Ruter At the Center of Foxboro’s Title-Winning Run

Addie Ruter
Sophomore center Addie Ruter had a double-double in all five of Foxboro’s playoff wins, including 18 points and 15 rebounds in the state title game against Dracut. (Josh Perry/

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LOWELL, Mass. – Following the playoff opener against Holliston, Foxboro coach Lisa Downs mentioned that some of the players looked a little nervous in the first quarter. It was a reminder that for most of Foxboro’s roster, tournament basketball was a new experience. In particular, Downs mentioned sophomore center Addie Ruter, who was getting her first taste of the postseason, looked tight at the start of the game.

Luckily for the Warriors, it only took Ruter a few minutes to shake that off.

Throughout a playoff run that culminated in Saturday night’s 73-53 victory against Dracut at the Tsongas Center, Foxboro has counted on the 6-foot-3 Ruter to provide matchup problems for their opponents and relieve the pressure on the dynamic backcourt of Camryn Collins and Kailey Sullivan. Each night, she has produced.

In five playoff games, Ruter finished with five double-doubles, averaging 18 points and 14 rebounds per game.

“I’m getting more used to it,” Ruter said about the rigors of the playoffs. “The first game was a little shaky but then the second game I just came out with a better mentality, more relaxed, and focused on my specific role on the court.”

Following Foxboro’s state title game win, Downs explained, “She’s the secret weapon that I’ve actually never had in 12 years, but few teams have. To have the scorers I do have and then you add in an inside player and it makes us a nightmare. You can’t really go to a zone because we’re going to shoot lights out and if you go to a man she’s going to beat you in there.”

Ruter’s domination of the paint started right at the beginning of the season. She scored a game-high 18 points in her varsity debut on the road at Milford, showing that the preseason hype was real.

“I worked a lot in the off-season, but I wasn’t really sure how things were going to come out and then that first game was a big confidence booster for me and then I just tried to stick with it and it was a great season,” Ruter explained.

Although she was the third-leading scorer on the Warriors in the regular season, her 14.7 points per game was seventh best in the Hockomock League.

Those numbers only grew with the stage.

In the win over Holliston, Ruter scored eight points in the second quarter and had 12 rebounds by halftime, on her way to 14 and 21 for the night. The Sweet Sixteen was Ruter at her best. With an obvious size advantage, she was unstoppable against previously unbeaten South High, scoring a career-high 31 points and grabbing 16 rebounds.

“She knew she had a role,” Collins said when asked about Ruter’s contributions to the title win. “I mean, when you see her you could tell that she was an asset with her height, so I think when she came on the court and she knew she was going to have to give us some new dimension. I think she did an awesome job growing as a player. I’m so proud of her.”

In the quarterfinal rout of Chicopee, Ruter scored 17 points and grabbed 10 rebounds, while adding two blocks and five assists. She was showing different aspects of her game that could help the team. Not only was she finishing around the rim and scoring on put-back attempts, but knocking down jumpers, showing off post moves, and looking secure as a focal point in the offense.

The Final Four was a real test, as Walpole’s Catie Hurley provided a physical challenge. Ruter battled, but struggled for most of the game to get into a rhythm on offense. Still, with a trip to the championship game on the line, she scored 10 points in the fourth quarter and pulled down 10 rebounds to help knock off the top seed.

On Saturday night, Ruter continued to find ways to impact the game, scoring 18 points and grabbing 15 boards, while dishing out a pair of assists. In a tough environment with a huge crowd, she was tied for the team-high in points, scoring six in the third quarter as the Warriors broke things open and put the game away.

“It was a little different to get used to but once we started getting great passes to me, great rebounding from everyone, just a great team effort, and grew in confidence as the game went on,” she said.

Downs added, “She’s fast, she’s tall, she can shoot, she does it all, and then she can also find the open player. She’s a weapon I’m happy to have for two more years.”

In the middle of the team’s celebrations after the game, Ruter was asked how it felt to be a state champion. “Amazing,” she replied. “It was a really fun ride and to end it like this was just…amazing.”

It was ride that Ruter was right at the center of and one that Foxboro hopes she’ll get the chance to experience a couple more times before her career is over.

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Foxboro Pulls Away From Dracut, Secures D2 State Title

Foxboro Girls Basketball
Foxboro beat Dracut 73-53 at the Tsongas Center to earn its third state title in the past six years and the program’s fourth title overall. (Josh Perry/

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LOWELL, Mass. – As the final seconds wound down in Saturday night’s Div. 2 state championship game at the Tsongas Center on the campus of UMass Lowell, Foxboro junior guard Camryn Collins was forced to watch the action from the bench. The Hockomock League MVP fouled out midway through the fourth quarter, but she watched her teammates step in and step up to close out the victory.

“It was a little weird,” Collins admitted when asked about having to be on the bench, “but I had full confidence that they were going to do whatever Lisa wanted them to do. During the season we had a lot of games that we would come out for a good lead, so I think it was just a matter of saving the lead and playing how we know how to play.”

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While the focus will always be on Foxboro’s three leading scorers, the Warriors got a total team effort on both ends of the court in the final, leading by double figures for almost the entire second half and running away with a 73-53 victory. It is the program’s fourth state title and third in the past six years.

“It just never felt comfortable, but we dug in,” Foxboro coach Lisa Downs said. “Everyone contributed and that’s kind of been a theme all season. It’s always been team over me and, honestly, that wasn’t from me that was all them. It was just an awesome team to coach this season.”

Collins added, “Our coach always says, play Warrior ball, so we just come out here, you may not always see it on the court but we’re always working behind the scenes. I can always depend on what they can do.”

It was a fast-paced start to the game, with both teams knocking down big shots and racing up and down the floor. All the attention was on Collins guarding Dracut’s dynamic scorer Ashlee Talbot (28 points), but it was Emma Felker that gave the Middies an early boost. The center buried a corner three and had nine of the team’s first 13 points.

Collins (15 points and three assists) had four early points, including two off a stolen inbounds pass, but also picked up two fouls. Ava Hill came off the bench and gave the Warriors a huge lift. She drilled a three and then went hard to the basket for a transition layup that made it 16-13.

Kailey Sullivan (18 points and three assists) nailed the first of her four threes to extend the lead to six, but Talbot finally got going with a pull-up jumper and a pair at the line. Collins found Sullivan on a nice backdoor cut to close out the first with a 21-17 lead.

After the early foul trouble for Collins, Erin Foley picked up Talbot to start the second. Foley only scored three points (all at the line) but she dished out six assists and did her best to close off driving lanes and force Talbot into long-range efforts.

Sullivan buried a three and freshman Kylie Sampson came off the bench and hit one after a good kick-out by center Addie Ruter (18 points and 15 rebounds). Talbot answered with a three that cut the lead to 29-24, but Hill knocked down a jumper and Sullivan was on target from distance again to push the lead to 10 for the first time.

After Talbot hit a pair at the line, Hill sent Foxboro into the locker room up 36-26 with another baseline jumper. She had nine of her 11 points in the first half.

“She has that capability on any given night,” Downs said about Hill. “She was helping on defense the way that we had been practicing all week, she was hitting those key shots, and she was being strong with the ball. She was the dynamic player we needed tonight.”

Felker hit a three early in the third quarter that made it 38-29, but that would be as close as the Middies would get in the second half. Collins made up for lost time in the third quarter, taking the ball to the rim and knocking down her lone three of the night. She scored nine points in the frame to help Foxboro start to pull away with an 11-0 run.

She also had plenty of help. Ruter twice scored by crashing the offensive glass, spinning one shot just over the rim and through, and also took a nice pass from Collins for a finish at the rim. Isabelle Chamberlin (four points and six rebounds) also got in the act, swishing a rare elbow jumper.

“Everybody has a role on this team,” Collins explained. “So if Kailey and I come down and hit shots, if we come down and get it into Addie in the paint then she’s going to hit those shots, because we can depend on each other for that.”

Collins slid baseline for a reverse layup and Sullivan hit another from deep and Foxboro led by as many as 23. Talbot would score five points to cut the gap down to 20 heading to the fourth.

Over the final eight minutes, the game felt like it was still in the balance because of Dracut’s ability to score in bunches, but in truth the Warriors never really lost control of the outcome. Dracut never got closer than 13 points.

“I feel like the third quarter was when we made that explosion offensively, but it never felt safe,” Downs said. “Ashlee Talbot can shoot lights out at any time and then she can dish if we help off of people.”

Ruter started the quarter with a short jumper and Chamberlin got a bucket to push the lead to 63-43. Talbot was doing her best to keep the Middies alive with a couple of deep threes and Brodie Gannon hit a corner three that made it 68-53 with 2:13 to play. Foxboro was relying on its free throw shooting to put the game away, going 11-of-19 at the line in the fourth.

Even as Collins sat the final four minutes and Sullivan was forced to the bench late in the quarter with an injury, the result was never seriously in doubt. Ruter capped off her impressive playoff run with another put-back in the closing minute, and by then the party had started on the bench and in the stands.

The state championship trophy was heading back to Foxboro (24-1).

“It’s so awesome,” Collins said, still clutching the trophy. “I’m so blessed to be here with these girls who are so deserving. We’ve been talking about this since summer league, so we’re just so glad that we can come out on the court and execute and win. It’s awesome.”

When the team’s relative inexperience (no seniors in the regular rotation) is mentioned, Downs responded, “It’s amazing. They play like they’ve been here before and none of them have. If you were looking at the roster, you’d see a whole bunch of sophomores and junior but you’d never have known that if you see them on the court.”

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Showing Gritty Side, Foxboro Rides Defense to D2 Final

Foxboro girls basketball
In front of the Foxboro student section, sophomore Kailey Sullivan lines up a three-pointer. The Warriors closed on a 14-3 run to secure a title game berth. (Josh Perry/

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BRIDGEWATER, Mass. – In the quarterfinal against Chicopee, Foxboro went on a run over the second and third quarters that turned the game into a rout. Monday night’s Final Four game at Bridgewater-Raynham High, against top-seeded Walpole, was never going to be comfortable.

With only five wins all season of less than 20 points, the Warriors rarely play in tight games, but to reach the Div. 2 final, they were going to need to bear down, fight through every half-court possession, and show that there is a gritty side to their game.

No problem.

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Foxboro closed the game with a 14-3 run, a stretch filled with huge hustle plays on both ends of the floor, and secured a 51-34 win over the Timberwolves, booking a return to the state championship game for the first time since being named co-champs in the COVID-shortened 2020 season.

“No,” Foxboro coach Lisa Downs succinctly replied when asked if she was surprised that her team could put in a defensive performance like this. “I think these girls do it day-in, day out and they rely on each other out there. Our help defense has improved so much. They just work as a great unit out there. I was thrilled with how they executed.”

Junior guard Erin Foley added, “We came into it knowing they work hard on offense, they push on offense, they’re very aggressive, very fast, so we worked on our help defense all week. We worked hard, everyone worked together, and we go the job done on defense.”

Right from the start, it was obvious that this was not going to be a shootout. Both teams were physical, aggressive, and fundamentally sound on the defensive end, making each possession a test of patience.

Foley got the night started by burying a corner three. After Walpole got the next six points to grab the lead, Kailey Sullivan (12 points, eight rebounds, and two blocks) drilled a straightaway three to tie it. It was the only basket of the first half for Sullivan, the team’s leading scorer.

Brooke Walonis (seven points) scored the next four to put Walpole back in front, but Foley (10 points, six rebounds, and three steals) snatched an offensive rebound and went up strong for two. Camryn Collins (game-high 17 points, seven rebounds, six assists, and three steals) would take a nice feed from Addie Ruter for a layup and then sliced down the lane for two and a 12-10 lead after one.

If anything, things got tighter in the second quarter. Catie Hurley (seven points) was a tough matchup for Ruter in the paint and she restored Walpole’s lead with an and-one, then added another tough finish at the rim. Collins answered with a drive and a nice look-ahead to Foley for a transition bucket.

“Cam, her athleticism was on display for everyone to see tonight,” Downs explained. “The amount of times that she was able to get a tip out there, and that led to a lot of turnovers that she instigated and we were able to score off those as well.”

After Collins hit a pull-up jumper from the top of the key, the game was tied at 18 apiece. The Hockomock League MVP capped off an eight-point quarter with a pair of free throws and a layup on the break to put Foxboro ahead by four going into the locker room.

Downs was pleased to be in the lead, even with Sullivan and Ruter (two of the team’s three leading scorers) held to just three points. She explained, “I knew the fouls had the potential hurt us (Collins and Ruter each had to sit with two), but we did what we needed to do, hit our free throws. That’s a quality team that can shoot from the outside and is very physical inside so we needed to make sure we maintained our composure out there.”

The third quarter was a struggle for both teams, combining for just 15 points total. Walonis drained a three and Isabelle Adams (seven points) knocked down a jumper off an offensive rebound to put Walpole ahead 24-23 with nearly half of the quarter played.

Foxboro closed every quarter well and the Warriors used an 8-0 run to grab the lead back. Collins drove and dished to Isabelle Chamberlin (five rebounds, two blocks, and two charges taken) for her lone basket of the night. Collins then dove on the floor to keep a possession alive at mid-court, fired a pass to Chamberlin, who fed it to Sullivan for a layup.

With the Foxboro crowd’s energy adding to the team’s momentum, Collins again drove, drew multiple defenders, and found Foley for a huge three right in front of the student section.

“Tonight I came into it thinking it’s the No. 1 seed, what do we have to lose?” Foley said about her best scoring night of the playoffs. “It’s a great shooting night for everyone and I did knock down some threes. I was happy about that, it got us off to a great start.”

Downs, who praised Foley and Chamberlin for rising to the challenge with the top scorers struggling, remarked, “Erin was assigned Adams to just shut her down and really make her life a living nightmare, and she did that. She wreaks havoc on defense. She has that energy, that little spark we needed because everyone does focus on those three and when one or two of them are having a lot of pressure on them we need someone to step up.”

Adams started the fourth with a reverse to get back within three, but Foxboro scored seven straight to open up a double-digit advantage. Ruter sank a baseline jumper for her first points of the night and Sullivan drilled a three after Collins skied for a rebound and kicked it out to the wing. Sullivan came up short on another three from the corner, but followed her own shot and knocked down a floater.

Walpole wasn’t going quietly. Freshman Bella Bingham got a pair at the line and leaked out after a rebound by Hurley for a transition basket, getting the Timberwolves as close as six.

Ruter, who was scoreless for three quarters, started to take over. Another big hustle play gave the Warriors a second opportunity and Chamberlin slipped a pass to Ruter for two. With 3:45 to go, Ruter buried a tough turnaround over Hurley to restore the 10-point lead. She finished with her fourth double-double in four postseason games, scoring 10 points (all in the fourth) and grabbing 10 boards.

Foxboro hit 8-of-12 free throws down the stretch, pushing the lead to 17 and allowing the Warriors to count down the final seconds before celebrating a chance to play for the state title.

“We had a great team our freshman year with Katelyn Mollica, Jordyn [Collins], all of them, we thought we’d make it far but then COVID happened,” Foley said when asked about what this run means. “It’s great to have a long run in this tournament and we’re already here and we’re at the state championship.”

Riding a 19-game win streak, Foxboro (23-1) will face No. 6 Dracut, which upset No. 2 seed Medfield, at the Tsongas Center at a date and time to be determined.

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Ruter’s Towering Performance Carries Foxboro Past South

Foxboro girls basketball
Sophomore center Addie Ruter scored a career-high 31 points and grabbed 16 rebounds to lead Foxboro to a win over South High in the D2 Sweet Sixteen. (Josh Perry/

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FOXBORO, Mass. – In the opening round, Foxboro coach Lisa Downs said that sophomore center Addie Ruter looked nervous at the start and it took her a quarter to get into the flow of the game. Apparently, Ruter got all the nerves out because in Tuesday night’s Div. 2 Sweet Sixteen game against previously undefeated South High (Worcester), she dominated.

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Ruter scored a career-high 31 points (19 combined between the second and third quarters) and pulled down 16 rebounds, taking advantage of the size mismatch in the paint to power Foxboro to a 71-55 victory and a spot in the quarterfinal.

“I tried my hardest to calm my nerves before the game,” Ruter explained, “and I came out strong knowing that I had the advantage and that I was going to keep doing that. It’s definitely a confidence booster, those first few points, and then you keep it rolling.

Foxboro coach Lisa Downs said of Ruter, “They didn’t have a lot of height, so we knew we had to get it into her offensively and she did a great job of keeping the ball up. She did a really great job of timing her jump, keeping the ball up, and going up strong with it.”

Early in the game it was a contrast of styles. Foxboro was trying to get the ball to the rim, whether on dribble drives or with Ruter posting up, while the Colonels were bombing away from three. Arianna Gonzalez (17 points), Jaiyla Colon (12 points), and Jaizzy Santiago (eight points) each knocked down triples for South in the opening quarter.

Foxboro was willing to work the ball around in the half-court, probing for an opening. Ruter got off to a quick start, burying a pair of foul line jumpers. An Erin Foley defensive rebound turned into a run out bucket for Camryn Collins (16 points, nine rebounds, and five assists), and Kailey Sullivan (20 points) beat her marker off the dribble for an and-one.

Ruter added two more on an offensive rebound, but South got a basket in the closing seconds to cut the gap to 15-11 after one. 

Collins hit a tough runner and then her steal led to a Sullivan layup to push the lead to six. South got baskets from Gonzalez and Santiago to cut the deficit to just two, but the Warriors put together a 10-0 run to take control of the game. The Colonels never got closer than eight from that point on.

After Ruter got the run started with a baseline jumper and another put-back, Sullivan helped open up the gap by drilling a pair of threes.

“That was huge for us,” Downs said about Sullivan getting going from the outside. “We saw against Holliston (in the first round), she was missing a lot in the first quarter and she kind of sets the tone. You saw that first shot go in and it was a sigh of relief. We just played a little more relaxed.”

Bryan Bascones, who had the unenviable task of trying to match up with Ruter in the paint, would grab an offensive rebound to make it 32-24, but Ruter answered with back-to-back baskets and Foxboro went into the locker room up a dozen.

Sullivan kept firing away to start the second half, draining her third three and then getting to the rim with a nice move on the baseline. Foxboro was dominating on the glass. In addition to Ruter and Collins, Foley finished with six rebounds and Isabelle Chamberlin grabbed 10 boards for the second straight game.

Downs said, “We had to prevent those outside shots from going in and I think we did a better job of that in the third quarter, just getting out over the screens with our guards and getting a hand up to contest the shots. Obviously the rebounding, we weren’t giving them a second opportunity most times, so they were getting one contested shot.”

Colon tried to bring the Colonels back into the game with a three and a pull-up jumper after a steal, but Sullivan hit a floater, Ruter knocked down a jumper, and Collins nailed a three to go back up by 15.

Foxboro pulled away early in the fourth, pushing the lead to as many as 20 points. Collins made a nice slashing drive for two, Ruter continued to pound away in the paint with six more points, and Ava Hill splashed a three. Santiago and Niama Bleou both hit from beyond the arc and Foxboro got a little sloppy with the big lead, but Collins got another bucket in transition to close out the game and ease any fears of a later comeback.

“It’s lots of fun,” Ruter said of her first playoff experience. “It’s definitely tense, but if you trust your teammates then it’s great.

She continued, “Over the season, we’ve built a lot of trust (in each other). I know, coming into the season, the first few games, I kind of felt like I’d been playing with them my whole life even though it was really new. It’s great team chemistry.”

Foxboro (21-1) will put its 17-game win streak on the line and try to book a place in the Final Four against No. 13 Chicopee, which upset No. 4 Westwood, at home on Friday night.

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Foxboro Rolls Past Holliston and Into Sweet Sixteen

Foxboro Girls Basketball
Camryn Collins scored 15 of her 17 points in the first half, helping Foxboro overcome a slow start to build a big lead against Holliston, helping the Warriors reach the Sweet Sixteen. (Josh Perry/

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FOXBORO, Mass. – Nearly five minutes into Friday night’s Round of 32 game, Foxboro was still searching for its first made basket. Ava Hill picked the pocket of a Holliston guard and threw the ball ahead to Camryn Collins for a layup. Megan Simpson banked in a runner to tie the game, but then Kailey Sullivan came up with a steal and turned it into a layup at the other end.

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It was still early in the game, but that 6-4 lead was one that the Warriors wouldn’t relinquish. Foxboro shook off the slow start in its first tournament game and ran away from Holliston for a 68-35 victory, booking a return to the Div. 2 Sweet Sixteen and earning head coach Lisa Downs her 200th career win.

“We just trusted each other,” Collins said about not getting past the slow start. “Our mantra this year is next play, so we just focused on the next play, making sure that we worked hard each possession.”

“Historically, every year our first game is our worst game,” Downs said. “I just had to remind them that we got here for a reason, that we’re a very good team but we need to take a couple deep breaths and just relax out there. Offensively all of the shots were just flat because we had nerves.”

Collins (17 points, five steals, and four assists) was the star early in the game for Foxboro. In a first quarter in which the Panthers committed 12 team fouls (there were 25 combined fouls in the first half) and Foxboro was just 4-of-10 at the line, Collins was on the attack, driving hard to the basket.

The junior, who was recently named Hockomock League MVP, scored six in the first quarter, but turned it on in the second to help the Warriors build a commanding halftime lead. Twice Collins turned a steal directly into an uncontested layup, scored on a drive to the rim, and made a nice cut and got the pass from Sullivan for two.

“No matter what happens, we always pride ourselves on defense,” she explained. “We want to stay tough on defense because that’s what being a Warrior is all about and we don’t want to disappoint Coach Downs.”

Sophomore Addie Ruter looked a little nervous in the first playoff game of her career, but in the second quarter she set that aside and started to provide the inside presence that has made Foxboro’s offense so dynamic this season. Ruter scored eight of her 14 points in the quarter and had 12 of her 21 rebounds by halftime. She got a couple of baskets by fighting for offensive rebounds and also got a nice dish from Collins for two more.

After a rough start to the game, Foxboro went into the locker room with a 32-16 advantage.

Sullivan was having a rough shooting night through the opening 16 minutes of the game, struggling to find the range and going into the break with just six points. In the third quarter, everything changed.

Holliston tried to make a little comeback, with Simpson (19 points) knocking down a three, but Sullivan made sure to instantly quell any momentum by matching it on the other end. A second three followed to make it 40-23. Freshman Kylie Sampson stole the ball on one end and made a nice outlet pass to spring Sullivan for a layup.

Even after Collins was forced to the bench with her fourth foul, Sullivan kept Foxboro’s offense humming. A tough floater plus the contact put the Warriors up 20 and she got another jumper after Ruter kept the possession alive with an offensive board. Sullivan had 13 of her game-high 21 points in the third.

“She’s my treacherous twin,” Collins said about Sullivan. “We just love playing together, we bounce off each other, play well together, and it’s just good team chemistry.”

Downs added, “It’s huge. No team can concentrate on just one of them. If Cam’s getting their focus then Kailey is going to be wide open and vice versa. It’s a luxury that I’m very happy to have.”

Ruter would keep things rolling in the fourth with six points. Foxboro’s shooters came alive as well, with Erin Foley, freshman Adrianna Porazzo, and senior Maddie Maher all burying shots from the perimeter. Freshman Keagan Maguire got some playing time and made a nice post move for a basket as well. Isabelle Chamberlin also chipped in with 10 rebounds.

It started out as a tight, tough game, but turned quickly into the expected romp for the Warriors and Downs took the opportunity to share her career milestone with several former players who had come to watch the game.

Downs reflected, “I’ve been fortunate to have some great players over the years, but more important I’ve really met some young women that are now parents. As rewarding as it is to be a coach and get the ‘Ws’, it’s equally as rewarding to build those relationships and now I’m friends with these girls who i coached who are now adults.”

“For them to reach out me when they’re in mid-20s, late-20s to say hi or to ask for advice, that’s the most rewarding part.”

Foxboro (20-1) has now won 16 straight game and will host #12 South High, which beat Hanover on Friday, in the D2 Sweet Sixteen on Tuesday night.

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