Franklin Locks Down Against Attleboro to Clinch Title

Franklin girls basketball
Franklin junior Olivia Quinn (23) drives into the lane for two of her game-high 15 points in the title-clinching win against Attleboro. (Josh Perry/HockomockSports.com)

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FRANKLIN, Mass. – Even with some of its regular starters on the bench cheering on, Franklin started Tuesday night’s game with Attleboro locked in defensively and crashing the glass. The Panthers held Attleboro scoreless in the first and to just six points in the second quarter, allowing their offense time to click into gear.

Click here for a photo gallery from this game.

Once Franklin got going on that end of the floor, knocking down 10-of-12 threes as a team in the second half, there was no way back for the Bombardiers. Franklin rolled to a 64-27 win, extending its win streak to nine games this season and 34 games overall and clinching a third straight Kelley-Rex division title.

“We have something to win,” Franklin coach John Leighton said of his team’s focus. “Beyond Thursday, there’s nothing out there. It’s the abyss. So, this was one tangible thing that they could do and they’ve been very fired up about it.

He added, “It’s a great league. It’s a great league when we play 20 games and a great league when we play 10. There’s great balance in the league, so I’m very proud of the girls for closing that out.”

Celebrating senior night, some of the usual suspects weren’t in the starting lineup, but the Panthers came out intent on controlling the boards and giving Attleboro no good looks.Katelynn Taylor (five rebounds) and Elizabeth Wilson (eight rebounds) set the early tone.

“We tried to limit their first and second looks and make their third or fourth look beat us,” Leighton explained. “The seniors this is their final home game and there was a spark across all 14 kids. I was impressed how they played.”

When junior Olivia Quinn, the team’s leading scorer, came in off the bench, the offense started to get going as well. She scored six of her game-high 15 in the first and Emma Sousa added a bucket for an 11-0 lead after one.

“Defensively in the first quarter I thought we did a good job when the game was still on the line, but then you go eight minutes and don’t score,” said Attleboro coach Marty Crowley. “We haven’t played from behind like that this year, from that kind of deficit so it’s a lesson learned.”

Emma Reilly (eight points) got Attleboro on the board with a pair of jumpers and Narissa Smith (eight points) hit a pull-up for her first points of the night, but Franklin’s depth and its strength in the paint was able to extend the lead to 17 by halftime. Katie Peterson scored all six of her points in the second and Brigid Earley chipped in with four of her six points in the frame.

Leading 23-6, Franklin was in control at halftime, but things still seemed out of sorts on the offensive end. The Panthers were getting good looks, but were making very few of them. Something seemed to click in the three-minute break before the start of the third quarter.

Quinn drove and kicked out to Erin Quaile (six points, five rebounds, and five assists) for a three to start things off. After Earley and Gabby Bosh traded drives, Stefany Padula spotted up in the corner for a three. Then Earley grabbed an offensive rebound and kicked out to Quaile from beyond the arc.

Out of nowhere, the lead was now 24 and Franklin was just getting started. Quinn had a nice lefty finish and then got an easy bucket after Quaile’s rebound and long lead pass. Teagan Collins (10 points) got into the act, burying her first three of the night, followed by one from Quinn, then one from Kaleigh Houlihan (11 points, 10 rebounds, and four steals), then another from Collins.

When the dust had settled, Franklin had knocked down seven threes and scored 29 points in the third and had built a 52-14 advantage.

“We got a lot of good looks, but missed a lot of wide open threes,” said Leighton. “When they started to connect in the second half, we just couldn’t miss. I said in the first half, they’re all good threes, no one is jacking up shots, but we don’t want to live by the three either, just keep playing. Then the roof came off the hoop and away they went.”

To Attleboro’s credit, the Bombardiers didn’t stop and had their best offensive quarter in the fourth. Meghan Gordon, who came into the night as the league’s leading scorer at more than 20 points per game, got a layup off a Smith steal and dish and then added a three. She finished with seven points and seven rebounds. Smith also knocked down a pair of threes in the fourth.

Franklin didn’t stop scoring either. Houlihan showed off her range, hitting a pair of threes including one from a few feet behind the line. Collins added her third three as well.

“In the third quarter, they probably could’ve been in the parking lot and not missed a shot the way things were going,” Crowley joked. “We held them 11 points in the quarter, so defensively you’re doing your job, but offensively we just couldn’t find a rhythm early on. We have great kids who work hard and tonight was just [Franklin’s] night.”

Franklin (9-0) will try to cap off an unbeaten season when it travels to Attleboro (5-2) on Thursday night.

Click here for a photo gallery from this game.

Tuesday’s Schedule & Scoreboard – 01/26/21

Today’s games are listed below.

Boys Basketball
Franklin, 50 @ Mansfield, 60 – FinalClick here for a Recap and Photo Gallery from this game.

Taunton, 68 @ Milford, 44 – FinalAfter a close first quarter, Taunton exploded for 22 points in the second quarter while limiting the Hawks to seven points to create a double-digit lead it held onto the rest of the way. Milford led 9-8 after one but Taunton senior Josh Lopes scored nine of this team-high 21 points in the second while senior Tyler Stewart added six of his 10 points to give the Tigers a 30-16 lead at halftime. Junior Trent Santos scored nine of his 16 points in the third as Taunton extended its lead to 50-32 through three quarters. Senior Ben Blanchard scored a team-high 14 points for the Hawks.

Girls Basketball
Oliver Ames, 76 @ Canton, 40 – FinalOliver Ames used a number of runs and great team defense to create a big lead by halftime and never looked back. The Tigers built a 35-16 lead by halftime. Caroline Flynn scored a game-high 20 points and grabbed six rebounds, Caroline Peper added 12 points, and freshman Jasmyn Cooper chipped in with 10 points and eight boards for OA. Sydney Gallery led the way for Canton with 19 points while Fay Gallery added 12 points.

North Attleboro, 46 @ Foxboro, 57 – FinalFoxboro held off North Attleboro in the second half to make it three wins in a row. Katelyn Mollica continued her hot streak, scoring 17 to lead the Warriors. Morgan Sylvestre had a career-high 12 points and Erin Foley added 11 in the win. The Rocketeers were able to get as close as eight points but Foxboro managed to keep them at arm’s length. North didn’t help its own cause with 11 missed free throws, but North coach Nikki Correia was happy with the team’s effort. She highlighted the defensive work of Ava McKeon, who tried to slow down Mollica and make her work for every point. Lydia Santos, Amanda Kaiser, and Taylor McMath all scored 10 points apiece in the loss.

Mansfield, 43 @ Franklin, 62 – FinalFranklin broke the game open in the second half to stay perfect on the season. Behind a strong second quarter, Mansfield had cut the lead to just 25-21 at the half, but the Panthers extended the lead to seven after three and exploded for 25 points in the fourth to put the game out of reach. Olivia Quinn scored a game-high 16 points in the win, while Brigid Earley chipped in with 12. The Hornets were led by Ashley Santos’ eight points. Sarah Dooling and Anna Darlington each scored seven for the visitors.

Sharon, 23 @ Stoughton, 35 – FinalJunior Makiayah Singleton brought a big spark on offense, leading the Knights in scoring with 12 points while senior Camille Firmin grabbed 16 boards and junior Vanessa Phelimond snatched 11 boards and had six steals. Rachel Hager led Sharon in scoring with 10 points.

Milford, 58 @ Taunton, 39 – FinalClick here for a Recap and Photo Gallery from this game.

Saturday’s Schedule & Scoreboard – 01/23/21

Today’s games are listed below.

Boys Basketball
Franklin, 65 @ Taunton, 72 – FinalClick here for a recap and photo gallery of this game.

Girls Basketball
Taunton, 10 @ Franklin, 59 – FinalClick here for a Photo Gallery from this game. The Panthers continue to roll through the first three weeks of the season, completing the sweep of Taunton with a strong defensive performance and with 12 players getting on the scoresheet. Franklin jumped out to a 15-3 lead after one quarter, but things got tighter in the second as the Panthers were held to just eight points. Things picked up offensively for the hosts after the break, as they scored 20 points in the third and 36 for the second half. Taunton was held to just three made field goals for the game (one in the first, third, and fourth quarters). Olivia Quinn led the way with 13 points in the win, including eight in the second half and three made three-pointers. Franklin continues to showcase its depth. Elizabeth Wilson had eight points, Kaleigh Houlihan added seven, and Katie Peterson and Brigid Earley both had six. Jaelyn Fernandez paced the Tigers with four points (all from the line in the second quarter).

Canton, 56 @ Mansfield, 65 – FinalIn a back-and-forth battle, Mansfield scored 24 points in the fourth quarter to pull out the non-league victory. The Hornets led 27-21 at halftime, but the Bulldogs came storming back with a 21-point third quarter to take a one-point lead into the final eight minutes. Kayla Vine scored 18 points, Ashley Santos had 15, and Abby Wager added 13 to hand Canton its first loss of the season. Ally Prentis also had a pair of big threes in the first half to put Mansfield in front. Sydney Gallery scored a game-high 22 points and Kiara Cerruti chipped in with 16 for the Bulldogs.

Boys Hockey
Franklin @ Taunton – Postponed to TBD.

Girls Hockey
Franklin, 7 vs. Boston Latin, 0 – FinalFranklin senior Amanda Lewandowski scored a hat trick as the Panthers skated to a win over BLA. Junior Maggie McCaffrey added a pair of goals while Molly Hurley and Libby Carter (two assists) each scored once in the win. Lyndsay Atkinson added three assists in the win while Gabby Colace had the shutout.

Gymnastics
North Attleboro @ Taunton, 4:00

Franklin Overcomes Slow Start to Sweep King Philip

Franklin girls basketball
Franklin point guard Erin Quaile dished out eight assists to lead the Panthers to a win at King Philip. (Josh Perry/HockomockSports.com)

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WRENTHAM, Mass. – After playing at King Philip’s pace for the opening eight minutes and heading into the first break down by a point, Franklin coach John Leighton implored his team to slow things down, move the ball around, and look for good shots not just the first shot.

Click here for a photo gallery from this game.

Over the next two quarters, the Panthers did just that, scoring 40 points in the second and third quarters combined and turning that deficit into an 18-point lead. Franklin would lead by as many as 25 points in the fourth and earned a sweep of the Warriors with a 62-48 victory.

“Something you never want is a slow start and that’s exactly what we had,” said Leighton. “We had way too many turnovers, we went too fast, but what I was impressed by is that by the end of the quarter they had bought into the idea of slowing it down, seeing the next step, and when you start getting defensive stops they can’t press as much.”

KP had the Panthers on the run in the first, playing the frenetic style that the Warriors thrive on. After back-to-back threes by Emma Glaser and Courtney Keswick (10 points), the hosts held a 10—6 lead. Olivia Quinn (game-high 22 points, six rebounds, and four steals) answered back with a three of her own and a layup to put Franklin in front, but Caroline Aaron’s drive to the basket put the Warriors up 12-11 after one.

Franklin has plenty of experience on its roster and the players talked in the huddle about the need to settle down and play their game. The defending state champions started to look more like themselves in the second.

Brigid Earley scored six of her 10 points in the second, as Franklin made an effort to get the ball inside. Elizabeth Molla responded with a three that cut the lead back to three, at 25-22, but the Panthers scored the final seven points of the half to lead by double digits.

Elizabeth Wilson crashed the boards for a putback and then Earley (four assists, seven rebounds, and two blocks) picked out Quinn for a short jumper. Quinn was the focal point of the offense, scoring eight points in the second and 13 in the first half, as Franklin led 33-22.

“I said to them that we were down 11 at halftime, but it felt like it could’ve been tied,” said KP coach Dan Nagle, who was on the bench for the first time this season. “We had a couple of live-ball turnovers where we missed wide open layups and they go down and we get a steal and throw it to them right under the basket. You can’t even be mad because your kids are flying around and working hard.”

Things clicked into high gear for the visitors in the third. After Jackie Bonner (eight points) drilled a three to start the second half, Franklin went on a 16-0 run to break the game open.

Quinn came right back with a three off a Stefany Padula drove and kick, Erin Quaile’s steal led to a Katie Peterson basket, and Earley had a pair of assists on Quinn buckets to push the lead to 17. Peterson (10 points) got open again underneath, this time on a Kayleigh Houlihan assist, and Quaile found Teagan Collins for an open three to make it 49-25.

KP scored seven straight to get some momentum, including threes by Cat Spellman and Keswick, but Peterson’s offensive rebound and layup put the Panthers ahead by 18 heading to the fourth.

Leighton said, “This year, we have three or four kids who can score every night. The pressure isn’t on Liv to carry us on her back, we have a lot of kids who can contribute. This is the deepest group we’ve had in a very long time.”

One of the features of Franklin’s play was its passing. Quaile finished with eight assists, while Earley had four and Padula had three. The Panthers were spreading the ball around and making it difficult for KP to trap.

“Unselfish ball is good, especially today,” Leighton explained. “When they’re going to double you, they’re trying to make you go faster, so if you can pass and find the open kid then everyone has more time. It buys time and space.”

That continued at the start of the fourth, as Quinn hit a short jumper after a good drive and kick out by Bridget Leo and then Quinn played provider on a corner three by Emma Sousa, who had missed the first three games of the season. Franklin stretched its lead to 60-35.

Although a comeback was unlikely at that point, the Warriors never stopped running and pressing and kept battling to the final whistle. Bonner had a steal and layup and Julia Marsden assisted on Keswick’s third three of the afternoon. Aaron (11 points) had another drive through the lane and stepped back to knock down a three of her own to help the Warriors cut the deficit to 14.

“Us just realizing that all those little plays matter is a good lesson,” Nagle said. “Franklin is where we want to be eventually and we competed with them at a high level. We had them playing faster than they want to, we turned them over a good amount. Today was progress, not perfection, but it was a good effort.”

Franklin (4-0) will have a few days off before it faces Taunton on Thursday, while King Philip (1-3) will look to get back in the win column when it faces Milford on Tuesday.

Click here for a photo gallery from this game.

Thursday’s Schedule & Scoreboard – 01/14/21

Today’s games are listed below.

Boys Basketball
Milford, 38 @ Attleboro, 47 – FinalAttleboro staked a lead through a quarter of action and overcame a poor free throw shooting night (10/24) to earn a win. Senior Justin Daniels netted nine of his team-high 14 points in the opening quarter to help the Bombardiers get off to a strong start. The Bombardiers got key three-pointers in each quarter to help key the Hawks at bay. Sophomore Trevor White (10 points) in the second, Evan Houle (eight points) and Alec Eaton (six points) in the third, and Houle again in the fourth. White added six points in the final frame for Attleboro, who led 21-16 at halftime and 32-24 after three quarters. Milford senior Ben Blanchard scored all of his team-high eight points in the first half.

Sharon, 50 @ Canton, 49 – FinalSharon junior Will Hippler stepped in and drew a charge with 0.3 seconds left to secure a win on the road for the Eagles. Senior Matt Baskin sank a pair of free throws with 7.5 seconds left to put Sharon ahead. Canton had to go the length of the court but Hippler helped off his man, got into position and drew the charge to win the game. The Eagles built a double-digit lead by halftime (22-11) but Canton had a big third quarter, sparked by eight points from Lanse Dorcelus (11 points) and seven points from Steve Burbank (11 points) to get within three, 38-35, going into the fourth. Eric Mischler scored six of his team-high 15 points in the fourth to help Canton seize a lead, going up 48-45 late after a pair of free throws. Hippler also hit a key three in the fourth quarter while Baskin finished with a season-high 20 points, including 13 in the second half. Kiran Chandrasekaran chipped in with 11 points for the Eagles.

Stoughton, 36 @ North Attleboro, 61 – Final Click here for a recap and photo gallery of this game.




Girls Basketball
Attleboro, 55 @ Milford, 33 – FinalThe Bombardiers pulled away in the fourth quarter, outscoring Milford 19-9 in the frame, to secure a second straight win over the Hawks to open the season. Meghan Gordon followed up her career-high on Tuesday with 19 points to pace Attleboro. Gabby Bosh also hit double digits, scoring 11, and Emma Reilly added nine points. Kayla Goldrick chipped in with eight. Attleboro coach Marty Crowley said, “It was great to go on the road and pick up a win.” Emma Lawrence led Milford with eight points and Brooke Ferreira and Emily Croteau each had six for Milford, which kept the game close through three quarter on senior night.

Canton, 62 @ Sharon, 19 – FinalThe Bulldogs jumped out to a 20-1 lead after one quarter and extended the lead to 27 by halftime, rolling to a third win of the season behind a strong defensive performance. Kiara Cerruti powered Canton to its early lead, scoring 11 of her game-high 19 points and knocking down three of her five three-pointers in the first. Sydney Gallery scored 13 and Fay Gallery added 10. Tayla DeGraw chipped in with eight points for the Bulldogs. Sharon was led by Trinity Payne’s seven points.

Oliver Ames, 51 @ Foxboro, 47 – FinalClick here for a Recap and Photo Gallery from this game.

King Philip, 31 @ Franklin, 66 – FinalFranklin picked up a big win over one of the contenders for the Kelley-Rex crown. Olivia Quinn scored in double digits for the third straight game, finishing with a game-high 18. Kayleigh Houlihan and Brigid Earley each had a dozen points in the win. Jackie Bonner scored 10 points and Cat Spellman added eight points for KP.

North Attleboro, 50 @ Stoughton, 17 – FinalFor the second night in a row North got off to a great start and earned a sweep of Stoughto. After scoring the first 23 points on Wednesday, the Rocketeers went into halftime on Thursday leading 28-3 thanks to its high pressure defense. Eleven players scored for North. Amanda Kaiser and Summer Doherty both scored 14 points and Kaiser added 11 rebounds. Taylor McMath had a solid game on the block, scoring six points and grabbing eight boards.

Swimming
Sharon vs. Canton, 3:30