BRIDGEWATER, Mass. – After a slow start, the game and season seemed lost for fifth seeded Oliver Ames (16-6), which had fallen behind by as many as 15 points in the third quarter and trailed 44-30 after Shannon Lynch (14 points) nailed her third three-pointer of the third, but it turned out to be the moment when the Tigers finally got going.
OA rallied with an 18-2 run, sparked by league MVP Kayla Raymond’s 11 points in the third and a strong performance off the bench by freshman Caroline Flynn (15 points), which put the Tigers improbably ahead by two and provided an exciting finish to a game that fourth seeded Bridgewater-Raynham had largely controlled.
Unfortunately for the Tigers, the Trojans had a comeback of their own and it proved decisive.
Raymond (19 points) scored to put OA ahead 53-51, but the Trojans responded with the game’s final 10 points and pulled out a 61-53 victory that sends them into the Div. 1 South semifinal to face top seed Newton South and ended OA’s first tournament run since moving up to D1 this winter.
“They were just a little bit anxious,” said OA coach Laney Clement-Holbrook. “It was the first time for all of them, with the exception of Kayla, to have experience in the postseason after the first round. I think the fact that there was some level of inexperience, but that’s just trying to get the jitterbugs out.”
She added, “You’ve got to play the whole game and we didn’t.”
Although OA would lead 9-8 after the first quarter, it was a sluggish start for the Tigers. Turnovers would plague OA for the entire first half, as it racked up 18 of them, many of which were unforced. Raymond and junior Alex Sheldon, the team’s two leading scorers were held to just one basket apiece in the first, sophomore Erin Holmberg picked up early foul trouble and senior Abby Reardon went to the bench for a spell due to an injury.
It was not the start that the Tigers were hoping for and gave the Trojans the opportunity to build an early lead. Sheldon (10 points and 10 rebounds) drove to the basket for an old-fashioned three-point play that tied the game at 17-17, but B-R closed the half with nine straight, including five from Kaleigh Matulonis (19 points).
“Once we settled down, we played our game,” said Clement-Holbrook. “I just thought in the second quarter, for whatever the reason was, we weren’t focused. We brought it back and we were starting to show signs of who we are. We missed a close out in the corner, [they] hit a couple threes, because we were helping on penetration.”
The Tigers showed flashes early in the third quarter of being able to get back into the game. Raymond got a three-point play off a Katie Flynn inbound pass, Caroline Flynn hit a runner on the baseline, and Raymond closed the gap to eight with a steal and transition bucket, but each time the Trojans had an answer from deep.
When Raymond ended the third with a corner three off a Holmberg pass, it cut the lead to 44-33 and gave the Tigers a little bit of energy, but it did not seem at the time that it would kick off a furious comeback.
Meg Holleran added a three to start the fourth quarter and Sheldon followed with a finish in traffic and then another dive to the rim plus the foul that made it a four-point game. The traveling OA fans were making a ton of noise, the bench was fired up, and the Tigers were back in a game that seemed over just a few minutes earlier.
“I think it was just the confidence of let’s do what we do, let’s do what got us here,” Clement-Holbrook explained. “Move the ball, get the ball inside. We settled for way too many outside shots early in possessions without making them work defensively.”
Raymond got out in transition for two and Reardon tied the game off a Sheldon assist before Flynn gave the Tigers their first lead since the second quarter with a pair of free throws.
“You were hoping we would have gotten that kind of play from everybody,” said Clement-Holbrook about the play of Caroline Flynn. “She’s a gamer and she’s going to give you everything she has. In terms of her development from the start of the season, she’s come miles.”
After two B-R free throws, Victoria Dacey gave the Trojans back the lead with a three, but Flynn answered right back with a three to tie it and Raymond got open on another inbounds pass for a layup with a little more than two minutes to play, putting OA in front.
On the next B-R possession, the Trojans got into the lane forcing OA to help off the three-point line, which left Matulonis alone for a big shot to regain the lead. Kylee Piche would add four straight points to make it a five-point edge and the Trojans hit free throws to seal the win, while OA struggled to knock down shots on the other end in the final minute.
Clement-Holbrook remarked, “They were playing a little too cautiously with that extra stress on them and they just didn’t handle the pressure well.”
NORTH EASTON, Mass. – The first half was a shootout between the top scorers on each team with New Bedford sophomore Chiron Rose and Oliver Ames senior Kayla Raymond going head-to-head, scoring 15 points apiece. But, it is hard to win a playoff game on the back of one player, even someone like Raymond, the Stonehill-bound Hockomock MVP.
In the second half, the rest of the Tigers took over. Raymond still got her points in the third (before sitting for the entire fourth quarter) but it was OA’s depth that turned a six-point lead at the half into a 69-39 victory over the 12th seeded Whalers in the Tigers’ first postseason game since moving to Div. 1.
“They came out with fire in their eyeballs,” said OA coach Laney Clement-Holbrook. “It was amazing. In the third quarter, we were pushing the pace. We knew that was something that we had to do, we knew we had to run, and I thought the kids did a great job of allowing New Bedford just one shot.”
Rose came out firing and got the sizable traveling contingent from New Bedford excited from the opening whistle. She buried a pair of step-back threes and had eight points in the first to help the Whalers get off to a 8-2 start. The Tigers took a few minutes to get going but then Raymond started to take over and helped OA finish the first on a 14-2 run.
She scored on a feed from sophomore Erin Holmberg then added one of her six blocks on the defensive end, which was rebounded by Katie Flynn (10 rebounds) who then fired an outlet pass to Raymond for a transition basket. She assisted on a three-point play for Alex Sheldon (19 points and 13 rebounds), drilled a three and hit a long jumper.
Rose got off to a great start in the second, scoring the first seven points to put New Bedford back in front at 17-16, but Raymond answered right back with layup off a Meg Holleran assist. Abby Reardon (seven points) and Raymond both scored off two more of Holleran’s five assists and then Raymond added a layup around the out-stretched arms of New Bedford’s 6-foot-2 center Janice Leao (13 rebounds).
A three by Kyara Almeida-Sylvia cut the OA lead to six at the break and a Rose three and a pair from beyond the arc by Monica Eires kept the Whalers in the game, down just 34-29. The Tigers would score the game’s next 13 points and in total put together a 25-2 run that finally broke the game open.
“We had a couple match-up situations, but I thought we remedied them in the second half,” Clement-Holbrook said. “The unsung heroes like Katie Flynn inside just helping on Leao and just from a collective defensive principle I think that’s where we got the points from. We shut them down and just ran the floor.”
Freshman Caroline Flynn got it started with a drive to the rim and she added three assists in the second half. Holmberg scored all eight of her points in the third quarter, finding leak-out opportunities for transition buckets. Sheldon was also a force in the paint, scoring 11 of her 19 points in the second half.
Clement-Holbrook said of Sheldon’s contributions, “She was absolutely, positively key in all this because everyone’s trying to take away Kayla and the fact that we could get the ball inside…we’re just sending shuffle cuts and good movement and that allowed Alex to get the ball and she’s very physical and she’s very strong. She came to play today.”
Raymond, who finished with a line of 23 points, seven rebounds, six blocks, four assists and three steals, was still doing her thing in the third, capping the quarter by picking Rose clean at one end and swooping in for a finger roll at the other. The New Bedford guard, who was held to three points in the second half, was left with a wry smile on her face as she looked up to the rafters following the steal.
“Rose in the first half, she was money and we gave her a little too much room to wiggle,” Clement-Holbrook explained. “In the second half we did a much better job. When we switched Kayla on her, I thought Kayla’s length really bothered her.”
OA led 51-31 after three quarters. The Tigers scored one fewer point in the third than they had in the entire first half. That continued in the fourth quarter as Tate Hadges came off the bench and scored all six of her points, Sheldon continued to control the paint and a trip to the Div. 1 South quarterfinal was confirmed.
When it was mentioned to Clement-Holbrook that the move to Div. 1 seems to be going well, she smiled and replied, “Currently, but we’ll see how these things go.”
Oliver Ames (16-5) will travel to No. 4 seed Bridgewater-Raynham in the quarterfinal round on Saturday, barring a change because of the impending storm.
NORTH EASTON, Mass. – Oliver Ames and Franklin had a lot on the line in Friday night’s game at the William F. Nixon Gym. The teams were tied for second place in the Kelley-Rex division and trying to stay within two games of league-leading Mansfield (which has to play both the Panthers and Tigers again this year), while OA was also trying to clinch its spot in the state tournament.
Behind 29 points from senior forward Kayla Raymond and defensive adjustments strong contributions off the bench in the second half, OA rallied from three points down at the break for a 61-54 come from behind victory and a split of the season series with the Panthers.
In the first half, everything offensively for the Tigers ran through Raymond. The Stonehill-commit scored 12 of OA’s 14 points in the first quarter, twice scoring on three-point plays taking the ball to the basket. She added another four in the second in the second, while Caroline Flynn knocked down a three and Abby Reardon added four.
With Raymond on one side and Katie Flynn or Alex Sheldon giving weakside help, OA double-teamed Franklin center Ali Brigham, forcing the Panthers to find scoring on the perimeter. Junior guard Bea Bondhus stepped right in and drilled four threes in the first half, scoring 14 of her team-high 18 points in the process.
Teagan Collins also nailed one from outside, as Franklin closed the half on an 11-4 run to lead 28-25.
“That was the game plan, don’t leave Bondhus alone,” said OA coach Laney Clement-Holbrook. “We lost her and she had 14 points in the first half. All I wrote on the board at halftime was 21 (Bondhus) [has] 14, that’s all. Defensively, we needed to make a couple of adjustments and I thought we did.”
OA switched to man-to-man and upped the full-court pressure to try and keep the ball out of Bondhus’ hands. After Raymond tied the game with a three, Megan O’Connell (11 points) scored off a Kelsey MacCallum assist. Erin Holmberg (seven points) hit a three to give OA a lead, but Brigham (14 points and 11 rebounds) answered with a three-point play on an offensive rebound.
“They can make it very tough,” said Franklin coach John Leighton. “They made it so other kids had to score by focusing on Ali and Bea. I thought we countered it pretty well and we had some kids step up. We worked tremendously hard.”
Raymond continued to pour in the points, showing off nifty footwork under the basket to go up and under for a layup with Brigham on her back, but OA also started to get contributions off the bench. Caroline Flynn (six points) scored on a putback, while Meg Holleran and freshman Tori Harney also chipped in on both ends of the floor.
“They did a great job,” said Clement-Holbrook of the bench effort. “Honestly, we started see that become a part of who we are against Foxboro. I think from that point forward that’s what we want and I think they’re starting to believe a little more.”
OA caught Franklin in the press and Katie Flynn hit Raymond with a perfect pass over the top of the defense for a layup. It was one of five assists for Flynn, who caused problems for the Franklin defense in the high post. The senior also added four points, six steals, two blocks, and four rebounds.
“It’s not fancy, flashy,” said Clement-Holbrook about Flynn’s contributions. “That was one of the things we keyed on to try and get Brigham away from the rim. We had to come up with a scheme to see if we could get her out or over and Katie did such a great job because she hit some nice backdoor passes.”
OA led 44-39 heading to the fourth and Raymond drained a long jumper to get the final quarter started. Franklin would not go away, cutting the lead back down to four. The Tigers stretched it back out to nine on a basket by Holmberg and a jumper by Ally Scolnick, who came off the bench to score all seven of her points in the fourth.
“Kayla was kind of a one-man band in the first half,” said Leighton, “but in the second they got kids some open shots, especially in the transition when we were pressing.”
Clement-Holbrook explained, “Offensively, we did a reasonably good job of opening things up. The first time we played them with Brigham sitting in the middle like that it kind of took us a little while to figure things out. Because we moved people around, I think it made it a little more difficult for them to defend us.”
Brigham scored plus the foul off a feed from O’Connell to keep Franklin within six, but Raymond found Flynn with a wraparound pass on the baseline for a layup. Shannon Gray answered with a three on the other end, but OA beat the press and Scolnick set up Raymond for an easy basket. Raymond then returned the favor for a Scolnick bucket in transition.
“We gave up too many easy ones at the end,” Leighton said. “I thought we might be able to hang with them, but once they started getting those easy ones then they were able to pull away.”
Oliver Ames (10-4, 9-3) will be back at home on Tuesday to take on King Philip. Franklin (10-6, 8-4) will try to bounce back on Tuesday when it welcomes Taunton.
NORTH EASTON, Mass. – For three quarters, Oliver Ames did its best to make life difficult for Davenport division leader Foxboro in its visit to the William F. Nixon Gym on Friday night. Playing without the team’s and the league’s top scorer, senior Kayla Raymond, the Tigers turned up the defensive pressure and forced the Warriors to grind out each possession.
Unfortunately for the hosts, all it took was one big quarter for the Warriors to break the game open and get another league win. Foxboro closed the first half on a 10-3 run to lead by double digits, used a 21-0 run to start the second half to build a big lead, and withstood a late OA rally to win 61-39.
It was the eighth time this season that Foxboro has won by at least 20 points, although few 20-point wins were as difficult as this.
“I honestly thought we saw that Kayla wasn’t playing and decided to take a night off a little bit,” admitted Foxboro coach Lisa Downs. “There’s no excuse for that. OA is always going to be a quality team…and they’re always great defensively, so we should’ve been ready for the pressure.”
OA needed an offensive spark without Raymond and in the first quarter sophomore Erin Holmberg provided that lift with seven of her 11 points, including the Tigers’ lone made three on the night. Junior Alex Sheldon (12 rebounds) added six of her game- and career-high 20 points in the first.
“We don’t have Kayla obviously but nobody has to do anything extraordinary,” said OA coach Laney Clement-Holbrook about the message prior to the tip. “Everybody has to do their job and maybe a little extra and we’ll be okay. Just keep digging, just keep digging, just keep digging.”
She added, “Play good defense, try to limit them to one shot, limit their threes and we’ve got a chance. And for three quarters of the game that’s exactly what they did.”
Even with the defensive pressure ramped up, Foxboro held an 18-13 lead after one quarter. Lily Sykes (12 points and six assists) had seven points and Grace Tamulionis (team-high 19 points) knocked down a pair of threes for six points.
The second quarter was even better for the OA defense, stifling the Warriors and limiting the transition game that allows Foxboro to create so much separation, but the offense struggled. A floater on the baseline by Holmberg cut the OA lead to 19-15, but the Tigers would only get one more basket (a layup by Ally Scolnick off a Katie Flynn inbound pass) in the second.
Foxboro started to push the lead with a 10-3 run to close the half. Ashley Sampson (16 points, six steals, and four assists) scored plus a foul and got to the basket on a Sykes assist to make it 29-18 at the break.
The Warriors came out of the break a totally different team. Sampson scored in the half-court and instantly the full-court press started to force turnovers. Tamulionis drilled her third three of the game off an Abby Hassman assist and then Tamulionis assisted on a Sykes three.
“She’s instrumental,” said Downs of Tamulionis. “She works hard and she has a beautiful shot and I think the less time she has to think about that shot the better off she is. We recognized that she was the open player and she hit some big shots for us.”
Suddenly, the floodgates were open for Foxboro.
Sampson twice scored off her own steals, Tamulionis added five more points, Sykes scored in transition, and Shannon Smally (10 rebounds) scored all four of her points in what ended up being a 21-0 run (31-3 including the second quarter) and a 50-18 lead.
“They played a little better in the third quarter and the defense picked up a little bit,” said Downs. “We were able to get a few deflections, a few steals, and that generated layups and then we just got the momentum.”
With the game seemingly out of reach, OA started to settle down again and began a big run that would see the Tigers creep back within reach. Caroline Flynn scored off a Meg Holleran pass, Scolnick scored on the break and Sheldon added two more to make it 52-24 heading to the fourth.
“These were significant minutes in terms of pressure,” said Clement-Holbrook about getting playing time for her younger players. “We were playing against Foxboro’s first five, so I think it was a good barometer for us to see who can do what in what situations. I thought they adjusted.”
OA continued to grind in the fourth quarter. The Tigers held Foxboro without a point for six minutes, scored the first 15 points of the fourth (21-2 run overall), and climbed back with 13 points. Sheldon was the major force in that run, as she scored 11 points in the fourth quarter alone, twice getting on the break for three-point plays.
“It was awesome,” said Clement-Holbrook of the comeback. “We’re really proud of them. Hopefully we can not revert back from this point now, hopefully we can move it forward.”
When asked about the fourth quarter, Downs replied, “Not pretty at all.” After dropping back into a half-court defense, Downs called for the press for the final minutes and Foxboro ran off nine straight (five from Tamulionis) to seal the win.
“They’re more comfortable in the press,” Downs said, “so we were in half-court because of the score but once they chipped away a little we went back and they were like, okay this is where we’re comfortable.”
Foxboro (12-2, 10-0) will have another crossover game on Tuesday when Attleboro pays a visit. Oliver Ames (8-4, 7-3) will be on the road Tuesday to face Canton.
NORTH EASTON, Mass. – In the three game leading into Friday night’s first-place showdown with Mansfield in the William F. Nixon Gym, Oliver Ames senior forward Kayla Raymond had averaged 32 points per game. But defense has been the cornerstone of back-to-back league titles for the Hornets and they came out intent on keeping the Stonehill-commit quiet.
Using a box-and-one defense and taking advantage of a roster filled with athletic wing defenders, Mansfield held Raymond to just six points on the night and the Tigers to only seven points as a whole in the first half to win 44-31 in the first of two meetings between the teams this season.
“We have the highest respect for Kayla and you have to start your defense with slowing her down,” said Mansfield coach Mike Redding. “We’re fortunate that we have Maggie [Danehy], Steph [Kemp], Emily [Vigeant], Sydney [Mulkern], four different people that can run around and are long enough and quick enough to keep it out of her hands.”
He added, “We’re really good defensively when we can zero in on one player and take her out and then rebound when other people miss.”
The game plan worked to perfection in the first half. Mansfield held OA scoreless for the opening five minutes of the game, allowed only one made field goal in the first quarter and three made shots in the first half to build a 24-7 lead at the break.
“It disrupted us and we’ve got to be better at recognizing that other people can do things too,” said OA coach Laney Clement-Holbrook of Mansfield’s ability to deny Raymond touches. “We depend on Kayla all the time and the other kids have to gain the confidence in their ability to do what they’re capable of doing and we didn’t do that in the first half.”
Mansfield also got off to a strong start offensively with Ann Maher scoring all eight of her points in the first, including a pair from beyond the arc, and Meg Hill getting five of her game-high 16 points. Hill, who will team up with Raymond at Stonehill next year, also added nine rebounds and five blocks, just missing out on another double-double.
In the second quarter, Meg Holleran came off the bench and scored four points for the Tigers, one layup off a Raymond assist that momentarily looked like it might get the hosts going and a second after Katie Flynn pulled down and defensive board and sprung Holleran on the break.
“She did a good job,” said Clement-Holbrook of Holleran. “She scored some points, she was physical inside, but we just weren’t disciplined offensively.”
Those were the only baskets of the quarter for OA, while Mansfield continued to get the ball into the paint with Hill scoring off assists by Maher and Kemp and Danehy (10 points and nine rebounds) scoring five in the quarter. Hill capped the half by knocking down a long jumper to make it 24-7.
The second half was much better from the Tigers, although OA only managed two made shots in the third quarter as well. Alex Sheldon scored all five of her points in the third and Raymond got on the board, going 3-of-4 from the line. Holleran (10 points) also knocked down one of her two second half threes but Mansfield matched the Tigers in the quarter.
The Hornets were sparked off the bench by Mulkern (10 points), who knocked down a three after Mady Bendanillo swung the ball around the perimeter and added four more points in the fourth as well.
“We did a good job getting Meg looks and then they did a good job doubling in the second half and Sydney Mulkern really stepped up,” said Redding. “They left someone open and it ended up being her a few teams. We’re good enough when they double Meg to keep people honest and give her room to score in the paint.”
OA was not able to close the gap in the third, despite having moments when it seemed as though the momentum may have swung to the Tigers.
“In the second half, we made a few adjustments and I think we got some positive things out of those adjustments,” said Clement-Holbrook. “[Ally] Scolnick had three threes that went in-and-out and I think if those go down it would have changed momentum a little.”
Erin Holmberg scored five of her seven points in the fourth, including a three on the game’s final shot, and Holleran knocked down her second three of the night. Raymond finally got a clean look and hit a three for her only made field goal in the game.
Hill scored twice in the fourth, both on assists from freshman Ashley Santos, to keep the Hornets ahead by a comfortable margin, as OA never got closer than 13 in the second half.
Clement-Holbrook said of her relatively inexperienced roster, “Those kids in those moments where there’s a lot of pressure on them, they’ve just got to be equal to the task and they’ve got to handle it. I have a lot of kids who haven’t played at this level, so they’ve got to be able to handle the bright lights.”
With the win, Mansfield moves a full game ahead of OA and Franklin in the Kelley-Rex, but Redding knows the Hornets still have a lot of work to do to clinch a three-peat. He explained, “It’s good to get to the halfway point controlling your own destiny. We’re in a good spot but there is a lot of basketball left to play. It’s going to be a good race to the end.”
Mansfield (9-4, 7-1) will travel to Sharon on Tuesday, while Oliver Ames (7-3, 6-2) faces a trip to Milford.
NORTH EASTON, Mass. – Oliver Ames was struggling to start the fourth quarter, having made only one shot from the field and scored three points in nearly four minutes. Defensively, the Tigers had held Needham to only one made field goal and just five points so trailed by only one when Kayla Raymond rose up and drained her second three of the game.
OA, which led 35-34 heading into the final eight minutes, grabbed hold of a 41-39 lead with Raymond’s three and seemingly had also grabbed the momentum in Wednesday afternoon’s opener of the annual Sue Rivard Tournament at the William F. Nixon Gym.
Unfortunately for the Tigers that would be their final made shot. Needham closed out the fourth quarter with an 11-1 run to turn things around and came away with a 50-42 victory that sends the Rockets to Thursday’s final against another Bay State Conference team, Walpole (which beat Brockton earlier in the day).
“In the fourth quarter we just disappeared, said OA coach Elaine Clement-Holbrook. “They’ve got to come of age and learn to play the whole game at the same level of intensity. They need to learn play within themselves and not try to do something not in their wheelhouse.”
Needham started the fourth with a three by sophomore Kiara McIntyre, who came off the bench to score a game-high 19 points, which put the Rockets up 37-35. Raymond (18 points and 14 rebounds) finished in transition off an Abby Reardon assist to tie the game. After a series of free throws, Raymond drilled a shot from the outside for OA’s final lead of the night.
McIntyre forced a turnover in the backcourt and fed freshman Caroline Klemm for a layup to tie it. McIntyre then drove to the basket to put Needham in front to stay and Marianna Jantzen (14 points) added a scooped finish before another Klemm layup and then two free throws pushed the lead to eight inside the final minute.
The Tigers would finish with only seven points in the fourth quarter.
“It came down to turnovers,” explained Clement-Holbrook, but the other thing that did not help us was that our defense was so inconsistent and gave them a lot of chances. From an offensive standpoint, our shooting percentage was abysmal.”
OA took the lead from the start of the game, ahead 12-8 after the first quarter. The Tigers added an 8-3 run to close out the first half with a four-point edge going into the break.
Tate Hadges hit a jumper off a Caroline Flynn assist, Raymond scored on an offensive rebound, and Alex Sheldon (eight points) scored at the rim to make it 22-21. OA got one last possession in the second quarter and Flynn banked home a 30-foot three-pointer to make it 25-21 at halftime.
The lead could have been much larger for the hosts. OA dominated on the glass with five players having at least five rebounds in the first half alone. Raymond led the way with 14 rebounds, but Sheldon (12 rebounds), Caroline Flynn (eight rebounds), and Katie Flynn (seven rebounds) also chipped in to keep possessions alive and keep the Rockets off the boards.
Unfortunately for OA, the good looks it was creating from its offensive sets and the extra looks it was getting from its advantage on the glass went to waste.
“I was looking at the shooting chart from the first half and you look at how many shots we missed…the bottom line is that if you get the ball under the basket then you have to finish and they did not finish,” said Clement-Holbrook, who estimated that the Tigers missed 50 shots in the game.
In the third quarter, Needham chipped into the lead with McIntyre and Jantzen combining for 11 points in the quarter. Raymond scored four points in the third and Meg Holleran drilled a three but the Tigers lead was down to one heading into the fourth.
As the lead got tighter, so did the Tigers. Clement-Holbrook noted, “I think they started to get into panic mode and they started to force things. We understood there were going to be double teams and we did not handle it well. We tried dribbling through things that were not there.”
It is OA’s first loss of the year and Clement-Holbrook hopes this will be an early season lesson for the Tigers. She said, “Hopefully we can recognize where we made our mistakes so we can come back better.”
Oliver Ames (3-1, 3-0) will play Brockton in the consolation game of the Rivard Tournament on Thursday evening.
The Bombardiers enter the season with a new coaching staff and a very different starting lineup to the one that nearly knocked off Mansfield in the Div. 1 South playoffs last season. Former King Philip coach Marty Crowley has taken over after Rick Patch stepped down in the off-season and he will have only a few returning varsity players to call on this winter.
Senior forward Sam Pierce will be the key piece on offense, as Attleboro tries to replace the more than 30 points per game that was lost with the graduation of Sarah Deyo and Julia Strachan. Pierce has been a consistent scorer and rebounder for the past few seasons, but this will be the first time that she is the primary offensive weapon and could be poised for a breakout year. Junior Jordyn Lako and senior Grace Mayer are strong on-the-ball defenders and should help Crowley implement his high-pressure defensive scheme. Senior Kim White will also be one of Attleboro’s ball-handlers in the backcourt.
One of the players who saw a little time on varsity last season that is expected to make a big jump is sophomore Nyah Thomas, who has the length to be a tough defender and showed in her few appearances last year that she can rebound and take the ball to the basket. Sophomore Liv McCall is a fearless shooter that will stretch the floor and transfer Mackenzie Roberts will give the Bombardiers added size in the paint.
Crowley said, “For us to be successful we must be able to play defense consistently and rebound. Sam, I am sure, is going to draw a lot of attention from other teams, so we must make sure that we are smart offensively and get touches for everyone.”
2016-2017 Record: 6-14 2016-2017 Finish: Missed postseason. Coach: Jim Choquette
There has been excitement around the Canton program for the past few seasons and that continues this winter, as the Bulldogs look to secure a place in the state tournament behind an experienced lineup that has been developing together for several years.
Senior Hannah Jerrier is the key for the Bulldogs, as the forward is coming off a league all-star season in which she emerged as a potential double-double night after night. Jerrier is a solid rebounder and scorer in the paint, reaching the 20-point mark nine times last season and averaging more than 16 points and nine rebounds per game. Junior Julia Hamilton will be back at point guard for the Bulldogs to help get the Canton into its offensive sets and provide pressure, on-the-ball defense. Senior Jess Powers is also back after missing a season to a knee injury and will add a boost to the team’s outside shooting and take pressure off Jerrier on offense.
Junior Maggie Connolly returns for her second year in the backcourt and seniors Lindsey Barrett, Nikki Gefteas, and Leya Conard will all add depth to the Canton roster this season, while junior Erin Devine adds another important post presence on both ends of the floor. The versatility of the roster will allow head coach Jim Choquette to change his game plans every game, slowing it down to play half-court or ratcheting up the pressure to go up tempo.
“Canton remains focused on playing together and staying positive for the best season possible,” Choquette said. “Leading up to our first game there’s been an extreme amount of effort and energy by a large group of unselfish girls and our seniors have all been great examples of staying positive throughout all situations!”
2016-2017 Record: 22-3 2016-2017 Finish: Reached Div. 2 State Semifinal Coach: Lisa Downs
After winning the Div. 2 South title and reaching the TD Garden last winter, this year’s Foxboro team will have high expectations, but with four starters returning, including reigning Hockomock League MVP Ashley Sampson, the Warriors will once again be the favorites to take home the Davenport division crown.
Having already passed the 1,000-point mark for her career, Sampson enters her senior season as the focal point of the Foxboro offense. Her ability to get into the lane and finish, as well as step back and knock down shots, makes her a tough cover and opens space for her teammates. Fellow senior Lily Sykes is one of the beneficiaries of that space and she can take advantage of open looks on the perimeter. Senior Grace Tamulionis is another player who can stretch the floor for the Warriors and can be an ‘X’ factor for Foxboro in big games. Senior Shannon Smally adds rebounding and post presence to keep defenses honest.
The Warriors are now the veteran team in the division, but there are also several younger players that have developed into critical pieces off the bench, including sophomore Abby Hassman, who has grown in the off-season into a strong rebounder. Freshman Katelyn Mollica will add backcourt depth with her tenacity on defense and already impressive court awareness. Junior Chelsea Gibbons is another player that is expected to step into a bigger role this season.
Foxboro coach Lisa Downs said, “This group of seniors have been part of our Varsity team since their freshmen year and with each year, they have learned and developed more – all of the girls on this year’s team put in the necessary work; now its time to execute.”
2016-2017 Record: 9-11 2016-2017 Finish: Missed postseason. Coach: John Leighton
Franklin got off to a rough start last season, beginning 0-6 with an inexperienced roster, but then closed the year with nine wins in the last 14 games, just missing out on a return to the postseason. This year, the Panthers will try to build on that year of experience and book a return to the playoffs.
The Panthers will have strength in the middle to try and get off to a much better start this season. Sophomore Ali Brigham, last year’s HockomockSports.com Underclassman of the Year, has received several Div. I NCAA offers, including one from the University of Minnesota, and at 6-foot-3 can dominate the paint on both ends of the floor. Franklin will also have outside scoring with junior guard Bea Bondhus, who is a consistent three-point shooter and will stretch defenses to open up the post for Brigham.
Franklin has plenty of size this season. Sophomore forwards Breanna Atwood (5-foot-9) and Megan O’Connell (5-foot-10) and senior forward Kate Morse (5-foot-11) will provide plenty of depth on the inside. Junior Shannon Gray will be back to run the point and senior Grace Sameski will add backcourt depth. Freshman guard Elizabeth Wilson is poised to make an instant impact for the Panthers, as she did in the season opener by knocking down three free throws in the final seconds to force overtime against Holy Name.
“We are a young team with only two seniors, but I am very pleased with the effort and progress of the team,” said Franklin coach John Leighton, who is excited about the return of the majority of the team’s scoring and the potential of the youth on the roster.
King Philip has a new coach this season, with former Wellesley assistant Amy Siggens taking over for Marty Crowley, and there could be a period of adjustment for a still relatively young Warriors roster to adapt to the new system, but there is excitement about the progress being made by the seven returning varsity players.
Boston University-commit Shannon O’Connor will once again be a player to watch for the Warriors this winter. The junior’s ability to shoot off the dribble, defend multiple positions, and take the ball to the basket has made her one of the league’s elite perimeter players. As O’Connor continues to develop as a playmaker that will create open looks for her teammates, including junior Julia Leroux and sophomore Faith Roy. Senior Christina Hathaway (one of only two seniors on the roster) will add strength in the paint on both ends of the floor.
The Warriors will not lack for size this season. O’Connor is listed at 5-foot-11, junior Catherine Cummings and sophomore Faye Veilleux are listed at 5-foot-10, and Roy is listed at 5-foot-9. The versatility of those players will give Siggens room to switch up lineups when needed. KP is still pretty young and Siggens has added two freshmen, Emma Glaser and Brianna James, to this year’s roster.
Siggens said, “Early on we will stress the importance of being unselfish on offense and being tough and aggressive on defense. Knowing mistakes will be made, there will be no small emphasis on the importance of playing hard all the time… I am encouraged by our team’s enthusiasm and attitude.”
2016-2017 Record: 20-4 2016-2017 Finish: Reached Div. 1 South final. Coach: Mike Redding
Replacing the production of last season’s HockomockSports.com Player of the Year Jen Peel is a difficult task, but Mansfield has the talent, depth, and experience in the roster to make it work. The Hornets return four starters from last year’s squad and will lean on a loaded and versatile junior class to try and make it a three-peat of league titles.
The key returner for Mansfield is 6-foot-3 center Meg Hill. The Stonehill College-commit is already the program’s best in blocked shots and is soon to be the career leader in rebounds, while improving her offensive game every season. With Peel gone, junior Mady Bendanillo will be tasked with getting the ball into the post to Hill and to fellow junior Maggie Danehy, who had an impressive start with a double-double against Medfield in the Endowment Game. Reigning HockomockSports.com Defensive Player of the Year Ann Maher will also be back at shooting guard and is one of the team’s most consistent three-point threats.
Juniors Erin Daniel, Emily Vigeant, Sydney Mulkern and Kara Bendanillo will likely compete for the fifth starting spot and all should see plenty of playing time this year. With 5-foot-11 senior Maeve Carney and 5-foot-10 freshman Ashley Santos, the Hornets should be able to dominate the paint and sophomore Becca Hottleman will add depth at the point guard position.
Mansfield coach Mike Redding said, “We have a chance to be very good again with our junior group getting a ton of experience last year and we hope to compete for league title again.” He added that the Hornets bolstered the schedule this season as well. Redding said, “Our record may not be as good as last year when we earned the No. 1 seed, but we will be more battle tested for the state tourney in March.”
2016-2017 Record: 10-11 2016-2017 Finish: Reached Div. 2 Central first round. Coach: T.J. Dolliver
A year after returning to the postseason for the first time since 2012 (and nearly pulling off an upset of Marlboro on the road), Milford brings back seven seniors to try and make a push for a Davenport division title and another state tournament appearance.
The Hawks have a versatile lineup led by four-year starter Kate Irwin. The lefty point guard is one of the most dynamic perimeter scorers and playmakers in the league and she continues to improve each season. Her ability to get into the paint opens up room for her teammates and she can also step back and knock down threes. Irwin will be helped by fellow seniors Gillian Valanzola and Juliana Tracy, who add size on the post.
Senior Emily Piergustavo is a knock-down shooter from beyond the arc and her classmate Jess Tomaso has proven to be a solid rebounder from the guard position. There are also two sophomores and four freshmen on the roster this season to add depth and build for the future under third-year head coach T.J. Dolliver.
Dolliver said, “I am very excited for our team this year. This is my 3rd year with a lot of these girls and seeing how they have progressed over the years have really set this team up for a fun season.”
Last season, North Attleboro boasted one of the most experienced lineups in the league with five of its top six players being seniors, but this year the Rocketeers will be incorporating a number of new faces, as only six players (only starter) return from last winter.
The lone returning starter is junior guard Julia Feid, who had a breakout season on the wing and will be counted on to lead the offensive attack this year. Feid’s classmate Emily Haskell will also be on the wing for North this season and will also have a large chunk of the offense run through her. Senior Emily Pastore, junior Liz Smahi, and sophomore Michelle Pothier will also contribute scoring from the wing, while junior Lauren Pezzi and sophomore Olivia Forbes will run the point and distribute the ball in the half court.
The graduation of Caroline Collard and Liz Morehouse leaves an opening on the post, but North has several players that will step in to provide a presence in the paint. Senior Julia Santos and juniors Emma Noreck and Kaley Sullivan will each get opportunities to contribute. North faces a tough early season schedule with the likes of Franklin, Oliver Ames, Archbishop Williams, and Hingham, so it will be critical for the new players to find their feet quickly.
North Attleboro coach Derek Herber said, “The team has quickly began to gel and I am hopeful that we if we can survive the early part of the season, we can qualify for the tournament.”
2016-2017 Record: 13-8 2016-2017 Finish: Reached Div. 2 South First Round. Coach: Elaine Clement-Holbrook
Oliver Ames struggled to find consistent offense last season and it kept the Tigers from being able to challenge Mansfield for the league title or make another run in Div. 2 South, but a healthy lineup with several key returning players has OA optimistic for improvements this winter.
The main focus will be on senior forward Kayla Raymond. The Stonehill College-commit is one of the most versatile players in the league, with the length and leaping ability to dominate in the paint and the range to step out and knock down jumpers. Raymond is listed as a forward/center but could potentially be used at multiple positions. Senior guard Abby Reardon is back to get the Tigers into their offensive sets and as one of the league’s top on-the-ball defenders. Classmate Katie Flynn also returns to give Raymond help in the post.
In addition to the seniors, junior Alex Sheldon will provide depth at the forward position and junior Sadie Homer was a dynamic scorer on the perimeter before an injury cut her season short last year. Homer was a solid three-point shooter last year and will be expected to stretch defenses again this season. Sophomore guard Meg Holleran emerged as a playmaker during her freshman campaign and could see a bigger role this year.
“OA is looking to blend some younger talent and are working hard to provide some depth in the backcourt,” said OA coach Laney Clement-Holbrook. “Looking forward to the fight for the Kelly Rex Division.”
In addition to a new coaching staff, Sharon will see a number of new faces on the roster, as several of last year’s players are focusing on other sports this winter. Former Rockland and East Bridgewater assistant Sandra Lombardi takes over for Cliff Tomassian and will have a young group to work with in her first head coaching position.
Junior small forward Emma Eberhardt is one of the returning players that will be expected to provide leadership and scoring for the Eagles. Eberhardt, a HockomockSports.com All-Underclassman Team performer last year, was Sharon’s top scorer last winter and also has the size to be a problem for opponents on the glass. She scored 16 points in Sharon’s win over Nipmuc in the season opener. Senior guard Miranda Cheung will also be back for Sharon to provide ball-handling and perimeter shooting.
Sophomore Telishya Herbert made the jump from JV to varsity midway through last season and had an instant impact on the Eagles with her athleticism and her ability to score in the paint. She had 10 points against Nipmuc and could be ready for a breakout year as Sharon’s second scorer to take some pressure off Eberhardt. Also back from last year’s roster are junior Evanjuline Elisma and sophomore Ally Brown.
Lombardi said of her new team, “We are going to be quick and aggressive. I’m excited to see what the season will bring.”
The Black Knights narrowly missed out on the postseason last year, despite having a number of underclassmen in the roster, and expectations for this season include a return to the playoffs under third-year head coach Charmaine Steele-Jordan.
Senior Val Whalen was the team’s MVP last season after leading the Black Knights with more than 13 points and nine rebounds per game. Whalen has improved every season and her intensity on defense and on the glass boosts is contagious. Stoughton is a physical team that likes to put pressure on the ball defensively and Whalen sets the tone. Senior Jordan Motley is also a tenacious rebounder and gives the Black Knights another strong presence in the paint.
Sophomore guard Shyanne Trinh had a breakout freshman campaign, scoring more than 10 points per game, and her ball-handling and long-range shooting opens things up for the post players. Fellow sophomore Aliyah Wright also had a strong rookie campaign and her size is a difficult matchup for many of the point guards in the Hock. Stoughton will also count on junior guards Lindsey McDonald and Hailey Egan and sophomore Lexi Baptista. Freshman Sydnee Hyacinthe has also been called up to add depth in the backcourt.
Steele-Jordan said of her senior forwards, “I’m looking forward to their leadership, hustle on the court and their defensive presence this year. Whalen and Motley’s veteran play along with our returning sophomores will be great for the Black Knights this season.”
2016-2017 Record: 1-21 2016-2017 Finish: Missed Postseason. Coach: Walter Harrigan
Taunton is coming off a difficult season in which the Tigers finished with just one victory, but one game into the new year and Taunton has already matched that total. The season opening win over Cumberland (R.I.) fits with the optimism around the program, as the Tigers blend youth with experience in the hopes of making a run at a playoff spot.
The Tigers will be led by senior forwards Hannah Moniz and Mackenzie Handrahan, who combined for 26 points in the win at Cumberland and provide a mix of rebounding, scoring at the rim, and outside shooting to balance the Taunton offense. Junior Lily Patneaude also returns from an all-star season and is Taunton’s most dynamic scorer with range from well beyond the arc. Junior Alexa White is another guard that will provide solid contributions on both ends of the floor.
Junior Shantel Andrew, a 5-foot-7 forward, is expected to be a significant contributor this season, after missing two years with knee injuries. As usual, Taunton has plenty of youth on the roster with four freshmen making varsity, a couple of whom got playing experience last year as eighth graders. Forwards Jaelyn and Sonya Fernandez and guards Kelsey White and Tori DaRosa are going to be counted on to play big roles this year for the Tigers.
Taunton coach Walter Harrigan said, “Our goal for this year is to continue to work hard while focusing on the development of good habits which will hopefully lead to team improvement and a trip to the state tournament.”
Football – Playoffs D1 South
#6 Attleboro, 6 @ #3 Xaverian, 44 – Final 3rd Quarter: (A) Cam Furtado 2-yard pass to James Weir, 2-point rush failed.
#8 Taunton, 0 @ #1 BC High, 34 – Final
#1 King Philip, 35 vs. #8 Barnstable, 20 – Final 1st Quarter: (B) Barnstable 31-yard rush, XP failed; (KP) Shane Frommer 1-yard rush, Cole Baker XP good.
2nd Quarter: (KP) S. Frommer 5-yard rush, C. Baker XP good; (B) Barnstable 27-yard pass, 2-point failed; (KP) Brendan Lydon 12-yard pass to Jack Piller, C. Baker XP good.
3rd Quarter: (KP) B. Lydon 22-yard pass to Tom Madden, C. Baker XP good.
4th Quarter: (B) Barnstable 5-yard pass, 2-point pass good; (KP) B. Lydon 5-yard pass to J. Piller, C. Baker XP good.
#4 Mansfield, 34 vs. #5 Marshfield, 14 – Final 1st Quarter: (Mans) Damani Scott 6-yard pass to Hunter Ferreira, Michael DeBolt XP good.
2nd Quarter: (Mans) Vinnie Holmes 2-yard rush, D. DeBolt XP good; (Marsh) Jackson Phinney 14-yard pass to Danny Hickey, D. Hickey XP good.
3rd Quarter: (Mans) Nick Marciano 71-yard interception return, XP failed.
4th Quarter: (Mans) V. Holmes 13-yard rush, M. DeBolt XP good; (Mans) M. DeBolt 6-yard rush, M. DeBolt XP good; (Marsh) J. Phinney 31-yard pass to Nick Banks, D. Hickey XP good.
#1 North Attleboro, 28 vs. #8 Walpole, 14 – Final – Click here for a Recap and Photo Gallery from this game. 1st Quarter: No scoring.
2nd Quarter: (NA) Chad Peterson 8-yard pass to Nolan Buckley, Geoff Wilson XP good; (W) Brett Lavanchy 47-yard pass to Chase Conrad, XP no good; (NA) C. Peterson 26-yard pass to Devin Slaney, G. Wilson XP good.
3rd Quarter: (NA) C. Peterson 7-yard rush, G. Wilson XP good; (W) B. Lavanchy 16-yard pass to C. Conrad, B. Lavanchy to C. Conrad 2-point conversion.
4th Quarter: (NA) C. Peterson 8-yard rush, G. Wilson XP good.
#4 Stoughton, 30 vs. #5 Whitman-Hanson, 21 – Final 1st Quarter: (WH) Ethan Phelps 8-yard pass to Jacob Nixon, XP good; (S) Justin Ly 50-yard rush, 2-point failed.
2nd Quarter: (WH) E. Phelps 8-yard rush, XP good; (S) Ruben Gonzalez 85-yard kickoff return, 2-point failed; (WH) E. Phelps 61-yard pass to Rian Schwede, XP good.
3rd Quarter: (S) J. Ly 2-yard rush, 2-point failed.
4th Quarter: (S) Johnny Medina 9-yard rush, 2-point failed; (S) David Bell 71-yard interception return, 2-point failed.
#7 Milford, 7 @ #2 Duxbury, 9 – Final 1st Quarter: No scoring.
2nd Quarter: (D) John Roberts 4-yard pass to Frankie Tower, Ben Carver XP good.
3rd Quarter: (D) Duxbury safety.
4th Quarter: (M) Will Pointer 3-yard rush, Sean Lehane XP good.
#5 Foxboro, 35 @ #4 Somerset Berkley, 12 – Final 1st Quarter: (F) Devin Hassett 6-yard rush, Russell Neale XP good; (F) D. Hassett 6-yard pass to Pat Carey, R. Neale XP good.
2nd Quarter: (SB) Steven Fralick 3-yard rush, XP failed; (F) Phil Dure 6-yard rush, R. Neale XP good.
3rd Quarter: (F) Anthony Capachietti 1-yard rush, R. Neale XP good.
4th Quarter: (F) A. Capachietti 5-yard rush, R. Neale XP good; (SB) Somerset-Berkley touchdown, XP failed.
Football – Non-Playoffs
Canton, 6 vs. Plymouth South, 21 – Final 1st Quarter: (C) Alec Ragusa 36-yard rush, XP failed; (PS) Alex Cohen 76-yard pass to Connor Holbrook, Emma Simpson XP good.
2nd Quarter: (PS) A. Cohen 9-yard pass to C. Holbrook, E. Simpson XP good.
3rd Quarter: No scoring.
4th Quarter: (PS) Brendan Shortall 3-yard rush, E. Simpson XP good.
Franklin, 26 @ Weymouth, 14 – Final 1st Quarter: (F) Jake Noviello 18-yard pass to Sean Leonard, Matt Zucco XP good.
2nd Quarter: (F) J. Noviello 65-yard pass to Jake Davis, M. Zucco XP good; (F) J. Noviello 16-yard pass to S. Leonard, XP failed.
3rd Quarter: (F) Sean Hofferty 3-yard rush, XP failed; (W) Weymouth 10-yard pass, XP good; (W) Weymouth 5-yard rush, XP good.
4th Quarter: No scoring.
Oliver Ames, 42 vs. Norton, 8 – Final 1st Quarter: (OA) Cobey Williamson 46-yard rush, XP failed; (OA) Anthony Berksza 44-yard rush, Cam Perron 2-point pass to Noah Fitzgerald good.
2nd Quarter: (OA) A. Berksza 20-yard rush, Derick Hanscom XP good; (OA) C. Perron 10-yard pass to Ethan Eckstrom, D. Hanscom XP good.
3rd Quarter: (OA) A. Berskza 20-yard rush, D. Hanscom XP good.
4th Quarter: (N) T. Elliot touchdown pass to L. Combs, T. Elliot 2-point pass to C. Reynolds good; (OA) Nate Cabral 30-yard rush, D. Hanscom XP good.
Stoughton, 0 @ Canton, 6 – Final – Canton junior Paul Corcoran scored four goals and also recorded an assist to help the Bulldogs roll to a big win at home. Griffin Roach and Paulo Ruggeri each scored once for Canton.
King Philip, 1 @ Franklin, 1 – Final – King Philip senior Larsen Keys headed in a cross from Anthony Bozza in the final minutes of play to help the Warriors pick up a point on the road.
Milford, 2 @ Sharon, 1 – Final – Milford sophomore Nuno Mestre netted his first career goal, which turned out to be the game-winner, as Milford kept its postseason hopes alive. With the win, the Scarlet Hawks need one point from their season finale against Nipmuc. Sophomore Walisson de Oliveira opened the scoring midway through the first half, finishing a fed from Heitor Silva. Then Mestre converted a cross from Zach Brown midway through the season. Sharon scored its goal inside the final five minutes.
Canton @ Stoughton, 3:45
Foxboro, 0 @ North Attleboro, 4 – Final – North Attleboro coach Bill Wallace earned his 200th career win as the Rocketeers got a brace from Leah Jette to earn the home win. Jette scored eight minutes into the game off a Kayla Pasquel assist and added a second off an Ashlyn Gaulin assist with 14 minutes to play. In between, Emma Gaulin scored on a Haley Guertin assist and Aine Mendonca added a goal early in the second half from a Julia Tolfa assist. Emma Noreck earned the clean sheet for North.
Franklin, 0 @ King Philip, 5 – Final – Chloe Layne scored a brace and Avery Snead had a goal and two assists to lead the Warriors to a big win in the season finale to clinch at least a share of the program’s first league title since 2002. Layne opened the scoring nine minutes into the game off a Snead assist and she added an unassisted goal four minutes after the break. Abby Baker knocked in a third off a Snead assist and then Snead scored on a 20-yard free kick for a 4-0 lead after 53 minutes. Ally Stanton scored the fifth on a first-time shot off an Emma Corcoran corner. KP coach Gary Pichel said, “The team is so excited to be champs after a 15-year drought!”
Sharon, 0 @ Milford, 1 – Final – Maggie Boyle scored from the penalty spot inside the final minute to lift the Hawks to victory. According to Milford coach Jay Mastaj, Brianna Braza, Leanne Kibbee, Rachel LeBlanc and Julia Oliveira played well in the win. Sharon had its chances during the game, according to Eagles coach Brad Furnival, with Sabrina Robbins hitting the post and Ally Filipkowski forcing a goal-line clearance. He added, “My girls played excellent and did everything but score.”
Foxboro, 1 @ Mansfield, 1 – Final
King Philip, 3 @ Franklin, 0 – Final – King Philip’s Claire Lawler scored a pair of goals in the first half and set up the third to help KP cap its Hock schedule with a win on the road. Lawler scored on a corner with 9:25 to play in the first from Nicole Conner, and then scored with 2:39 left in the half, again on a corner, on a pass from Dana Truini. Liz Furfari iced the game, taking a feed from Lawler with 15:29 to play. Franklin junior Christina Luccini made 10 saves in net, including a stop on a penalty stroke.
Milford, 4 @ Sharon, 0 – Final
Oliver Ames, 0 @ West Bridgewater, 0 – Final – Oliver Ames senior goalie Caitlin Grant made seven totals, including three sliding saves to rob the hosts of find the back of the cage.
Taunton, 1 @ New Bedford, 0 – Final – Taunton senior Liana Duarte scored the winner with five minutes left in the game, giving the Tigers their first postseason berth since 1990. Sophomore goalie Emma Sheehan made six saves for the shutout while interim head coach Mike Fox said Lauren Torres and Kennedy Thielker both had strong games defensively.
Canton, 1 vs. Duxbury, 3 – Final
Franklin, 3 vs. Bishop Feehan, 2 – Final – Franklin picked up wins in games one, three and five to edge off the visiting Shamrocks (25-17, 22-25, 25-21, 17-25, 15-13). Hailey Sanders and Meaghan Maguire each had eight kills apiece as well as two blocks, while Maggie Doyle chipped in with six kills and four blocks. Junior Lauren McGrath had 33 assists in the win, as well as four ace and two kills.
North Attleboro, 3 @ Mansfield, 0 – Final – North Attleboro capped its regular season with a sweep on the road, and sixth straight victory in a row (25-14, 30-28, 25-14). For Mansfield, Meg Hill had nine kills and four blocks, Julia Harrison added eight kills and five digs and Lexi Gardner finished with five digs and four kills.
Oliver Ames, 3 vs. Bridgewater-Raynham, 0 – Final – Oliver Ames defended home court with a clean 3-0 (25-8, 25-20, 25-12) sweep over the visiting Trojans. Senior Kayla Raymond had seven kills and three aces, junior Sarah Litwack notched 20 assists and seniors Katie Flynn and Emma Petrillo each added five kills apiece.
Sharon, 3 vs. Norwood, 2 – Final – Sharon scored a pair of goals in the final five minutes to erase a one-goal deficit and land a one-goal win. Freshman Bryce Nathan converted a free kick just outside the area in the 34th minute to bring the Eagles level. Norwood went up 2-1 in the 57th minute but the Eagles leveled the match when Antonio El Khoury scored on a bicycle kick inside the area in the 76th minute. Senior Andy Reyes-Jones headed in the winner in the 78th minute off a long throw-in from classmate Tyler Hippler.
Attleboro, 1 @ Franklin, 3 – Final – Attleboro took the lead early but junior Annie Walsh tied the game last in the first half for the Panthers. FHS junior Cassi Ronan then scored the next two goals to give the Panthers the win. Franklin coach Lisa Cropper noted that senior Kyla Aldred played a strong game on defense.
Taunton, 0 @ Oliver Ames, 2 – Final – Oliver Ames freshman Hannah Stryke scored a pair of goals in the first half to help the Tigers qualify for the state tournament. Senior Sarah Stevens assisted on the second goal while senior Caitlin Grant made two saves in net.
Stoughton, 6 @ Sharon, 1 – Final – Julia Russell led the Stoughton offense with three goals while Jackie Evangelista scored a pair of goals and Brittni Paul found the back of the net once. Emily Locke scored for Sharon.
Attleboro, 0 @ Franklin, 3 – Final – Franklin defended home court with another balanced offensive attack. Hailey Sanders and Meaghan Maguire each recorded eight kills for the Panthers while Maggie Doyle had four kills to go along with 14 service points and a pair of blocks. Junior Lauren McGrath added 21 assists and 14 service points in the win.
Canton, 3 @ Foxboro, 0 – Final – Canton went on the road and recorded a 25-20, 25-19, 25-16 sweep of Foxboro. Erin Devine had five kills and five blocks for the Bulldogs. Canton head coach Pat Cawley noted that Caitlyn Cahill had some clutch serving and good defense while Angie Elias came off the bench and provided a spark on offense.
King Philip, 3 @ Mansfield, 0 – Final – King Philip picked up the sweep on the road over Kelley-Rex rival Mansfield, walking away with a 25-18, 26-24, 25-20 in a competitive contest. Sydney Phillips led the offense with 17 kills, five digs, and two aces while Michaela Palumbo added 10 kills, nine service points and a pair of aces. Grace Ely added four kills while Julianne Rando chipped in with six digs and six aces. For Mansfield, Julia Harrison led the offense with 11 kills while Meg Hill added 10 kills. Jolie O’Neil, Sam Sternberg, and Katie Dardinski each had 10 digs for the Hornets.
North Attleboro, 3 @ Milford, 1 – Final – North Attleboro picked up a tight win on the road, leaving Milford with a 25-23, 25-27, 25-22, 26-24 win over the Scarlet Hawks.
Taunton, 2 @ Oliver Ames, 3 – Final – Taunton won two of the first three games but Oliver Ames battled back to win games four and five and earn the win (24-26, 25-16, 14-25, 25-15, 15-4). Katie Flynn led the way for the Tigers with 14 kills while Emma Petrillo also had 14 kills as well as six aces. Allie Kemp finished with 36 assists, Sadie Homer added 32 digs and a pair of aces and Kayla Raymond slammed down eight kills with six blocks.
Stoughton, 3 @ Sharon, 1 – Final – Stoughton bounced back after dropping a tight first set to win the next three and earn its 15th win of the season (27-29, 25-13, 26-24, 25-17). Senior Val Whalen led the way with 16 kills and 23 digs for the Black Knights while junior Molly Turner added 17 assists and 16 digs and junior Hanna Holden chipped in seven aces.
Game of the Week – Football – Click here for a recap and photo gallery from the game.
North Attleboro, 35 @ Stoughton, 21 – Final 1st Quarter: (S) Alex Sjoquist 2-yard rush, Josh Cocchi XP good; (NA) Nick Raneri 6-yard rush, Geoff Wilson XP good.
2nd Quarter: (NA) Chad Peterson 4-yard rush, G. Wilson XP good; (S) Justin Ly 65-yard rush, J. Cocchi XP good.
3rd Quarter: (NA) C.Peterson 1-yard rush, G. Wilson XP good.
4th Quarter: (NA) Nathan Pearce 8-yard rush, G. Wilson XP good; (NA) C. Peterson 2-yard rush, G. Wilson good; (S) Johnny Medina 51-yard pass to J. Ly, J. Cocchi XP good.
Mansfield, 31 @ Attleboro, 7 – Final – Click here for a recap and photo gallery from the game. 1st Quarter: No scoring.
2nd Quarter: (M) Michael DeBolt 26-yard field goal; (M) Aidan Sacco 27-yard fumble return, M. DeBolt XP good; (M) Damani Scott 53-yard pass to M. DeBolt, M. DeBolt XP good.
3rd Quarter: (M) D. Scott 18-yard pass to Hunter Ferreira, M. DeBolt XP good.
4th Quarter: (M) A. Sacco 2-yard rush, M. DeBolt XP good; (A) Joseph Llanos 14-yard rush, Tyler Evans XP good.
Foxboro, 24 @ Milford, 30 – Final 1st Quarter: (M) Sean Lehane 42-yard field goal.
2nd Quarter: (F) Mike Henri 4-yard rush, Russell Neale XP good; (M) Colby Pires 32-yard pass to Will Pointer, S. Lehane XP good; (F) M. Henri 4-yard rush, R. Neale XP good; (F) R. Neale 39-yard field goal.
3rd Quarter: (F) M. Henri 31-yard rush, R. Neale XP good.
4th Quarter: (M) Ryan Pearl 4-yard pass to Joey Everett, S. Lehane XP good; (M) W. Pointer 31-yard rush, S. Lehane XP good; (M) Ryan O’Toole 62-yard rush, 2pt failed.
Taunton, 14 @ Franklin, 21 – Final
1st Quarter: No scoring.
2nd Quarter: (F) Jake Noviello 71-yard pass to Ryan Driscoll, Matt Zucco XP good; (F) Nick Gordon 3-yard rush, M. Zucco XP good; (F) J. Noviello 31-yard pass to Sean Leonard, M. Zucco XP good.
3rd Quarter: No scoring.
4th Quarter: (T) Noah Leonard 1-yard rush, John Teixeira XP good; (T) N. Leonard 15-yard pass to Jahmeir Lewis, J. Teixeira XP good.
Oliver Ames, 0 @ King Philip, 42 – Final 1st Quarter: (KP) Shane Frommer 10-yard rush, Cole Baker XP good.
2nd Quarter: (KP) S. Frommer 12-yard rush, C. Baker XP; (KP) S. Frommer 17-yard rush, C. Baker XP good; (KP) Brendan Lydon 17-yard pass to Andrew Dittrich, Cole Baker XP good.
3rd Quarter: (KP) Ryan Halliday 4-yard rush, Lazar Rogosie XP good; (KP) R. Halliday 5-yard rush, L. Rogosie XP good.
4th Quarter: No scoring.
King Philip, 0 @ Attleboro, 1 – Final – Attleboro freshman Joey Soucy scored his first career goal inside the first 10 minutes of the game to help the Bombardiers earn their first win of the season.
Sharon, 0 @ Foxboro, 4 – Final – Foxboro scored three goals in the opening 10 minutes and never looked back in a win over visiting Sharon. Shane VandenBoom, Nic Biegel, and Matt Rongione each scored to give the Warriors a 3-0 lead. VandenBoom converted a penalty kick in the second half for the final tally. VandenBoom also had an assist, as did keeper Bobby Harrison.
Oliver Ames, 4 @ Franklin, 1 – Final – Matt Alvarado scored his first of two goals in the first half and Oliver Ames added three more in the second half to grab two points on the road. Alvarado’s goal, assisted by Nathaniel Cardoza, gave the visitor’s a 1-0 lead at the break. Michael Nikiciuk put OA up 2-0 before the Panthers cut the deficit in half at 2-1. Alvardo and James Gillespie added goals to give the Tigers insurance. Cardoza finished with three assists while Brandin Osborne had one.
Mansfield, 4 @ Taunton, 0 – Final – Mansfield scored three goals in the second half to turn a close game into a big win on the road. Cullin Anastasia opened the scoring on a Luke Savoie corner in the 34th minute to give the Hornets a 1-0 lead at the break. Sam Hyland converted off another Savoie corner in the 58th minute to make it 2-0. Four minutes later, Anastasia grabbed his second on a penalty kick. Jackson Murphy capped the scoring in the 70th minute on an assist from Colin Caridi. Nick Ferraz made three saves for his fourth shutout of the season.
Milford, 2 @ Stoughton, 0 – Final – Milford scored once in each half to pick up two points on the road at Stoughton. Sophomore Walisson de Oliveira kept his hot streak going, opening the scoring in the first half on a volley on a feed from Joey Madden. Anthony Salvadore added an unassisted tally in the second half for the Scarlet Hawks. MHS head coach Brian Edwards said freshman Leo Coelho and sophomore Bryan Traya both played great in the midfield.
Attleboro, 1 @ King Philip, 6 – Final – The Warriors got a combined five goals and six assists from sophomores Avery Snead and Chloe Layne to stay in a tie at the top of the Kelley-Rex standings. Makayla Griffin opened the scoring in the second minute off a Layne assist and then Layne added her first 14 minutes later on a Snead assist. Four minutes later, Layne set up Snead for a third goal. Julia Hayes scored off a 20-yard free kick for Attleboro’s lone goal, but KP added three in the second half. Layne scored on a Snead assist five minutes after the break and then the same combo added another four minutes later. In the 58th minute, Snead added an unassisted goal to wrap up the scoring.
Canton, 0 @ North Attleboro, 4 – Final – North Attleboro set the tone early, scoring the opener less than three minutes into the game. Big Red then added one late in the first half and two more in the final five minutes of the game. Kayla Pasquel netted the opener on an assist from Aine Mendonca in the third minute. Haley Guertin, assisted by Leah Jette, made it 2-0 with just two minutes to play in the first half. Emma Gaulin made it 3-0 in favor of Big Red with four minutes left in the game off an assist from Ashlyn Gaulin and then Guertin finished the scoring on a feed from Haley Ferrin with just a minute to play. Emma Noreck earned the shutout in net – “with a smothering defense in front of her,” said NAHS head coach Bill Wallace.
Foxboro, 6 @ Sharon, 0 – Final – Foxboro took a 2-0 lead into halftime and broke the game open with four goals in the second half. Mackenzie Fraser netted a pair of goals for the Warriors while Lily Sykes, Shaina Abbott, Katelyn Mollica and Yara Fawaz each scored once. “We played with a lot of energy and passion today,” noted Foxboro head coach Katie Stalcup.
Franklin, 1 @ Oliver Ames, 2 – Final – Jackie Mills scored a last-minute goal, her second of the game, to secure a dramatic two points for the Tigers. Franklin had a chance from the penalty spot in the second half, but OA defender Maggie Ault stepped in between the pipes (starting goalie Regan Benton was forced to the bench with a yellow card) and made the save. Anabella Walsh and Abby Reardon had assists for the Tigers.
Taunton, 0 @ Mansfield, 4 – Final – The Hornets stayed in a first-place tie atop the Kelley-Rex behind a Stephanie Kemp brace. Cassidy McMahon added a goal and two assists and Emily Vigeant scored one for the Hornets.
Stoughton, 1 @ Milford, 5 – Final – Milford senior Leeanne Kibbee and Ashleigh Starks each scored a pair of goals as Milford cruised to a win at home. Senior Maggie Boyle also found the back of the net while freshman goalie Carly Ferreira notched her first career win. Mia Greene had the goal for the Black Knights.
King Philip, 3 @ Attleboro, 1 – Final – King Philip bounced back from an opening set loss to earn a win on the road, beating Attleboro 19-25, 25-15, 25-18, 25-9. Sydney Phillips led the offense with 11 kills, Michaela Palumbo had five kills with five service points, including four aces and Rachael Veillieux had 18 service points, including eight aces. Kat Kmetz added 10 service points and five kills and Grace Ely chipped in with five kills.
North Attleboro, 3 @ Canton, 2 – Final – Despite falling behind 2-0, North Attleboro rallied with three straight wins to pick up a big division win on the road (20-25, 22-25, 25-15, 25-8, 15-8). Amelia Murphy led the offense with 22 kills and four blocks while classmate Kezia De La Cruz had 15 kills and four aces. Leah Marceau put the offense in motion with 28 assists. For Canton, Nicole Brown had 20 assists, 11 digs, and four kills, Hannah Jerrier had 10 kills, and Megan McDonough had 15 digs and a pair of aces.
Sharon, 3 @ Foxboro, 0 – Final
Oliver Ames, 0 @ Franklin, 3 – Final – Franklin junior Lauren McGrath spread the ball around in the Panthers sweep of the Tigers, recording 29 assists as well as three kills and two aces. Maggie Doyle (four blocks), Meaghan Maguire (two blocks) and Hailey Sanders (block) each had six kills for Franklin. For Oliver Ames, Katie Flynn had seven kills while junior Sadie Homer had 22 serve receptions and 10 digs.
Mansfield, 3 @ Taunton, 0 – Final – Mansfield snapped its three-game skid with a 25-23, 25-13, 25-14 win on the road at Taunton. Meg Hill had a team-high 18 kills while Julia Harrison added 10 kills. Emma Ascoli had 28 assists and 10 service points and Lexi Gardner had 17 service points and four kills.
Milford, 1 @ Stoughton, 3 – Final – Stoughton picked up its 13th win of the season with a 3-1 decision over visiting Milford. Senior Val Whalen led the way for the Black Knights with 13 kills, 14 digs, and nine aces while Junior Hanna Holden chipped in with 13 digs and eight assists.
Canton, 170 @ Sharon, 176 – Final – Canton’s Thomas Singleton and Sharon’s Corey Carter shared match medalist honors, each carding a round of 40 but the Bulldogs came away with a close win. Joey Vaughan shot a 41 whole Chris Lavoie added a round of 44 in the win. Matt Grosser shot a round of 44 for the Eagles.
Franklin, 168 vs. Medway, 170 – Final
Oliver Ames, 145 @ King Philip, 159 – Final – Oliver Ames seniors Ryan McGarry and Mark Bissonette earned co-medalist honors, each carding a low-round of 35 to lead the Tigers to their 12th win of the season. Nolan Donze shot a 37 and Matt Kelley added a round of 38 in the win.
Taunton, 100 @ New Bedford, 73 – Final (Stableford) – Taunton picked up a win on the road, beating New Bedford in a match decided by Stableford points system. Jack Patneaude led the way with a 42 for the Tigers while Spencer Andrews shot a 43 and Jack Giebel carded a 44.