Click here for the 2018 HockomockSports.com Girls Lacrosse Awards
Below are the official 2018 Hockomock League Girls Lacrosse All Stars, selected by the coaches in the league.
Hockomock League MVP
Sophia DiCenso, Foxboro
Hockomock League All Stars
Kyra Lyons, Attleboro
Maggie Connolly, Canton
Sara Addeche, Foxboro
Caroline Boudreau, Foxboro
Meghan Curran, Foxboro
Sophia DiCenso, Foxboro
Christina Rogers, Foxboro
Gianna Cameron, Franklin
Grace MacCallum, Franklin
Annie Walsh, Franklin
Erin Walsh, Franklin
Katie Crowther, King Philip
Christina Hathaway, King Philip
Caroline Klim, King Philip
Dana Truini, King Philip
Kathryn Garvin, Mansfield
Ann Maher, Mansfield
Alaina Mello, North Attleboro
Mackenzie Rosenberg, North Attleboro
Olivia Piazza, Oliver Ames
Ariana Waldorf, Oliver Ames
Emma Eberhardt, Sharon
Sabrina Robbins, Sharon
Alana Tavares, Taunton
Graycen Cassidy, Attleboro
Colleen Boucher, Canton
Molly Murphy, Foxboro
Kelsey MacCallum, Franklin
Alli Meehan, King Philip
Lauren Whitman, Mansfield
Emily Haley, Milford
Katie Lindstrom, North Attleboro
Chloe Kilkelly, Oliver Ames
Bridget McManus, Sharon
Lorna Li, Taunton
Today’s games are listed below.
Attleboro, 1 @ Franklin, 2 – Final (8 Inn.) – Franklin senior Colby Fitzgibbons laced a two-out single into left center field to drive in Shane O’Neil as the Panthers walked off with a win over Attleboro. Fitzgibbons had two hits on the day, Steve Luttazi had an RBI, and Jake Macchi had a hit and a run scored for Franklin. Bryan Woelfel struck out 10, walked one, and scattered six hits in 6.1 innings of work. Attleboro threatened with runners on first and third in the top of the seventh but Jason Ulrickson (1.2 IP, win, 2 K) made an appearance in relief, getting a strikeout and then Attleboro was caught trying to steal home. Attleboro’s Matt Callahan (two hits) reached base four times, Alvaro Espinal had two hits and an RBI and Ryan Morry had a hit and a run scored. Eoin Kelleher allowed just four hits while striking out six.
Canton, 5 @ Foxboro, 10 – Final – Foxboro exploded for six runs in the fourth inning to break open a 3-3 game and never looked back to beat the visiting Bulldogs. Robert Theriault had a big day for the Warriors, going 3-for-4 with three RBI while Joe Freitas (RBI, two runs) and Joe Cavaleri (run) each had two hits. Chad Bearce added a double and an RBI for Foxboro. Steve McLaughlin struck out four, walked four, and allowed six hits in four innings of work while Sean Yoest struck out four and allowed five hits in three innings of relief. Canton’s Matt Pigeon went 3-for-3 with two runs, Nate Quan had three hits and two RBI, and Jake Aronson had two hits and an RBI.
King Philip, 1 @ Mansfield, 3 – Final – Mansfield was limited to just one hit but cashed in on its opportunities to beat King Philip. Sophomore Chris Jenkins drew a walk in the third inning, stole second and came around to score on two passed balls. Jenkins reached on an error in the fifth and came around to score after a throwing error on Michael Hargadon’s bunt. Sam Nugent executed a safety squeeze to bring Hargadon home from third. Connor Sheehan earned the win, striking out seven with one walk and six hits allowed in a complete game effort. KP’s David Morganelli was the tough-luck loser, allowing just one hit with seven strikeouts and four walks in a complete game. Liam Rohan had a hit and a run scored for KP.
North Attleboro, 6 @ Milford, 2 – Final – North Attleboro went on the road and clinched at least a share of the Davenport division title with a win over Milford. Big Red’s offense got off to a strong start with two runs in the first inning behind a Nick Sinacola RBI double (Brendan McHugh single, run) and a Zach DeMattrio triple and passed ball. Sinacola added another RBI in the third with a single that plated Aidan Harding. Milford cut the deficit to two with a run in the bottom of the third when Justin Applebee scored on a single from Matt Shaver. North responded with two runs in the top of the fourth when Nate Pearce drove in a pair with a double. Big Red added an insurance run in the sixth when Sinacola (three hits) singled and eventually scored on another double from Pearce. Aidan Wilde added an RBI single in the bottom of the seventh for Milford. Peter Cohen pitched a complete game for North, scattering six hits while striking out three.
Oliver Ames, 5 @ Taunton, 1 – Final – Oliver Ames did all of its damage offensive during the second inning, plating all five of its runs in the frame. Jacob Levine (2-for-4) and Mitch Goulet each had two RBI hits in the inning while Jake Erlich had two hits and had a strong game behind the plate for the visiting Tigers. Michael Mulrean struck out nine with just two walks in 5.2 innings of work without allowing an earned run. Jakob Roberts was 2-for-3 with an RBI and Logan Lawrence added two hits for Taunton.
Stoughton, 7 @ Sharon, 0 – Final – Stoughton’s Zak Paquette needed just 80 pitches for the complete game shutout, allowing four hits with one walk and five strikeouts. Evan Gibb (2-for-3, three runs, stolen base) and Mike Nazzaro (2-for-3, RBI) led the Black Knights’ offense.
Franklin, 4 @ Attleboro, 0 – Final – Franklin junior Jackie Cherry struck out nine in a complete game shutout to lead the Panthers to a win on the road. Franklin scored a pair of runs in the first, built a 3-0 lead in the second and tacked on an insurance run in the seventh inning. Ally Shea went 2-for-2 with an RBI and Maddy White reached base twice, scored once, and had an RBI. Franklin’s Peyton Arone helped end an Attleboro threat in the fourth, making a catch in left and getting a double play at second.
Foxboro, 10 @ Canton, 5 – Final
Mansfield, 0 @ King Philip, 12 – Final (6 inn.) – King Philip’s Jess Bonner launched a pair of home runs and Faith Turinese threw a no-hitter as the Warriors blanked Mansfield. Bonner finished with five RBI, Allison Kuchy had a three-run home run, and Hailey McCasland contributed three hits for KP. Turinese didn’t issue a walk and struck out seven in a complete game effort.
Milford, 5 @ North Attleboro, 1 – Final – Milford junior Emily Hartman had a day to remember at the play and senior Emily Piergustavo set a new program record in a win on the road at North. Hartman went 3-for-4 with a double and a three-run home run, finishing with five RBI. Piergustavo had two hits, including the 144th of her career to set a new Scarlet Hawk record. Kate Irwin (double, triple) and Maddie Bonvino each added two hits. Kelley Reichert earned the win, allowing just five hits with four strikeouts in a complete game. North scored its lone run in the fifth inning when Olivia Capobianco drove in Andrea Miceli with a single.
Oliver Ames, 3 @ Taunton, 9 – Final – Jaime Brown had two hits and knocked in three runs and Kya Enos added two hits and an RBI to lead Taunton past OA. McKenzie McAloon also had two hits, including a double, while scoring two runs. Jaylin Couto struck out nine with two walks and five hits allowed in seven innings of work. OA scored three runs in the first inning with Caroline Mahoney (1-for-3, RBI, run) knocking in Lexie Campbell (2-for-4, run) on a double to right center. Katie Abreu and Rachel Han each knocked in a run in the first inning as well.
Sharon, 0 @ Stoughton, 12 – Final (6 Inn.) – Stoughton’s offense belted a season-high 19 hits while Gina Carafa allowed just two hits in six innings of work for the Black Knights. Jordan Lyons led the offense by going 4-for-4, Brianna Ferrandiz was 3-for-4 with an RBI, Karly Estremera had a two-run double, and Val Whalen and Sarah McGrath each had two hits and an RBI.
Sharon, 9 @ Attleboro, 3 – Final
Taunton, 0 @ Canton, 17 – Final
Franklin, 6 @ Foxboro, 7 – Final (2 OT) – Click here for a recap and photo gallery of this game.
Milford, 4 @ King Philip, 14 – Final
Mansfield, 3 @ North Attleboro, 11 – Final
Stoughton, 0 @ Oliver Ames, 20 – Final – Oliver Ames’ Eric LeBlanc was one of nine Tigers to find the back of the net in a win over Stoughton. LeBlanc scored his 100th career goal in the win while Nick Gillis recorded the shutout.
Canton, 11 @ Taunton, 10 – Final – Maggie Connolly and Leah McClellan both had hat tricks for the Bulldogs, as Canton pulled out a second straight one-goal win. Connolly also had an assist. Kaitlyn Goyetch scored twice and assisted on two other goals, while Molly Colburn and Caroline Tourgee both scored twice and Alexa Maffeo had a goal and an assist.
Attleboro, 3 @ Sharon, 17 – Final – Sharon coach Shara Ginthwain said that the Eagles “played great as a team” with six different goal scorers and assists on eight of the goals. Rose Wald made eight saves in the Sharon goal.
Foxboro, 5 @ Franklin, 11 – Final – Click here for a Recap and Photo Gallery from this game.
King Philip, 18 @ Milford, 2 – Final – Lauren Anderson paced the Warriors with four goals and Caroline Klim had a hat trick and an assist. KP also got a pair of goal from Ali Wilson and single goals from Claire Lawler, Callie Sullivan, Victoria Tormey, and Christina Hathaway.
North Attleboro, 17 @ Mansfield, 19 – Final – Katy Garvin scored seven times and Hannah Sternburg made 15 saves as Mansfield pulled out an important win on senior night. Olivia Murray scored a hat trick and Ann Maher, Hayliegh Crawford, Lauren Whitman, and Emily Vigeant all scored two goals for the Hornets. Maggie Danehy also scored in the win. Katie Lindstrom scored nine goals for the Rocketeers in the loss.
Franklin, 5 @ Attleboro, 0 – Final – Franklin freshman Liam Marr didn’t lose a game in his match and the Panthers won all five in straight sets to pick up a win on the road. Marr won 6-0, 6-0 at second singles, Rohan Herur recorded a 6-2, 6-0 win at first singles, and Saketh Saripalli won 6-1, 6-1 at third singles. The team of Tony Calderone and Shoumik Sompally prevailed 6-2, 6-1 at first doubles and Tyler DiPalma and Tyler St. Marie lost just one game in a 6-1, 6-0 decision at second doubles.
Foxboro, 5 @ Canton, 0 – Final
Mansfield, 1 @ King Philip, 4 – Final – King Philip’s Sean Desroches and Nate Ihley rallied from a one-set deficit to pick up a win at first doubles in KP’s 4-1 win over Mansfield. Desroches and Ihley won 5-7, 6-4, 6-3 while Nick Ihley and Aidan Ignatius prevailed 6-2, 6-2 at second doubles. Nick Putney dropped just two games in a 6-2, 6-0 win at second singles and Jack Cannon earned a 6-2, 7-5 win at third singles for KP. Mansfield’s Luke Nickerson won 6-1, 6-4 at first singles.
Milford, 1 @ North Attleboro, 4 – Final – North Attleboro’s Alex Rinaldi and Sam Gallagher didn’t drop a game in their match at second doubles to help the Rocketeers beat Milford. Rinaldi and Gallagher won 6-0, 6-0 while Ben Pfeffer and Vikram Senthilakumaran won 6-2, 6-1 at first doubles. Richard Bermudez and Jonah Manso both won 6-0, 6-0 at first and second singles, respectively, for North. Milford’s Zach Austin won 6-3, 6-4 at third singles.
Oliver Ames, 0 @ Taunton, 5 – Final – Taunton lost just two games total between its five matches to move within a game of qualifying for the state tournament. Francois Hennaux won 6-1, 6-1 at first singles while Brett Beaulieu (second), Mike Briggs (third), Charlie Fiske and Dylan Kullas (first doubles) and Kyle Dennehy and Trevor Hart (second doubles) all won 6-0, 6-0.
Sharon, 5 @ Stoughton, 0 – Final – Sharon senior Andre Olivei prevailed in a tiebreaker to pick up a win over Stoughton freshman Waseem Sablon to complete the Eagles’ sweep. Danujan Thirumavalavan won 6-0, 6-1 at second singles and Ashwin Sreevatsa didn’t lose a game in a 6-0, 6-0 win at third singles. Max Brody and Russell Rapaport won 6-0, 6-0 at first doubles and Alex Aspel and Jake Ross won 6-2, 6-0 at second doubles for Sharon.
Attleboro, 3 @ Franklin, 2 – Final
Canton, 0 @ Foxboro, 5 – Final – Freshman Pamela Nelson prevailed with a 6-3, 6-4 win at second singles over Canton freshman Natalie Keppler in a battle of two of the best young players in the league to help Foxboro earn the win. Sophia Prinos won 6-1, 6-0 at first singles and Kayla Prag won 6-1, 6-3 at third singles. The team of Sarah Prag and Julia Muise earned a 6-1, 6-2 win at first doubles and Olivia Dantona and Kendall Milender picked up a 6-1, 6-3 victory at second doubles.
King Philip, 5 @ Mansfield, 0 – Final – King Philip won all three singles matches in straight sets in a sweep at Mansfield. Erin Regnier won 6-1, 6-1 at first singles, Meghan Sepich picked up a 6-0, 6-1 win at second singles, and Caitlin Gonser was victorious (6-2, 6-2) at third singles. Grace Ely and Mia Valencia prevailed with a 6-2, 7-6 (4) win at first doubles and Lucy Barnard and Katarina Schneider won 6-2, 6-0 at second doubles.
North Attleboro, 5 @ Milford, 0 – Final – North Attleboro earned its third straight 5-0 sweep, this time taking down Milford on the road. Jordan Willis won 6-1, 6-0 at first singles, Emily Chiasson didn’t lose a game at second singles, and Tara Nair won 6-1, 6-2 at third singles. Azka Siddiq and Shurobhi Nandi teamed up for a 6-2, 6-0 win at first doubles and Leah Marceau and Samantha Martino won 6-2, 6-2 at second doubles.
Taunton, 3 @ Oliver Ames, 2 – Final – Taunton’s second doubles team of Amanda Pugh and Brianna Fevrier emerged with a win in a three-set thriller to help the visiting Tigers pick up a win. Pugh and Fevrier won 6-4, 6-7 (2), 6-2 to help Taunton win. McKenzie Lucie and Samantha Martin won 6-2, 7-5 at first doubles and Jillian Pagliuca picked up a 6-2, 7-5 win at first singles. OA’s Tate Hadges lost just two matches in a 6-1, 6-1 win at second singles and Maura Kiernan picked up a 6-2, 6-1 win at third singles for the host Tigers.
Stoughton, 0 @ Sharon, 5 – Final – Sharon’s Alysha Posternak played in her first varsity match, teaming with with Lauren Glass to pick up a 6-2, 6-2 win in doubles play. Emily Wen won 6-2, 6-0, at first singles, Katie Merport earned a 6-0, 6-0 victory at second singles, and Sachi Bhasin didn’t drop a game in a 6-0, 6-0 decision at third singles for the Eagles.
Milford @ Catholic Memorial, 6:00
Taunton, 3 vs. Dighton-Rehoboth, 0 – Final
By HockomockSports.com Staff
2018 Hockomock Girls Lacrosse Preview
2017 Record: 2-16
2017 Finish: Missed Playoffs
Coach: Kevin Patton
Attleboro went into 2017 with an inexperienced lineup and first-year head coach Kevin Patton tried to bring together a roster that had essentially never played together at the varsity level. With all but two players back for this spring, Patton is expecting the Bombardiers to be improved in all facets of the game and to be more competitive in the league.
Leading scorer Kyra Lyons is back for her third varsity season and the junior midfielder will be a key player, as the Bombardiers look to improve on last season’s league-low 88 goals. The offense will be bolstered by senior Emily Patton, who is a four-year varsity player, and fellow senior Alison Wall. Junior Alex Compton will also be back for a third season to make an impact for Attleboro. On defense, seniors Graycen Cassidy and Kim White will provide much-needed leadership for a unit that allowed 273 goals last year.
“Because we only lost two players to graduation last year, we have a lot of varsity experience on both sides of the field,” Patton said. “I am looking for the upperclassmen to take a leadership role and am looking forward to seeing the girls in essentially their second year all playing together on varsity.”
2017 Record: 6-12
2017 Finish: Missed Playoffs
Coach: Laurie Chabot
Canton has a new coaching staff this season that will try to build on a talented crop of underclassmen to get the Bulldogs back into the postseason. Laurie Chabot has taken over this spring and the coaching staff is excited to get the season underway and see what this Bulldogs roster, which has only three seniors, can accomplish.
Senior midfielder Molly Colburn will be the leader for the Canton attack this season, while fellow captain Colleen Boucher provides vocal leadership in the defensive zone to keep everything in check. Senior Jess Powers is still battling an injury, but Canton has a host of younger players that can step in, including juniors Maggie Connolly, Lauren Fitzpatrick, Maggie Malloy, and Leah McLellan and sophomore Alexa Maffeo, who all had success with their winter teams.
Chabot said, “With three seniors (all captains) we are looking at a young but skilled and talented group of girls. With speed and a strong stick skillset our girls are ready to compete.”
2017 Record: 17-5
2017 Finish: Reached D2 East Final
Coach: Brittany Sherry
Last season, Foxboro reached the Div. 2 East final for the first time in program history, continuing the program’s upward trend as one of the top D2 teams in the state. The loss to Walpole in the final has left the Warriors, who had only four seniors on last year’s roster and return 10 starters, wanting more and the team comes into a new season experienced, battle-tested, and loaded with talent, including 2017 league MVP Sophia DiCenso, who in her two varsity seasons has already made quite an impression with her all-around game.
Joining DiCenso in the potent Foxboro attack is fellow junior Meghan Curran, who is coming off a breakout season and is capable of finishing against the best defenses. Senior Caroline Boudreau returns as one of Foxboro’s biggest threats on the draw and classmate Christina Rogers is back to lead the defensive unit, which is an aggressive group that puts a lot of pressure on the opposition. Sophomore Sara Addeche is back in goal after a very strong rookie season.
“Going into this year we’re looking to pick up where we left off,” said Foxboro coach Brittany Sherry. “Losing to Walpole in the sectional finals left us wanting more. These girls are ready to progress to the next level. They’ve dedicated their off-season and preseason to preparing our comeback.”
2017 Record: 22-2
2017 Finish: Reached D1 State Semifinal
Coach: Kristin Igoe Guarino
Franklin has emerged not only as the top program in the Hockomock League but in recent seasons as one of the top programs in the state. The Panthers have won the Div. 1 East title in three of the past four seasons, although they have yet to find a way past the state semifinal and get the opportunity to play for a state championship. Despite being a team loaded with underclassmen again this spring, Franklin comes into the new season once again as the team to beat in the league and with state title aspirations.
Reigning Underclassman of the Year Annie Walsh is back to spearhead the Franklin attack and create scoring opportunities for herself and for her teammates. One of the teammates that benefits is her sister Erin. The sophomore is a creative finisher around the crease and will be a top scoring threat again this year. Sophomore Gianna Cameron is back in goal for the Panthers after an impressive rookie campaign and senior Grace MacCallum is back to lead Franklin’s stingy defensive unit. Sophomore Kelsey MacCallum will be a player to watch in the midfield, while freshman Katie Jones is a newcomer that could make an instant contribution.
“We are definitely still young, but now our youth has experience,” said Franklin coach Kristin Igoe Guarino. “The team is doing a great job so far of playing fast, smart and together. We have some excellent leadership in our senior class, and we are working hard every day to get better!”
2017 Record: 10-11
2017 Finish: Reached D1 East Semifinal
Coach: Kourtnie Wilder
It was an up-and-down spring for King Philip in 2017, but it certainly finished on a high as the Warriors pulled off a pair of upsets in the state tournament to reach the Div. 1 East semifinal and a rematch with rival Franklin. The Warriors will have a new coach, Kourtnie Wilder takes over this season, and a number of returning players to make a run at unseating the Panthers from the top of the Kelley-Rex division, including senior attacker Katie Crowther, who comes into the season with more than 200 goals for her career.
One of the strengths for KP this season will be the defense, which is loaded with experience and vocal leaders. Christina Hathaway and Victoria Tormey will be the key defensive returners along with Caroline Watson, who has been one of the league’s top goalies for the past two seasons. The midfield will chip in on defense and help Crowther in the attack. Dana Truini, Alli Meehan, and Caroline Klim will all be back to solidify the midfield unit.
“We are going into the season with a clean slate and working to improve each week and being focused at practice,” said Wilder. “This is a hard-working and dedicated team and it will be exciting to see their hard work pay off.”
2017 Record: 10-9
2017 Finish: Reached D1 East First Round
Coach: Alexis Kobey
Mansfield got back into the tournament last season and gave Bishop Feehan all it could handle in the first round. The Hornets come into this spring motivated by unfinished business, as they look to not only get back to the postseason but also to make a deep tournament run. The first week of the season will provide a good early test with Mansfield facing Natick, Sharon, and North Attleboro, all 2017 playoff teams, right out of the gates.
The Hornets return four seniors from last year’s team and they will be expected to provide the leadership to push a talented group of juniors. Ann Maher will be back to add steel to the midfield and will try to get the ball forward to senior attacker Lauren Whitman and junior Katie Garvin. The defense will be as strong as its ever been, according to head coach Alexis Kobey, anchored by senior Danielle Skinner and with senior Hannah Sternberg back in goal.
“Making the tournament last year but losing by two to Bishop Feehan, we are definitely coming into the season with a bit of a chip on our shoulder,” said Kobey, “and want to improve on our record from last year and want to make it deeper into the playoffs.”
2017 Record: 4-14
2017 Finish: Missed Playoffs
Coach: Tim Dowd
In his second year in charge, Milford head coach Tim Dowd said that his team is focused on trying to outwork teams this season and to be “scrappy on the field,” as the Hawks look to make a move up the standings and compete with what has developed into a very deep league. The Hawks return several key players and have a few freshmen that will be added to the mix and given the opportunity to contribute right away.
Junior Emily Haley is the leader of the attack and Dowd said that he is expecting her to “have an incredible season.” Joining Haley in the midfield and attack are senior Jadyn White, junior Brianna Maietta, and sophomore Annie Flanagan. The defense has several players back from last season, including seniors Emily Condon and Alexa Lancisi, who provide the necessary vocal leadership to keep the defensive unit organized. Dowd added that there are a number of underclassmen that will play important roles this season, as the Hawks use their team speed to cause problems.
“We’re looking to be the team that goes the extra mile for each other and constantly works to win battles on the field,” said Dowd. “One of the things I’m looking for is improvement every day. We’re going to try to focus on the little things to hopefully make big improvements.”
2017 Record: 13-7
2017 Finish: Reached D2 East Quarterfinal
Coach: Colleen Carchedi
North Attleboro has achieved quite a bit in the past few seasons, including its first home playoff game and its first playoff victories, and new coach Colleen Carchedi, who comes over from Sharon after achieving similar success in building that program up, is hoping to continue the Rocketeers’ upward trajectory. North will have a tough non-league schedule to prepare itself to make a deep tournament run.
One of the key players that North will rely on this season is senior midfielder Mackenzie Rosenberg, who was in the league MVP conversation last season and has been one of the league’s top scorers for the past two seasons. Senior Alaina Mello and senior goalie Kayla Moulin will lead the defensive effort along with classmate Caroline Vigorito. North will have plenty of speed to call on in the midfield this season with senior Julia Tolfa and sophomores Katie Lindstrom and Lindsey Spratt. The attack will be led by seniors Camille Pizarro and Julia Dakin, who are part of a very experienced roster that wants to lift North beyond the second round for the first time.
“These girls have been working really hard in the off-season and we are not willing to settle,” said Carchedi. “I have found that this team plays with passion and if we can continue to play with that energy and determination we are up for a great season.”
2017 Record: 8-12
2017 Finish: Missed Playoffs
Coach: Nicole Lang
Oliver Ames is another developing program that has added depth to the Hockomock League in recent seasons and the Tigers are poised to make a breakthrough into the postseason as first-year coach Nicole Lang takes over this spring. While the coach is one of several new faces for the Tigers this season, Lang believes that OA will be able to build on its successes from the past few years to continue building the program.
Senior goalie Ariana Waldorf, fresh off a trip to Israel this winter to help spread the game of lacrosse, will be back between the pipes this spring for the Tigers, one of many talented goalies across the league. Chloe Kilkelly and Olivia Piazza, who was named to the HockomockSports.com Second Team last year, will provide leadership and be counted on to step up in all phases this year.
Lang said, “Our girls have been preparing harder than ever for the upcoming season. We have a lot of new faces to the team and are looking to our seasoned players to lead the way to a potential playoff berth.”
2017 Record: 15-5
2017 Finish: Reached D1 East Quarterfinal
Coach: Shara Ginthwain
Sharon has been a program on the rise for the past several seasons, including best-ever second-place finishes in the Davenport division, the program’s first playoff appearance, and last spring the Eagles added a first playoff win as well. While Sharon will move on this year with a new coach and without leading scorer Alex Rabb, the Eagles still have the talent to make a run at the postseason and new coach Shara Ginthwain has been an assistant at Sharon for the last three years, so it should be a smooth transition for the players.
Senior Sabrina Robbins is back to add dynamism to the midfield in both defense and attack and she will be joined by junior Emma Eberhardt, who adds speed, size and finishing ability from the middle of the field. Senior Abbi Solomon is back in the attack and junior Bridget McManus will be back in the heart of the defense. With 10 returning players, experience will be a strength for the Eagles, particularly on the defensive side where goalie Rose Wald also returns. Freshman midfielder Jenna Goldstein is a newcomer to watch for Sharon this year.
“Having our first playoff win in program history last season really lit a fire for a lot of these girls, it’s clear that the girls put in a lot of work in the off-season and they are ready to go!” Ginthwain said. “The girls are really motivated to work hard and to win. They are determined to be competitive in the Hock and into playoffs.”
2017 Record: 7-11
2017 Finish: Missed Playoffs
Coach: Kerry Northup
Taunton is still a relatively young program and it enjoyed its best season in 2017 with seven wins, including a pair of wins in the league, and now the Tigers are going to try to build on that despite the loss of several players that had significant impacts. The focal point for Taunton this spring will be freshman midfielder Alana Tavares, who put together a stellar rookie campaign as an eighth grader and was one of the league’s leading scorers.
While much of the attention will, deservedly, be on Tavares and the attack, senior goalie Lorna Li is also back to give the defense some solidity after a really strong junior season. Seniors Hannah Moniz, Diana Brens, and Kayla Phillips will also be back to try and chip in with goals and leadership, while sophomore Kamryn Li could take on a larger role after the graduations of Abbey Kingman and Delaney Powell. Freshmen Anastasia Lajoie and Rosemary McGrath also saw time with Tavares as eighth graders last year and could step in to contribute more this season.
“We lost some talented seniors but have a lot of promise in some of our younger players,” said Taunton coach Kerry Northup. “We are excited to see what they can bring to the team this year.”
STOUGHTON, Mass. – Exactly a month ago, Stoughton earned its first league win of the season on the road at North Attleboro. Following the game, Black Knights coach Charmaine Steele Jordan said that she was looking forward to a strong second half of the season from her team. She turned out to be right.
On Monday night, behind strong performances from freshman Sydnee Hyacinthe and sophomore Aliyah Wright, the Black Knights beat King Philip 61-49, making it eight wins in the last nine games. After starting the season 1-7, Stoughton is now just one win from clinching a spot in the state tournament.
“It’s exciting to see how the program has evolved,” said Steele Jordan about the progress of the youth on the roster. “We have young guards, but that makes for promise for the future. We’ve got a lot of youth coming up and I’m excited where the program is going. I feel like we’re a fun group to watch and when we’re on, then we’re on.”
The game got off to an even start. Wright got a steal and layup off the Stoughton press and Lindsay McDonald (eight points) knocked down a jumper after an offensive rebound for an early lead. Faith Roy (nine points) completed a three-point play to tie the game at 5-5, but Hyacinthe (15 points) knocked down the first of her five three-pointers and Wright (17 points) got one of her eight steals and turned it into a layup for a 12-8 lead after one.
KP was playing without leading scorer Shannon O’Connor, who was injured in the last game against Taunton, and the Warriors offense stalled a little at the start of the second quarter.
“It’s an adjustment for the team, for the coaches, for everybody,” said KP coach Amy Siggens. “We did alright and I think someone needs to step up into that role and I don’t think they know who that is yet. Everyone had to contribute and we started off a little slow but then we started to figure it out as the game went along.”
The Black Knights ran off the first eight points of the second with sophomore Mariah Harris (10 points) knocking down a pair of jumpers and senior Val Whalen (11 points and 15 rebounds) adding four as well. Roy tried to bring KP back with a pair of threes that cut the lead back to five. Hyacinthe answered with a three but, after free throws from Stoughton, Julia LeRoux (nine points) hit a three to keep KP within nine at the half.
In the third quarter, Stoughton continued its hot shooting to break the game open. Hyacinthe was particularly accurate from downtown, nailing three from beyond the arc in the third, while McDonald also buried a pair of deep jumpers, as the Black Knights scored 22 as a team in the quarter.
“It’s great to see those girls knocking down shots,” said Steele Jordan. “They’ve been working on their games all season and it’s nice when it finally rolls over into a game and they’re being consistent and shooting with confidence.”
While the offense was clicking, Steele Jordan was also pleased with the defensive effort. The Stoughton press was forcing turnovers that led to baskets for Harris and Wright in the quarter.
“We’re fueled off our defense,” she explained. “When we’re moving our feet, we have active hands, and we’re anticipating, we have several girls who can be a step ahead of the pass and see where it’s going. It’s nice to see them use their athleticism and get those deflections.”
Stoughton continued to tack on to its lead, eventually extending it to as many as 23 points after a jumper by Wright and a three from Harris.
“We work a ton on our help and doubling down because we knew how good their bigs were and…you’ve got to give up one or the other and we just weren’t able to close out,” said Siggens. “I can’t take anything away from how well they shoot and how quick they are.”
KP continued to battle in the final minutes and would cut into the lead behind six points from Cummings, who knocked down a pair of jumpers and finished an offensive rebound. Freshman Emma Glaser also added three points for the Warriors.
“She’s worked really hard all season to work on those moves,” said Siggens of Cummings. “She’s due for a monster game, so it’s nice to see those going in for her.”
Stoughton (9-8, 8-6) will try to clinch its state tournament berth on Tuesday night when it hosts Sharon. King Philip (4-12, 3-11) will be right back in action on Tuesday with the visit of league champ Mansfield.
NORTH ATTLEBORO, Mass. – North Attleboro came storming out of the gates to jump all over King Philip in Wednesday night’s game at the Kenneth Pickering Gym. The Rocketeers held KP to just four points in the first quarter and led by 19 heading into halftime.
Things got much closer in the second half, as the Warriors stormed back in the fourth quarter to cut the lead to as few as six points, but North held its nerve and held off the KP charge to pull out its first league win of the season, 57-48.
“Ultimately, we talked about the last couple days about being aggressive on both ends of the court,” said North Attleboro coach Derek Herber. “That first half, I think, was the best we’ve played all year. We were very aggressive.”
Utilizing a full-court press from the opening tip, North was able to keep the Warriors from getting into any rhythm on the offensive end. Four points from Julia Santos and four from Julia Feid put the Rocketeers ahead 8-0 to start and a three by Emma Noreck helped extend the lead to 12-4 after the first quarter.
In the second, North’s pressure continued to create offense. Despite four points apiece from Shannon O’Connor and Julia Leroux in the second, KP continued to fall further behind. Eliza Dion steal led to an easy basket for Feid (10 points, all in the first half) who followed it up with a steal and layup off the ensuing inbound pass.
“We played a little sloppy,” said KP coach Amy Siggens, “and it comes down to a lot of finishing for us, which we work on every day but we’ve just got to keep working on.”
North had no problem finishing in the second. Sophomore Julia Kleczkowski drilled a pair of threes in the quarter, freshman Amanda Kaiser hit one, and senior Emily Haskell scored eight of her team-high 14 points in the second, including a pair from beyond the arc. North went into the break leading 35-16.
Things looked drastically different in the second half. North made only one shot from the field, a layup by Santos (14 points and 10 rebounds) off one of Olivia Forbes’ six assists, and finished the third with six points.
“I said in the second half they’re going to come out aggressive and we have to match that aggressiveness and we didn’t right away,” said Herber. “We had to kind of find ourselves on offense. The third quarter was ugly and that’s kind of how we’ve been. We can’t score and then we can’t set our press, be aggressive, and do the things we want to do.”
KP crept closer behind eight points from O’Connor and a strong effort from the whole team on the glass (Christina Hathaway and Catherine Cummings each had seven rebounds). O’Connor, a Boston University-commit, got free for a pair of layups, both assisted by Faith Roy, scored on an offensive rebound, and a pair of free throws. O’Connor finished with a game-high 22 points and pulled down a game-high 15 boards.
The Warriors were within 13 heading to the fourth and Siggens credited better ball management against the press for being able to get into the offense easier.
She explained, “We just readjusted. We usually create our 1-3 cross and we just had to adjust and bring people back and I think we get caught up very fast and kind of panic. We kept our composure a little bit better in the second half.”
The tough shooting stretch continued into the fourth quarter for the Rocketeers and KP continued to close the gap. O’Connor knocked down a three that made it 47-41, the closest the Warriors had been since the opening quarter. Santos got a scoop in traffic to go to push the lead back to eight, but Leroux (seven points) scrambled in a rebound that made it a six-point game again.
“I called a timeout and said this is what we need to do, we’ve been practicing this, we’ve got to be smarter and we need to play through all this stuff,” Herber explained. “We fought through all that and I’m so proud of the way we played tonight.”
Kaiser made a back-cut and received a nice dish from Forbes for a layup and she and Santos each hit a pair of free throws to extend the lead back out to double digits. O’Connor hit her second three of the quarter, but it was not enough to get KP all the way back.
“They really stepped it up,” said Siggens of her team’s second half comeback attempt. “We just couldn’t convert on a couple of ones we should’ve to really cut into that lead, but I’m very proud of the way they played second half. I couldn’t ask for more.”
Today’s games are listed below.
Attleboro, 59 @ Milford, 51 – Final – Click here for a recap of this game.
Franklin, 93 @ Stoughton, 58 – Final – Franklin jumped out to a quick 19-2 lead and never looked back in a road win at Stoughton. The Panthers led 30-11 after one before the Black Knights cut the deficit to nine, 48-39, at halftime. Franklin outscored 45-19 in the second half to earn the win. Senior Paul Mahon led a game-high 21 points while senior Matt Elias and sophomore Chris Edgehill each had 16 points apiece for the Panthers. Stoughton senior Cam Andrews had a team-high 15 points.
King Philip, 57 @ Sharon, 63 – Final (OT) – King Philip raced out to a 13-0 lead, led by as much as 23 in the first half and 31-11 at halftime, but Sharon stormed back with a gigantic second half to stun the Warriors in overtime. Sharon hit one free throw to make it 50-46, then grabbed the offensive rebound to get back to the line. After making the first again, the Eagles came down with the offensive board on the miss. Lester High, who scored a career-high 19 points, drained a three to tie the game with 25 seconds left to send the game into overtime. Malik Lorquet (18 points, 13 rebounds) and Jimmy Fitzhenry (12 points) hit back-to-back baskets, KP answered with a free throw, then High hit his fifth triple of the game to make it 57-53. Tom Madden (12 points) answered in the post to cut it to four, but Fitzhenry drained a three with just under a minute to play to make it 60-53. Pharoah Davis led KP with 14 points.
Milford, 46 @ Attleboro, 38 – Final – A night after scoring 33 and reaching the 1,000-point plateau, Kate Irwin scored 17 points to lead the Hawks to a road win at Attleboro to clinch a spot in the postseason for the second season in a row. Jess Tomaso added 15 points for Milford, while Attleboro was led by Sam Pierce with 14 points.
Foxboro, 61 @ Oliver Ames, 39 – Final – Click here for a Recap and Photo Gallery from this game.
Stoughton, 47 @ Franklin, 36 – Final – Stoughton won its fourth straight game (all on the road) with a strong defensive effort against the Panthers. Aliyah Wright led the Black Knights with 17 points and Jordan Motley just missed out on a double-double with 11 points and nine rebounds.
Sharon, 43 @ King Philip, 63 – Final – KP had four players in double digits in a big home win. Faith Roy was the top scorer for the Warriors with 19 points, while Shannon O’Connor scored 14 and Christina Hathaway and freshman Brianna James each scored 10. Emma Eberhardt was Sharon’s top scorer with 11 points.
North Attleboro, 29 @ Mansfield, 59 – Final – Meg Hill scored 15 points and recorded 12 rebounds in another double-double for the senior center. Ann Maher scored nine, while Sydney Mulkern and Alicia Hottleman each added seven for the Hornets. Julia Feid was the high scorer for North with 10 points.
Boys Indoor Track (@ Reggie Lewis)
Attleboro, 58 vs. Taunton, 42 – Final
Canton, 52.5 vs. Foxboro, 47.5 – Final – Marquise Montes, Riley McDonnell, and Cordell Smith all placed first in individual races and teamed together along with freshman Cam Sanchez to win the 4×200 relay to help the Bulldogs edge the Warriors. Montes on the 55M (with Sanchez second), McDonnell took first in the 300M (with Smith second and John Guenthner third) and Smith won the high jump (with Steven Brady second and McDonnell tied for third). Brady also won the long jump, Jack Healey won the 2 Mile and was second in the 1 Mile, and Mike Mazzola took second in the 1000M. Gerry Sullivan added a third-place finish in the 600M.
Franklin, 25 vs. Mansfield, 75 – Final – The Hornets clinched another league title with a win over the Panthers. Jareme DiLorenzo had a great meet for Mansfield, taking first in the 55M hurdles (8.12), first in the long jump (20-05.00) and second in the 55M dash (6.98). Mike Hargadon ran a PR (1:26.52) for a second place finish in the 600M, with Mike Shannon coming in first (1:25.29). In the shot put, Dan Radev had a PR of 41-11.25 to take second (behind teammate Kevin McCree’s 45-05.00) and Kalin Petrov had his best performance in the 2 Mile, finishing in 9:42.00.
King Philip, 36 vs. Oliver Ames, 64 – Final
Milford, 33 vs. North Attleboro, 67 – Final
Sharon, 58 vs. Stoughton, 42 – Final
Girls Indoor Track (@ Reggie Lewis)
Attleboro, 30.5 vs. Taunton, 65.5 – Final
Canton, 36 vs. Foxboro, 60 – Final – Canton’s Jimisha Williams, Leah Murphy and Claire Belisle all won individual events and teamed with Rosana Cho to win the 4×200 relay for the Bulldogs. Williams took first in the 55M, Murphy was on the long jump while Cho took second, and Belisle won the 300M. Ally Chin (2 Mile) and Bronwyn Mahoney (shot put) earned first-place finishes, while Chloe Pennacchio earned points with third-place finishes in both the 1000M and 1 Mile.
Franklin, 59 vs. Mansfield, 41 – Final – Franklin won the division for the third straight year with the victory. For Mansfield, senior Madison Haughey ran a PR in the 55M hurdles and jumped 4’11 in the high jump, qualifying for states in both events. Junior Brynn Anderson knocked off six seconds for a PR in the 1000M, also qualifying for states. Lizzie How also ran a PR in the 300, taking second, with freshman Tessa Lancaster shaved 20 seconds off her 2 Mile run, qualifying for states at 12:14.55.
King Philip, 57 vs. Oliver Ames, 43 – Final
Milford, 43 vs. North Attleboro, 57 – Final
Sharon, 69 vs. Stoughton, 30 – Final
Franklin, 86 @ North Attleboro, 74 – Final
Oliver Ames, 99 @ King Philip, 84 – Final
Franklin, 90 @ North Attleboro, 75 – Final
Oliver Ames, 90 @ King Philip, 95 – Final
ATTLEBORO, Mass. – Attleboro was clinging to a one-point lead heading into the fourth quarter of Sunday night’s game against King Philip, but the Bombardiers shut down the Warriors over the final eight minutes, allowing only six points and two made field goals from the visitors to pull away for a 52-41 victory.
“I think this is our most complete effort, front to back, all year,” said first-year Attleboro coach Marty Crowley, who was facing KP for the first time since leaving the Warriors during the off-season.
He added, “I think we played 32 minutes tonight. We had a great win against Durfee, down by 13 in the third quarter and we came back to win by 12 last game, and the light kind of came on for us. I kind of put us in a hole early with my defensive scheme, but we switched and the kids really dug in.”
Attleboro scored the first five points of the fourth on drives to the basket by MacKenzie Roberts (her only basket of the game) and sophomore Nyah Thomas (seven points, six rebounds). Faith Roy scored on a drive and Shannon O’Connor hit a free throw to cut the lead to 41-38, but Abby Struminski added a pair at the line and Sam Pierce (14 points, eight rebounds, five blocks) scored in the paint to extend the advantage back to seven points.
“Sam obviously is a phenomenal player, she’s one of the best players in our league,” Crowley said about getting the senior forward involved offensively. “We’re working on recognition when to give Sam the ball and when not to and I thought we move the ball pretty well tonight.”
Pierce followed with a kick-out pass to junior Jordyn Lako for a three-pointer that pushed the lead to 11. Lako scored all 14 of her points in the second half and the point guard also chipped in with nine rebounds. After O’Connor knocked down a late three for KP, Thomas scored in transition and Lako got a steal and layup to seal the win.
First-year KP coach Amy Siggens said, “We don’t go very far in our bench and we’re very guard heavy. The guards we have are very good, so I think it comes down to is trying to get people subs and rest where we can. We just runs out of steam, but that’s something that can be fixed.”
O’Connor, the Boston University-commit, started the game on fire, scoring 11 of her game-high 19 points in the first half, including nine in the first quarter. Crowley admitted that the Bombardiers had to change things up defensively to slow down the junior guard, who he had coached for the past two seasons.
“Shannon is such a special player,” said Crowley of using Lako, Thomas, and Pierce to guard O’Connor. “The three of them did a nice job on her and we just tried to take her out of the equation and for the most part it worked in the second half. First half, they ran some good stuff for her but we made some adjustments at halftime.”
Pierce kept Attleboro in the game in the first quarter with seven points and Liv McCall gave Attleboro a much-needed perimeter threat with all nine of her points coming in the first half (on three shot from beyond the arc).
The Warriors were also forced to play without starting forward Faye Veilleux for the majority of the game after the sophomore twisted an ankle in the first quarter.
“It really hurt us,” said Siggens. “She’s really been fighting hard to work on her positioning and getting better as a player. She was really starting to get it and to go down like that is too bad.”
The teams went into halftime tied at 25 apiece and the third quarter was back-and-forth. Julia Leroux (nine points, six rebounds) gave KP a brief lead and O’Connor scored four points in the quarter to tie the game at 31-31. Leroux added a pair from the line to give the Warriors a lead at 33-32.
“She never stops playing,” said Siggens of Leroux. “She’s fun to watch and she really wants to go get it. I couldn’t ask anything more of her tonight.”
Christina Hathaway scored inside to put KP ahead by three points, but the Bombardiers rallied behind Lako, who scored eight of the team’s 11 points in the third. She buried a three off a Rory Hopkins pass to tie the gam and added a free throw to give Attleboro a slim edge heading to the fourth quarter.
KP was also hamstrung heading into the fourth after O’Connor picked up her fourth foul in the closing seconds of the third. “Foul trouble seems to be what we’re getting into but I’ll take it because it means they’re playing hard,” Siggens said. “We’ll figure out all the little things and controlling it better later.”
For almost seven minutes of the fourth quarter, Attleboro held KP to just three points, pushing the lead and securing a third league win in four games this season.
Crowley said, “We really clamped down in the fourth quarter when we had to, but we put ourselves in position where we didn’t have to scramble from behind and once we kind of took off there in the beginning of the fourth quarter that was the difference in the game.”
Attleboro (5-3, 3-1) will travel to Mansfield on Wednesday just one back in the win column of the Hornets in the Kelley-Rex standings. King Philip (2-4, 1-3) will host Oliver Ames looking to get back on track.
By HockomockSports.com Staff
2017-2018 Hockomock Girls Basketball Preview
2016-2017 Record: 16-8
2016-2017 Finish: Reached D1 South Quarterfinal
Coach: Marty Crowley
The Bombardiers enter the season with a new coaching staff and a very different starting lineup to the one that nearly knocked off Mansfield in the Div. 1 South playoffs last season. Former King Philip coach Marty Crowley has taken over after Rick Patch stepped down in the off-season and he will have only a few returning varsity players to call on this winter.
Senior forward Sam Pierce will be the key piece on offense, as Attleboro tries to replace the more than 30 points per game that was lost with the graduation of Sarah Deyo and Julia Strachan. Pierce has been a consistent scorer and rebounder for the past few seasons, but this will be the first time that she is the primary offensive weapon and could be poised for a breakout year. Junior Jordyn Lako and senior Grace Mayer are strong on-the-ball defenders and should help Crowley implement his high-pressure defensive scheme. Senior Kim White will also be one of Attleboro’s ball-handlers in the backcourt.
One of the players who saw a little time on varsity last season that is expected to make a big jump is sophomore Nyah Thomas, who has the length to be a tough defender and showed in her few appearances last year that she can rebound and take the ball to the basket. Sophomore Liv McCall is a fearless shooter that will stretch the floor and transfer Mackenzie Roberts will give the Bombardiers added size in the paint.
Crowley said, “For us to be successful we must be able to play defense consistently and rebound. Sam, I am sure, is going to draw a lot of attention from other teams, so we must make sure that we are smart offensively and get touches for everyone.”
2016-2017 Record: 6-14
2016-2017 Finish: Missed postseason.
Coach: Jim Choquette
There has been excitement around the Canton program for the past few seasons and that continues this winter, as the Bulldogs look to secure a place in the state tournament behind an experienced lineup that has been developing together for several years.
Senior Hannah Jerrier is the key for the Bulldogs, as the forward is coming off a league all-star season in which she emerged as a potential double-double night after night. Jerrier is a solid rebounder and scorer in the paint, reaching the 20-point mark nine times last season and averaging more than 16 points and nine rebounds per game. Junior Julia Hamilton will be back at point guard for the Bulldogs to help get the Canton into its offensive sets and provide pressure, on-the-ball defense. Senior Jess Powers is also back after missing a season to a knee injury and will add a boost to the team’s outside shooting and take pressure off Jerrier on offense.
Junior Maggie Connolly returns for her second year in the backcourt and seniors Lindsey Barrett, Nikki Gefteas, and Leya Conard will all add depth to the Canton roster this season, while junior Erin Devine adds another important post presence on both ends of the floor. The versatility of the roster will allow head coach Jim Choquette to change his game plans every game, slowing it down to play half-court or ratcheting up the pressure to go up tempo.
“Canton remains focused on playing together and staying positive for the best season possible,” Choquette said. “Leading up to our first game there’s been an extreme amount of effort and energy by a large group of unselfish girls and our seniors have all been great examples of staying positive throughout all situations!”
2016-2017 Record: 22-3
2016-2017 Finish: Reached Div. 2 State Semifinal
Coach: Lisa Downs
After winning the Div. 2 South title and reaching the TD Garden last winter, this year’s Foxboro team will have high expectations, but with four starters returning, including reigning Hockomock League MVP Ashley Sampson, the Warriors will once again be the favorites to take home the Davenport division crown.
Having already passed the 1,000-point mark for her career, Sampson enters her senior season as the focal point of the Foxboro offense. Her ability to get into the lane and finish, as well as step back and knock down shots, makes her a tough cover and opens space for her teammates. Fellow senior Lily Sykes is one of the beneficiaries of that space and she can take advantage of open looks on the perimeter. Senior Grace Tamulionis is another player who can stretch the floor for the Warriors and can be an ‘X’ factor for Foxboro in big games. Senior Shannon Smally adds rebounding and post presence to keep defenses honest.
The Warriors are now the veteran team in the division, but there are also several younger players that have developed into critical pieces off the bench, including sophomore Abby Hassman, who has grown in the off-season into a strong rebounder. Freshman Katelyn Mollica will add backcourt depth with her tenacity on defense and already impressive court awareness. Junior Chelsea Gibbons is another player that is expected to step into a bigger role this season.
Foxboro coach Lisa Downs said, “This group of seniors have been part of our Varsity team since their freshmen year and with each year, they have learned and developed more – all of the girls on this year’s team put in the necessary work; now its time to execute.”
2016-2017 Record: 9-11
2016-2017 Finish: Missed postseason.
Coach: John Leighton
Franklin got off to a rough start last season, beginning 0-6 with an inexperienced roster, but then closed the year with nine wins in the last 14 games, just missing out on a return to the postseason. This year, the Panthers will try to build on that year of experience and book a return to the playoffs.
The Panthers will have strength in the middle to try and get off to a much better start this season. Sophomore Ali Brigham, last year’s HockomockSports.com Underclassman of the Year, has received several Div. I NCAA offers, including one from the University of Minnesota, and at 6-foot-3 can dominate the paint on both ends of the floor. Franklin will also have outside scoring with junior guard Bea Bondhus, who is a consistent three-point shooter and will stretch defenses to open up the post for Brigham.
Franklin has plenty of size this season. Sophomore forwards Breanna Atwood (5-foot-9) and Megan O’Connell (5-foot-10) and senior forward Kate Morse (5-foot-11) will provide plenty of depth on the inside. Junior Shannon Gray will be back to run the point and senior Grace Sameski will add backcourt depth. Freshman guard Elizabeth Wilson is poised to make an instant impact for the Panthers, as she did in the season opener by knocking down three free throws in the final seconds to force overtime against Holy Name.
“We are a young team with only two seniors, but I am very pleased with the effort and progress of the team,” said Franklin coach John Leighton, who is excited about the return of the majority of the team’s scoring and the potential of the youth on the roster.
2016-2017 Record: 7-13
2016-2017 Finish: Missed postseason.
Coach: Amy Siggens
King Philip has a new coach this season, with former Wellesley assistant Amy Siggens taking over for Marty Crowley, and there could be a period of adjustment for a still relatively young Warriors roster to adapt to the new system, but there is excitement about the progress being made by the seven returning varsity players.
Boston University-commit Shannon O’Connor will once again be a player to watch for the Warriors this winter. The junior’s ability to shoot off the dribble, defend multiple positions, and take the ball to the basket has made her one of the league’s elite perimeter players. As O’Connor continues to develop as a playmaker that will create open looks for her teammates, including junior Julia Leroux and sophomore Faith Roy. Senior Christina Hathaway (one of only two seniors on the roster) will add strength in the paint on both ends of the floor.
The Warriors will not lack for size this season. O’Connor is listed at 5-foot-11, junior Catherine Cummings and sophomore Faye Veilleux are listed at 5-foot-10, and Roy is listed at 5-foot-9. The versatility of those players will give Siggens room to switch up lineups when needed. KP is still pretty young and Siggens has added two freshmen, Emma Glaser and Brianna James, to this year’s roster.
Siggens said, “Early on we will stress the importance of being unselfish on offense and being tough and aggressive on defense. Knowing mistakes will be made, there will be no small emphasis on the importance of playing hard all the time… I am encouraged by our team’s enthusiasm and attitude.”
2016-2017 Record: 20-4
2016-2017 Finish: Reached Div. 1 South final.
Coach: Mike Redding
Replacing the production of last season’s HockomockSports.com Player of the Year Jen Peel is a difficult task, but Mansfield has the talent, depth, and experience in the roster to make it work. The Hornets return four starters from last year’s squad and will lean on a loaded and versatile junior class to try and make it a three-peat of league titles.
The key returner for Mansfield is 6-foot-3 center Meg Hill. The Stonehill College-commit is already the program’s best in blocked shots and is soon to be the career leader in rebounds, while improving her offensive game every season. With Peel gone, junior Mady Bendanillo will be tasked with getting the ball into the post to Hill and to fellow junior Maggie Danehy, who had an impressive start with a double-double against Medfield in the Endowment Game. Reigning HockomockSports.com Defensive Player of the Year Ann Maher will also be back at shooting guard and is one of the team’s most consistent three-point threats.
Juniors Erin Daniel, Emily Vigeant, Sydney Mulkern and Kara Bendanillo will likely compete for the fifth starting spot and all should see plenty of playing time this year. With 5-foot-11 senior Maeve Carney and 5-foot-10 freshman Ashley Santos, the Hornets should be able to dominate the paint and sophomore Becca Hottleman will add depth at the point guard position.
Mansfield coach Mike Redding said, “We have a chance to be very good again with our junior group getting a ton of experience last year and we hope to compete for league title again.” He added that the Hornets bolstered the schedule this season as well. Redding said, “Our record may not be as good as last year when we earned the No. 1 seed, but we will be more battle tested for the state tourney in March.”
2016-2017 Record: 10-11
2016-2017 Finish: Reached Div. 2 Central first round.
Coach: T.J. Dolliver
A year after returning to the postseason for the first time since 2012 (and nearly pulling off an upset of Marlboro on the road), Milford brings back seven seniors to try and make a push for a Davenport division title and another state tournament appearance.
The Hawks have a versatile lineup led by four-year starter Kate Irwin. The lefty point guard is one of the most dynamic perimeter scorers and playmakers in the league and she continues to improve each season. Her ability to get into the paint opens up room for her teammates and she can also step back and knock down threes. Irwin will be helped by fellow seniors Gillian Valanzola and Juliana Tracy, who add size on the post.
Senior Emily Piergustavo is a knock-down shooter from beyond the arc and her classmate Jess Tomaso has proven to be a solid rebounder from the guard position. There are also two sophomores and four freshmen on the roster this season to add depth and build for the future under third-year head coach T.J. Dolliver.
Dolliver said, “I am very excited for our team this year. This is my 3rd year with a lot of these girls and seeing how they have progressed over the years have really set this team up for a fun season.”
2016-2017 Record: 18-7
2016-2017 Finish: Reached Div. 2 South Quarterfinal.
Coach: Derek Herber
Last season, North Attleboro boasted one of the most experienced lineups in the league with five of its top six players being seniors, but this year the Rocketeers will be incorporating a number of new faces, as only six players (only starter) return from last winter.
The lone returning starter is junior guard Julia Feid, who had a breakout season on the wing and will be counted on to lead the offensive attack this year. Feid’s classmate Emily Haskell will also be on the wing for North this season and will also have a large chunk of the offense run through her. Senior Emily Pastore, junior Liz Smahi, and sophomore Michelle Pothier will also contribute scoring from the wing, while junior Lauren Pezzi and sophomore Olivia Forbes will run the point and distribute the ball in the half court.
The graduation of Caroline Collard and Liz Morehouse leaves an opening on the post, but North has several players that will step in to provide a presence in the paint. Senior Julia Santos and juniors Emma Noreck and Kaley Sullivan will each get opportunities to contribute. North faces a tough early season schedule with the likes of Franklin, Oliver Ames, Archbishop Williams, and Hingham, so it will be critical for the new players to find their feet quickly.
North Attleboro coach Derek Herber said, “The team has quickly began to gel and I am hopeful that we if we can survive the early part of the season, we can qualify for the tournament.”
2016-2017 Record: 13-8
2016-2017 Finish: Reached Div. 2 South First Round.
Coach: Elaine Clement-Holbrook
Oliver Ames struggled to find consistent offense last season and it kept the Tigers from being able to challenge Mansfield for the league title or make another run in Div. 2 South, but a healthy lineup with several key returning players has OA optimistic for improvements this winter.
The main focus will be on senior forward Kayla Raymond. The Stonehill College-commit is one of the most versatile players in the league, with the length and leaping ability to dominate in the paint and the range to step out and knock down jumpers. Raymond is listed as a forward/center but could potentially be used at multiple positions. Senior guard Abby Reardon is back to get the Tigers into their offensive sets and as one of the league’s top on-the-ball defenders. Classmate Katie Flynn also returns to give Raymond help in the post.
In addition to the seniors, junior Alex Sheldon will provide depth at the forward position and junior Sadie Homer was a dynamic scorer on the perimeter before an injury cut her season short last year. Homer was a solid three-point shooter last year and will be expected to stretch defenses again this season. Sophomore guard Meg Holleran emerged as a playmaker during her freshman campaign and could see a bigger role this year.
“OA is looking to blend some younger talent and are working hard to provide some depth in the backcourt,” said OA coach Laney Clement-Holbrook. “Looking forward to the fight for the Kelly Rex Division.”
2016-2017 Record: 6-14
2016-2017 Finish: Missed Postseason.
Coach: Sandra Lombardi
In addition to a new coaching staff, Sharon will see a number of new faces on the roster, as several of last year’s players are focusing on other sports this winter. Former Rockland and East Bridgewater assistant Sandra Lombardi takes over for Cliff Tomassian and will have a young group to work with in her first head coaching position.
Junior small forward Emma Eberhardt is one of the returning players that will be expected to provide leadership and scoring for the Eagles. Eberhardt, a HockomockSports.com All-Underclassman Team performer last year, was Sharon’s top scorer last winter and also has the size to be a problem for opponents on the glass. She scored 16 points in Sharon’s win over Nipmuc in the season opener. Senior guard Miranda Cheung will also be back for Sharon to provide ball-handling and perimeter shooting.
Sophomore Telishya Herbert made the jump from JV to varsity midway through last season and had an instant impact on the Eagles with her athleticism and her ability to score in the paint. She had 10 points against Nipmuc and could be ready for a breakout year as Sharon’s second scorer to take some pressure off Eberhardt. Also back from last year’s roster are junior Evanjuline Elisma and sophomore Ally Brown.
Lombardi said of her new team, “We are going to be quick and aggressive. I’m excited to see what the season will bring.”
2016-2017 Record: 8-10
2016-2017 Finish: Missed Postseason.
Coach: Charmaine Steele-Jordan
The Black Knights narrowly missed out on the postseason last year, despite having a number of underclassmen in the roster, and expectations for this season include a return to the playoffs under third-year head coach Charmaine Steele-Jordan.
Senior Val Whalen was the team’s MVP last season after leading the Black Knights with more than 13 points and nine rebounds per game. Whalen has improved every season and her intensity on defense and on the glass boosts is contagious. Stoughton is a physical team that likes to put pressure on the ball defensively and Whalen sets the tone. Senior Jordan Motley is also a tenacious rebounder and gives the Black Knights another strong presence in the paint.
Sophomore guard Shyanne Trinh had a breakout freshman campaign, scoring more than 10 points per game, and her ball-handling and long-range shooting opens things up for the post players. Fellow sophomore Aliyah Wright also had a strong rookie campaign and her size is a difficult matchup for many of the point guards in the Hock. Stoughton will also count on junior guards Lindsey McDonald and Hailey Egan and sophomore Lexi Baptista. Freshman Sydnee Hyacinthe has also been called up to add depth in the backcourt.
Steele-Jordan said of her senior forwards, “I’m looking forward to their leadership, hustle on the court and their defensive presence this year. Whalen and Motley’s veteran play along with our returning sophomores will be great for the Black Knights this season.”
2016-2017 Record: 1-21
2016-2017 Finish: Missed Postseason.
Coach: Walter Harrigan
Taunton is coming off a difficult season in which the Tigers finished with just one victory, but one game into the new year and Taunton has already matched that total. The season opening win over Cumberland (R.I.) fits with the optimism around the program, as the Tigers blend youth with experience in the hopes of making a run at a playoff spot.
The Tigers will be led by senior forwards Hannah Moniz and Mackenzie Handrahan, who combined for 26 points in the win at Cumberland and provide a mix of rebounding, scoring at the rim, and outside shooting to balance the Taunton offense. Junior Lily Patneaude also returns from an all-star season and is Taunton’s most dynamic scorer with range from well beyond the arc. Junior Alexa White is another guard that will provide solid contributions on both ends of the floor.
Junior Shantel Andrew, a 5-foot-7 forward, is expected to be a significant contributor this season, after missing two years with knee injuries. As usual, Taunton has plenty of youth on the roster with four freshmen making varsity, a couple of whom got playing experience last year as eighth graders. Forwards Jaelyn and Sonya Fernandez and guards Kelsey White and Tori DaRosa are going to be counted on to play big roles this year for the Tigers.
Taunton coach Walter Harrigan said, “Our goal for this year is to continue to work hard while focusing on the development of good habits which will hopefully lead to team improvement and a trip to the state tournament.”