Attleboro, 63 @ North Attleboro, 51 – Final – Attleboro built a double-digit advantage by halftime and kept the host Rocketeers at bay throughout the second half to score a rivalry win on the road. The Bombardiers limited North to single-digit scoring in each of the first two quarters and a 16-point second quarter, highlighted by eight points from Hayden Crowley (14 points total), helped extend the lead to 30-16 after two quarters of action. The Rocketeers got their offense going with 19 points in the third as sophomore Austin Clemente caught fire from downtown, hitting four triples in the frame while classmate Jonnie Obuchowski hit another had had five in the frame to help the hosts close the gap to just seven, 42-35, going into the fourth. Crowley, Jaiden Outland (12 points), and Michael Beverly (seven of his 10 points in the fourth) each hit a triple in the final frame to keep Attleboro ahead. Junior Neo Franco had a team-high 16 points for the Bombardiers while senior Givany Carney led North with 15 points apiece.
Mansfield, 69 @ Canton, 43 – Final – Mansfield senior Chris Hill set the tone early by scoring all 12 of his points in the first eight minutes, helping the Hornets establish a big lead that they kept the rest of the way. Hill sank a trio of three-pointers in the first for a 19-6 lead after just a period of play. Davon Sanders added seven of his career-high 18 points in the second while the Hornets got baskets from Trevor Foley (13 points), Eddie McCoy, and JT Veiking to stake a 34-22 lead at halftime. Mansfield continued to outscore the Bulldogs as Foley had seven more in the third and Caden Colby added a three. Sanders, Colby, Foley, McCoy, Veiking, and senior Michael Creedon all scored in the fourth to add to the lead. Matt Chafin had a trio of threes in the second and finished with a team-high 13 points while Jamaal McConnell added 12 points for the Bulldogs.
Oliver Ames, 51 @ Foxboro, 56 – Final – Foxboro took the lead in the first quarter and never surrendered it, grinding out a hard-fought win against Oliver Ames. After a slow start from both sides saw the Warriors stake an 11-6 lead after a quarter, the Warriors had their best offensive stretch with 19 points in the second quarter. Sophomores Ryan Kelley and Nolan Gordon each hit a three, Ryan LeClair and Ryan Cotter each added a bucket, and senior Alex Penders had half of his team-high 14 points in the frame to give Foxboro a 30-22 advantage at the break. OA’s Nick Asiaf hit two of his six threes in the third quarter and had eight of his career-high 22 points in the game while sophomore Zach Ivanoski had five points to help the Tigers claw back into it and cut the deficit to 41-37 going into the fourth. Penders had an early three-point play to start the fourth and LeClair drained a corner three to push Foxboro’s lead to 10. Chris Elias answered for OA with four straight points but Gordon sank his second triple of the game to keep the Warriors ahead.
Milford, 46 @ Franklin, 66 – Final – Franklin played well on both sides of the ball, pouring in 36 points in the first half while limiting the visitors to just 16, and the Panthers never looked back from there. After taking a 15-6 lead through one quarter of action, Franklin really extended its advantage with 21 points in the second quarter. Andrew O’Neill had half of his 10 points in the second, Caden Sullivan added a triple, and Sean O’Leary had seven of his team-high 17 points in the game to build a 36-16 halftime lead. Geino Scaringello had two threes and finished with 10 points for Franklin, which had 11 players register points. Sophomore Andrew Rivera (five rebounds) and freshman CJ Farrell (eight rebounds) paced the Hawks with 16 points apiece.
Stoughton, 61 @ Sharon, 77 – Final – Sharon had six players contribute to a massive first quarter and the Eagles never looked back after that in a win at home over Stoughton. Matt Baur had two threes and eight of his 13 points in the first quarter, Ryan Brown and Tyler Goodman each added a triple, and Jack Bates, Jacob McLoughlin, and Nate Katznelson each had field goals as the Eagles blitzed the visiting Black Knights to stake a 25-6 lead after a quarter. Katznelson finished with a team-high 21 points and hauled in 10 boards and McLoughlin added 14 points and seven assists in the win. Obi Dike and Nathan Figaro each had career-highs, finishing with 14 points apiece while Elijah Connor chipped in with 11 points for the Black Knights.
North Attleboro, 32 @ Attleboro, 56 – Final – Attleboro carried over the momentum from its strong second half on Tuesday, jumping out to a 32-13 lead in the first half on Friday. Kayla Goldrick scored a career-high 21 points for the Bombardiers, 15 of them coming in the first half. Vanessa Ellis added 18, splitting her points between the two halves. Molly Moore hit a pair of threes for her six points. Katie Corsetti was North’s top scorer with seven points, all of them coming in the first half. Ella McLaughlin and Sam Sweeney each scored six in the loss. With the win, Attleboro stays just a game back of league-leading Franklin.
Canton, 34 @ Mansfield, 54 – Final – Mansfield led by four points at halftime, but broke the game wide open with a 20-5 third quarter, sealing its seventh win in the past eight games. Abby Wager sparked the rally in the third, scoring 12 of her game-high 19 points in the quarter. Kara Santos added 10 points, Bridget Hanley had eight points (all in the first half), and Rose Maher finished with seven for the Hornets. Canton was tied after one and trailed just 26-22 at the break. Samya DaSilva buried three triples and scored a team-high 17, including 10 points in the first half to keep the Bulldogs close. Freshman Deanna Kolokithas scored seven and her sister Mercia hit a first quarter three for Canton.
Foxboro, 72 @ Oliver Ames, 32 – Final – Foxboro stayed perfect in league play and moved a game closer to a Davenport title with a convincing win over the defending champs. The Warriors, who knocked down nine threes as a team, got off to a big start and never let up. Foxboro led 21-5 after one quarter and went into the break up 37-12. The Warriors kept it up in the second half, outscoring the Tigers 35-20 for its second straight win by 40-plus points. Kailey Sullivan was the game’s top scorer, burying five triples and finishing with 19 points. Camryn Collins added 17 (12 in the first half), Addie Ruter scored 14, and Erin Foley had 10 in the win. Isabelle Chamberlin gave Foxboro a lift on the boards with a game-high 14 rebounds. Freshman Avery Gamble led OA with 15, 10 coming in the second half. Fellow rookies Maeve Horsman and Kamryn Derba each scored five for the Tigers.
King Philip, 62 @ Taunton, 41 – Final – KP had nine different scorers and secured its fifth straight victory, remaining two back of Franklin in the Kelley-Rex standings. The Warriors jumped out to a 15-2 lead after one and 34-14 heading to the locker room. Jordan Bennett and Emily Sawyer combined for 23 of KP’s points in the first half to take control of the game. Sawyer finished with a game-high 21 and Bennett added 15. Jessi Persky chipped in with six in the win. Taunton got 11 points from Tarynn Campbell, seven of them in the second half as the Tigers put 27 on the board. Cali Melo scored eight (six after the break) and Lexi Haywood hit a pair from beyond the arc in the second half. Skylar McCrohan also had six for the Tigers.
Franklin, 57 @ Milford, 28 – Final – Franklin locked down on defense, holding Milford to just 10 points in the first half, and exploded for 28 second quarter points to pick up a seventh straight win, clinch a playoff berth, and hold onto its one-game lead in the division. Leading 9-4 after one, Franklin found another gear in the second. Katie Peterson had a dozen, Chloe Fales added eight, and Caelyn Leonard scored six in the second quarter. Fales (trio of three-pointers) and Peterson each finished with 16 points and Leonard had eight. Milford scored 14 in the third, cutting two points off the lead. Brooke Ferreira had five of her six points in the frame and Emily Croteau (six points) knocked down one of her two threes in the quarter. TJ Downing had four for the Hawks.
Attleboro, 47 @ Franklin, 67 – Final – Franklin built a 10-point lead after a quarter, doubled it by halftime, and led the entire second half in a big win over visiting Attleboro. Justin Allen hit two of his four threes in the opening quarter, Geino Scaringello added another triple, and Andrew O’Neill, Bradley Hernon, Caden Sullivan, and Sean O’Leary all had buckets as the Panthers’ offense got going early for a 19-9 lead. O’Neill, Allen, and O’Leary all had triples — Franklin finished with 10 total — in the second and the Panthers’ defense limited the visiting Bombardiers to just seven points for a 36-16 advantage at halftime. O’Leary finished with a team-high 18 points and both O’Neill and Allen had 14 points in the win. Jaiden Outland and Neo Franco each had 13 points for Attleboro.
Foxboro, 75 @ Canton, 73 – Final (2OT) – Foxboro senior Ryan LeClair came up with a steal with just over 10 seconds left and classmate Alex Penders converted a putback with just seconds left as the Warriors outlasted Canton in an absolute thriller. Penders had a career-high 33 points to lead the Warriors while Sam Golub added 19 points. Canton’s Matt Chafin drilled a three-pointer with 20 seconds left in regulation to tie the game and force an overtime. From there, it was back-and-forth for both overtime and double overtime. Canton scored the first four points of the first overtime as Jamaal McConnell, who had a career-high 24 points, hit a pair of free throws and Julius Hicks (13 points) converted a tough layup for a 60-56 lead with two minutes to go. Penders used a nice fake and finished for two and Sam Golub drove to the basket for two more to tie it. Canton’s Caden Mirliani had a traditional three-point play with 30.7 seconds to go before Penders drove the length of the court for two to cut the deficit to one. Canton extended the lead with a free throw with 19.9 seconds left and forced a turnover with 10 seconds to go. After going 1/2 from the line again, Canton had a 65-62 lead. Foxboro was off on a game-tying three but sophomore Nolan Gordon soared in from the baseline and converted the putback while being fouled. His free throw with 1.9 seconds left tied the game to send it to double overtime. Golub gave Foxboro the lead early but Hicks had a three-point play to put Canton bak in front. LeClair battled through contact for two before McConnell answered for Canton to make it 70-69 with 2:00 to go. After Foxboro tied it with a free throw, Mirliani had a huge steal with under a minute to go and hit an open three for a 73-70 lead. Golub wasted little time and drained a deep three from straight away to tie it 73-73, setting up LeClair’s steal and Penders’ winner.
Stoughton, 52 @ Mansfield, 83 – Final – Mansfield’s offense clicked into high gear, scoring over 20 points in three of the four quarters to run away with a big win over the visiting Black Knights. The Hornets had four players in double figures and combined for 13 three-pointers with seven players hitting at least one. After building a 16-10 lead after one, the Hornets put up 21 points in the second, 22 points in the third, and ran away with the win with 24 points in the fourth quarter. JT Veiking (17 points) and Caden Colby (15 points) each hit three three-pointers to lead the offense while both Trevor Foley (12 points, five rebounds, four blocks) and Eddie McCoy (six rebounds, four assists) also finished in double figures for Mansfield. Davon Sanders (nine rebounds, four assists) and Chris Hill (13 rebounds, six assists, three blocks) each finished with nine points. Jayden Costa-Haywood led Stoughton with 13 points and Jarred Daughtry added 12 points.
Taunton, 87 @ Milford, 63 – Final – Taunton senior Chris Perault sank six three-pointers for a career-high 24 points and Chris Volcy added 22 points as the Tigers secured a win on the road behind a big offensive outburst. Gus Coutinho scored nine of his 17 points in the opening quarter as Milford led by a point, 16-15, but Taunton flipped the game with a big second quarter. Not only did the Tigers put up 23 points, they held the Hawks to just eight to flip a one-point deficit into a 38-24 lead at halftime. Perault hit half of his threes in the second and junior Troy Santos added nine of his 18 points in the frame to give Taunton a double-digit advantage. Perault added two more threes in the third and Jakari Innocent, Al Morisseau, and Travis Johnson had buckets to keep Taunton ahead, 61-44, going into the fourth. Taunton exploded for 26 points in the final frame as Santos hit a pair of threes and Volcy, Perault, and Gerry Cardoso each had one. Andrew Rivera scored a team-high 21 points for the Hawks including 15 in the second half.
Oliver Ames, 58 @ Sharon, 62 – Final – Oliver Ames went on the road and put Sharon on upset alert but the Eagles answered the call and closed out a close win over the Tigers. Oliver Ames rallied for a lead at 41-40 in the third quarter but the Eagles closed the frame with a 7-0 run to take the lead into the fourth. A three-point play from OA freshman Soren Lolonga (18 points) got the Tigers within three in the fourth but Tyler Goodman answered with a three, Nate Katznelson (19 points) converted a putback, and Jacob McLoughlin (game-high 21 points) had a steal and a breakaway dunk to give the Eagles a double-digit lead at 56-46. Chris Elias (13 points) hit a three and Lolonga had two more to get within five but Katznelson and McLoughlin each had a bucket to keep Sharon ahead. Sophomore Cole Craffey also had 18 points for Oliver Ames.
Franklin, 66 @ Attleboro, 55 – Final – In a battle for first place in the Kelley-Rex division, Franklin outscored Attleboro 22-9 in the fourth quarter to overturn a two-point deficit and pull out the 11-point win. The Bombardiers bounced back nicely from a tough loss to Foxboro last time out, scoring 20 points in the first quarter to grab the lead. Avery James and Lily Routhier each scored six in the first to get Attleboro off to a great start. Franklin cut the lead to five heading to the locker room and chipped three more points off in the third, with Chloe Fales scoring seven and Katie Peterson adding five in the quarter. Franklin’s offense clicked into gear in the fourth. Peterson went 6-for-6 from the line in the quarter (9-of-10 for the game) and Fales and Caelyn Leonard each added five points, while Lizzie Newman scored four. Vanessa Ellis had six of Attleboro’s nine points in the final period. Peterson led all scorers with 17 on the night. Fales scored 16, Newman added 12, Leonard had 10, and Bridget Leo scored seven points for the Panthers. Attleboro had only four players on the score sheet on Friday. James led the way with 16, Routhier scored 15, Ellis had 14, and Kayla Goldrick chipped in with 10. The Panthers now lead the division by one game.
Canton, 32 @ Foxboro, 55 – Final – Kailey Sullivan and Camryn Collins each scored 15 points and Foxboro continued its unbeaten start to the league campaign. Six of Foxboro’s eight wins this season have been by at least 23 points. Addie Ruter added 14 points for the Warriors, while Isabelle Chamberlin grabbed a team-high 12 rebounds.
Mansfield, 80 @ Stoughton, 37 – Final – Mansfield set a new program record for points in a game, extending its win streak to six games and staying within two games of league-leading Foxboro. Abby Wager scored a game-high 31 point to power the Hornets offensively. Kara Santos added 15 and Hallie Popat scored 14 for Mansfield. Maiya Merritt paced the Black Knights with 10 points, while Kirsten McKay added seven. Stoughton also got six points apiece from Caleigh Clark, Raina Tat, and Leah McCarty.
Milford, 36 @ Taunton, 46 – Final – The game was tied at 18 going into halftime, but Taunton found an extra boost of offense in the second half to bounce back from a loss on Tuesday and get back to .500 on the season. Cali Melo and Lexi Haywood combined for 14 of Taunton’s 18 in the first half and Aliza Syed continued her solid season by scoring half of Milford’s first half points. Melo continued her strong offensive play after the break, adding 10 more points to finish with a game-high 18. Haywood added five more in the second half, while Tarynn Campbell went 5-for-6 from the line and scored seven of her eight points. Chelsea Bousquet added all six of her points in the second half for Taunton to help the Tigers pull out the win. In addition to Syed’s 11 points, Milford got nine from Emily Croteau and six from Brooke Ferreira.
King Philip, 54 @ North Attleboro, 33 – Final – After a 9-0 North run to end the first quarter, KP built a six-point lead at halftime and outscored North 31-16 after the break to pull out the win. Emily Sawyer saw frequent double teams, and the North defense held her to four points combined in the second and third quarters, but she still managed to score a game-high 21 points. Maddie Paschke added 14 points and Jordan Bennett scored eight for the Warriors. Using its press, North climbed back within as few as four points but the Rocketeers struggled to consistently knock down shots and KP started to pull away. Ava McKeon scored a team-high 14 points and Sam Faria had a dozen for North. Katie Corsetti had a solid game in the post defending Sawyer.
FOXBORO, Mass. – It is no secret that Foxboro likes to press, likes to run, and likes to get its offense in transition. So, Attleboro came into Tuesday night’s showdown of league leaders determined to use its zone to force the Warriors to find ways to score in the half-court.
The plan was a solid one, with the one issue that the zone gave sophomore point guard Kailey Sullivan a little bit of space on the perimeter and a little space was all she needed to shoot Foxboro to the win.
Sullivan knocked down six three-pointers, including three in the third quarter, and scored a game-high 25 points, nearly matching the Bombardiers on her own. With Sullivan firing away from deep and the defense holding Attleboro to just 11 points in the first half, the Warriors pulled away for a 60-29 victory that maintains their unbeaten start to league play.
“With Kailey shooting the way that she shoots now, it’s hard for people to defend us in a zone,” Foxboro coach Lisa Downs explained. “So, we just had to find the open spots for her on the floor. I didn’t really think that we’d see a lot of man this season, but I think people are going to have to go to that at some point because we do have so many scorers.”
It didn’t take long for Sullivan to find the range. In a first quarter played at Attleboro’s preferred tempo, Sullivan buried a pair from beyond the arc to put the Warriors in front 8-2. While the Bombardiers were able to slow the game down like they wanted, it was still a struggle to break down the Foxboro defense.
Kayla Goldrick (11 points) and Avery James (six points) were able to hit threes to tie the game, but Ava Hill (five points) stepped back and drilled a corner three and Addie Ruter (10 points, seven rebounds, and two blocks) added a put-back to give Foxboro a 13-8 lead after one.
“We couldn’t get anything going,” admitted Attleboro coach Bri Bracken. “We were getting good shots, they just weren’t falling. I told them at the end of the game that I thought there was a cover on top of the rim because Vanessa’s almost and-one was in the hoop and bounced out.”
One of the reasons for Attleboro’s struggles offensively was the play of Camryn Collins. The junior guard was able to match-up one-on-one with sophomore forward Vanessa Ellis (six rebounds), using her strength and speed to keep one of Attleboro’s top scoring threats to four points and no made field goals.
“She can guard anyone,” Downs said of Collins. “The versatility that she has with the strength and the speed, her athleticism, is just so valuable. A lot of times I would’ve put my center on Ellis and she’s not your typical center and that would’ve been hard for us. Luckily, I have Cam who can match her athleticism and keep her in check.”
After ending the first on a 5-0 run, Foxboro’s pressure turned up a notch in the second. The Warriors went on a 14-0 run to start the quarter and outscored Attleboro 17-3 in the period. Collins (13 points, seven steals, and seven rebounds) and Sullivan would combine for all 17.
Collins got it started with a backdoor cut and layup off a feed from Erin Foley (four assists and seven rebounds) and then knocked down her only three of the night. After a pair of free throws for Sullivan. Collins would get back-to-back steals and turn each of them into layups. Another steal turned into an and-one for Sullivan, who also spotted up in the corner for a three off a nicely worked inbounds play.
Any thoughts of an Attleboro comeback in the second half quickly disappeared. A Sullivan steal led to a layup for Ruter and then Sullivan added a pair from the outside to make it 40-14 (Foley got the assist on both threes). Goldrick tried to keep Attleboro close with an offensive rebound and then a dish out to James for another three, but Sullivan answered right back with her third triple of the quarter and finally a steal and layup for good measure.
Downs praised how Foxboro maintained its defensive intensity in the second half. She said, “I think that’s the most we’ve worked for 32 minutes on defense. Some games we’ll have some dips and do some things good and then get lax a little bit. The work ethic was there for 32 minutes.”
The Bombardiers kept battling in the fourth, as Bracken urged her team to continue going to the basket. Goldrick scored twice, once on a drive to the rim and then on a step-back jumper. Merry Bosh banked in a jumper for her only points and freshman Tia Williamson was able to score on the block.
Collins added four more points in the fourth and Isabella Chamberlin (six rebounds) crashed the boards for a bucket, before dishing out a nice pass to Foley on the backdoor cut.
Bracken acknowledged that her team got frustrated at times as the offense struggled to find a rhythm and that the Bombardiers can learn how to step up to the challenge of playing teams of this caliber. She said, “You just have to play through it. Be tough, take the and-one, and go…It made us better and now we’re onto Franklin and hopefully we can learn from these mistakes and be better for them.”
Foxboro (8-1) will be back on its home court on Friday to take on division rival Canton. Attleboro (6-2), which is tied for first in the Kelley-Rex division despite the loss, has its first meeting with co-leader Franklin.
2021-2022 Record: 16-7 2021-2022 Finish: Reached Div. 1 Round of 32 Coach: Brianna Bracken
Former Attleboro standout Bri Bracken took over the coaching duties late in the preseason a year ago, but she stepped right into her first varsity job and led the Bombardiers to a 16-win season and a return to the state tournament. The graduation of top scorer Meg Gordon will be tough to replace, but the Bombardiers have a versatile lineup and a focus on the defensive side of the ball that still makes them a tough challenge even for the top teams in the league.
Attleboro returns only two starters from last season. Junior Kayla Goldrick impressed in her first two years on varsity, playing on the wing or as the primary ball-handler. Her control on both sides of the ball will be critical this season. Senior Lily Routhier, who transferred from Wheelock last year, is a strong rebounder and can score in multiple ways around the paint. Sophomore Vanessa Ellis wasn’t a starter for most of last year, but she came through with some big games down the stretch, scoring in bunches around the rim and being a force on the glass.
An injury to junior Rylie Camacho will deprive the Bombardiers of one of their best perimeter shooters, but Bracken will be hoping that juniors Merry Bosh and Molly Moore and sophomore Avery James can step into bigger roles in the backcourt and add scoring punch. Senior Sarah Maher is going to have a bigger role on both ends this season, bringing the energy and intensity every game. This will be a different look from last year, as the Bombardiers will have different go-to players every night.
“We have a great mix of experience and youth,” Bracken said. “We are excited about what lies ahead. Practices have been intense and the girls have been working really hard.”
2021-2022 Record: 16-7 2021-2022 Finish: Reached Div. 2 Quarterfinal Coach: Jim Choquette
How do you move on from graduating not just one but three of the best players in program history? That will be the challenge for Canton coach Jim Choquette this season, as the Bulldogs are coming off a winter that included a rare home playoff game and a trip to the Div. 2 quarterfinals and return a group of players that have experience but will need to step into bigger roles this year.
There is a veteran core that the Bulldogs will be relying on. Senior forward Samya DaSilva can score in the paint and knock down shots from the perimeter, while classmate Erin Beatty has been a force on the boards and brings a lot of energy on both ends of the floor. Senior guards Emily McCabe, Marissa Staffiere, and Han Hong all can run the point and are strong defensive players who will be tasked with keeping the ball moving for Canton on offense to find the best shot.
In addition to those familiar faces, juniors Fatima Sidibay and Jess Wright will provide additional athleticism in the frontcourt. Junior Mercia Kolokithas can stretch defenses with her perimeter shooting and sophomore Sally Hoban will provide depth on the wing along with Ava McCoole. Deanna Kolokithas is another newcomer to watch this season, as she can give Canton a boost at point guard, allowing the veteran guards to move off the ball.
“Every season is different, even if you have similar players,” Choquette explained. “We have spoken about that this year and I’ve encouraged our team to write their own narrative, what they want, how they want to get it, and the sacrifices they’re willing to make to accomplish it. I’m so excited to see how we respond as coaches to help them and as players to achieve.”
2021-2022 Record: 14-8 2021-2022 Finish: Reached Div. 2 Sweet Sixteen Coach: Lisa Downs
While head coach Lisa Downs knew there would be some growing pains for a roster loaded with underclassmen, Foxboro was not only building for the future in 2021-22 but showing that it could already compete with the league’s top teams. This season, adding a year of experience to their talented core, the Warriors will be aiming to get back to the top of the Davenport division and make a run in the state tournament.
The backcourt was the key for Foxboro last winter. Sophomore Kailey Sullivan burst onto the scene and was the rare freshman that could lead a team in scoring and also look right at home running the point against the tough defenses in the Hock. Junior Camryn Collins finished just behind Sullivan in the scoring charts, but her handle, her athleticism, and her ability to read the game made her an impact player on both ends of the court. Add in junior Erin Foley’s tenacity on the defensive end and it is a backcourt that can cause any team problems from baseline to baseline.
Foxboro also got solid contributions in the front court from sophomore Ava Hill, who looked increasingly comfortable as the season wore on, and junior Isabelle Chamberlin. Sophomore Adie Ruter will be a new piece to the puzzle this season. The 6-foot-2 center gives a new dimension to the Warriors’ offense and her development in the off-season has her poised for a breakout year. Freshmen Kylie Sampson and Adrianna Porazzo continue the tradition of underclassmen jumping right onto varsity with an opportunity to contribute.
“I’m anxious to get started working with this team,” Downs said. “I really envision a pretty high ceiling once we get established. We will continue the Foxboro team culture of hard work on defense and team play on offense, so it will be pretty exciting to see what they are able to accomplish.”
2021-2022 Record: 22-2 2021-2022 Finish: Reached Div. 1 Quarterfinal Coach: John Leighton
Franklin has dominated the Kelley-Rex division for the past four years, which included a state title run as well, but with a lot of new faces jumping into the lineup this season, the league title race could be a lot closer this winter. The Panthers may not be able to overwhelm teams with size like they have in past few years, but an athletic core of players returns to play typically tough defense and get out and run on the break.
The focal point this season will be senior forward Katie Peterson. After a breakout junior year in which she led the team in scoring, the UMass girls lacrosse commit comes back as one of the top wings in the league. Her athleticism will be critical on both ends of the floor. Senior guard Bridget Leo is also back to run the offense and will be one of the team’s top perimeter defenders. Senior Lizzie Newman emerged last season as a solid rebounder and post defender and her outside shooting could be a major factor.
There are also several players who stepped in at times last year that will need to take on bigger roles for the Panthers this season. Junior Sasha Tracey gives Franklin good length on the wing and adds another athlete that can get out on the break and finish. Her improved outside shot will also help stretch defenses. Sophomore Chloe Fales is a newcomer to watch with her athleticism and ability to score at multiple levels.
“This team is working to find its identity and play unselfish basketball,” said Franklin coach John Leighton. “I have been very impressed with the leadership of our seniors who have stepped up and provided mentorship to our younger players to speed their integration into the team.”
2021-2022 Record: 11-11 2021-2022 Finish: Reached Div. 1 Round of 32 Coach: Jeff Miszkiewicz
Only the two division winners allowed fewer points per game than King Philip last season, as the Warriors focused on strong half court defense under first-year coach Jeff Miszkiewicz. Defense will remain key for KP this season, but there is also an effort to bring more balance to an offense that struggled to keep up with some of the top teams in the Hock. With a year of experience in the new system, the Warriors will be looking to provide a challenge to Franklin and Oliver Ames in the Kelley-Rex.
Senior center Emily Sawyer has developed into a force on both ends of the floor and her presence in the paint will be a major piece of KP’s play this year. An almost automatic double-double every night, Sawyer has improved her offense every year and remains an imposing shot blocker and disruptor on defense. Fellow senior Jackie Bonner will give KP much-needed balance on offense with her ability to shoot from distance and take defenders off the dribble. KP looked like a different team when she went down with an injury last season.
While Bonner and Sawyer get a lot of the attention, KP has solid depth in both the front and backcourt. Senior guard Leah Santoro gives the Warriors a tenacious perimeter defender and junior Jordan Bennett runs the offense well at the point and showed flashes of being a threat from three-point range. Junior forward Maddie Paschke provides energy, rebounding, and finishing in the paint, and classmate Kylie Watson continues to improve on shot-making both in the paint and from the outside.
Miszkiewicz is also counting on several new faces to add to his squad this season. “They all bring something different to the court and have a chance to really impact games this year,” he said. “We can score on all three levels consistently, so we look to attack any advantages that we can get. Last year, we prided ourselves on playing tough, gritty defense. We try to make every shot difficult and hold teams to one shot.”
2021-2022 Record: 12-11 2021-2022 Finish: Reached Div. 1 Round of 32 Coach: Heather McPherson
Mansfield will play in the Davenport division for the first time this winter and, with only three players graduating from last year’s playoff team and both of its leading scorers back, there are hopes that this could be a title-winning debut for the Hornets.
Senior Abby Wager is the team’s top scorer from a year ago and the athletic wing will be the focal point for most teams defensively this year. The Southern New Hampshire-commit causes problems on both ends of the floor with her length and speed and her addition of different facets to her offensive game. If teams want to extend out to the perimeter, Mansfield can also hurt them in the paint with junior forward Kara Santos, who emerged as a consistent scorer on the block.
Experience should be no problem for the Hornets, who have a host of players that gained valuable experience last season. In the backcourt, seniors Olivia Salisbury and Bridget Hanley can run the point and step up with big scoring nights when needed. Senior Natalya Gill was instant offense off the bench for the Hornets, while classmate Rose Maher can knock down big shots from the outside. Senior Brooke Butler gives the Hornets another strong rebounder and paint presence.
“Extremely excited for the season,” said McPherson. “The level of focus and pace that we have committed to this preseason makes me extremely excited for the season with these girls!”
2021-2022 Record: 5-14 2021-2022 Finish: Missed postseason Coach: TJ Dolliver
Milford brings back five seniors from last year’s team, including a pair of four-year varsity players at captain, which the Hawks hope can provide the leadership for a move up the Kelley-Rex standings. After winning five games a year ago, Milford continues to set its sights on getting back into the playoff picture.
Senior forward Emily Croteau is an all-energy player at forward and will be one of the players that Milford counts on at both ends of the floor. She crashes the boards, defends, and her hustle is infectious. Classmate Brooke Ferreira is more of a calming presence in the backcourt, getting the Hawks into their sets and knocking down shots on the perimeter. Fellow seniors Molly Hartman and Aliza Syed will add experience and strength in the paint.
Junior forward Khatrina Leger could be ready for a breakout year after impressing in flashes as a sophomore. Leger used her athleticism to keep possessions alive and was able to get creative with her finishing around the rim. Classmate Erin Michelson uses her length on the wing to cause problems on the defensive side and junior Maeve Driscoll can come into the game and make some big shots on the perimeter.
“We have a lot of versatile players with different skills so our offense and defense is going to rely on execution during the games,” said Milford coach TJ Dolliver. “I have a great group of girls who are ready to compete on a daily basis. We have a lot of room to grow and I am looking forward to seeing where it takes us.”
2021-2022 Record: 4-16 2021-2022 Finish: Missed postseason Coach: Nikki Correia
North Attleboro incorporated plenty of youth into last year’s rotation and those young players will need to be ready from the start this winter because the Rocketeers are only returning four varsity players from 2021-22 and have as many underclassmen (four) as seniors on this year’s team. It is a guard-heavy rotation, which fits into head coach Nikki Correia’s preferred up-tempo style, but there will be a learning curve for a relatively inexperienced group.
Senior Ava McKeon will be the leader on the court for North this season. A four-year varsity player, McKeon gives the Rocketeers an edge with her tenacity, toughness, and athleticism. The rest of the team can feed off the energy that she provides on both ends of the court. Sophomore guards Sam Faria and Sam Sweeney both showed as rookies that they can knock down shots from the outside, but need to be more consistent to take the North offense to the next level. Classmate Maryellen Charette also impressed at times as a freshman and could be ready for a breakout year at forward. Confidence will be important for the younger players to meet the expectations that come from being regular starters.
North has added some new faces to the roster this year to contribute off the bench and give teams different looks. Senior guard Emma Hanwell and forwards Kylie James and Kayla Dominique, as well as junior forward Katie Corsetti will make the jump up from the JV team this season. Freshman guard Ella McLaughlin is another player with the potential to make instant contributions.
“I think our strengths on offense will be our quick guard play,” Correia said. “Our offense seems to be a little more organized and the guards are able to control the tempo. I am really looking forward to the season with this group of players. We are young and have so much potential to really surprise some opponents this year.”
2021-2022 Record: 22-3 (Davenport champions) 2021-2022 Finish: Won Div. 2 state title Coach: Brittany Engle
The defending Div. 2 state champions are going to have a very different look this season. Not only did Oliver Ames lose its top two scorers (Caroline Peper to graduation and Jasmyn Cooper to transfer) but also saw the retirement of legendary coach Laney Clement-Holbrook after more than four decades in charge. OA has turned to former assistant coach Brittany Engle, who is also a 1,000-point scorer and former state champ for the Tigers, who inherits a roster with only four returning players from last season.
Junior guard Kaydance Derba is the team’s top returning scorer and is one of the best long-range shooters in the league. Her length, her passing, and her ball-handling will all be critical for a team that is going to rely on a lot of relatively inexperienced players. Classmate Sarah Hilliard might be ready for a breakout season. The junior forward showed flashes of being a dominant post player last year, coming up with huge games on both ends of the floor during OA’s tournament run and her athleticism is a tough matchup for most teams.
A pair of seniors round out the returning players. Maddie Homer, who was voted volleyball MVP this fall, missed time last year due to injury but she came back to play a role in the state title game win against Norwood. She brings a lot of intensity on the defensive end and is another solid ball-handler that can get the Tigers into their sets. Classmate Grace Dupill will bring more athleticism to the forward position and leadership for a young squad that wants to challenge Franklin for the Kelley-Rex title.
“I’m excited for the season,” Engle said. “We’ve got a lot of good athletes who work hard, and are coachable and competitive. Coming off of a state title, expectations are high, but measured. This is a different team, but one with a lot of potential.”
2021-2022 Record: 4-16 2021-2022 Finish: Missed postseason Coach: Matt DellaBarba
Coming off a four-win season, Sharon returns four starters and nine players from last year’s roster, intent on making a move up the standings in the Davenport division. There is a change on the sidelines, with former Plymouth South coach Matt DellaBarba taking over this season and he will be hoping to utilize the experience that the Eagles have to make a run at a potential playoff spot.
Most of the focus this winter will be on junior center Jasmine Davis. After a stellar first varsity season in which she introduced herself with a 30-point, 20-rebound debut against Milford, Davis was one of the most prolific post players in the league as a sophomore. Sharon can take advantage of the attention Davis will draw to create shooting space for classmate Rachael Hager, who can force defenses to stay home with her ability to knock down shots from distance. Senior Tess Letendre and junior Eva Poulton round out the returning starters and both are solid ball-handlers and defenders in the backcourt and give the Eagles balance on both ends of the floor.
There is going to be plenty of experience coming off the bench for Sharon as well. In the backcourt, senior Clara Armon and juniors Carmen Leonardi and Natalie David will give the Eagles good energy and aggressiveness. Seniors Samantha Dunham and Emily Freeman add depth, rebounding, and solid defense in the front court. DellaBarba wants to make sure all of his players are threats to score on offense and communicate well in his team defense scheme.
“Being completely new to the Hockomock League I’m not entirely sure what to expect in my first season in the league,” DellaBarba said. “I know year in and year out the Hockomock League is one of the most competitive leagues in the state, so our focus right now is making sure we’re approaching every practice and game with energy and giving maximum effort in every opportunity that we receive.”
2021-2022 Record: 1-19 2021-2022 Finish: Missed postseason Coach: Eric Adams
Stoughton had its struggles in 2021-22, winning just one game, but the Black Knights are in the process of rebuilding through youth. With former assistant Eric Adams taking over for Charmaine Steele Jordan this winter, Stoughton will have continuity on the sidelines despite the coaching change and that should be a boost for a lineup that features only two seniors.
While young, Stoughton does have some varsity experience to call on. Senior guards Andrea Khouzami and Anna Hobbs will provide much-needed leadership in the backcourt. Junior Maiya Merritt is a quick guard who can get into the lane and sophomore Raina Tat showed that she has the ability to stretch defenses with her range, and the confidence to not pass up an open look.
In the front court, junior Alyssa Edwards is a three-sport athlete and she uses her strength and quickness to good effect on both ends of the court. Junior Katrina Varnum gives Stoughton a rim protector and a solid rebounder to protect the paint, while she also showed increasing confidence as a finisher around the rim. Sophomore Leah McCarty returns to give more depth on the block. Stoughton also has four freshmen on the roster, guards Kristen McKay, Molly Fox, Isabel Belmonte, and Cecelia Squires, who could be stepping in and getting minutes right away.
“This team is a young team; two seniors, four juniors, two sophomores, and four freshmen,” Adams explained. “This year is going to be a building year and we are eager to grow as a program.”
2021-2022 Record: 4-16 2021-2022 Finish: Missed postseason Coach: Gretchen Rodrigues
The transfer of the league’s leading scorer from last year, Kameron St. Pierre, will be a big challenge for Taunton this season. Losing more than 20 points per game, nearly half of the team’s nightly output, will obviously require more than just one or two players to step up. First-year coach Gretchen Rodrigues is counting on her team’s athleticism and focusing on the defensive end of the floor first to get the Tigers out and running this season.
Junior point guard Cali Melo will be a key player for the Tigers in this system, not only setting the pace for the team but also providing the energy on the defensive side of the floor. Melo is a tenacious defender and rebounder and will be like a coach on the floor. Junior guard Lexi Haywood provides long-distance shooting for the Tigers and is one of the players that could benefit from a few more touches on the offensive end. Sophomore Jillian Doherty gives Taunton more speed and finishing on the break and senior McMina Clermont adds more vocal leadership, defense, and rebounding.
While a lot of the focus is on the outgoing players, Taunton also got a transfer in who could be a major factor in the paint this season. Sophomore Skylar McCrohan has come from Somerset Berkley and Rodrigues will be counting on her crashing the boards and getting buckets in the post. Freshman Taryn Campbell is a quick guard and solid shooter, who will come in and contribute right away.
“We are going to push the ball, play hard all the time, play unselfish, and be in great shape,” Rodrigues said. “My style is up and down, pressure a lot, and utilize all 94 feet.“
FOXBORO, Mass. – Last season, Franklin rolled through the league unbeaten and scored 124 goals on its run to the Div. 1 state semifinal, which was more than double any other Hockomock League team. The Panthers started this season just as potent in front of goal, with 14 tallies in the opening two games.
Foxboro knew exactly what kind of threat the Panthers would pose on Wednesday evening at Sam Berns Community Field and put together a total team effort to keep the Franklin attack at bay. The game plan worked perfectly.
The Warriors held Franklin to just three penalty corners, the defense stayed packed into the middle, Foxboro threw multiple bodies at last year’s top scorer Kaitlyn Carney, and goalie Kathryn Ferguson came up with a highlight reel stop in the fourth quarter to come away with an impressive 0-0 draw.
“One of the keys to trying to keep the game controlled for us would be our defense and keeping the ball out of the middle and slowing them down as fast as we could,” Foxboro coach Melissa Bordieri explained about her team’s third shutout in three games this season. “I thought we did a really good job of making them do other things and be more creative on the fly.”
Franklin coach Michelle Hess praised Bordieri for putting together a strong plan and the Foxboro players for executing it very well. I was just giving Melissa kudos because that’s how I would’ve played us,” she said.
“They completely packed it in and it was hard for us to generate anything,” Hess continued. “We were super nervous today for some reason. We didn’t play our typical style of play. It was back-and-forth, back-and-forth, not a lot of opportunities and we didn’t take advantage when we did get them.”
While Foxboro was intent on keeping compact defensively, it wasn’t all one-way traffic. In fact, the Warriors had several good chances of their own, including the best look of a tight first quarter when Mya Waryas broke free down the right wing and forced a near post save out of Franklin freshman goalie Devon Barry.
The Panthers were having difficulties getting anything through to goal in the opening 15 minutes. Their best chance came when Raena Crandall charged down a clearance and deflected it off the side of the net. Foxboro’s defense of Catherine Cotter, Macy Quinn, Paige Curran, Val Beigel, and Mia Dinunzio (with help from all the attackers) kept everything outside the circle.
After a tough opening quarter, Franklin seemed to find another gear in the second, but Ferguson was there to back up her defenders.
Carney had a chance in the opening minute of the period that was kicked aside. Seven minutes later, Haley Wernig stole the ball on one end and, after a give-and-go with Carney, raced half the field before forcing another kick save out of the Foxboro goalie. Less than a minute after that, Carney was teed up by Sophia Cuneo for a blast off a penalty corner but again Ferguson was able to get a pad to it.
Right before halftime, Carney again forced her way into the circle and got free for a backhand shot from a tight angle but Cotter was in front to block and clear.
Foxboro gained momentum from going into the break scoreless and carried that energy into the third. Camryn Collins spun and fired a shot towards goal that was tipped just wide of the post by Jennifer Gallagher.
“We have to capitalize on the opportunities we work so hard for,” Bordieri said. “We did a fantastic job against an obviously really strong team, but we’ve got to jump on and capitalize on those too.”
Midway through the third, Foxboro had another good look as Isabelle Chamberlin’s long shot from the left side was kicked away by Barry. The save turned into one of the few transition opportunities Franklin had all night. Shaw Downing raced down the right side, but her cross into the middle was cut out by Quinn in front of a couple of late-arriving Panthers.
Pressure continued to mount, as Franklin grew increasingly anxious about trying to preserve its perfect start to the season. On a corner, Cuneo played the ball out to Carney, who tipped it to her sister Emily for a long shot that was blocked in front. Play stayed alive and Franklin won another corner. This time Kaitlyn Carney took the shot from the top herself and Ferguson came through with a nice stop.
Franklin nearly grabbed the opener with six minutes to play. Emily Carney flicked a shot in front that was tipped by Wernig in front. Ferguson (six saves) appeared to be wrong-footed, but was able to plant and dive at full stretch to get her stick to the shot that seemed destined for the bottom corner, preserving the shutout.
“The diving save and then she jumped right up to make sure,” Bordieri said about her goalie’s late heroics, “They’re a quick team. You can’t make a dive like that and lay there.”
It wasn’t the result that she was looking for, but Hess sees positives in her team getting tested like this early in the season. “We all know other teams are going to go after Kaitlyn,” she said. “So, this was a good learning experience for us that we’re going to have to work with the other girls to pick up the slack. It was a really good learning experience for us.”
Foxboro (2-0-1) will be on the road on Friday afternoon to take on Sharon, which is fresh off its first win of the season. Franklin (2-0-1) will also be on the road Friday, traveling to Taunton.
Stoughton, 25 @ Foxboro, 57 – Final – Kailey Sullivan scored 24 points to help the Warriors bounce back from Tuesday’s loss to OA. Camryn Collins added 11 points and Isabelle Chamberlin added a career-high 10 points to help Foxboro pick up the victory. For Stoughton, senior Vanessa Phelimond grabbed nine rebounds while sophomore Katrina Varnum had four blocks.
Attleboro, 0 @ Stoughton, 4 – Final – Stoughton had four different players light the lamp in a non-league win over Attleboro at Asiaf. Joe McNulty, Charlie Caputo, Cooper Lehmann and Josh Greenspoon each scored once in the win for the Black Knights while Chris Andrade and Sean McGowan combined for the shutout in net.
Franklin, 3 vs. St. John’s Prep, 4 – Final – Click here for a Photo Gallery from this game. Christian Shabbick scored a pair of goals and goalie Cole Pouliot-Porter made 38 saves, as Franklin pushed the top team in the state down the wire. The Panthers took the lead midway through the first period when Dylan Marchand finished off a two-on-one with a snipe from the right wing circle. The lead lasted two minutes before Prep answered back. A nifty pass from Pierce Blaeser teed up Tommy Sarni, who picked the top corner. Pouliot-Porter made 16 saves in the first and kept the score level while the visitors took control of the play. The Eagles capitalized on a power play opportunity early in the second, Sarni blasting a one-timer. Two minutes later, Prep threatened to put the game out of reach when Jeff Melanson’s wrister through a crowd beat Pouliot-Porter. Franklin turned things around when Logan Marchand kept the puck in the zone and the loose puck was collected by Shabbick inside the right face-off dot. He ripped a shot past the blocker to make it 3-2. Pouliot-Porter again made a point-blank save to keep Franklin within one and the Panthers started to wrest control from the visitors. The Panthers came out flying to start the third and Shabbick stepped up again, firing a quick-release shot from a tight angle that snuck in the near post. With just under five minutes remaining, Ben McGilvray got the winner with Prep’s second power play goal of the night.
Mansfield/Oliver Ames, 1 @ Whitman-Hanson, 4 – Final – Mansfield/Oliver Ames killed off three of its four penalties and applied a lot of pressure despite a short bench, but ultimately fell to Whitman-Hanson. Cataline Kipp put away a rebound on a shot from Julia Muttart for MOA’s lone goal.
King Philip, 3 vs. Norwood, 1 – Final
Stoughton/Sharon, 0 vs. Central Catholic, 7 – Final
2020-2021 Record: 9-4 Coach: Brianna Bracken
Attleboro finished second in the Kelley-Rex division last year and, despite only returning one starter, have an experienced corps that will be looking to push the Bombardiers back to postseason contention this season. There was a big change a few weeks ago when Marty Crowley stepped down as coach (after taking the athletic director job at Cumberland High) and former player and freshman coach Brianna Bracken was promoted to take over.
The change in coach won’t change the emphasis on defense and trying to use the roster’s athleticism to get easy baskets in transition. Attleboro’s lone returning starter is senior forward Meghan Gordon, who has improved every season on varsity and averaged nearly 17 points per game last year. Gordon will get help from classmates Lindsey Perry and Lillian Froio, who have both improved offensively and will help the Bombardiers take some of the pressure off Gordon on that end of the floor.
Injuries and transfers will have an impact as well. Senior Hailey Perry suffered a knee injury that will keep her out and last year’s freshman point guard Narissa Smith transferred to Rivers. Junior Lily Routhier has transferred in this year from Wheeler School and will help out on the boards. Sophomores Kayla Goldrick and Rylie Camacho will add to the Attleboro attack after getting experience as freshmen and senior Avery Vieira and sophomore Sarah Maher will try to fill Perry’s role in the backcourt. Sophomore Merry Bosh and Molly Moore and freshman Vanessa Ellis have had impressive preseasons as well.
“We have a great mix of experience and youth,” said Bracken. “We are excited about what lies ahead. Practices have been intense and the kids have been working really hard.”
2020-2021 Record: 7-5 Coach: James Choquette
Canton could be poised for a big season with a mix of talented underclassmen and an experienced group of seniors who have played together on varsity for four years. The Bulldogs went 7-5 in the shortened 2020-21 season, but expectations are higher this winter, with hopes of challenging the top teams in the Davenport and putting together a playoff run.
Kiara Cerrutiis the team’s top returning scorer and the senior winger will be counted on to provide scoring punch with her mix of inside-outside skills. Fay Gallery is back to run the point for the Bulldogs, getting the team out in transition and finding ways to create good looks for teammates in the halfcourt. Sydney Gallery is also back to give Canton a strong post presence and scoring inside the arc. The three players combined to average 38 points per game last season and give the Bulldogs a strong foundation to build on and help spread the floor for a team that has the potential to be one of the top shooting teams in the league.
Marissa Staffiere and Carly Fitzgerald return to help run the point and give strong defensive effort in the backcourt and junior Samya DaSilva has stepped in to add another versatile weapon on the offensive end. If the Bulldogs can continue to improve defensively, they have the firepower to compete with anyone. Offensively, it will be about ball movement and making sure the ball doesn’t stick on the perimeter.
“Our program continues to grow and improve,” said Canton coach Jim Choquette. “With a strong senior class and a great group of underclassmen, we hope to improve each day we’re in the gym together and achieve the results we desire. Everyone knows how hard it is to win, but this group is willing to do whatever it takes and we’re so excited to see how this season unfolds.”
2020-2021 Record: 9-2 Coach: Lisa Downs
Foxboro had its four-year reign at the top of the Davenport division come to an end last season, as the Warriors came second to Oliver Ames. With a relatively young roster, Foxboro improved over the course of the shortened season and seemed to be peaking as it headed into what would have been the second half of a normal winter. The hope for this season is that those younger players will build on that experience to make another title challenge and playoff run.
With the graduation of the league’s leading scorer, Katelyn Mollica, the Warriors will have a lot of points to make up but have several players capable of taking on bigger roles this year. Senior forward Hannah Blake could help provide some of that scoring with her solid post-up game and mid-range jumper. Sophomore guards Erin Foley and Camryn Collins both had impressive rookie campaigns and showed versatile offensive games and both are aggressive and athletic defenders, who fit into Foxboro’s typical style.
Senior Andrea Slattery and junior Lauren Miley are under-sized forwards but both bring a lot of energy and aggression to the defensive end and hitting the glass. Freshmen Kaley Sullivan and Ava Hill will jump right into the varsity lineup this season and both could be ready to make instant impacts. Juniors Michelle Brandt and Maddie Maher and sophomore Isabelle Chamberlin will give the Warriors plenty of depth to call on this season, especially with their effort on the defensive end.
“Although we are young and have new faces, I am excited to see the potential and look forward to seeing the improvement every time they step onto the court,” said Foxboro coach Lisa Downs.
2020-2021 Record: 10-0 Coach: John Leighton
Franklin returns eight players, including six seniors, from last year’s team, which extended the Panthers’ win streak to 35 games and clinched a third straight Kelley-Rex division title. The Panthers will be leaning on that experience as they seek to continue their reign at the top of the league and defend the Div. 1 state title that they won in 2019-20.
Senior forward Olivia Quinn will be the focal point of the Franklin offense this year after leading the team in scoring last winter and emerging as one of the top players in the Hock over the past two years. The reigning Kelley-Rex MVP will have plenty of help, particularly in the paint. While Franklin doesn’t have someone with Ali Brigham’s size, the Panthers have seven players on their roster that are listed at 5-foot-9 or taller. Senior Brigid Earley was the team’s leading rebounder last year and junior Katie Peterson is an athletic forward with a versatile game. Senior Emma Sousa is another experienced forward that gives depth in the post.
On the perimeter, Franklin has graduated a lot of its ball-handlers and shooters but senior Stefany Padula, a Springfield College-commit, is back and will help stretch the floor. Junior Bridget Leo is coming off a strong soccer season and could step in at point guard along with seniors Julia White and Jessica Pingeton, who saw some time last year. Sophomore guard Sasha Tracey is the lone underclassman on the roster this season.
“I am very excited to get back on the court with this team,” said Franklin coach John Leighton. “There is a lot of work ahead of us but there has also been many glimpses of what we could develop into. We have a very strong senior class who has set the bar high for the team. We hope to develop into a close-knit, supportive team that can win in different ways and also play defense that will limit our opponents’ options.”
2020-2021 Record: 5-6 Coach: Jeff Miszkiewicz
There is going to be a transition period for King Philip this season, as the Warriors will be moving from former head coach Dan Nagle’s unique, non-stop pressure, quick-shot system to a new system brought in by first-year coach Jeff Miszkiewicz (who comes from LaSalle Academy in Rhode Island). With seven returning players, including five seniors, the Warriors should have the experience to adjust to the new style and be in the mix in the Kelley-Rex division.
Junior Emily Sawyer will be a major weapon for the Warriors on both ends of the floor. The 6-foot-3 center may be the biggest beneficiary of a change in system and is poised for a breakout year in the paint. Her classmate Jackie Bonner will move into a starting role this season, with her ability to create instant offense and be a pest on the defensive side of the game.
Seniors Liv Lafond, Julia Marsden, and Elizabeth Molla also project to be starters for the Warriors this season. All three are versatile wings that can space the floor and attack in transition. Lafond may be the best off-the-dribble player for KP this season and her ability to get into the paint and create will be key. Marsden is a smart player who always seems to be in the right spot and a solid scorer at the rim or out on the perimeter. Molla is a knockdown shooter from the outside and can punish teams that sink down into the paint to guard Sawyer or prevent driving lanes.
“The team plays really hard and is very coachable,” said Miszkiewicz. “I think that’s why we have seen so much improvement over the first week of practice. You’ll see us take full advantage of our athleticism on both offense and defense. We’re going to be a fun team to watch.”
2020-2021 Record: 9-4 Coach: Heather McPherson
Mansfield closed out the shortened 2020-21 season with five straight wins and will hope to keep that momentum rolling into this winter, although the Hornets will need a lot of players to step into bigger roles. Six seniors graduated from last year’s team, including the bulk of the team’s frontcourt and two of its three leading scorers. New players will need the early part of the season to adjust to the pace of the varsity level.
The Hornets will be hoping that junior guard Abby Wager’s growing offensive game will allow her to improve on the nine points per game she averaged as a sophomore. Senior Anna Darlington brings tenacity on defense and will make it tough for teams to get into their half court sets. Seniors Kayla Doherty and Sophia Allen will also need to add experience to a lineup that is growing into the season.
Junior guard Olivia Salisbury and sophomore forward Kara Santos are going to be stepping up from utility roles into core pieces of the Mansfield offense this season. Salisbury has good vision and can create chances for teammates, while Santos will be a threat in the paint, making up for some of the size that graduated from last year’s team.
“After a shortened season under my belt I feel confident in the adjustments that the girls have made into a slightly different system than previous years,” said second-year Mansfield coach Heather McPherson. “We are emphasizing good fundamental defense and hoping that we can use it to create transition offense.”
2020-2021 Record: 3-8 Coach: TJ Dolliver
Milford ended last season with three wins in its final five games, building a little momentum that the Hawks are going to hope can get them off to a good start this winter. There will be a lot of changes from last year’s squad, as Milford graduated seven players, including a few four-year members of the team, so there may be some growing pains as new faces adjust to a new level.
Four seniors return to add experience and leadership to this year’s team. Guards Jess Douglas, Olivia Morelli, and Aubrey Korpi, and forward Jill Araujo are all back and will give Milford a foundation to build around. With so many new faces in the team this year, head coach TJ Dolliver will be leaning on his upperclassmen to help the younger players adjust, as the coaches work through the best way to utilize everyone’s skills on the court.
Junior forward Emily Croteau and guard Brooke Ferreira will be key players as well. The team’s top two returning scorers, Croteau and Ferreira will have to take on bigger roles this year and may be asked to carry a lot of the scoring punch. A three-year starter at point guard, Ferreira is the team’s top ball-handler and will be expected to get the Hawks into their sets while also looking for her own shot. An undersized forward, Croteau gives the team energy and rebounding, keeping possessions alive and getting chances thanks to her work rate.
“We are making a lot of changes this season,” Dolliver said. “It will be very important how we approach practice in regards to how successful we are this season. We have a lot of potential and I am excited to see where it goes.”
2020-2021 Record: 4-9 Coach: Nikki Correia
North Attleboro had a tough finish to the 2020-21 season, losing five straight to close it out, but all five were against teams with winning records, including two against division champ Oliver Ames. With a full season ahead, North has two of its top scorers back and has added more size in the frontcourt to try and make a postseason push.
The two key returning players will be senior Summer Doherty and junior Ava McKeon. The two aggressive guards give North extra energy on both ends of the floor and push the Rocketeers into the transition game that head coach Nikki Correia prefers. Their defensive effort will be critical for North this season. Senior forward Taylor McMath has improved each year and adds scoring in the paint and is an aggressive rebounder on both ends.
Size hasn’t been a strength for North the past few seasons but freshman Maryellen Charette will be an important addition in the paint. Despite being just a rookie, Charette has shown good footwork with back to the basket and is a strong rebounder. Sam Sweeney is the other freshman on the roster, while North has seven seniors on the roster to provide necessary experience for the younger players.
“I am looking forward to this season with a full schedule and many returning players, so lots of familiarity with each other and playing more under control and trusting each other more,” said Correia. “They are already showing more confidence and being in the right spots, running the offense, and letting the game come to them instead of forcing it.”
2020-2021 Record: 10-0 Coach: Laney Clement-Holbrook
Oliver Ames finished unbeaten and won the Davenport division title last season, but the Tigers will be disappointed to have missed out on a potentially deep tournament run. Coming into this year, expectations remain high with a good mix of experienced players and youth that will be getting their first taste of a full Hockomock League campaign.
Senior guard Caroline Peper is a four-year starter for the Tigers and has always been one of the league’s top long-range shooters, but continues adding to her game and her scoring will be critical. Senior Hailey Bourne is another four-year regular and one of the top defensive players in the league, capable of guarding multiple positions. Their leadership will be a key to OA’s success this winter. Senior forward Anna Murphy has improved each year and has a solid all-around game, making an impact on both ends of the floor, and junior guard Maddie Homer is a quick, tenacious defender and her improved offensive game will be important.
In addition to the more experienced players, OA is excited about the potential of the trio of sophomores who made cameos last year. Forwards Jasmyn Cooper, Kaydance Derba, and Sarah Hilliard all had good rookie seasons that gave a taste of their capabilities. Cooper and Hilliard provide size and scoring in the paint and both are excellent rebounders. Derba also has good size to be a tough matchup on the defensive end and is a dangerous three-point shooter who can stretch the floor.
“The Hockomock League, as always brings its share of tough competition, which will help us better prepare for the new standards established for the power rankings needed for the state tournament,” said OA coach Laney Clement-Holbrook. “The thing that I am most proud of is the fact that my players have worked tirelessly to improve themselves as players and we are ready to give it our best fight.”
2020-2021 Record: 1-10 Coach: Sandy Lombardi
It is hard to predict what type of season this will be for Sharon because the Eagles will be incorporating so many new faces and many of the players will be experiencing their first full season on varsity. After one win in 2020-21, the Eagles return only one senior on this year’s roster, so there is the potential to spring a few surprises on teams this season.
Trinity Payne is the lone senior for the Eagles. The four-year varsity player is a strong defensive presence and can control the glass, especially on the defensive end. Sharon coach Sandy Lombardi is looking for more offensive punch from Payne this season. Junior point guard Tess Lentendre returns after missing a few games last winter. A leader in the backcourt, Letendre is a three-year varsity player and will help control things on the offensive end.
The rest of the starting five for Sharon will be sophomores. Rachel Hager and Eva Poulton both saw time on varsity last season and play out on the wings. Jasmine Davis didn’t play last year but will start at center and should give Sharon extra size in the middle and should be a force on both ends of the court. Junior forward Emily Freeman is back from last year, but the rest of the Sharon roster are newcomers to the varsity team, although Lombardi is expecting good contributions from the bench.
“The girls have been working hard,” Lombardi said. “We are excited for the season and hopefully we can make some noise in the Hock this year.”
2020-2021 Record: 1-9 Coach: Charmaine Steele Jordan
Last year was a little bit of a transition season for Stoughton, as the Black Knights graduated a lot from a team that was a win away from tournament qualification. An inexperienced Stoughton roster had some growing pains in 2020-21, but with five seniors this year head coach Charmaine Steele Jordan is hoping that last year will set a foundation for this year’s team to build on.
Senior Jess Maddalena is an important returning player for Stoughton. After missing her junior season to an injury, Maddalena will give the Black Knights additional scoring and depth on the wing. Senior guard Kate Bulger will be back to run the offense and provide strong perimeter defense. Senior Vanessa Philemond adds athleticism, energy, and rebounding and her length can be a weapon on both ends of the floor.
In addition to their three captains, the Black Knights will also be hoping for big seasons and lots of leadership from senior guards Makaiyah Singleton Rivera and Evie Lam. Stoughton also has three sophomores, Katrina Varnum, Alyssa Edwards, and Maiya Merritt, and freshman Raina Tat, who will be handling their first full season of varsity basketball this season.
“It’s so good to be back on the hardwood to compete this season,” said Steele Jordan. “We will continue to play hard on both ends of the court this season. I am looking forward to the five seniors taking charge and setting the pace for us. We will play tough, be gritty, and battle until the final buzzer sounds each night in the Hock.”
2020-2021 Record: 0-10 Coach: Amy Siggens
Taunton coach Amy Siggens is in her third year in charge of the program (and second season on the sidelines after not coaching last winter) and she will have a very different looking roster to the one that she first inherited. The Tigers graduated six seniors from last year’s team and there will be a lot of untested players getting their first taste of varsity action this season.
There is excitement about the return of junior guard Kameron St. Pierre. After a breakout rookie season in which she averaged more than 14 points per game, St. Pierre sat out last winter and will be back to carry a heavy load for the Taunton offense. The lefty point guard will get the Tigers into their sets and her long-range shooting should open the floor for teammates.
In addition to St. Pierre, the Tigers will have a host of guards to rotate through. Seniors Braeley McDonald, Kyanna Barros, and Abby Souza will give the Tigers plenty of energy on both ends of the floor and could benefit from the attention paid to St. Pierre to get decent looks from the perimeter. Sophomores Cali Melo and Lexi Haywood also have experience at the varsity level. Inside, Taunton will have several new faces but senior forward Olivia Gannon and junior Sayla DePina bring some size in the paint.
“As we look toward the beginning of this basketball season, caution and patience are the words that ring true for us,” said Siggens. “Baptism under fire is an appropriate description for our girls this season but with enthusiasm, hard work, and a commitment to improving, we have a chance to be competitive in a typically demanding Hockomock League.”