Strong Second Half Defense Helps OA Ground Eagles

Oliver Ames boys basketball
Oliver Ames junior Carter Evin (22) celebrates with teammates after a win over Plymouth North. (Ryan Lanigan/HockomockSports.com)

ByRyanLanigan_2016FollowRyanLanigan_2016
NORTH EASTON, Mass. – Through the first 16 minutes, there was virtually no separation between #16 Oliver Ames and #17 Plymouth North.
But through the final two quarters, the Tigers turned a tie game into a double-digit lead and picked up a 69-50 win over the Eagles.
OA surrendered 18 points in the opening quarter but the defense improved in each quarter. The Tigers limited Plymouth North to 13 points in the second quarter, 11 points in the third quarter and just eight points in the final quarter.
“I think the biggest thing is what we got a pretty good defensive contribution in the second half,” Oliver Ames coach Don Byron said. “Rayshon Ward got off and running there in the first half. I thought Shawn Cardoza, being the primary guy, did a nice job of making him work a little harder to get his looks. That was big for us.”
Ward, a 6’6 senior for the Eagles, had nearly half of the team’s points in the first half (15) but Cardoza and OA limited him to just five points in the second half.
The majority of the separation came in the third quarter. With a two point advantage (37-35), OA closed out the remaining five and a half minutes with a 18-7 run. Senior Tim Kelley got the run going while Carter Evin and Shawn Cardoza each converted a field goal in the paint and Dylan Mahoney drained a three. Mahoney added a pair of free throws and a strong take to the rim and sophomore Jack Spillane came off the bench to drain a corner three in the final seconds to put OA up 55-42 at the end of the quarter.
“We hit a couple of timely shots, guys coming off bench hit shots too,” Byron said “When they pressed I thought we attacked it well and got ourselves in positive number situations. We didn’t always make the correct decision but we got into attack mode and that was good.”
Mahoney and Evin opened the fourth quarter with back to back baskets to extend the lead to 17. A quick spurt from the Eagles cut it to 12 but that would be the closest they would get. A two minute scoreless stretch kept OA’s lead at 14 and when Plymouth North finally found the bucket, junior Nick Welch answered for OA.
The Tigers didn’t allow Plymouth North to score over the final three minutes of play to seal the win.
While OA had a comfortable lead for the majority of the second half, the advantage might have been bigger if the Tigers had converted at a higher rate from the free throw line. OA went 0/8 to start the game and finished 5/16.
“Foul shooting is so critical,” Byron said. “We were like 0 for 7 right out of the gates. You can’t really get a good control of the game unless you hit a decent percentage so that was part of it. There were some time situations I would have liked to play better but all and all I’m really happy with what went on tonight.”
Evin finished with a team-high 19 points along with four rebounds, Mahoney scored 17 points and had seven rebounds and Cardoza had eight points to go along with 14 rebounds and a solid defensive performance.
Mahoney had 11 of his 17 points coming in the second half (including nine in the vital third quarter).
“When he attacks the basket, he can be tough to guard,” Byron said of Mahoney, just a junior. “He had some matchups that were favorable I thought. He has a great first step and he’s athletic at the rim. We try to tell him to play inside out, try to play at the rim first then work your way out to the three ball. We want him to be a slasher who has a jump shot and not the reverse of that. When he does that, he’s hard to guard.”
Oliver Ames finished with a monstrous 54-30 advantage on the glass. Connor Maroney had nine rebounds along with six assists, Tim Kelley had seven points and five rebounds and Nick Welch had seven assists and four rebounds.
The Tigers (11-10) advance to the First Round on the MIAA D2 South bracket. Oliver Ames boys basketball will travel to #1 Bishop Feehan in a rematch of last year’s D2 South final. The game will tip off at 6:30 on Wednesday, March 2nd.
Ryan Lanigan can be contacted at RyanLanigan@hockomocksports.com and followed on Twitter at @R_Lanigan.

Evin, OA Earn Playoff Spot With Win Over Black Knights

Oliver Ames boys basketball
Oliver Ames junior Nick Welch drives to the basket in the second half (Ryan Lanigan/HockomockSports.com)

ByRyanLanigan_2016FollowRyanLanigan_2016
 
 
 
STOUGHTON, Mass. – It was win or go home for the Oliver Ames boys basketball team on Monday night.
Paced by a career-high 28 points from junior Carter Evin and two 20-plus point quarters, Oliver Ames notched a 74-55 win over Stoughton and punched its ticket to the postseason.
With the win, the Tigers extended it to 13 straight playoff appearances.
“I couldn’t be happier with what’s going on here,” Oliver Ames head coach Don Byron said. “Coming back this year the highest kid [returning] on the food chain was [Shawn] Cardoza and there were a couple of kids who backed up others and had to work really hard to get on the floor. To think that they are here right now, that’s not typical. There will be teams that sneak in on the last night that are flawed but I think we’re playing pretty well. We’re finding multiple ways to score, we’re getting contributions from more kids as we go along and we’re starting to see them mature right in front of us.”
Stoughton rallied to take a lead in the early the second quarter via an 11-4 run but the Tigers dominated the final five minutes. OA scored 21 points the rest of the way with six guys contributing to the run. Evin scored six in the stretch with Nick Welch and Dylan Mahoney each adding five and Shawn Cardoza, Tim Kelley and Connor Maroney each chipping in. OA took a 42-33 lead in into the break.
The third quarter was better defensively for both sides with OA holding a slight edge, 11-9. A pair of threes from Jared Costa-Haywood brought the Black Knights within seven but OA answered with a free throw from Evin and a corner three from Kelley to push the lead back to double-digits.
“This didn’t just fall together, the kids really worked at it in the offseason and put a lot of time in,” Byron said. “It’s nice to see it pay off. Having so many seniors last year, these guys didn’t have as many opportunities as before as you do in a typical year.”
The Tigers closed the door early in the fourth quarter. Nick Welch drained a three to open the quarter, Evin secured an offensive rebound and putback and then pulled up for a corner three and Mahoney’s layup capped a 10-2 to open the first two minutes of the final quarter.
“They don’t want to go home,” Byron said. “They’re a close group, they like playing with each other. They sincerely like each other. You could sense that they weren’t in any hurry to get out of here.
“We’ve played a lot of teams tough like Franklin, Foxboro, and Sharon. The league helps us out in games like this. I don’t think we’re a typical 10-10 team, I think we’re a little better than that. The league will make you rise up to what you have to do. We’ve had 10-10 teams before where we were covering some stuff. We’re not covering quite as much with this group.”
Midway through the final quarter the Tigers built a 20 point lead and were able to pull their starters with a couple minutes to play in the game.
“We’re a streaky team and sometimes those streaks are good and sometimes they’re bad,” Stoughton head coach John Gallivan said. “When we looked at the shot chart at halftime, they were getting whatever they wanted in the paint. We just didn’t defend. The goal was the make it hard for them to score and we didn’t. OA has absolutely come a long way in terms of their offense this season but to give up 42 points in the first half is very disillusioning. The kids played better defense in the third quarter but we need to combine that with scoring and we just didn’t.
“Hats off to them, they finished the season strong and deserve to go to the tournament. They’ll be a tough out for someone.”
Despite a .500 record, the Tigers have been one of the top defensive teams in the league and entered Monday’s contest allowing 54.9 points per game, third best in the Hockomock. Beyond allowing 20 points in the second quarter, OA limited Stoughton to 13 in the first and fourth and nine in the third quarter.
“We’ve been pretty good defensively,” Byron said. “We seem to get a kid every year we can put in that lock down position. Charlie Ryan this year has been great, he plays everyone from the one to the four, wherever we feel we have to give attention too. His brother [St. Clair] was a terrific defender too. It’s nice, you don’t have to do all the scheming to shut down one player. You can just put your guy on him and feel comfortable.”
Evin led all scorers with 28 points, completing the double-double with 10 rebounds. Mahoney added 15 points, Welch had 11 points and Kelley added 10 points.
“He’s had an unbelievable second half [of the season],” Byron said of Evin. “He’s another one that was on the team last year but was 10 or 11 in the rotation. He’s a talented kid, he’s got good skills and athleticism. His big thing was transitioning from a nice pierce to being the guy. He’s really done that well over the second half of the season, he’s been terrific.”
Costa-Haywood led the Black Knights with 17 points, Cam Gomes had 12 points and Cam Andrews chipped in with 10 points. Senior captain Nick Quattrucci hauled in seven rebounds.
Oliver Ames boys basketball finishes the regular season at 10-10 and will await seeding in the MIAA D2 South tournament, due out on Friday. Stoughton wraps up its season at 7-13.
Ryan Lanigan can be contacted at RyanLanigan@hockomocksports.com and followed on Twitter at @R_Lanigan.

Tuesday’s Schedule & Scoreboard – 01/12/16

Today’s games are listed below.
Boys Basketball
Milford, 55 @ Attleboro, 70 – Final – Attleboro had three players score in double-digits, led by a career-high 24 points for junior Jake Dunkley, who also added seven rebounds. Junior Andrew Milliken had 16 points and five rebounds, sophomore Nate Douglas had 14 points and four rebounds and senior Kyle Murphy had 14 rebounds to go along with seven points. Milford’s Zack Tamagni scored a team-high 20 points for the Scarlet Hawks. 

Canton, 34 @ North Attleboro, 43 – Final – North Attleboro junior Brent Doherty scored 11 of his game-high 15 points in the second half, including nine of them in the third quarter, which was the period the Rocketeers created an eight point cushion. Senior Ridge Olsen added nine points and Kyle Gaumond had six. Canton’s Tony Harris had 12 points for the Bulldogs.

Foxboro, 60 @ Franklin, 65 – Final (OT) – Senior Tim Prunier scored a game-high 18 points while freshman Jay Dieterle scored 13 points, senior Kevin Gill had 12 points, five rebounds and four assists and Josh Macchi had 11 points and eight rebounds. Foxboro’s Jason Procaccini scored 17 points, Robby Lowey added 12 points and six rebounds and Mark Clagg had 11 points. 

Sharon, 45 @ King Philip, 52 – Final – King Philip broke into the win column, pouring in 20 points in the first quarter and never looking back. Seth Sullivan had a game-high 13 points while junior Pharaoh Davis added 11 points and junior Noah Goodwin had 10 points. Peter Banks had 10 points for Sharon, who went 2/24 from 3PT range as a team. 

Oliver Ames, 63 @ Mansfield, 78 – Final – Junior Sam Goldberg netted a career-high 23 points (17 in the second half) pulled in 10 rebounds and had four assists to lead the Hornets. Matt Ehrlich added 17 points and Max Boen added 11 points. Oliver Ames’ Tim Kelley had 20 points and Connor Maroney added 15 points. 

Stoughton, 53 @ Taunton, 81 – Final – Senior Jose Mercado netted 25 points and junior Quan Roberson added 22 points as Taunton’s offense scored a season-high 81 points. Stoughton sophomore Cam Andrews had 14 points to lead the Black Knights. 
Girls Basketball
North Attleboro, 50 @ Canton, 38 – Final – North Attleboro was led by junior guard Ashley Ahern, who finished with 18 points. For the second straight night, Hannah Jerrier recorded a double-double for Canton with 14 points and 10 rebounds.

Franklin, 45 @ Foxboro, 51 – Final – Sophomore Ashley Sampson led the way for the Warriors with 21 points while sophomore Lily Sykes chipped in with 12 points for Foxboro. 

King Philip, 53 @ Sharon, 45 – Final – KP rallied from eight down in the fourth quarter behind 18 points from freshman Julia Leroux (nine in the fourth quarter alone). Sam Madden added 12 for the Warriors, who outscored the Eagles 22-7 in the final quarter. Sharon was led by Alyssa Piazza with 14 points and Charlotte Ransom with 12.

Mansfield, 48 @ Oliver Ames, 32 – Final – Caroline Maher led the way for the Hornets with 16 points in a game between the top two teams in this week’s girls basketball Hock 5. Meg Hill added eight points and nine rebounds and Jen Peel had eight points and eight assists for Mansfield.

Attleboro, 54 @ Milford, 26 – Final – The Bombardiers were without star forward Sarah Deyo but pulled out the win on the road led by 18 points and 12 rebounds from sophomore Sam Pierce. Emma Vlashi added 12 points for Attleboro in just her second game back from injury and Fatima McDonald chipped in with eight steals.

Taunton, 52 @ Stoughton, 54 – Final – Stoughton seniors Jess Greer and Alecia Quinones each scored a team-high 18 points to lead the Black Knights to a close win. Taunton senior Jordan Wade had 16 points while Lily Patneaude and Alyssa Gibson each added 12 points for the Tigers. 
Hockey
Canton, 11 @ Stoughton, 1 – Final – Senior Matty Marcone netted his first career goal to lead the Bulldogs to a league win.
Wrestling
Taunton, 42 vs. Josiah Quincy 36 – Final – The Tigers got wins from Chris Fernandes (120), Justin Bradley (132), Brandon DeForitis (145), Alex Simon (170), Jose Anaya (182), Nuno Camara (195), and Mason Frank (220).
Swimming
Boys
Foxboro, 51 @ Oliver Ames, 103 – Final
Girls
Foxboro, 80 @ Oliver Ames, 90 – Final

Oliver Ames Goes On The Defensive To Beat Archies

Oliver Ames' Charlie Ryan (right) defends an Archbishop Williams player in the first half. (Ryan Lanigan/HockomockSports.com)
Oliver Ames’ Charlie Ryan (right) defends an Archbishop Williams player in the first half. (Ryan Lanigan/HockomockSports.com)

By Ryan Lanigan, Editor-in-Chief
NORTH EASTON, Mass. – What’s one of the best remedies for a struggling offense?
A stout defense works.
As Oliver Ames tries to work the kinks out on offense, it relied on its defense to deliver a 39-25 win over Archbishop Williams in the first round of the Val Muscato Holiday Tournament.
The Tigers held Archies to single digits in every single quarter, helped force 28 turnovers and never trailed from the second quarter on.
“To our credit, we’ve done well defensively,” Oliver Ames head coach Don Byron said. “Besides the Taunton game, the last three games we’ve defended well. I think the kids are going to come out of [the shooting slump]. We’ve hung in there and we felt the strength coming into the year was their ability to shoot the ball but it hasn’t really shown the way we thought it would yet. It’s cliche but defense will keep you in games but it’s done it for us three times. We’ve managed to hang around with the defense.”
Turnovers and a 1/5 start from the floor six minutes into the game would make one think the Tigers would be in a big hole. But because of strong defense, OA was down just 6-2. A bucket from junior Carter Evin and two free throws from junior Dylan Mahoney tied the game with a minute to play in the first. A three from Tim Kelley put the Tigers ahead 9-6 at the end of the quarter.
OA’s defense continued to clamp down in the second quarter, allowing just four points in the game’s second eight minutes. A putback from junior Nick Welch got the Tigers off to a good start and Mike Graziano’s three pointer with just under six to play made it 14-11. More misses and turnovers from Archies stalled their offense and OA extended the lead with a bucket from Shawn Cardoza off a nice pump fake.
“We played pretty well defensively [against Franklin],” Byron said. “To hold them to 50, especially after seeing what they did the next time out against CM, was encouraging for us. The defense has been good and coming into the year I thought that was going to be something we’d have to work at, and they have worked at it, and they it’s been our strength so far, surprisingly so. I’m hoping the offense will come around because we do have some kids who can put the ball into the basket.”
Up 18-10 to start the second half, Oliver Ames had its best offensive quarter in the third. Archies cut the deficit to three but OA responded with a 9-2 run, capped with a Graziano bucket at the basket off a turnover to make it 27-17. With an 11 point lead to start the fourth quarter, the Tigers held onto it each time Archies tried to get back into it.
OA finished the game with an 8-3 run over the final three minutes of the game with points from Welch, Evin, Connor Maroney and Jordan McGrath. The Tigers won the rebound battle 37-22.
Evin finished with a game-high nine points and added five rebounds, Cardoza had seven points and nine rebounds, Graziano had seven points and Maroney had 11 rebounds to along with three points.
“It’s balanced, I just wish it was a little higher balanced,” Byron said. “14 or 12 points each would be nice to see but hopefully that will come.”
Oliver Ames (2-2) will play in the finals of the Muscato Holiday Tournament against Falmouth on Wednesday at 7:30.
Ryan Lanigan can be contacted at RyanLanigan@hockomocksports.com and followed on Twitter at @R_Lanigan.

Boys Basketball: Davenport Division Preview 2015-16

Sharon's Tyler Smith (2) and David Roelke are two of eight returning varsity players for the Eagles. (Ryan Lanigan/HockomockSports.com)
Sharon’s Tyler Smith (2) and David Roelke are two of eight returning varsity players for the Eagles. (Ryan Lanigan/HockomockSports.com)

By HockomockSports.com Staff

CANTON

2014-2015 Record: 5-15
2014-2015 Finish: Missed playoffs
Coach: Ryan Gordy
The Bulldogs have a good amount of talent with experience returning this season and have added some key young pieces and head coach Ryan Gordy is hoping that combination will be a recipe for success this season.
Senior captains Rishi Jambunathan, Woanyen Mahn and Ben O’Neill all got plenty of experience last year and will be relied upon in getting the younger players involved. Griffin Jerrier, who was a strong rebounder last year, is also back and will help the Bulldogs in the paint.
“We are a team that has a nice mix of veterans and rookies, we have some athleticism, a good work ethic and IQ for the game,” Gordy said. “I would say we are relatively deep this year with 11 guys who can give quality minutes at the varsity level. Our biggest weakness is that this roster is unproven, and we need to learn how to execute in big moments to win games.”

FOXBORO

2014-2015 Record: 15-8
2014-2015 Finish: Reached D2 South Semifinal
Coach: Jon Gibbs
When it comes to talent coming back, Foxboro is near the top of the list with the players they have returning this season. Hockomock League All Stars Alex DuBrow and Robby Lowey are both back for their senior seasons and will look to lead the Warriors to another deep postseason run.
Along with DuBrow and Lowey, Foxboro has junior Mark Clagg (third year of varsity), Andrew Block and Jonathan Carnino all back this season. Sophomore Joe Morrison was brought up at the end of last year and the Warriors got transfer Jason Procaccini from Nobles and he could emerge as one of the Foxboro’s top scoring options. Head coach Jon Gibbs will be relying on experience and depth to try take the next step this year.
“We have some good pieces offensively and should be able to score in a variety of ways, so as long as we stay unselfish, we should be able to put some points on the scoreboard,” Gibbs said. “Ultimately, our success will be determined by how big of a commitment we make to defense and rebounding.”

MILFORD

2014-2015 Record: 2-18
2014-2015 Finish: Missed playoffs
Coach: Paul Seaver
After just two wins in head coach Paul Seaver’s first year, the Scarlet Hawks are looking to take a big step forward in the 2015-2016 season. With nearly everyone back, Milford is in prime position to pick up more victories this season.
Dwight Anderson, a Hockomock League honorable mention last year, is back for his senior season, junior sharpshooter Nate Davila is back, junior Zack Tamagni will be back running the point and senior Dimitry Torres is a player that can make an impact at both ends of the court. Sophomore Kayden Kelley saw some time in the second half of the season last year and should provide good length and size in the post.
“We return 10 of 14 guys from last year’s team, which was the youngest in the league,” Seaver said. “This group had a terrific offseason, coming together both on and off the court, and helping to rebuild the culture within Milford basketball. Some of our strengths would include our improved teamwork and general awareness of working with each other after having played together so much over the last year.”

OLIVER AMES

2014-2015 Record: 20-4
2014-2015 Finish: Reached D2 South Final
Coach: Don Byron
After reaching the D2 South Final last season, the Tigers will have a to overcome a lot to try and get back there this season. All five starters (Carney, Handy, Kyne, Flynn, Welch) from last year’s team graduated as well as a key role player off the bench (Kelley) and another junior Franklin Holgate transferred to Nobles.
But the goal hasn’t changed for Oliver Ames as the Tigers will be making a push for the postseason again this year. Senior Tim Kelley will be one of the Tigers’ go-to options on the offensive end of the court and junior Carter Evin will provide some size in the post to give OA options on offense and defense. Connor Moroney will also be a source of scoring while Shawn Cardoza is another post player with some good experience.
“We graduated a strong senior class last year but with a nucleus of five returning players who played in a number of high pressure games last year we are optimistic,” head coach Don Byron said. “We also will add seven players who were key players on our successful JV and freshmen teams last year.”

SHARON

2014-2015 Record: 11-10
2014-2015 Finish: Reached D2 South First Round
Coach: Andrew Ferguson
Similar to Foxboro, Sharon is near the top of the list when it comes to returning players back this year. First year head coach Andrew Ferguson has eight returning varsity players at his disposal as the Eagles will look to not only make the playoffs, but try to get further than they did this past season.
Seniors Matt Lowerre, Tyler Smith, Bryce Smith, Mitchell Sirota, Andrew Filipkowski, David Roelke, and Michael Zola are all back for another year while juniors Ricardo Ripley and Peter Banks both saw time last year. Ferguson will be relying on that depth to try and challenge Foxboro in the Davenport title race. Although the Eagles don’t have a ton of size, they make up for it in athleticism.
“We are very excited to begin the season, and expect a lot from a very experienced roster,” Ferguson said. “Our roster will allow us to be very versatile as we try to create mismatches on both ends of the floor.”

STOUGHTON

2014-2015 Record: 8-12
2014-2015 Finish: Missed playoffs
Coach: John Gallivan
There are a lot of questions heading into the season for Stoughton but at the same time, there is a lot of optimism among the Black Knights.
Brandon Teixeira is back for his third year on varsity and is among the best shooters in the league. He will be relied on to captain the team on both ends of the court while junior Ryan Sullivan – who saw minutes last season – should see a bigger role in 2015-2016.
Beyond those two, head coach John Gallivan will be looking for others to step up and emerge as options on offense and as consistent players on defense. Sophomore Cam Andrews could be one of those players after seeing some minutes during his freshman year and junior Cam Gomes could provide some size for the Black Knights.
“There’s a big difference between the games that start at 5:00 and the one’s that start at 6:30,” Gallivan said of JV to varsity. “We have a lot of guys that haven’t played the 6:30 ones yet. We don’t have a ton of size but we can run and we’re hoping to make teams play our style.”