six of their 11 opponents under 14 points per game. Junior Coleman Loftus is a returning starter and a two-way lineman for the Eagles while junior linebacker Sam Spencer will look to make an impact this season. Chris Gong joins Dodes and Strong in the secondary while Naisuler will be a part of the Eagles’ front seven.

“It has been a pleasure coaching this group and seeing them make progress,” Morse said. “Despite being the youngest team I have coached, their commitment is refreshing and they motivate me to help them succeed.”

Stoughton

2016 Record: 8-3
2015 Finish: Reached D2 South Semifinal
Coach: Greg Burke

Key/Returning Players: Evan Gibb, Jr., QB; Jason Joseph, Sr., DE/TE; Justin Ly, Sr., FB/LB; Colin Sanda, Sr., WR/DB; Ruben Gonzalez, Sr., WR/RB/DB; Alex Sjoquist, Sr., RB/DB; Paul Feeney, Sr., OL/DL; Anthony Burke, Sr., OL/DL.

Outlook: The Black Knights have had a strong stretch of success over the past couple of seasons and will try to continue that in 2017, despite graduating a very memorable senior class last season.

Gone are playmakers Ryan Sullivan and Izon Swain-Price, as well as linemen Lino Azul and Andrew Iverson and a handful of terrific role players. But, one key returning piece is junior quarterback Evan Gibb. Gibb took over early on during his sophomore season and looked very comfortable in his role. Now he will have to be a leader of the offensive unit. Justin Ly was the third member of Stoughton’s three-headed rushing attack a year ago and will likely be one of the team’s feature backs. Ly is a tough runner that can get yards up the middle but also has speed to get to the outside. Alex Sjoquist will likely also get carries while experienced receivers Colin Sanda and Ruben Gonzalez should see increased roles in 2017.

The Knights are well known for their defense during the successful stretch. While there will be a lot of new faces in new places, the Knights are relying on improved speed to go along with their strength. Jason Joseph is back after a solid junior campaign to lead the defensive line along with Paul Feeney, while Ly is joined by Anthony Burke as linebackers. Sanda, Gonzalez and Sjoquist will all see time in the secondary for Stoughton.

“We’re replacing so many kids from last year,” Stoughton head coach Greg Burke said. “We hope to be ready without a lot of experience. We hope to compete and be healthy.”

Thursday’s Schedule & Scoreboard – 04/20/17

Today’s games are listed below.

Baseball
Oliver Ames, 8 @ Attleboro, 6 – FinalIt was a back and forth battle between the Tigers and Bombardiers, with Oliver Ames prevailing behind three runs in the seventh inning. The Tigers grabbed the lead with three runs in the top of the first but Attleboro cut into the deficit with a pair of runs in the bottom half. Attleboro took a 4-3 lead in the fourth but OA grabbed a 5-4 advantage in the top of the fifth. The Bombardiers tied the game 5-5 in the bottom of the fifth and took a 6-5 lead in the bottom of the sixth. Oliver Ames took advantage of 10 walks on the day. Junior Matt Muir (2-for-5) drove in a pair of runs and the Tigers added an insurance run on a wild pitch to go up 8-6 in the top of the seventh. Cam Johnson was 2-for-3 with two RBI for OA while Alden Newman had a standout day behind the plate and went 1-for-3 with an RBI. Sophomore Chris Pearsons (RBI) picked up the win, coming on in relief in the sixth and didn’t give up a hit. Attleboro junior Jon Candiales (3-for-3) reached base four times and had an RBI double while sophomore Troy Van Vliet recorded a pair of hits for the Bombardiers.

Sharon, 3 @ Canton, 4 – FinalCanton struck for a pair of runs in the third and then again in the fourth, holding off a Sharon rally late to pick up its first win of the season. A trio of sophomores stepped up to lead the Bulldogs. Matt Pigeon had a two-run single to pace the offense. Paul Corcoran earned the win, tossing five scoreless innings while classmate Rob Sullivan earned the two-inning save. Sharon’s Spencer Singer had a three-run double in the sixth to bring the Eagles within one.

Foxboro, 2 @ Milford, 3 – FinalMilford senior Alex Macek had another strong outing on the mound for the Scarlet Hawks, going the distance without giving up an earned run. He scattered eight hits and struck out seven to earn the win. Offensively, he went 1-2 with a run scored. Milford scored all three runs in the third inning, junior Aidan Wilde going 2-for-3 with an RBI triple and Anthony Arcudi hitting 1-for-3 with an RBI for the Scarlet Hawks. Foxboro tacked on single runs in the sixth and in the seventh. Steve McLaughlin struck out five and allowed six hits in a complete game effort for the Warriors. Colin Thoener was 2-for-4 for Foxboro.

Franklin, 6 @ Mansfield, 2 – FinalFranklin’s offense picked right where it left off from Wednesday’s walk-off win over Walpole. The Panthers pounced for three runs in both the first and second innings to take a 6-0 lead. Mansfield tacked on single runs in the fifth and seventh innings. Franklin junior Jason Ulrickson was impressive on the mound, giving up just one earned run on seven hits and just one walk in a complete game effort. Ulrickson also struck out five and had two RBI and a run scored on the offensive end. Jake Lyons (two runs) and Tyler Gomes (RBI) each went 2-for-4 for Franklin while Ryan Hodgkins (1-for-2) had an RBI and two runs, Bryan Woelfel had a two RBI single and Cam Lupien was 2-for-3 with a run scored. Mansfield’s Matt Farragher had an RBI single for the Hornets.

Taunton, 6 @ King Philip, 4 – FinalTaunton overcame a four run deficit, scoring runs in the fifth, sixth and seventh innings to earn a key division win over King Philip. The Warriors plated a pair of runs in the second and the fourth innings. The Tigers cut the deficit in half with two in the fifth and took the lead with three runs in the top of the sixth. Taunton added an insurance run in the top of the seventh. With the game tied 4-4, Taunton senior Billy Emerson (1-for-2, two RBI) knocked in the go-ahead run with a single. Taunton sophomore Jack Moynihan (2-for-4, run) earned the win, striking out two with four runs allowed in six innings of work. Senior Danny Keogh got the save with a scoreless seventh inning. Tyler Medeiros and Jacob Crawford each went 2-for-4 with an RBI while David Schofield went 1-for-3 with two RBI and a run scored. King Philip’s Kyle Guenthner was 2-for-4 with two RBI and Chris Wing went 2-for-2 with an RBI and a run scored. Wing also struck out three in 5.2 innings of work, allowing three earned runs.

Stoughton, 7 @ North Attleboro, 2 – FinalStoughton’s Luke Johnson got the offense going early and Ryan Sullivan had a solid outing on the mound as the Black Knights battled the Rocketeers for the top spot in the Davenport. Johnson (3-for-4) connected for a two-out two RBI single in the top of the first to put Stoughton ahead. Evan Gibb had two hits, Ruben Gonzalez hit a solo home run and Jack Connelly knocked a two-run shot over the fence. Sullivan allowed just one earned run in six innings of work, walking two, allowing four hits and striking out five. Gibb pitched a scoreless, no-hit seventh inning with two strikeouts.

Softball
Attleboro, 10 @ Oliver Ames, 8 – FinalAttleboro scored early and often, needed each run to take down the Tigers at Parkview Elementary. Big Blue pushed across five runs in the top of the first and added two more in the second to take a 7-1 lead. OA responded with four runs in the bottom of the second to cut Attleboro’s lead to 7-5. The Bombardiers never relinquished the lead and took a 10-8 decision. McKenzie Bergdoll went the distance in the circle for Attleboro, striking out seven and went 3-for-4 at the plate. Lead off hitter Jordyn Lako went 3-for-4 with two runs scored and Julya Woyton hit 3-for-4 with a three-run triple with the bases loaded in the first inning. AHS coach Mark Homer said Kayla Battisti made several stops at third base, helping to thwart OA’s comeback attempts. Oliver Ames’ Victoria Ziner was perfect at the plate (4-for-4, three singles, double) with three runs scored for the Tigers. Lexie Campbell (1-for-3) and Katie Abreu (3-for-4, double) had two RBI each. Rachel Han and Caroline Mahoney also each knocked in a run for OA.

Canton, 4 @ Sharon, 9 – FinalSenior Sam Marglous provided the offense to help the Eagles pick up a second win of the season. Marglous went 3-for-3 with two RBI and a run scored. Alli Small, Rebecca Clayman, and Clara Cook each had hits and Sharon coach Deb Parker added that Small also played a strong defensive game at shortstop.

Milford, 16 @ Foxboro, 4 – Final (6 inn.)Milford and Foxboro traded runs in the third inning to make it 2-2 but Milford’s offense came to life, scoring three runs in the fourth and then exploding for 11 runs in the sixth. Emily Piergustavo (3-for-5, HR, two runs, four RBI) and Jess Tomaso (3-for-5, HR, double, three runs, three RBI) connected on back-to-back home runs to pace the Hawks’ offense. Kaitlyn DeCapua went 3-for-4 with two RBI and two runs scored, Emily Hartman was 3-for-5 with a home run, four RBI, a double and two runs and Shannon Cormier was 3-for-4 with an RBI and two runs scored.

Mansfield, 5 @ Franklin, 4 – Final (9 inn.)Mady Bendanillo scored the game-winning run for Mansfield in the top of the ninth inning on a sacrifice fly by Mackenzie Burke. Bendanillo slid in just ahead of the tag to give the Hornets the lead. Franklin put two runners on in the bottom of the ninth, but Sarah Cahill got the final two outs to earn the complete game win. Mansfield took a two-run lead in the top of the seventh. Megan Letendre reached on an error and Bendanillo was hit by a pitch, followed by back-to-back RBI singles by Marissa Staffer and Kerran Holmes. Franklin rallied with two in the bottom of the seventh to force extra innings. Kim Moulton (pinch hit) and Rachel Cousineau (3-for-4) had back to back singles. Olivia Haba tagged up for third and scored on an overthrow. Olivia DiGiacomo singled to score Cousineau.

King Philip, 3 @ Taunton, 1 – FinalTaunton took the lead with a run in the bottom of the first, but King Philip responded with three in the top of the second and that was enough to pull out the win in a pivotal Kelley-Rex division game. Jess Bonner drove in one run and Elise Pereira had an RBI double and scored on a wild pitch, while Jenn Hutnyan allowed only one run on four hits to pick up the win for the Warriors. Courtney Fisher allowed two earned runs on three hits for the Tigers and Taunton coach Dave Lewry praised eighth grader Hannah Aldrich for a strong game defensively at shortstop. Aldrich had eight assists and three put-outs. MacKenzie Handrahan drove in the lone Taunton run.

North Attleboro, 14 @ Stoughton, 0 – FinalNorth Attleboro freshman dazzled on the mound, striking out a career-high 14 batters, allowed just one hit and walked just two batters to help the Rocketeers blank Stoughton. Liz Morehouse paced Big Red’s offense, going 3-for-5 with five RBI. Olivia Capobianco and Andrea Miceli each had a pair of hits while Erti and Ashley Cangiano each scored a pair of runs.

Boys Lacrosse
Canton, 13 vs. Milton, 0 – FinalThe Bulldogs picked up their fourth straight win, blanking Milton in a non-league clash at Canton High. Eight different players scored at least one goal, led by sophomore Mike Shaw’s four assists and one goal. CHS head coach Bill Bendell said his side got great defense from their poles: Michael Pigeon, Brendan Albert, Nick Mackay, Gabe Galeotos, Brian Ghostlaw, Jona Sutton, Michael Yong and Brian Albert. Freshman Jack Connolly (three quarters) and senior CJ Martin combined for the shutout in net.

Foxboro, 5 @ Mansfield, 4 – FinalFoxboro and Mansfield were tied after the first quarter (1-1) and tied at halftime (3-3). But Foxboro outscored the Hornets 2-1 in the third quarter and pitched a shutout in the fourth to edge Mansfield in the semifinals of the Chowda Cup. Andrew Whalen netted a pair of goals, including the game-winner in the third quarter. Bobby Yerardi, Brendan Tully and Sam Blake each scored once for Foxboro, who received 10 saves in net from goalie Jake Addeche. Foxboro head coach Matt Noone said Mike Collins and Lou Blake had strong games defensively for the Warriors. For Mansfield, Joe Cox had one goal and two assists while Cullen Murphy, Brett Kessler and Aidan Sacco each scored once. Sean Peters made 16 saves in net in front of a strong defensive effort led by Grant Milas and Josh London. Foxboro will play Catholic Memorial in the finals of the Chowda Cup on Saturday at Braintree.

Franklin, 10 vs. Walpole, 11 – Final (OT)Franklin rallied from a 8-5 deficit at halftime to take a 9-8 lead in the second half. After Franklin was whistled for an interference call, the Rebels tied the game with 1:27 to go. Walpole netted the game-winner with 38 seconds left in overtime. Eric Civetti had four goals and four assist, Chase Tanner had four goals and Kyle McEniry had one goal and one assist. Connor O’Rourke made 17 saves in net for the Panthers while sophomore Jacob Alexander won 18 face offs.

King Philip, 7 vs. Medway, 13 – Final

Milford, 11 vs. ASMA, 3 – Final

Sharon, 5 @ Holliston, 11 – Final

Stoughton, 3 vs. Norton, 8 – Final

Girls Lacrosse
Attleboro, 2 @ Sharon, 17 – Final

Oliver Ames, 13 @ Pembroke, 14 – FinalOliver Ames nearly overcame an eight goal deficit but fell just short on the road at Pembroke. The Titans jumped out to a 9-1 lead and held a 10-4 advantage at halftime. The Tigers won the second half 9-4 but came up just shy of tying the game. Liv Piazza scored five goals, Chloe Kilkelly scored four goals, Kendall Clifford and Sofia Masciarelli each had two goals for the Tigers.

Mansfield 16, vs. Holliston, 6 – FinalMaire Foley led the way for the Hornets with five goals and Ann Maher added a hat trick. Mansfield also got two goals apiece from Lauren Whitman, Kathryn Garvin, and Mairead Dunn and 10 saves from Hannah Sternburg.

Boys Tennis
Attleboro, 3 @ Oliver Ames, 2 – FinalAttleboro’s second doubles team of Hans Estrada and Luis Sandoval won in three sets, giving the Bombardiers the decisive third win to beat Oliver Ames. Estrada and Sandoval picked up a 6-2, 5-7, 7-5 win while Shawn Gordon won 6-0, 6-2 at first singles and Jared Cooper won 6-4, 6-4 at third singles. Oliver Ames’ Nick Cavanaugh 6-3, 6-0 at second singles and Greg Mueller and Michael Souza won 6-4, 2-6, 7-5 at first doubles.

Canton, 0 @ Sharon, 5 – FinalSharon dropped just one game in singles player and just two in doubles to get the sweep against Canton. Junior Andre Olivei won 6-1, 6-0 at first singles, sophomore Danujan Thirumavalavan won 6-0, 6-0 at second singles and freshman Alberto Olivei won 6-0, 6-0 at third singles. The team of seniors Alex Romantz and Sammy Kirshenbaum won 6-0, 6-2 at first doubles and the team of juniors Ashwin Sreevatsa and Artie Chinnappan won 6-0, 6-0 at second doubles for Sharon.

Milford @ Foxboro, 3:45

Mansfield, 2 @ Franklin, 3 – FinalFranklin relied on its depth to pick up a win over Mansfield in a Kelley-Rex showdown. While Mansfield won at first and second singles, the Panthers claimed wins at third singles and both doubles matches. Freshman Rohan Herur won 7-6 (7-4), 2-6, 6-2 at third singles, James Johnstone and Derek Wu won 6-2, 6-3 at first doubles and Tyler DiPalma and Rahul Hosdurg clinched the match with a 3-6, 6-1, 6-2 win at second doubles. Mansfield’s Benny Lin won 2-6, 6-2, 6-4 at first singles and Luke Nickerson won 6-3, 6-4 at second singles.

King Philip, 5 @ Taunton, 0 – FinalKing Philip won all five matches in straight sets, dropping a total of six games on the road at Taunton. Cole Ginter won 6-0, 6-3 at first singles, Blake Ginter won 6-0, 6-0 at second singles and Marco DiStefano won 6-0, 6-0 at third singles. Ryan Gemelli and Sam Collela won 6-0, 6-1 at first doubles and Aidan Ignatius and Sean Desrochers won 6-2, 6-0 at second doubles.

North Attleboro, 4 @ Stoughton, 1 – FinalNorth Attleboro picked up wins at first and second singles as well as first and second doubles to beat Stoughton. Zac Pfeffer won 6-0, 6-0 at first singles and Barsomo Nuay won 6-0, 6-1 at second singles for Big Red. Daniel Zhang and Ben Pfeffer won 6-0, 6-1 at first doubles and Brendan Hurd and Keigan Beaugh won 6-1, 6-2 at second doubles. Stoughton’s Erik Anderson won 7-5, 6-2 at third singles.

Girls Tennis
Oliver Ames, 5 @ Attleboro, 0 – FinalOliver Ames picked up a win on the road at Attleboro, winning all five matches in straight sets. Sarah Leger won 6-2, 6-0 at first singles, Mandi Miller won 6-2, 6-0 at second singles and Maura Kiernan won 6-0, 6-3 at third singles. The team of Tori Wyman and Kristin Bloumbas won 7-5, 6-1 at first doubles and Emily Yu and Ana Serjak won 6-2, 6-1 at second doubles for the Tigers.

Sharon, 4 @ Canton, 1 – FinalSharon picked up the win on the road, notching two wins at singles and two wins at doubles. Nupur Shukla won 6-1, 6-0 at first singles and Rithika Neti won 6-1, 6-0 at second singles. The team of Sydney Gordon and Lauren Glass won 6-0, 6-2 at first doubles and Sachi Bhasin and Makalia Cheung won 6-3, 6-3 at second doubles for the Eagles. Sharon forfeited the match at third singles.

Foxboro, 5 @ Milford, 0 – FinalThe Warriors went on the road and picked up an impressive win, dropping a total of five games between the five matches. Sophia Prinos won 6-0, 6-0 at first singles, Lexi Nelson won 6-0, 6-0 at second singles and Julia Muise picked up a 6-0, 6-1 win at third sinlges. Kayla Prag and Olivia Dantona won 6-2, 6-2 at first doubles and the team of Jacey Nicklas and Kendall Milender won 6-0, 6-0 at second doubles for Foxboro.

Franklin, 2 @ Mansfield, 3 – FinalMansfield picked up a big division win against the visiting Panthers of Franklin, winning at second and third singles as well as first doubles. Junior Sarah Doyle won 6-3, 1-0 at second singles and sophomore Elizabeth Elsner won 6-1, 6-4 at third singles. The team of senior Chloe Peters and sophomore Tessa Garufi earned the third win for the Hornets, winning 6-2, 6-0 at first doubles. Franklin’s Hannah Sweeney won 6-0, 6-2 at first singles and the team of Jillian McCaugh and Hailey Stier won 0-6, 6-4, 6-1 at second doubles.

Taunton, 1 @ King Philip, 4 – Final

Stoughton, 0 @ North Attleboro, 5 – Final

Wednesday’s Schedule & Scoreboard – 06/01/16

Today’s playoff games are listed below.

Boys Lacrosse
D2 South
#6 Canton, 9 @ #3 Sandwich, 10 – Final – Canton’s Shaun Kirby netted a hat trick, Ryan Lodge scored twice and Ben O’Neill, Jake Ragusa and Griffin Roach each scored once. Michael Pigeon, Dan Nadeau, Jon Sutton, and Brendan Albert all played well defensively while Matt Mackay provided a spark on face-offs. Ragusa was able to hold Sandwich’s 300 point scorer to just a pair of assists on the day while Chris Albert made 14 saves in net.

Girls Lacrosse
D1 East
#12 Sharon, 7 vs. #5 Bishop Feehan, 13 – FinalClick here for a recap of the game.