SHARON, Mass. – Sharon went into its final game of the season honoring the one senior on this year’s roster, Trinity Payne, but it was a trio of sophomores who made sure that the Eagles closed out the winter on a high note.
Jasmine Davis (23 points, 20 rebounds, and three blocks), Rachael Hager (15 points on five three-pointers and five assists), and Eva Poulton (nine points) combined for 47 points, lifting Sharon to a 53-44 victory over visiting Stoughton. The win split the season series with the Black Knights and showed the talent that Sharon will bring back next year.
“We’re just so young,” said Sharon coach Sandy Lombardi. “We’ve got the majority of the kids coming back, so that’s good for us.” She added, “Being senior night for Trinity tonight, I think we were extra motivated to win. I thought both teams played hard, both teams played aggressive, and both teams had runs.”
Stoughton jumped out to an early lead, as Kate Bulger (team-high 12 points) scored the first three points of the game. Tess Letendre (four points, six rebounds, and three assists) knocked down a jumper to get the Eagles going. Davis scored with a put-back and Hager answered a drive by Jess Maddalena (five steals and two blocks) with her first three of the night.
Freshman Leah McCarty got an offensive rebound and scored and Vanessa Phelimond (six points and 12 rebounds) had a quick move in the post to tie the game at 10-10. Payne, a Simmons University softball commit, closed out the first with a put-back for her only basket of the night to give Sharon a 12-10 lead after one.
Davis started to heat up in the second, scoring six points and showing off an array of moves in the post. Stoughton kept hanging around, as Evie Lam (six points) banked in a runner over Davis and Bulger got free for an open jumper off an inbounds play. Hager buried her second three of the night to extend the lead to 23-16 heading into the locker rooms.
Sharon’s inside-outside game took over in the third quarter and broke the game open. A nice entry pass from Payne got Davis an easy bucket and then she drove baseline and finished with the right hand. Lam grabbed an offensive rebound to get two back and Bulger hit another jumper, but the Black Knights had no answer for Davis, who had 10 points in the third.
Davis scored six straight, getting a bunny off a feed from Hager, grabbing an offensive rebound, and then hitting a leaner from the left block.
“Jasmine Davis was phenomenal,” said Stoughton coach Charmaine Steele Jordan. “Her touch around the basket is something different. I haven’t seen that in a post player in the Hock in a while.”
Four quick points, on a Bulger pull-up jumper and then a steal and layup from Lam, got Stoughton back within 11, but Hager got open for a three from the wing and then another from the corner, putting the hosts up 41-26 after three.
The lead continued to grow, as Davis got loose on the inside again. It was her third game with at least 20 points and 20 rebounds this week. Poulton then swung the ball around to Hager for yet another three and the Eagles led by 20.
Lombardi explained, “[Rachael] gives us that lift and her threes, she’s moving farther and farther from the three-point line and she’s hitting them. She gives that outside presence and then we have Jasmine on the inside, so it balances out. I think the whole team played well for us but those two kids really stepped up offensively.”
Bulger matched that three on the other end but then Poulton started to get going on offense. She took a pass from Davis and drove to the rim for two and then Payne drew the defender and had a nice wrap around pass to give Poulton a layup. She scored five points in the fourth to give Sharon a little spark.
“She’s playing with more confidence,” Lombardi said of Poulton. “She’s getting to the basket a little more, getting to the foul line. That’s her game and she’s been doing really well with that the last couple of weeks.”
Stoughton never stopped attacking, even though time was running out and the deficit was 20. The Black Knights seemed to find an extra gear in a frantic final two minutes to rattle off 11 straight points. Raina Tat (eight points) came off the bench and scored seven points down the stretch. She had a nice drive to the basket, followed by one from Makaiyah Singleton Rivera, then Tat stepped into a three and turned a steal into a reverse layup.
“I just wish that the intensity of that eight minutes was our 32 minutes,” said Steele Jordan. “There have been a lot of games this year, we’ve been in it at half but the gas towards the end was short. This time, we had the gas towards the end but we’ve got to put all the pieces of the puzzle together. We fight hard, we’re always going to fight until the final buzzer sounds.”
Sharon finished the season at 4-15. Stoughton (1-18) will close out its season on Tuesday afternoon with a rescheduled game at Waltham.
Canton, 40 @ Attleboro, 48 – Final – Canton cut a double-digit halftime deficit down to three in the third quarter but Attleboro finished the quarter strong and pulled away for good with a 10-0 run to start the fourth. Lanse Dorcelus drained a three with three minutes left in the third to make it 28-25 but Attleboro closed with a 7-2 run to take a 35-27 lead into the fourth. Alvin Harrison, who had a career-high 19 points, scored twice down low and then sophomore Neo Franco (eight points) and senior Colin Morais each hit a three as the Bombardiers pushed the lead to 45-27 with five minutes left. Dorcelus scored 12 of his team-high 13 points in the second half, Dillon Nguyen hit a trio of second half trifectas for 12 points, and Matt Chafin had 11 points for the Bulldogs.
Foxboro, 68 @ Taunton, 69 – Final – Taunton’s big three of Trent Santos, Tristan Herry, and Faisal Mass combined for 65 points and the Tigers avoided an upset bid from visiting Foxboro. The Warriors twice rallied from big deficits to make a game of it but came up just short as the buzzer expired. Taunton raced out to a 21-5 lead but Foxboro had a big second quarter to make it a six-point game, 43-37, at halftime. After an even third quarter, Taunton once again stretched its lead to double-digits at 64-51 before the Warriors came charging back in the final minutes. Santos, who dropped a game-high 33 points, sank a pair of free throws with 30 seconds left to put the hosts ahead 69-66. Foxboro finally converted at the rim with under 10 seconds to go but there wasn’t enough time left to force an inbounds and the buzzer sounded for a 69-68 win for Taunton. Santos hit five first-half threes while Faisal Mass also had two in the opening half, finishing with 19 points. Herry added a first half three of his own and finished with 13 points. Dylan Gordon led Foxboro with 22 points, Alex Penders added 15, and Sam Golub chipped in with 13 points with three trifectas for the Warriors, who sank a season-high 11 three-pointers.
Sharon, 57 @ Franklin, 75 – Final – Sharon had a one-point lead after the first quarter, Franklin surged ahead by 10 at the halftime break, the Eagles cut it back to eight going into the fourth, and then the Panthers poured in 24 points in the final frame to run away with the win. Senior Sean Vinson (14 points) sank four three-pointers in the fourth quarter and sophomore Henry Digiorgio (game-high 25 points) had five three-pointers in the second half, two in the fourth, to help Franklin pull away. Sophomore Sean O’Leary scored 12 of his 18 points in the opening half as Franklin staked a 35-25 lead at halftime. Sharon’s Donyae Pierre scored eight of his 13 points in the opening quarter and both Will Hippler (10 points) and Matt Baur (10 points) hit first quarter threes to help the Eagles take a 17-16 edge into the first intermission.
Oliver Ames, 56 @ Mansfield, 69 – Final – Mansfield jumped out to a double-digit lead by the end of the first quarter and kept OA at bay the rest of the way to finish crossover action with a win. Junior Chris Hill (eight rebounds, four assists, two blocks, two steals) tied a career-high with 21 points, including 13 in the first half to help the Hornets seize a 33-20 advantage at halftime. The Tigers held the hosts to 10 points in the third but Mansfield went 9-for-10 from the line in the fourth and put the game away with 26 points. Andrew Slaney (four steals) hit three three-pointers on his way to 15 points while Caden Colby had eight first-half points for Mansfield. CJ Williams and Drew Baxter paced OA with 11 points each while CJ Santos and Zach Tagliamonte chipped in with 10 points apiece.
Stoughton, 57 @ Milford, 54 – Final – Stoughton used a balance attack offensively and survived a last second shot from Milford to record a win on the road. The Black Knights had eight players in the scoring column with senior Cash Mathurin leading the way with 11 points. Stoughton led by four (23-19) after a hot start from both offenses but the Hawks tied it up at 32-all by halftime. Stoughton jumped ahead by the end of the third (45-39). Rayan Sablon had a huge three in the final minutes and finished with a team-high 13 points for Stoughton. Milford had a shot at the go-ahead basket in the final seconds but its bid from the block stayed out. Sophomore Jake Soares led Milford with 13 points.
Taunton, 33 @ Foxboro, 60 – Final – Freshman Kailey Sullivan continued her strong rookie campaign with 22 points, as the warriors earned a fourth straight victory. Camryn Collins also reached double figures for Foxboro, finishing with 11.
Franklin, 61 @ Sharon, 27 – Final – Franklin had 10 players get on the score sheet and the Panthers held their fourth straight opponent under 30 points to improve to 10-0 on the season. Sharon was held to just four points in the first quarter and Franklin broke the game open by scoring 20 in the second for a 29-12 halftime lead. An 18-6 third quarter put distance between the teams. Stefany Padula and Olivia Quinn each scored 14 points. Padula scored all of her points in the middle two quarters and buried four threes. Quinn had five of Franklin’s nine points in the first and another six in the second. Katie Peterson added nine points in the win. Jasmine Davis led the Eagles with nine points and Tess Letendre scored eight.
King Philip, 29 @ North Attleboro, 23 – Final – KP was able to pull out a defensive struggle on the road and moved back to .500 on the season. Although North was able to hold KP’s center Emily Sawyer to six points, the Rocketeers struggled to find the range with only four players getting on the score sheet. Summer Doherty led North with nine points and Taylor McMath added seven, while also doing a strong job defensively in the paint and on the glass. Ava McKeon chipped in with five points.
Mansfield, 36 @ Oliver Ames, 60 – Final – Mansfield made a second quarter push to cut the deficit to single digits, but Oliver Ames dominated the second half to get the win. The Tigers limited the visitors to just four free throws in the opening quarter to establish a 20-4 lead through eight minutes. Mansfield made a game of it with a big second, cutting it to 32-23 by halftime. But OA once again locked in defensively, surrendering just three points in the third to run away with the win. Senior Caroline Peper led the way with 15 points and eight assists, sophomore Jasmyn Cooper added 14 points and 11 rebounds, Anna Murphy chipped in with 10 points, and Hailey Bourne set the tone with high energy defensive play. Abby Wager led Mansfield with a team-high 10 points.
Milford, 40 @ Stoughton, 36 – Final – Following a 40-point night against Burncoat on Monday, Maddalena Mannucci Pacini scored 23 against Stoughton to help Milford win for the second time in two days. The Black Knights had a 25-23 lead going into the fourth, but the Hawks scored 17 in the final eight minutes to come from behind and pick up the win. Pacini had 11 points through three quarters and exploded for 12 in the fourth, including 4-of-4 at the line, and Maeve Driscoll added four of her nine points in the final quarter to pull out the win. Jess Maddalena led the Black Knights with nine points. Katrina Varnum nearly had a triple-double in the loss, scoring eight points, blocking seven shots, and grabbing nine rebounds, while Alyssa Edwards had seven points and 10 boards.
Oliver Ames, 1 @ Franklin, 8 – Final – Franklin came out hot right from the opening puck drop, scoring five goals in the opening period in a league win over visiting Oliver Ames. Dylan Marchand scored twice while Christian Shabbick, Ben Paterson, and Domenic Lampasona each found the back of the net once as Franklin established a 5-0 lead. Shabbick, Logan Marchand, and Dylan McEvoy tacked on goals in the third period for the Panthers. Ryan Sicchio assisted on half of Franklin’s goals, Paterson added three helpers, and Justin Magazu recorded two assists. Andrew Livingstone (from Jack Corey and Sean Kearns) scored a second period goal for OA. Junior Brandon Burke turned away 27 saves for OA while sophomore Cole Pouliot-Porter had 16 saves in the win for the Panthers.
Mansfield, 63 @ Seekonk, 94 – Final – Mansfield closed its dual meet with a loss to Seekonk but put up some impressive performances in the setback. Rico Balanza won both the 100 free and the 100 back, Kevin McCarthy shaved off seven seconds for a new personal best in a first place finish in the 200 free, Xavier Gwynne set a new PR in his win in the 100 fly, and Ryan Morley came in first in the 100 breaststroke with a new PR. Palanza, Morley, McCarthy, and Gwynne teamed up to take first in the 200 free relay as well.
Mansfield, 73 @ Seekonk, 97 – Final – Mansfield recorded a handful of season-best times but fell on the road to Seekonk. Sofia Seifert took first in the 100 breaststroke, followed by a second place finish and new PR time from Katherine Elliott. Seifert added a season-best time in the 100 free and took second, Elliott also set a new PR in a second place finish in the 200 IM, and Carla Guirguis set a new personal record in a second place finish in the 100 fly. Separately, over at Wheaton College at the Hockomock League Diving Championships, Mansfield’s Caitlyn Zajac took home the championship with a score of 187.75.
Congratulations to Mansfield’s Caitlyn Zajac on winning the Hockomock League Diving Championship tonight at Wheaton College with a score of 187.75! Congrats to Caitlyn and her Coach Steve Dubois! pic.twitter.com/x4DM3XZQaH
North Attleboro, 123.15 @ Oliver Ames, 136.3 – Final – Senior Kate McGarry took first place in both the bars and the floor, Abbey DeCouto won the beam, Katie Babinikas grabbed first on the vault, and Oliver Ames finished its final dual meet with a win over North Attleboro. McGarry scored a 9.1 on the bars, and won the floor with a 9.3 while OA captains Peyton Rivers (8.8) and Halley Gramer (8.3) each set new personal bests on the floor. DeCouto and Babanikas each scored 9.0 in their respective wins while Shayla Nagle, Kalli Puskar and Lexi Weintraub all scored key points to help the Tigers.
NORTH ATTLEBORO, Mass. – North Attleboro has been struggling with its offense all season long and that has made it difficult to close out close games in the fourth quarter. On Friday night at the Pickering Gym, the Rocketeers figured out ways to manufacture points in the final minutes and put up their best scoring night of the year.
Leading by seven after the third, North scored 17 points in the fourth quarter to pull out a 54-43 victory over Stoughton and end its three-game win streak. The teams entered the night as the league’s lowest-scorers and both set season highs in points.
“We need to play as a team,” said North coach Nikki Correia. “It’s frustrating when you’re not winning. Once we talked yesterday and said, you win as a team, you lose as team. You need to start playing together and stop making those mental mistakes and the game will come. We came out for the first time looking confident. We battled through mistakes and kept working hard and stuck to the game plan.”
Slow starts have been an issue for the Rocketeers as well, but North jumped out to an 8-0 lead that it never relinquished. Summer Doherty was the spark plug for the hosts, scoring eight of her game-high 23 points in the first. She also finished the night with three blocks, three steals, and seven rebounds.
Doherty started things with a pull-up jumper, then leaked out on the break to get a layup after Ava McKeon’s defensive rebound. She buried another jumper off an Abby Camelio assist to make it 10-2. Stoughton got off to a tough start and head coach Charmaine Steele Jordan called for more energy at the first timeout.
The Black Knights did come out with more life to close the quarter. After Raina Tat walked into a straightaway three, Makaiyah Singleton Rivera (11 points and nine rebounds) gave the visitors a much-needed lift with four points, both baskets coming off offensive boards, including one at the buzzer to send Stoughton to the bench down just 15-9 after one.
“She was a nice spark tonight for us,” said Steele Jordan of Singleton Rivera. “We started a little slow. We got good looks, shots just weren’t falling our way tonight. They’re gritty, they fight, it’s tough because I can’t ask them to go harder. They’re giving me all they’ve got.”
Singleton Rivera started the second with a jumper to cut the lead to as little as four, but Doherty answered with a three down the other end. Tat (six points) hit her second three of the night but Camelio (10 points and nine rebounds) matched it off one of McKeon’s four assists. McKeon (13 points and 12 rebounds) also started to get things going with six in the quarter, pushing the lead to 27-19. McKeon and Doherty combined for 21 of North’s 27 in the first half.
Stoughton went on a quick burst right at the end of the half, with Singleton Rivera making two at the line and then turning a steal into a layup, to send the teams into the locker room with North only up four.
Doherty didn’t slow down coming out of the break, starting the half with her second three. After Kate Bulger’s runner, Doherty added a jumper from Sam Faria’s skip pass over the top of the Stoughton zone. Evie Lam nailed a triple on the other end and then got an easy two after Singleton Rivera grabbed a rebound and managed to squeeze a pass to her while laying on her back.
North had stalled on the offensive end but got a big bucket before the end of the quarter when Camelio banked in a three to extend the lead to 37-30.
Again it was Doherty that got North going, starting the fourth with a layup. Camelio added another after McKeon’s rebound and long pass ahead to put North up by double digits. To that point, all but one of North’s points had been scored by the trio of Doherty, McKeon, and Camelio, but in the final quarter other players stepped up.
Taylor McMath (five points) went 4-of-8 from the line in the fourth and Faria got her lone basket after Camelio hit her with a long pass over the press coming out of a timeout. The Rocketeers may have put the game away sooner but shot 6-of-13 from the line in the fourth (and 15-29 for the game).
Stoughton continued to battle, despite losing Singleton Rivera and Jess Maddalena to injuries in the second half. Bulger (five points) drilled a three and assisted on one for Lam (eight points), while Vanessa Phelimond got her only points of the night with three-point play after a pass by Alyssa Edwards.
“I couldn’t be prouder of hard we’re trying,” said Steele Jordan. “We’re getting better executing, we’re getting better talking and listening on defense, which is what you want to see at this time of the year. I can’t wait for their heart and their hustle to convert into a win because they want it.”
With North running the clock down on every possession, Doherty sealed the win in the final minute by burying a three after a swing pass by McMath.
Correia said, “We have to play four quarters and a lot of time we may have two really good quarter and two quarters where they become stagnant, they stand around. We kept fighting through. We responded tonight, which we haven’t done in past games.”
North Attleboro (3-6) will try to carry that momentum into Monday night when it hosts Foxboro. Stoughton (0-9) will also be at home, on Tuesday, to face unbeaten Franklin.
Attleboro, 51 @ Taunton, 71 – Final – In a game of runs, Taunton had more of them and at key moments to secure an impressive win over visiting Attleboro. The Tigers opened with a 10-0 to start the game and pulled away anytime the Bombardiers closed the game. Taunton led 19-8 after a quarter and then pushed the lead to 35-25, closing the first half on a 10-3 run. In the third, Attleboro made it a possession game at 45-40 but Trent Santos (22 points) capped a quick 7-0 burst with a four-point play to give Taunton a 52-40 advantage going into the fourth. The Tigers closed with their best offensive quarter of the game (19 points) to run away with the win. Senior Jordan Costa scored 18 of his career-high 23 points in the second half to keep the hosts ahead throughout the game. Tristan Herry chipped in 10 points while Faisal Mass had eight points, all in the first half. Seniors Evan Houle and Colin Morais each scored 12 points for the Bombardiers while sophomore Neo Franco added eight points.
Canton, 46 @ North Attleboro, 39 – Final – Canton scored 18 points in the opening quarter to establish a lead that it held onto the rest of the way in a win on the road at North Attleboro. The Rocketeers responded with 13 points in the second to make it a close game by halftime (28-23) but the Bulldogs limited the hosts to just five points in the third to push the lead to double-digits (38-28) going into the fourth. North rallied to get within a possession in the final frame but Canton secured the win with successful free throw shooting. Senior Lanse Dorcelus scored a team-high 14 points, including all nine of Canton’s second quarter points, while Matt Chafin added 12 points and Nate Mei had nine points. North senior Casey Poirier netted a career-high 22 points while Gavin Wells chipped in with seven.
Foxboro, 55 @ Sharon, 68 – Final – Sharon dropped 20 points in the opening quarter capped by a halfcourt shot at the buzzer, and then added a 22-point third quarter to create the separation it needed to record a key win over division foe Foxboro. Matt Baur scored 10 of his 17 points between the first and the third, swishing a halfcourt heave just before the buzzer in the first as the Eagles established a 20-14 lead early. Sophomore Nate Katznelson added 12 of his 16 between the first and third, and sophomore Jacob McLoughlin had all 11 points in those two periods for the Eagles, who turned a 31-24 halftime lead into a 53-39 advantage going into the final quarter. Foxboro junior Alex Penders scored 23 of his career-high 25 points in the first three quarters while senior Dylan Gordon added 11 points for the Warriors, who hit three of its their seven threes in the final quarter.
Milford, 78 @ King Philip, 85 – Final (OT) – King Philip senior Danny Clancy scored off of an inbounds pass with six seconds to go to send the game into overtime and the Warriors outscored the Hawks 8-1 in the extra period to get the win. KP exploded for 24 points in the third quarter to erase an eight-point halftime deficit, knotting the score at 55. Both squads scored 22 points in the fourth with KP going 10-for-12 from the free throw line in the fourth. KP finished the game 23-for-39 from the line while Milford was 14-for-22 for the game. Braeden Sottile scored six of his 10 points in overtime while Will Laplante had 10 of his team-high 23 points in the fourth quarter for KP, which trailed 16-12 at the end of the first and 39-31 at halftime. Tommy Martorano finished with 20 points while Clancy had 17 points in the win. Wyatt Zagami dropped a career-high 24 points for the Hawks, hitting a trio of threes in the fourth quarter for 13 of his points. Jake Soares also hit a pair of threes in the fourth, finishing with a career-high 19 points.
Oliver Ames, 72 @ Stoughton, 79 – Final – Stoughton poured in 27 points in the second quarter to build a double-digit lead by halftime, and then held off a flurry of points in the fourth from Oliver Ames to get the win. The Black Knights turned a 12-10 lead after eight minutes into a 38-24 advantage at halftime, and pushed the lead to 20 points (61-41) going into the fourth. Junior Rayan Sablon scored a career-high 25 points, hitting a pair of threes, three two-point field goals, and went 13-for-13 at the free throw line to lead the Black Knights. Senior Connor Andrews scored seven of his 16 points in the second and freshman Matthew Greenspoon (15 points) hit three of his five three-pointers in the second to help the Knights establish their lead. Sophomore Liam Pearl added 10 points in the win. Oliver Ames’ Zach Tagliamonte scored 15 points in the fourth quarter and finished with a career-high 36 points to lead the Tigers. Drew Baxter added 11 points and freshman Cole Craffey finished with 10 points, all in the second half.
Taunton, 44 @ Attleboro, 65 – Final – Attleboro got off to a fast start, leading by 15 at halftime, and never looked back to win for the third time this week. All three wins were by double digits. Meghan Gordon continued her torrid week with a game-high 31 points. She scored 11 of Attleboro’s 19 in the second quarter and 10 of the Bombardiers’ 15 in the third to help build the lead up to 18 points. Lindsey Perry added 14 points in the win, including a pair from downtown. Kameron St. Pierre scored a team-high 21 for Taunton, knocking down three triples and scoring eight points in the fourth quarter. Cali Melo scored eight, all in the second half, and Emily Gannon added six for the Tigers.
North Attleboro, 45 @ Canton, 80 – Final – Canton got off to a great start, leading 21-7 at the end of the first quarter and extending that lead to 27 by halftime. The Bulldogs used a strong press to force 13 turnovers in the first half and quickly converted those into points on the other end. Fay Gallery scored a career-high 27 points, knocking down seven threes. She also dished out eight assists, grabbed seven rebounds, and had six steals. Kiara Cerruti nearly matched Gallery, adding 26 points and five steals. Sydney Gallery scored 11 points and had five assists, Samya DaSilva had five points and five boards, and Emily McCabe finished with four points, five rebounds, and three steals. North improved offensively in the second half, scoring 31 points after the break. Summer Doherty scored a team-high 13 points, while Ava McKeon and freshman Sam Faria each scored eight.
Sharon, 27 @ Foxboro, 70 – Final – Ten players got on the score sheet for the Warriors as they bounced back with a big win at home. Freshman Kailey Sullivan knocked down three from beyond the arc and scored a career-high 19 points in the win. Camryn Collins added a dozen for Foxboro.
Mansfield, 33 @ Franklin, 60 – Final – Click here for a Photo Gallery from this game. Franklin hadn’t played in nearly a month, so it took a while for the Panthers to get going, but they then went on a 22-0 run between the second and third quarters to grab hold of the game and stay perfect on the season. Olivia Quinn (four rebounds and three assists) and Stefany Padula (four steals and two blocks) each scored 14 points to lead the Panthers and combined to knock down five threes. Katie Peterson added 12 points, three assists, and a pair of blocks, while Brigid Earley scored nine points. The Hornets were shorthanded with several players out and several just making their return. Abby Wager came off the bench to score a team-high 12 points, all in the second half, and Olivia Salisbury added six points and five rebounds. Rose Maher had six points and eight boards, while Bridget Hanley scored three points but also chipped in with eight rebounds, three steals, and four assists.
King Philip, 57 @ Milford, 49 – Final – Milford led by two after one, but KP grabbed the lead in the second quarter and then extended it to double digits heading into the final eight minutes to earn its second close win of the week. Jackie Bonner led three scorers in double digits for the Warriors, finishing with 16 points on four three-pointers. Julia Marsden (15 points) and Emily Sawyer (13) also had big nights for KP. Maddalena Mannucci Pacini led all scorers with 18 and Emily Croteau added 10 points for the Hawks. Maeve Driscoll and Brooke Ferreira each chipped in with six in the loss.
Stoughton, 25 @ Oliver Ames, 66 – Final – Oliver Ames took control right from the opening tip and secured its second big win in as many days over division rivals. After a big win over Sharon on Thursday, the Tigers raced out to a 39-10 halftime advantage on Friday night against the Black Knights. Caroline Peper netted a team-high 16 points and recorded five steals, sophomore Jasmyn Cooper added 10 points and nine boards, and Hailey Bourne gave OA a big boost with nine points and four steals. Seniors Jess Maddalena and Evie Lam combined for 14 points for the Black Knights.
Taunton @ Attleboro – >Postponed to TBD.
Attleboro, 87 @ Milford, 83 – Final
Stoughton @ Canton, 3:00
Sharon @ Foxboro, 6:00
King Philip @ Mansfield, 6:00
Attleboro, 111 @ Milford, 48 – Final
Stoughton @ Canton, 3:00
Sharon @ Foxboro, 6:00
King Philip @ Mansfield, 6:00
North Attleboro, 52 @ Attleboro, 64 – Final – Attleboro established an early lead and never let it slip away to knock off rival North Attleboro. Sophomore Neo Franco hit a pair of threes in the first and Evan Houle (17 points) added five to give the hosts a 17-12 lead. The lead grew from there with senior Colin Morais adding seven second quarter points to give the Bombardiers a 29-20 halftime edge. Attleboro, who was without junior forward Trevor White, had its best offensive quarter in the third, scoring 23 points with contributions from Joe Francois-Annevil (seven of his 11 points), Jake Struminski (six of his eight points), and Alvin Harrison (half of his eight points). Brody Rosenberg led the Rocketeers with 15 points while Givany Carney chipped in with 12 points.
Canton, 45 @ Milford, 30 – Final – Canton delivered first year coach Eric MacKinnon his first career win, limiting the Hawks to 12 points in the second half for the win. The Bulldogs built a six-point lead after a quarter and kept the Hawks at a distance the rest of the way. Conor Hunter hit a pair of threes in the second quarter as the visitors carried a 23-18 lead into halftime. Canton had its biggest offensive quarter of the game, nearly doubling their lead going into the final quarter (36-27). Hunter finished with 13 points while Matt Chafin added 12 points in the win.
Foxboro, 26 @ Mansfield, 66 – Final – Click here for a photo gallery of this game. – Mansfield built a double-digit lead in the first quarter and never looked back in a big win over visiting Foxboro. The Hornets were clicking on all cylinders on the offensive end, getting 11 players into the scoring column. Senior Matt Hyland scored a game-high 17 points and grabbed five rebounds while junior Chris had a strong showing with 15 points and seven rebounds. Mansfield helped force 18 turnovers from the Warriors, who couldn’t get it going on offensively. Mansfield led 34-11 at halftime.
Stoughton, 72 @ King Philip, 64 – Final (OT) – King Philip battled back throughout the game, forcing overtime but couldn’t keep pace with the visiting Black Knights in the extra period. Stoughton built a double-digit lead (22-12) after a quarter with six players factoring into the scoring. The Knights kept the lead all the way to the fourth, but King Philip cut into it each quarter. Stoughton took a 38-30 lead into halftime but was held to just six points in the third as KP surged back to make it a one-possession game (44-41). The teams battled back-and-forth in the final quarter before Stoughton’s last second shot was off the mark. In overtime, Connor Andrews (game-high 22 points), Jayden Costa Heyward (12 points), Liam Pearl (nine points) and Cashmere Mathurin (six points) all scored to help the Knights outscore the Warriors, 11-3. Freshman Matt Greenspoon added 10 points in the win. Danny Clancy led King Philip with 16 points while Braeden Sottile added 15 points.
Oliver Ames, 48 @ Franklin 64 – Final – Franklin saw its 22-point halftime lead shrink to single digits going into the fourth quarter, but the Panthers bounced back and closed out strong to get a win over visiting Oliver Ames. Franklin built a 37-15 lead by the break behind a balanced scoring attack and strong defense. Franklin hit half of its 12 three-pointers in the second quarter alone, two apiece from Geino Scaringello and Justin Allen (team-high 12 points) and one each from Andrew O’Neil and Hansy Jacques, to take a commanding lead. OA came roaring back in the third as Zach Tagliamonte scored 10 of his team-high 14 points in the third and Dan Reilly had nine of his 12 points to make it 46-37 going into the fourth. Ben Harvey had half of his eight points in the fourth, Henry Digiorgio scored five of his seven, and Allen added another three to pull away.
Sharon, 71 @ Taunton, 89 – Final – Taunton senior Trent Santos caught fire early and never cooled off, dropping a career-high 41 points to lead the Tigers to a win over visiting Sharon. Santos hit four threes on his way to 20 points in the first quarter as Taunton jumped out ahead 28-12 after a quarter. Faisal Mass (14 points) and Matt Small (nine points) scored six points and five points, respectively, in the second for a 46-25 advantage at the break. Santos picked it back up in the second with 14 points, keeping the hosts ahead throughout. Tyson Carter scored all eight of his points in the third and Troy Santos added all seven of his to give Taunton a 68-47 lead going into the fourth. Sharon junior Matt Baur scored a team-high 26 points, hitting on six three-pointers. Sam Cohen added four threes for 12 points as the Eagles finished with 15 three-pointers made.
Attleboro, 41 @ North Attleboro, 30 – Final – Attleboro knocked down its outside shots and played solid defense to pull out a first win for head coach Bri Bracken. The game was tied at 9-9 after one quarter but Attleboro was able to build a six-point lead by halftime and extended it to 11 in the second half. North continues to struggle at times to find consistency on offense, but got eight points from Ava McKeon, who was back after missing a game with injury, and seven points apiece from freshmen Sam Sweeney and Maryellen Charette.
Milford, 17 @ Canton, 71 – Final – Canton got off to a great start and broke the game away in the second quarter to earn its first win of the season. Kiara Cerruti scored 14 of her game-high 18 points in the opening half, including 10 in the second quarter. Fay Gallery scored 17 points and added nine before halftime, as the Bulldogs ran out to a 36-9 lead. Sydney Gallery chipped in with 13 points and Han Hong added nine. Maddalena Mannucci Pacini scored four points for Milford, which also got three points apiece from Jess Douglas, Jill Araujo, and Khatrina Leger.
Mansfield, 43 @ Foxboro, 56 – Final – Foxboro got big nights from a pair of freshmen to earn its second straight win and hand Mansfield its first loss of the season. Kailey Sullivan set a new career-high with 16 points, 11 in the second half, and Ava Hill set a career mark with 14 points, including eight in the fourth quarter. The Warriors broke the game open in the second, extending a one-point lead out to a dozen by halftime. After Foxboro won the third quarter 14-11, Mansfield battled to win a fourth quarter shootout 19-17. Kara Santos was the top scorer for the Hornets with 13 and Abby Wager added 11 points, all in the second half and eight in the fourth quarter alone. Olivia Salisbury had five points, all in the final eight minutes. Foxboro was able to get clutch rebounding from Andrea Slattery and Lauren Miley down the stretch to keep a big lead. Camryn Collins scored nine points and Erin Foley scored eight points to go along with her aggressive defending.
King Philip, 65 @ Stoughton, 41 – Final – Stoughton kept it close in the first half behind a strong defensive effort but the visiting Warriors put together a big run in the third to turn a 6-point lead at half (30-24) into a double-digit advantage (47-30) going into the fourth. Seniors Makaiyah Singleton Rivera and Jess Maddalena combined for 16 points for the Black Knights.
Taunton @ Sharon – Postponed to TBD.
Franklin, 6 vs. St. John’s Shrewsbury, 3 – Final – Franklin saw its three-goal lead evaporate in a three-minute span in the second period but the Panthers bounced back with a big third period, scoring three more times to get the win over St. John’s Shrewsbury. Adam Quinn (from Ben Jarosz and Ben Paterson) and Ryan Sicchio (from Logan Marchand) scored for a 2-0 lead at the midway point of the first, and Paterson (from Dylan Marchand and Quinn) scored just over two minutes into the second to make it 3-0. SJS scored three times within the next four minutes to tie the contest 3-3 through two periods. In the third, Quinn got his second of the day (from Paterson and Sicchio) at the midway point of the third and Dom Lampasona (from Anthony Lampasona) added a key insurance goal less than a minute later. Anthony Lampasona tacked on a key empty net goal (margin of victory) in the final seconds on an assist from Christian Shabbick. Cole Porter made 31 saves in net for the Panthers.
King Philip, 1 vs. Medway, 4 – Final
Stoughton, 7 vs. Bellingham, 2 – Final – Stoughton broke into the win column in a big way, knocking off visiting Bellingham, 7-2. Charlie Caputo led the offense with three goals while Colin Alessi added a pair of goals. Brendan Twohig and Aidan Obrock scored a goal each while Anthony Hern recorded the win in net.
King Philip, 2 @ Wayland/Weston, 1 – Final (OT)
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.”
Stoughton, 28 vs. Brookline, 62 – Final – Click here for a Photo Gallery from this game. The Black Knights were down by just nine heading into halftime, but the Warriors broke the game open with a 23-0 third quarter to open the season with the road win. Brookline led 16-6 after one quarter, as Geanna Bryant scored nine of her game-high 17 points, but with Bryant in foul trouble in the second Stoughton was able to win the quarter 8-7. Jess Maddalena, who missed all of last season with injury, had six points and eight rebounds in the first half and Katrina Varnum had four points off the bench. After the Warriors scored 23 points in the first 16 minutes, they doubled that in the next eight. Mariah Washington scored seven of her 11 points in the third and Margo Mattes added seven of her 16. The Black Knights couldn’t get anything going on the offensive end and went into the fourth down 46-14. Stoughton would double its point total with a 14-point fourth quarter. Freshman Raina Tat scored eight points on her varsity debut and Andrea Khouzami buried a three.
Foxboro, 56 vs. Bridgewater-Raynham, 79 – Final
Sharon, 115 @ Milford, 51 – Final
Foxboro, 70 vs. Bridgewater-Raynham, 91 – Final
Sharon, 99 @ Milford, 70 – Final
Canton @ Attleboro, 6:15
Sharon, 121.8 @ Franklin, 145.35 – Final
2019-2020 Record: 10-12 2019-2020 Finish: Reached D1 South First Round Coach: Martin Crowley
After a couple of rebuilding years, Attleboro made a jump last winter and clinched its return to the playoffs in the final game of the regular season. While the Bombardiers will miss the all-around game of Nyah Thomas, who is at Worcester State after a breakout senior season, Attleboro will count on six returners from last year’s roster and a couple of promising newcomers to make some noise in the Kelley-Rex.
Thomas’ scoring and ball-handling will be tough to replicate, but the Bombardiers have strength and athleticism in the post. Junior Meg Gordon developed into a double-double machine last year, using her quickness and length to cause problems in the paint. Senior Ryan Johnson is another forward with length that can impact the game on the glass and protecting the rim.
In the backcourt, senior Gabby Bosh is back to run the point as well as being a pesky defender. Juniors Hailey and Lindsey Perry will also add to the depth at the guard position and to the team’s overall speed and defensive effort. Freshmen guards Kayla Goldrick and Narissa Smith are newcomers that have the potential to make an instant impact and should immediately find themselves in the backcourt rotation.
Attleboro coach Marty Crowley said, “For us to be successful we must be able to play defense consistently and rebound. This is by far the most athletic team we have had and hopefully we can use that to our advantage. We are blessed to be in the gym everyday with such great kids and that is a win in itself.”
2019-2020 Record: 13-10 2019-2020 Finish: Reached D2 South First Round Coach: Jim Choquette
Canton has been a youthful team with potential for the past two seasons and the Bulldogs come into the winter with an opportunity to turn that potential into the program’s first league title since 1992. After graduating just one player from last year’s team and with many of its standout players now in year three as starters, Canton has the experience to match its talent.
Juniors Fay and Sydney Gallery and Kiara Cerruti have been standouts since their first games as freshmen and have the all-around games to cause match-up problems for the opposition. All three can score from the perimeter, but Sydney gives the Bulldogs a presence on the post while Fay can score off the dribble and be a playmaker on offense. Cerruti is a pure scorer, with good range and the ability to take defenders off the bounce.
Depth should be a strength for the Bulldogs this season, with players able to come off the bench and produce at every position. Carly Fitzgerald and Marissa Staffiere will return in the backcourt, giving Canton solid ball-handlers and a pair of strong defenders. Senior Kayla Albert adds length and rebounding in the paint and sophomore Samya DaSilva showed off great footwork last year and will be another scoring threat on the block.
“I’m very excited to take the floor with this group of girls,” said Canton coach Jim Choquette. “I love their desire to improve, win games and represent the town of Canton to the best of their abilities. We all want to improve on our past successes, and we’ve been working hard to do so. Very lucky to be coaching this team!”
2019-2020 Record: 24-2 2019-2020 Finish: D2 State Co-Champion Coach: Lisa Downs
Foxboro closed out the 2019-20 season by winning its final 16 games and securing a second state title in the past three seasons. The Warriors graduated four starters from last year’s team, so players will have to step into bigger roles this season and newcomers will have to produce right away to make it five straight Davenport titles.
Defense and tempo are the hallmarks of Foxboro’s success under head coach Lisa Downs and that should be the same this year. For scoring, the Warriors are going to count on senior Katelyn Mollica. One of the top players in the league for the past three seasons, the Stonehill College-commit is one of the league’s top shooters and strong help defender. Senior Jordyn Collins is another key component from last year’s team, as a tenacious defender and a slasher who can get to the rim.
Senior Hannah Blake will step into the starting lineup at center this winter and Downs thinks that she has the potential to be one of the best bigs in the league. Senior Morgan Sylvestre had some big moments last year (for instance, the D2 South final against Hingham) and will see more time at point guard this year. Freshmen guards Camryn Collins and Erin Foley will both be in the mix right away and sophomore Lauren Miley is back after missing all of last year with an injury.
“We graduated a large chunk of our roster from last season so we will have quite a few new faces on the court to accompany Katelyn,” Downs said. “We will continue to focus on our defensive efforts and will strive to pursue the fast pace that we have become familiar with. Safety of the girls is obviously my first concern, but it is also my hope to be able to provide the most fulfilling season possible in terms of overall improvement on both ends of the court.”
2019-2020 Record: 25-0 2019-2020 Finish: D1 State Co-Champion Coach: John Leighton
Last winter, Franklin went start-to-finish as the top team not only in the league but in the state and capped off an undefeated season with the program’s first state championship. The graduation of center Ali Brigham, who was arguably the program’s best-ever player, is a big change for the Panthers this year but there is plenty of talent and experience on the roster to make a push for a three-peat of Kelley-Rex titles.
Junior Olivia Quinn is one of the main reasons that the Panthers are considered the favorites in the Kelley-Rex again this year. Quinn scored nearly 400 points and was one of the top three or four players in the league last season. She continues to develop and improve and will be the focal point of the offense this year. Senior Erin Quaile is the two-time Defensive Player of the Year but is also a solid point guard who limits turnovers, calms things down, and gets Franklin into its sets.
The offense will obviously look a little different this year, without a 6-foot-3 center in the middle, but the Panthers have talent on the wings to cause problems. Seniors Elizabeth Wilson and Kaleigh Houlihan, and junior Stefany Padula can all stretch the defense with their ability to knock down perimeter shots. The forward position should also be strong with Emma Sousa, Brigid Early, and Katie Peterson giving Franklin length and athleticism on the block.
“We are excited to be back on the court and I have been very impressed by our depth,” said Franklin coach John Leighton. “Our girls have been committed to getting better and competing on every play.”
2019-2020 Record: 12-9 2019-2020 Finish: Reached D1 South First Round Coach: Dan Nagle
King Philip head coach Dan Nagle has implemented a unique system based on high pressure and constant running. The Warriors don’t have to worry about shot clock violations. With a roster of athletic players who will all be counted on at some point and have a year of experience in the system, Nagle hopes this year’s team can create even more chaos that last winter and push Franklin at the top of the Kelley-Rex.
Senior Emma Glaser is the team’s top returning scorer and the Springfield College-commit will be counted on to take a step up, as the Warriors lost their top three scorers to graduation and transfers. Glaser is an athletic wing with range out beyond the three-point line. Athleticism is a common theme for this roster. Senior Caroline Aaron is another versatile wing who can contribute on both ends of the floor.
Depth won’t be an issue for the Warriors, who regularly sub five players at once and everyone gets playing time. Junior guards Elizabeth Molla, Liv Lafond, Grace Clyde, and Julia Marsden will provide scoring punch. At 6-foot-3, sophomore center Emily Sawyer gives KP a unique weapon in the middle and looks more comfortable with the speed at varsity. Senior Courtney Keswick battled injuries last year but is back healthy and gives KP a consistent three-point threat. Sophomore Jackie Bonner is a scorer being moved up from JV who could be poised for a breakout year.
Nagle said, “It’s year two in the system, so the learning curve has been a lot smaller and kids are picking things up fast. What we do is no secret. It’s going to be pandemonium every game, win or lose. This year’s team might even be a better fit for it because generally we have better team speed and it being year two makes a huge difference.”
2019-2020 Record: 9-14 2019-2020 Finish: Missed postseason Coach: Heather McPherson
After more than two decades in charge, Mike Redding retired as head coach after last season. There will be some continuity for the program however, as former player and assistant coach Heather McPherson will move into the first seat this year. McPherson can count on continuity on the floor as well, with six seniors among the returning players for the Hornets.
While the Hornets missed the playoffs last year, they also had some impressive wins against playoff teams along the way, beating Attleboro, King Philip, and Bishop Feehan. Senior Kayla Vine was one of the league’s top perimeter shooters and also a solid playmaker with her ability to get into the paint. Senior Ashley Santos extended her range as a shooter last year was a strong all-around player that was a tough matchup on both ends of the court. Sophomore Abby Wager showed flashes of her potential as a scorer during a strong rookie season and her development could be a big boost this year.
Mansfield will have plenty of depth to call on. Senior Ally Prentis adds another shooter, senior Sarah Dooling is another versatile forward, and seniors Brooke Berube and Kacey Veiking give the Hornets a lot of height in the paint. Junior Anna Darlington and sophomore Olivia Salisbury should see more time in the backcourt.
McPherson said, “I couldn’t ask for a better senior group to begin my varsity coaching career, they have set an exciting tone to the season with their energy, effort, enthusiasm. With all of the uncertainty that this year has brought we are excited for the opportunity to be playing basketball. For us to compete each night we will need to play good fundamental basketball.”
2019-2020 Record: 3-17 2019-2020 Finish: Missed postseason Coach: TJ Dolliver
While Milford went winless in league play last year, the Hawks lost no one to graduation and will have seven seniors on this season’s roster. Experience will be a key for Milford, which for the first time will be playing in the Kelley-Rex division. Although the Hawks have struggled at times offensively, no one can argue with the team’s effort and athleticism, especially on defense (ask state champion Foxboro, which was held to just 44 points last year) and that should once again be the team’s strength.
Senior Emma Lawrence will be the team’s focal point this year after an all-star junior season. Lawrence has long arms, endless energy, and the ability to get to the basket. Fellow senior Jillian Michelson is another player who will shadow the opposing team’s top offensive player and use her speed and length to cause problems. Sophomore Brooke Ferreira stepped in at point guard last year and had an impressive rookie campaign. Her ball-handling and ability to get into the lane was critical to the team’s offense, which could at times struggle from the perimeter.
Milford is not a tall team, but the Hawks have several versatile forwards that crash the boards and will make it tough for teams to score in the paint. Seniors Carly Ferreira, Katie Maietta, and Elise Fauerbach add physicality on the block for a team that likes to get up and pressure the ball.
“Having a senior-heavy roster and a team of hard working girls, this season will be a lot of fun,” said Milford coach TJ Dolliver.
2019-2020 Record: 9-11 2019-2020 Finish: Missed postseason Coach: Nikki Correia
Under first-year head coach Nikki Correia, North Attleboro bounced back last year and went into the final game of the regular season with a chance of clinching a return to the postseason. Although Big Red missed out on the tournament, the Rocketeers come into this season with optimism. A year of experience in Correia’s system and a strong corps of returning players gives North hopes of springing a surprise in the Davenport division.
Senior guard Amanda Kaiser will remain the focal point for opposing defenses and will force them to extend beyond the three-point line to prevent her from getting going. Kaiser is also a strong defender, who can kickstart the North break by forcing turnovers. Sophomore Summer Doherty is another wing player whose quickness and length causes problems on defense and her strength allows her to get into the lane on offense.
Senior Siobhan Weir keeps things calm even as North tries to get out and run as often as possible, while also adding a strong mid-range game. Senior Lydia Santos missed last season with injury and will be another strong ball-handler and leader in the backcourt. Sophomore Ava McKeon had an impressive rookie season on the wing and uses her strength and athleticism to get into the lane and her energy to get on the boards. Fellow sophomore Taylor McMath got called up last season and made an instant impact as a post player. North isn’t the tallest team, but McMath gives the Rocketeers extra length in the paint on both ends of the floor.
“I know with my team they have been so excited just to be on the basketball court again with their teammates and ready to compete,” said Correia. “Overall we have a strong unit and I can not wait to start the basketball season and see what these girls will do as a team. They all bring different strengths to the game so once they can mesh it all together on the court it will be great to see.”
2019-2020 Record: 14-7 2019-2020 Finish: Reached D1 South First Round Coach: Laney Clement-Holbrook
Oliver Ames is back in the Davenport division for the first time since 2016, when the Tigers won their last league title. OA returns with the goal of ending Foxboro’s four-year run as the top team in the division and has a talented, experienced roster to try and win the program’s Hock-best 23rd league title.
The Tigers pushed Franklin for the Kelley-Rex crown all the way to the final week of league play last year and that experience has given them added confidence heading into the new season. Injuries took their toll down the stretch, but when fully healthy OA boasts one of the deepest rosters in the league. Caroline Flynn is more of a point forward than a point guard but she has developed into one of the league’s top playmakers, while also being one of its top rebounding guards. Caroline Peper battled a back injury all of last season, but when healthy is one of the top shooters in the Hock.
Junior Hailey Bourne has emerged as one of the top defensive players in the league, capable of guarding players on the perimeter or in the post. Senior Jess Erlich adds shooting from her forward position. OA has six returning players who will be bolstered by an exciting crop of newcomers, including freshman guard Jasmyn Cooper.
OA coach Laney Clement-Holbrook, who passed the 700-win mark last season, said, “OA’s strengths will come from the depth of their lineup and a cast of young and upcoming players with great intensity and love for the game. Despite the challenges associated with pandemic, OA is excited to have the chance to play this season and value every second they get to compete for the top spot.”
2019-2020 Record: 4-16 2019-2020 Finish: Missed postseason Coach: Sandy Lombardi
Sharon finished with only four wins last season, but the Eagles also lost seven games by 10 points or less, including five games by five points or fewer and twice lost by a single basket. With a good core of versatile players returning, the Eagles are hoping to make a move up the standings in what continues to be a competitive Davenport division.
The graduations of Ally Brown and Kaitlyn Wallace take away two of the team’s top ball-handlers and perimeter scorers, but the Eagles can make up for that with strength in the paint. Senior Leah Fandel and junior Trinity Payne are difference makers on both ends of the court, capable of crashing the boards, protecting the rim, and offering interior scoring. Both players are capable of stepping back and knocking down short jumpers too, adding a different dimension to the offense.
Sophomore guards Tess Letendre and Emily Freeman will be counted on to pick up some of the slack on the perimeter and get the Eagles into their offensive sets. Seniors Gaby Cabral and Julia Early will also be counted on to take bigger roles this season. The Eagles will also have a pair of freshmen, Rachel Hager and Eva Poulton, who will be expected to contribute right away.
“I’m excited for the girls to have an opportunity to play this season,” said Sharon coach Sandy Lombardi. “Looking back a few months ago I would not have imagined us having a season at all.”
2019-2020 Record: 9-11 2019-2020 Finish: Missed postseason Coach: Charmaine Steele Jordan
Stoughton narrowly missed out on a playoff spot last year, falling just one win short of qualifying for the tournament (that included a one-point loss to North Attleboro midway through the season). The Black Knights will have to try and make up for the graduation of their two leading scorers, Aliyah Wright and Shyanne Trinh, but head coach Charmaine Steele Jordan expects that this year’s roster will live up to the program’s standard of hustle, hard work, and aggressiveness.
Mackenzie Manning is the team’s top returning scorer and Steele Jordan is counting on the senior guard to provide leadership and passion for the younger players. Fellow seniors Cate Downey and Jess Maddalena (who is out for the season with an injury) are also going to be counted on to set the tone for the team.
Junior guard Makaiyah Singleton Rivera saw plenty of time last year and gives the Black Knights a boost of speed and energy on the perimeter. There are also several underclassmen who will be jumping up to varsity and could add important minutes this season. Sophomore guards Kiara Scardina and Shayla Ford and freshman forward Alyssa Edwards are newcomers to keep an eye on this season.
Steele Jordan said, “I’m really thankful for all the players that came out for our program this year in the middle of pandemic. Looking forward to kicking off the season in 2021. Our goals have not changed, the Black Knights will play hard, play together and represent the Stoughton community with pride this season.”
2019-2020 Record: 5-15 2019-2020 Finish: Missed postseason Coach: Amy Siggens
Taunton has struggled to get going this winter, as practices were halted after just three days and the teams won’t resume basketball activities until next week, which has forced the opening games with Attleboro to be postponed. The Tigers will also be without last year’s leading scorer, sophomore Kameron St. Pierre, who has opted out. With all of that, second-year head coach Amy Siggens is still excited that the team this season and building on the fundamentals of her system.
The Tigers will be an experienced, if still young, team this season. Seniors Jaelyn and Sonya Fernandez will be the focal points on the offensive end. They are both versatile players capable of stepping back and knocking down shots and also taking their defenders off the dribble. Their athleticism on both ends of the court makes them a tough matchup. They also provide leadership for a team that is building consistency. The Tigers won five games last year, but also lost seven times by single digits, including once in overtime.
A strength of the team will be its depth in the backcourt. Senior Tori DaRosa is a tough defender and gets the Tigers into their sets. Juniors Abby Souza and Braeley McDonald are also strong options to provide shooting off the bench. Sophomore Maddie Michenzie can be a force on the boards and adds a different dimension in the post on both ends of the court.
“We’re rolling with the punches here,” said Siggens about having to postpone practices until the New Year. “Everyday is something new and you just have to adjust. We’re focusing on the leadership of our seniors but also the development of our young kids. This is a year to really pull it back and go after the fundamentals and the basics.”
2019 Boys Record: 1-5 2019 Girls Record: 0-6 Coach: Martin Tighe
The Attleboro boys cross country team has one of its best group of returners, perhaps one of the strongest teams in quite some time. And on the girls side, head coach Martin Tighe has one of the best runners in the league in senior Kelly Neuendorf, a top finisher at last year’s Hockomock League Championship meet. The Bombardiers host opponents at the Highland Park Cross Country Course, which was designed by Tighe and Bishop Feehan coach Bob L’Homme.
Senior Nathan Seybert will be in the mix for one of the fastest runners in the Hockomock League this season. In six dual meets last season, Seybert finished in the top three each time, taking first against both Feehan and Taunton. Tighe notes that Seybert will run around 16:10 or better this season. Attleboro also had Ethan Sylvia, Neil Bowie, Shane Cataloni, and Zachary Stromfors have strong finishes at the league championship meet last year.
On the girls side, Neuendorf is fresh off a top 10 finish at the league championships, clocking in at 20:28.32. She was first in the dual meet against league champion Franklin and finished no worse than third in the six dual meets. Other top runners from the league championship meet last season included Kimberly Esteban, Jazlyn Miller-Villanueva, and Diana Blouin.
“I’m looking forward to the X-C season as are many athletes and coaches,” Tighe said.
2019 Boys Record: 2-4 2019 Girls Record: 1-5 Coach: David Hiltz
Both the Canton girls and boys have spots to fill in their starting lineup but both squads have top runners back on the course this season. The Bulldogs call Pequitside Farm home, a 3.01 mile course that is mixed with trails, grass, and hills that make it one of the more challenging courses in the Davenport.
The boys squad graduated four of the top seven from last season but bring back its three captains in senior Jack Hernon, senior Elias Jabbour, and junior Kyle Downing. Downing was Canton’s top runner throughout last season, culminating in team-best finish at the league championship meet. After the top three of Downing, Hernon, and Jabbour, the Dogs have four spots in the lineup up for grabs. Sophomore Matt Hart, who had a solid freshman season, is a candidate for a breakout year.
“The boys have a good mix of returners with some new faces who have joined,” said head coach David Hiltz. “If we can build some depth with our four and five, run consistently, and stay healthy we should compete within each meet and strive for that third dual meet win (after a 2-3 finish last year).”
The girls have a strong core of three returners, led by senior captains Marie Messinger and Jesse Hart. Messinger was Canton’s top runner at Hocks in 2019 while Hart had strong showings against both Foxboro and Stoughton a year ago. Sophomore Johanna Bouwmeester had a breakout season as a freshman a year ago, including 41st place at Hocks. With four spots in the lineup open, it’s been a mix of other returners as well as some first time runners and freshmen competing for the openings.
“Although graduating senior leadership, there is a good mix of youth and experience that will make the top seven,” Hiltz said. “Similar to the boys, building depth in the four and five spots will determine how successful the team is this fall, with those spots going to some younger runners. A goal of the team is to increase the dual meet wins, and this year with three home meets and strong senior leadership should help in that process. Staying consistent and healthy will be key to their success this season.”
2019 Boys Record: 1-4 2019 Girls Record: 3-2 Coach: Wayne Relleva
With Joe Cusack taking over as athletic director this past school year, Wayne Relleva takes over as head coach for the Warriors’ cross country teams. Relleva will have a pair of young squads with just four seniors on the boys team and just one on the girls side.
Hosting teams at the Payson Road Fields, the Warriors are hoping home course advantage can lead to a strong start to the season as Foxboro hosts its first two meets. The boys squad features 19 total runners with senior captain Liam Cody leading the way. Relleva is also looking for junior Nicolas Olson and sophomore Brooks Stone to play big roles for the Warriors this season.
“For the season, I’m hoping to be highly competitive, improve, and win some races,” Rellava said. “Being as young as we are we have lots of room to grow over our five race season.”
Captain Amy Conley is the lone senior on the girls team and will lead the way for 10 sophomores and a freshman. Half of those sophomores are returners from a season ago, including Aine Fitzpatrick, who could be a major factor in the lineup this season. Relleva is also looking for sophomores Emilia Lacy, Mabel Linck, and Sophia Sougaris to factor into the scoring this year.
“I’m excited to see how this young team grows and comes together over our season, it should be fun to watch,” Relleva said.
2019 Boys Record: 5-0 2019 Girls Record: 4-1 Coach: Nick Bailey & Paul Trovato
Both of Franklin’s cross country squads are coming off league titles and will be looking to replicate that success in 2020. The boys team has won three straight Kelley-Rex titles and have a strong group of runners back this year to try and make it four straight. The girls bring back a pair of Hock all stars from last year’s squad that finished second at Hocks.
“With a strong senior and junior class the 2020 Franklin Boys XC team is looking forward to some tough competition once the races get underway,” said boys head coach Nick Bailey. “This team has put in the hard work necessary to be competitive in the Hockomock League and they have adapted well to social distancing guidelines we are all part of.”
Franklin will be hosting opponents on a course around the high school instead of Dacey Field. The course is a relatively fast course with a mixture of roads and fields that is 3.1 miles long. Senior Nicholas Calitri will be one of the top runners in the entire Hockomock League, fresh off a third place finish at the league meet a year ago. He will be joined by senior Declan Walmsley, who factored into the scoring in the dual meets last season and took 12th overall at the league meet, senior Josh Anderson (54th at Hocks), and junior Griffin Sieckiewicz (33rd at Hocks).
“Quite a few athletes on the team have made some great improvements since their last races all the way back in February and March and have adapted well to the new challenges that have come with the Fall 2020 season,” Bailey said. “One way or another, this will be a memorable year for our cross country team”
All-Hock selections Sydney Brady (10th at Hocks) and Caitlin Casey (18th) lead the way for the Panthers, who shared the division title with OA last year. Brady is a captain along with classmates Sydney Hawkins (who took 10th at Hocks) and Liz Petit. Juniors Charlene Peng and Liliana Duffy will bolster the Panthers lineup following successful sophomore campaigns, both finishing inside the top 30 at Hocks. RuthAnn Mulvey, a sophomore, and Angelina Perez, a senior, make the Panthers one of the deepest squads in the league.
“Last season the team finished second at the Hockomock Championship Meet. This team has a strong group of dedicated runners who are working hard and should be competitive in the Kelley-Rex Division,” said head coach Paul Trovato.
2019 Boys Record: 3-2 2019 Girls Record: 3-2 Coach: Scott Kramer & Lauren Farkash
The King Philip boys and girls cross country teams are in different situations heading into the 2020 season. The girls return their top three runners from last year’s Hockomock Championship race; all three finishing in the top 30. The boys team, however, graduated four of its top five runners from the same meet, including the Gatorade Runner of the Year Mike Griffin and Michael Norberg, who was fourth at Hocks.
But neither team is paying much attention to the past with the focus on the five-race season ahead. Senior Jovan Joseph will pace the pack for the boys, gaining plenty of valuable experience from last year’s group. Joseph is coming off a strong junior campaign that finished with a top 20 finish at the league meet. Head coach Scott Kramer is looking for a combination of juniors and sophomores to fill out the rest of the lineup. Liam Noke, Andrew Noke, Brandon Berdos, Ryan Andrews, and Matt DiFiore will all compete to be in the scoring for KP.
“The returning guys had a great summer of training,” Kramer said. “Captains Jovan Joseph and Sam Evans really ran a great program and it will be tough for any newcomers to get in the pack for us.”
KP has moved the finish line of its 5K course at the Rice Complex in Wrentham but the distance hasn’t changed. The King Philip girls squad, coming off a fourth place finish as a team at Hocks, has its top three runners back in juniors Maya Evans and Meg Sherwood as well as senior Ava Pisani. All three had strong seasons in 2019 with Evans emerging as one of the top competitors in the Hock as seen by her fourth place finish in 19:51.50 at Hocks. With some open spots in the lineup, head coach Lauren Farkash has been happy with the depth so far in training. Leah Burke and Kat Precobb are returners from last year while freshman Bridget Swezey could make an immediate impact.
“My goal this year is to just provide the girls a sense of normalcy during these unusual times,” Farkash said. “Our focus is creating good memories, strong bodies and minds, and having fun! We are not worrying about PRs or win/loss records, their enjoyment of the sport and their physical and mental health is most important!”
2019 Boys Record: 2-3 2019 Girls Record: 3-3 Coach: Ian Flanagan & Carolina DiBiase
Both the Mansfield boys and girls team are aiming to get back atop the Kelley-Rex division this season. After a 14-year run as league champs, Mansfield has been on the outside looking in over the past three seasons and will be relying on some new faces to lead the way this year. On the girls side, the Hornets have a handful of top runners back from last season to try and challenge for the division title. Mansfield will host teams at the Plymouth Street Soccer Fields (5K).
The Hornets lost their top three runners from the Hockomock Championship meet to graduation so head coach Ian Flanagan will be looking for new faces to step up. Mansfield is loaded with upperclassmen who had strong offseasons and run similar times. Junior Collin Stevens finished at 17:43.61 to take 31st overall and will be one of the top runners for the Hornets this season. Seniors Tim Corkery, Ryan Rispoli, and Trevor Flint, as well as junior Chris Leonard, will help round out a well-balanced lineup.
“We have some big shoes to fill from last year losing three of our better runners but the guys on this team are hard workers who are up for the challenge,” Flanagan said. “We also have some promising young guys who will really benefit from this season and will impact some meets this year.”
The girls are under new leadership this season as Carolina DiBiase, who has coached at MHS in the past, takes over for longtime coach Derek Ellis. DiBiase has one of the top runners returning this season in senior captain Tessa Lancaster, who crossed the finish line sixth at the league championships last year. Senior Emma Lamson is the other captain on the team and one of the top runners on the team (22nd at Hocks) as well. Senior Abby Greenberg and junior Cassidy Rice will be runners to watch this season while juniors Sophia Allen and Alanna Conley and freshmen Jen Mullert will help push the pack. Senior Anne Riley and sophomores Alexis DiVasta and Devin Anderson return as starters from last season.
“I am looking forward to seeing what they can do this season,” DiBiase said. “I have taken a break and have really enjoyed getting back into things. The girls look strong and they are ready to run and improve each week.”
2019 Boys Record: 4-1 2019 Girls Record: 3-2 Coach: Dan Gordon & Glenn O’Connor
Expectations are sky high for the Milford girls cross country team as the Hawks are aiming to soar above the competition in the Kelley-Rex division. Meanwhile, the boys might have a small squad but it includes some strong runners eager to make some noise against new competition.
The Milford girls have good reason for such high expectations with a strong group of top runners from the Hockomock League leading the pack. Senior Emma Lawrence will be among the top runners in the region after a strong offseason. In her first season running cross country, Lawrence had a remarkable year that included a 5th place finish at Hocks. She will be joined by sophomore Sydney Kalil (48th at Hocks) and a pair of indoor track league champions in Sarah Flanagan and Kerry O’Connor. Flanagan won the 300M race and O’Connor, who clocked in at 22:38.00 at last year’s league championship meet, was the Hock champ in the 600M. Maren Halpen, Haley Jansons, Eva Parsons, Kate Pease, Fiona Jordan, Stephanie Goulet, and senior captain Brittany Silverman will make the Hawks one of the deepest teams in the league.
“We’re so glad we have a season,” said Milford head coach Glenn O’Connor. “Nobody is going to happy to see the Lady Scarlet Hawks on their XC schedule.”
Dan Gordon takes over as head coach for the boys team, which has reason for optimism after some strong preseason times. Junior James Comisky is back after a strong sophomore campaign and will pace the pack for the Hawks this season. In a preseason 5K scrimmage against Mansfield, Comisky was the top finisher. Sophomore Mark Butters has grown a lot as a runner from his debut season last year and will be a key piece for Milford this season. Captain Jack Jansons will be one of the leaders for the Hawks this year.
“I am looking forward to having a safe, fun, and competitive season,” Gordon said. “My goals are that everyone leaves faster and more knowledgeable about how to race well when it matters most.”
2019 Boys Record: 3-2 2019 Girls Record: 3-2 Coach: Anne Marie McGrail
North Attleboro could be set for a breakout season for both the boys and girls teams this season. Five of the seven Rocketeer boys who scored at the league meet last season were either juniors or sophomores while only two seniors scored on the girls side, meaning North Attleboro should have a deep squad for the 2020 season.
Juniors Christopher Galligan and Griffin Goueck placed 39th and 53rd, respectively, at the league meet last season while junior Mark Carlson, junior Casey Poirier, and senior Jack McLaughlin all clocked in under 19 minutes.
On the girls side, Natalie Kaiser (32nd at Hocks) and Olivia Forbes were lost to graduation but the other six to factor into the scoring were juniors, sophomores or freshmen. Senior Melissa Sapini had North’s top placement for the girls last year when she clocked in at 21:11.52.
2019 Boys Record: 5-1 2019 Girls Record: 5-1 Coach: Kyle Sousa
The Kelley-Rex division could run through Easton this season, for both the girls and the boys. The girls split the division title with Franklin last year but bring back two of the best runners in the league and are poised for a repeat. The boys didn’t win the division but had a stellar showing at Hocks and took first place as a team with five runners in the top 20.
Of those five, the boys have three runners back – senior Kyle Sarney, junior Owen McMorrow, and senior Nathan Reservitz. Sarney will look to build on his fifth place finish at Hocks and be in the mix for one of the fastest runners in the Hock. McMorrow (13th) and Reservitz (17th) weren’t far behind so the Tigers will have a strong nucleus to lead the pack. Head coach Kyle Sousa described the boys team as a seasoned group with a lot of competitive experience.
Catherine O’Donnell and Meghan Reardon highlight a strong girls team for the Tigers. The duo finished in succession at the league meet with O’Donnell clocking in at 20:05.32 for seventh place and Reardon just a couple of seconds behind for eighth overall. Sousa is hoping that a very deep squad will translate to some dual meet wins in the quest for a second straight division title.
“Everyone around the Hockomock League and the state at large knows that the 2020 Season is going to look different than any season before it,” Sousa said. “Now more than ever, we are training through unpredictable adversity, and adapting in real time to the daily curveballs that some with a global pandemic. Never have I been so impressed by the commitment of the young men and women of Oliver Ames Cross Country. Their focus is unwavering — their commitment resolute. We are so grateful to be able to compete this fall. The Hockomock League is one of the premiere cross country leagues in the state, and we are hungry to cut our teeth on the exceptional competition in front of us. It is going to be a tough and gritty season in the Hock and we hope to be right in the thick of it.”
2019 Boys Record: 5-0 2019 Girls Record: 5-0 Coach: Tim Cimeno & Katelyn Decknick
There will be a big hole on the sidelines this season as the Eagles are set to start the 2020 season without coach Alan Conway, who passed away at the beginning of September. Conway was incredibly well-liked around the Hockomock League by runners and his peers.
On the course, the Eagles will be looking to defend their Davenport division titles as both the boys and girls earned a banner during the 2019 season. The girls will rely on a mix of veterans and new faces as they navigate a competitive field. It will start with junior Daphne Theiler, who was second overall at the league championship meet last season (19:41.21). Theiler will be joined by seniors Margaret Li and Berta Faktorovich, two runners are placed in the top 35 at Hocks. The Eagles also have some great new first year runners including sophomores Hannah Li and Grace Hu, as well as freshman Eva Olszewski.
“The girls team is hard working and there is great team spirit,” said head coach Katelyn Decknick. “As defending Hock Champs, we look strong. The team has a nice blend of well established talent and new runners hungry to race.”
The boys squad is returning five of their top seven runners while there are plenty of new faces (60 total on the team) eager to battle for a spot in the lineup. Seniors Sid Reddy (25th at Hocks), Mark Starovoytov (26th), Bradley Weiss (34th), and Jordan Saks, plus junior Balint Mihajlovits will lead a balanced and deep group of runners. New faces to watch include Matthew Lally, Ashmith Yeruva, and Jack Bates. Sharon will host home meets at Deborah Sampson Park (2.83), a flat and fast course.
2019 Boys Record: 0-5 2019 Girls Record: 0-5 Coach: Dave Barbato & Alexis Van Voorhis
There is a lot of potential when it comes to the Stoughton boys and girls cross country teams. The Black Knights made big strides as the season progressed a year ago and head coaches Dave Barbato and Alexis Van Voorhis are hoping that trend continues in 2020.
The girls lost their top runner in Rebecca Lally to graduation so the Black Knights will be relying on Elaine McCarty and Danielle Lawrence to pace the pack this season. Van Voorhis said both runners have looked strong in the two weeks of workouts and is expecting McCarty and Lawrence to work together throughout each race. Stoughton has a deep roster this year than last season and will be looking for Avrie Martin and freshman Lilly Branco to translate their track skills to the cross country course. Junior captain Jessica Maddalena is a key piece but will miss the season due to injury.
“If I were to use one word to describe this team and our season, it would be potential,” Van Voorhis said. “I have hope for every single girl on this team, that if we put in the work, this team could potentially emerge stronger and more determined than when we started. They are all fantastic people, and I am looking forward to seeing everyone’s improvement throughout the rest of the season.”
The boys team is hoping a year of experience will translate into better times as the Black Knights host opponents on a new course this season. The new course goes around the grounds of the new high school; it’s mostly flat (5K) and should be fast. The squad features four returning runners including captain Bob Currier, Colin Ozturk, Mike Henriques, and Aiden Castillo.
“The strength of their team lies with these juniors,” Barbato said. “If they can be tough, if they think they can be good and if they learn they belong up near the best from other teams Stoughton could win more than they lose.”
2019 Boys Record: 0-5 2019 Girls Record: 2-3 Coach: Jessica Ouellette & Mike Kelley
With a mix of top runners and a deep roster, the Taunton girls team enters the season with high hopes. And there is equal optimism on the boys side with a large group of talent back for the 2020 season.
The girls team features some of the top returning runners in the Hockomock League and a deep roster is providing head coach Mike Kelley with a range of options in his lineup. Senior captain Lily Valcovic and junior Nia Mainer-Smith have emerged as the top two runners for the Tigers this season while senior captains Livvy Weber and Olivia Dias give Taunton plenty of depth of experienced runners. Kelley’s roster got a big boost with a large eighth grade class, including Emersyn DePonte and Colby Dunham, who have quickly established themselves in the top five on the team.
“We’re much deeper than last year, to the point where we’ll be trying to displace other team’s fourth and fifth runners with our sixth and seventh,” Kelley said. “Being able to run in larger packs also takes pressure off individuals. The veterans have been terrific setting the example. We have four eighth graders in our varsity top ten, so the future is bright.”
On the boys side, the Tigers only lost two of their top 10 so there will be plenty of competition in-house and head coach Jessica Ouellette is hoping that translates to some success in the dual meets. Senior captains Ty Cali and Nolan Tavares return as the top two runners, as well as junior Ryan Strawbridge and sophomore Jack Pawlowski, who have put in some serious training over the summer. The Tigers have two runners to watch this year in freshmen Brayden and Andrew Cali, whose PRs last year are 17:39, and 17:50, as eighth graders.
“This is one of the stronger teams Taunton Boys XC has seen,” Ouellette said. “I’m hopeful that we can have our number three runner make a jump to sub-17 to solidify a fast 1-2-3. We have some promising younger talent as well as strong seniority up front. We have a great group of guys, who are motivated to work hard and work together to win.”
STOUGHTON, Mass. – Stoughton and Sharon had combined for 13 points through the opening 12 minutes of the second half and the Black Knights went into the closing stretch holding onto a slim six-point lead in Friday night’s season finale for both teams. Needing a spark to finish with a win, Stoughton turned to its senior and leading scorer.
Shyanne Trinh scored five of her team-high 11 points in a 30-second span to turn a close game into a double-digit lead and the Black Knights scored the game’s final 10 points to pull out a 37-22 victory that split the season series with the Eagles.
“They knew it was their last game, so there was a lot of emotions for them,” said Stoughton coach Charmaine Steele Jordan of her seniors, Trinh, Aliyah Wright, and Heather Papagno.
“It hasn’t been the easiest season for us because there’s been a lot of close games that they just didn’t finish off but tonight they fought and they’re a representation of what I hope for the future of this program with their heart and their hustle.”
Trinh hit a step-back, straightaway three for her first points of the second half and then Wright (10 points and 15 rebounds) grabbed a defensive board on the next Sharon possession and her quick look ahead found Trinh for a transition basket.
After not having scored for more than four minutes in the fourth, Stoughton found the spark it needed to put the game away. A couple of free throws and a runner off the glass by Jess Maddalena sealed the win.
Sharon (4-16) was held to only eight points after the break and the 15-point deficit at the final whistle could have been much narrower, but the Eagles shot only 8-for-27 from the line and made only two shots from the field in the second half.
“Especially against a team that’s playing a zone, you’re attacking the rim but you’ve got to finish or get to the line, which we did but just couldn’t hit our foul shots tonight,” said Sharon coach Sandy Lombardi.
The hosts got off to a strong start to the game, jumping out to a 7-0 lead. Wright scored six in the first quarter, including a defensive rebound that she turned into a fastbreak layup. Mackenzie Manning also started well, scoring five of her seven points in the first. She buried a three that put Stoughton ahead 13-3.
Kaitlyn Wallace (six points and eight rebounds) made a three in the first and Leah Fandel got her first points on an offensive rebound, but the Eagles trailed 16-6 after one.
Lombardi said. “I knew being their senior night that they were going to come out rip-roaring and ready to go and we beat them last time, so maybe a revenge night on senior night. They came out and were ready to play and I don’t think we were at the beginning of the game.”
Offense became a grind for both teams starting in the second, as they combined for three made field goals, Fandel (10 points and 11 rebounds) had both buckets for the Eagles and scored five points in the quarter, but Sharon only managed eight points in the second.
The positive for the Eagles was defense, as they held the Black Knights to only seven. Trinh scored four for Stoughton, including a tough runner, but it was the only made shot in the second.
“Our defense always keeps us in games,” said Lombardi. “I thought we played pretty good defense. We just sometimes struggle to score and that’s what happens tonight.”
It remained a struggle on offense heading out of halftime.
Sharon made only one shot in the third, a Fandel post move off an assist from Ally Brown, and knocked down three free throws (on eight attempts). Stoughton managed to hit two shots, one from Wright off a Trinh assist and another on a Manning drive to the rim, but those were the only points from the Black Knights, who led 27-19 heading to the fourth.
Steele Jordan said, “Every time we’ve got to play them, you just know it’s going to be a fight. We’re crosstown rivals and it’s a battle. Wallace is a tough player and No. 1 (Fandel), they were exposing us on the low block.”
Brown got the fourth quarter started well by knocking down a three that cut the lead to just five. Kyla Sheedy-Goff (five rebounds) got a free throw to push the lead to six, but both teams went scoreless for several minutes until Trinh turned the game on its head.
Stoughton (9-11) finished the season one win shy of a playoff berth, which includes a loss to Sharon in the first meeting. “You always want to finish the season on a win,” said Steele Jordan. “There are games that I can point to, there are a lot of games you look back on think, dang we were right there.”