Rocketeers Roll To D2 South Title Against Oliver Ames

North Attleboro baseball
North Attleboro’s Nate Pearce (right) is greeted at home plate after his sixth inning home run. (Ryan Lanigan/HockomockSports.com)
ByRyanLanigan_2016FollowRyanLanigan_2016
 
 
BROCKTON, Mass. – There’s hot, there’s red hot, and then there’s Big Red hot.

The North Attleboro lineup continued its torrid streak this postseason, belting out 18 hits on its way to a 17-2 win over Hockomock rival Oliver Ames in the D2 South Sectional Final.

It was the second straight game the Red Rocketeers have had double-digit hits and double-digit runs. In its three postseason games, North Attleboro has outscored opponents 42-2.

Click here for a photo gallery from this game.

“They are swinging the bat well, we’re just trying to keep the same approach regardless of what the pitcher is doing out there,” said first-year North Attleboro head coach Mike Hart. “We’re taking it one pitch at a time, one batter at a time. We feel if we take care of ourselves, we can be successful.”

And if the offense wasn’t hot enough, North Attleboro ace Nick Sinacola allowed just two hits and two unearned runs in six innings of work while striking out seven to earn the win.

“I’ll give it to that North Attleboro lineup, they crush the ball,” said Oliver Ames coach Joe Barr. “I’ve never seen a team like that, top to bottom, just go through and square it up. Our guy [Reid Latham] was throwing strikes but I don’t know if the air was a little thin or what but those balls got in the air and kept traveling.”

Once Sinacola set the Tigers down in order in the first inning, North Attleboro’s offense went right to work. Brendan McHugh led off with a double, Zach DeMattio had a one-out walk, and Nate Pearce roped a ground-rule double over the fence for a quick 1-0 lead.

Nick Raneri scored on a fielder’s choice as DeMattio was able to get home before OA’s throw did, and Jeff Gale hit one deep enough that brought Pearce, who was ruled to have tagged up after Mitch Goulet’s spectacular catch in center, home for a 3-0 lead after an inning.

Big Red tacked on four more runs — all with two outs — when it returned to the plate in the bottom of the second inning. McHugh started the rally with a single and moved to third when Sinacola picked up his first hit of the day. DeMattio brought both runners home with a hard hit triple, Pearce knocked a run in with a single, and Raneri drove a run in with a single as well to make it 7-0.

“We’ve all been working together through the winter and the spring and it really just shows how much hard work and coming together as a group can accomplish when you execute,” DeMattio said.

Nick Zwerle reached after forcing an error on his bunt and Sean O’Brien walked to put runners on first and second with one out. Sinacola got the second out but Michael Friel hit a line drive double into the gap in left center to bring both runs in to give the Tigers some life, cutting the deficit to 7-2.

But North Attleboro landed a big counter punch in the form of four runs in the bottom of the third to extend its lead. Aidan Harding walked and pinch runner Kyle Briere took second on a wild pitch and third on a single from McHugh. Briere beat out a throw home on Sinacola’s grounder, DeMattio scored McHugh with a single, Sinacola scored after DeMattio stole second and OA attempted to pick him off, and Pearce doubled in DeMattio for an 11-2 advantage.

“Subconsciously that’s the type of stuff that just creeps into your mind,” Abarr said. “You think you’re back in it — and I think we were in it more most of the game — but that was a deflating experience. I’ve been on that end as a player and a coach, and it’s tough. I tip my cap to North for that, they didn’t let up. They played hard right to the end.”


“I give [OA] a lot of credit, they are an excellent hitting team,” Hart said. “In regards to answering back, I think it just puts us at ease. I think it made it 7-2 then and five runs with these two teams means nothing. So to get those runs back, it helps Nick on the mound.”

Sinacola retired the side in order in each of the first and second innings, and after allowing two runs in the third, only allowed one base runner to reach third base (an error and a wild pitch). It was Sinacola’s second win against OA this year after beating them in his first appearance back in early April.

“I think early in the year, a lot of hitters struggle with the fastball,” Sinacola said. “Once you get to this point in the season, they are a lot better and they have their timing down. So I think we had to change it up and throw a little bit more offspeed then I did the first time and I think it worked.”

Raneri scored on a passed ball and Gale came home on a hard hit ball from Nolan Buckley that was ruled an infield error for the Tigers in the fifth inning.

In the bottom fo the sixth, Sinacola got his second RBI with a single to score McHugh, DeMattio picked up his fourth RBI of the day with a base hit to score Sinacola and at the next at-bat, Pearce launched a two-run home run to cap the scoring.

“We had to pretty much show up and play perfect against that lineup and that pitcher in order to walk out with a win,” Abarr said. “We knew they’d be relentless. But it was an unreal run for us here at the end, with a team that didn’t quite expect to be here. We don’t set hard and fast goals about where a team can get to, we have just shown up and worked on specific things to get better each day. And these guys did a great job doing that.”

North Attleboro’s top four hitters — McHugh, Sinacola, DeMattio, and Pearce — combined for 13 hits, 11 RBI, and 14 runs scored.

Click here for a photo gallery from this game.

For Oliver Ames (16-8), Friel had two hits and two RBI, Matt McCormack and Nick Bloumbas each had a base hit, and O’Brien and Zwerle each scored once. On the mound, Jay Fruci pitched a scoreless inning with a strikeout.

“This is definitely the best group I’ve ever coached,” Abarr said of his team. “From top to bottom, the first guy in the lineup to the last guy on the bench to the team manager…they were tight, always behind each other, and regardless who was in the lineup each day, they were ready to play. It was the most reliable, hard-working, and unified group that I’ve coached and those are the three qualities you look for in a high school team.”

North Attleboro (21-2) advances to the D2 State Final to play North champ Beverly (20-4) on Thursday night at 6:30 at LaLacheur Park in Lowell.

Thursday’s Schedule & Scoreboard – 05/31/18


Today’s games are listed below.

Baseball
Mansfield, 6 @ King Philip, 1 – FinalMansfield scored in each of the first four innings on its way to a win over King Philip, clinching the Kelley-Rex division title with the result. The Hornets scored two runs in the first and third innings while tacking on single runs in the second and fourth. Tyler Dalton earned the win on the mound, allowing just three hits and one unearned run in the seventh inning, and struck out 12. Dalton helped his cause at the place by going 2-for-3 with two RBI and two runs. Cullin Anastasia added two hits and an RBI for Mansfield.

North Attleboro, 7 @ Taunton, 3 – FinalNorth Attleboro plated four runs in the third inning, including what turned out to be the winning run, to conclude the regular season with a victory on the road at Taunton. Brendan McHugh (three runs) started the third with a leadoff walk and scored on a double from Zach DeMattio (2-for-4). DeMattio scored on a two-out double from Jeff Gale, and Nick Raneri (HBP) scored on an errant throw. Gale came in to score on a base hit from Nolan Buckley. Taunton scored two in the fifth behind three straight singles from Jack Moynihan, Evan Melo, and Tyler Pietrzyk, and then a sacrifice fly from Jacob Crawford. But North put the game away with two more runs in the top of the sixth. Shawn Watters (double) scored on a triple from McHugh, and McHugh came home on a sacrifice fly from Nick Sinacola.

Softball
North Attleboro, 7 @ Milford, 4 – Final (9 inn.)North Attleboro struck for three runs in the top of the ninth inning, all with two outs, to hand Milford its second straight loss. Olivia Capobianco drove in Katherine Munley and came around to score herself on a base hit from Abby Gallagher. Gallagher scored on a hit from Ashley Cangiano. Annabelle Hebard had two doubles and scored a run for North. Bella Erti struck out five in the win.

Girls Lacrosse
North Attleboro, 7 vs. Walpole, 18 – Final

Girls Tennis
Sharon vs. Martha’s Vineyard, 3:45

Boys Volleyball
#5 Milford, 3 vs. #12 Burncoat, 1 – FinalClick here for a Recap and Photo Gallery from this game.


McHugh, Wanless Lead North Attleboro Past Milford

By Brian Hines, HockomockSports.com Contributor

NORTH ATTLEBORO, Mass. – The North Attleboro offense has been tough to quiet all season, and that was again the case for the Milford Hawks on Wednesday afternoon at Community Field.

The Red Rocketeers used a pair of home runs, a grand slam by junior Brendan McHugh and a solo shot by senior captain Zach DeMattio, to beat the Hawks 5-1.

McHugh’s grand slam was set up by three consecutive two-out singles by seniors Nolan Buckley and Aidan Harding and junior Shawn Watters. McHugh’s shot hit the bleachers in left field, and after a long discussion between the umpires and two coaches, was ruled a home run.

The very next inning, DeMattio led off with a solo shot, also into the left field bleachers, for his second home run of the season.

“I thought their pitcher, [Andrew] Fauerbach, did a great job mixing up his speeds, which can flummox any team,” said North Attleboro head coach Mike Hart. “But I thought the second time around we definitely stayed back on the ball and looked to keep it simple and just drive it. If we do those things, not worrying about where the balls actually going to go, things will turn out well for us.”

The 5-0 lead was all North needed, especially with junior Matt Wanless on the mound. Wanless pitched six innings, striking out three batters while allowing just one run.

“Matt did a great job,” said Hart. “His big thing is throwing strikes and he did that. He got a lot of first-pitch strikes which sets up the count for him, hit his spots.”

Milford’s lone run came during a sixth-inning rally. After a single and two-out walk, Cameron Soloman’s base hit scored Matt Swanson, but North Attleboro catcher Todd Robinson caught the Hawks trying to advance to third, which ended the inning.

Wanless was able to avoid damage from the other Milford rallies. He worked out of a bases-loaded jam in the third, along with an early threat when Milford put runners on second and third in the first inning.

“[Matts] been in some tough spots this year and he’s done well through them,” said Hart. “I feel as though the couple times he got into situations today he did a very good job of getting out of them.”

North Attleboro baseball (13-2 Hockomock, 17-2 overall) will travel to Taunton on Thursday for the final game of their regular season. Milford finishes the season 5-15 overall and 4-12 in Hockomock play.

Franklin Prevails In Extras Against North Attleboro

Franklin baseball
Franklin’s Jack Nally (10) is greeted by teammates following his home run in the second inning. (Ryan Lanigan/HockomockSports.com)
ByRyanLanigan_2016FollowRyanLanigan_2016
 
 
NORTH ATTLEBORO, Mass. – With two of the best pitchers in the entire state on the mound, scoring chances for North Attleboro and Franklin were going to be hard to come by on Monday afternoon.

Franklin’s Jake Noviello and North’s Nick Sinacola, both committed to play at Division 1 schools next year, clashed in what was the true definition of a pitcher’s duel.

Noviello allowed one earned run on five hits and one walk, striking out 11 in eight innings of work while Sinacola struck out 12, allowed four, four walks and one earned run in 7.1 innings.

It wasn’t until the top of the ninth when the Panthers finally cashed in, exploding for five runs in the top half of the inning to prevail with a 6-1 win over the Rocketeers.

Click here for a photo gallery from this game.

“We knew we’d face Sinacola and he’s a great pitcher, and we knew it’d be a great game,” said Franklin head coach Zach Brown. “So we talked about competition, and I think sometimes people forget that competition is back and forth — they answer, then you answer, back and forth. So that was the message prior to the game. We knew there’d be a lot of swings, we just had to stay the course and trust each other. North Attleboro is a great baseball team, they made it really difficult for us today, so hats off to them.

“I thought Jake did a great job just setting the tone. Each time we needed him to settle us back down, he was able to do that.”

North Attleboro’s Zach DeMattio connected on a two-out solo home run in the bottom of the first inning to put Big Red ahead 1-0.

But Franklin sophomore Jack Nally answered in the top half of the second, ripping a line drive solo shot down into the bleachers in left field to make it 1-1.

“[Nick] pitched his tail off, there’s not much more to say,” said North Attleboro coach Mike Hart. “He did everything we asked him to. The kids have been behind him all year. He’s a great leader for us too. We knew scoring chances would be tough to come by for both teams. You have to take them when you have the opportunity.”

Those would be the only runs that the starting pitchers gave up, though each team had a golden chance to take the lead late in the game.

North had its best chance in the bottom of the seventh when Nick Raneri reached on a one-out single, and pinch runner Nolan Buckley went all the way to third after an errant pickoff attempt. The Rocketeers tried for a suicide squeeze to bring the winning run in, but Franklin’s defense was prepared.

Noviello purposely pitched high and junior catcher Jake Macchi fired down the third base line. Shortstop Alex Haba made a nice play to get back to the bag, took the throw, and then ran down the runner for the second out. Noviello struck out the next batter to end the inning.

“We had talked about it and how we wanted to defend it,” Brown said. “We decided that if they were going to do it, it’d be the first pitch so we went pitch out there and we were fortunate enough to get it done. And our shortstop did a great job coming over the top of that play, because that’s not an easy play. The guys did a great job executing it.”

“We’ve been aggressive all season, I’m not going to make any excuses for doing it,” Hart said about the decision. “I thought it was the time to do it…that’s the way we play the game and that’s how we’re going to continue to do it.”

That momentum carried into the top of the eighth for the Panthers. Evan Wendell (walk) and Scott Elliott (single) reached and then advanced a base on a throwing error. After going up 3-0, Haba was intentionally walked to load the bases.

That put an end to Sinacola’s day but senior Ben Arrighi came in and got the job done. The senior made a nice play on a grounder near the first base line to get the force out at home and got a swinging strikeout for the third out to escape the inning without any damage.

“That’s his spot right there,” Hart said of Arrighi. “His innings are down because our starters have been able to go deep into games. I give him a lot of credit. He came in with some serious guts and got the job done for us in that inning.”

Noviello didn’t slow down in the bottom of the eighth, sandwiching a pair of strikeouts around a pop up to keep the momentum on the Panthers’ side.

Nally got things started in the top of the ninth with a leadoff single and then stole second. Shane O’Neil laid down a sacrifice bunt to advance Nally over, and the sophomore scored on a base hit from senior Michael Langmeyer to make it 2-1.

Click here for a photo gallery from this game.

Langmeyer stole second, took third on a groundout, and crossed the plate on an RBI single from Colby Fitzgibbons. Elliott followed with a walk to put runners on first and second and then Haba — who had a two-run home run taken away by a leaping grab from North’s Nathan Pearce in the sixth inning — delivered the knock out blow with a three-run bomb over the press box at Community Field to give Franklin a 6-1 lead.

“[Alex] has been real steady for us,” Brown said. “He really stepped up big and delivered in a big spot for us. We really needed those insurance runs to beat a team like that because North is capable of scoring in bunches.”

Franklin senior Bryan Woelfel needed just 10 pitches to set North down in order in the ninth inning to close the door.

Franklin baseball finishes the regular season 17-5 overall and 12-4 in the Hockomock. If King Philip defeats Mansfield on Thursday, the Panthers will share the Kelley-Rex title with the Hornets. Franklin will find out its postseason fate June 3rd (Super 8) or June 5th (D1 South). North Attleboro (16-2 overall, 12-2 Hock) is back in action on Wednesday against Milford.

Wednesday’s Schedule & Scoreboard – 04/18/18

Today’s games are listed below.

Baseball
Mansfield, 9 @ Attleboro 2 – FinalMansfield struck for five runs in the top of the third inning and never looked back on the road at Attleboro. Senior Tyler Dalton earned the win on the mound, striking out six in five innings of work with three hits and two runs allowed. Jake Gerraughty and Justin Pena each pitched a scoreless inning in relief. Kyle Moran (RBI), Dan Saraceno, and Kevin Dow (three RBI) each had two hits apiece to pace the Mansfield offense.

Canton, 7 @ Norwood, 9 – Final

Foxboro, 1 @ Stoughton, 2 – FinalStoughton edged Foxboro in a pitchers duel between Zak Paquette (S) and Steve McLaughlin (F). Paquette allowed just one run on five hits and one walk with five strikeouts in a complete game effort. McLaughlin allowed two runs in over five innings of work for the Warriors. George Currier (2-for-3) came up with the big hit for Stoughton, connecting on a two-strike, two-out, two-RBI single in the first inning.

Franklin, 1 @ Walpole, 0 – FinalFranklin senior Jake Noviello dazzled in a complete game effort, helping the Panthers pick up a 1-0 win. Noviello blanked the Rebels through seven innings, allowing just four hits and two walks while striking out six. Franklin’s lone run came off the bat of James Leofanti, scoring classmate Steve Luttazi (2-for-3) on a sacrifice fly. Jake Macchi and Jack Nally also had two hits for the Panthers.

North Attleboro, 8 @ Bishop Feehan, 1 – FinalNorth Attleboro turned a pitchers’ duel into an impressive with behind a big fifth inning. The Rocketeers pushed eight runs across in the fifth inning, all with two outs. Big Red loaded the bases (Nick Sinacola single, Zach DeMattio walk, Nate Pearce walk) to get things started. Nolan Buckley had a two-run single, Aidan Harding (4-for-4) knocked in a run with an infield single, Sinacola (4-for-5) got back up and plated two with a single and Jeff Gale capped the scoring with a two-run single. Sinacola got the win on the mound, throwing a complete game with 10 strikeouts and just two walks. He had a no-hitter through four innings of play.

Sharon, 1 vs. Archbishop Williams, 6 – Final

Taunton, 6 vs. Durfee, 5 – FinalTaunton scored four runs in the bottom of the fifth inning to knot the score at five and scored the game-winning run an inning later to stay unbeaten so far this season. Christian Simoes (two RBI), Tyler Medeiros (two hits), and Jack Moynihan (two hits) all had RBIs in the fifth inning to tie the game. Trevor Pietrzyk (two hits) drove in the winning run with a sacrifice fly in the sixth. Medeiros earned the win on the mound, striking out five with six hits allowed in six innings. Josh Lajoie pitched a scoreless seventh inning to record the save.

Milford, 2 vs. Concord-Carlisle, 3 – Final

Softball
Foxboro, 2 @ Stoughton, 15 – Final (5 inn.)Foxboro opened the game with two runs in the top of the first inning but Stoughton answered with four runs in the bottom half to take the lead and never look back. The Black Knights added single runs in each the second, third, and fourth innings and then exploded for eight runs in the fifth to get the win. Gina Carafa (three doubles) and Nikki Cappola (two doubles) each finished with four hits and three RBI to pace the Stoughton offense. Lexi Baptista and Bri Ferrandiz each had two RBI as well. Hannah Davis had two hits for Foxboro, including the 100th of her career. Carafa got the win in the circle, striking out eight with three hits and two walks allowed in five innings of work.

Franklin, 1 @ Taunton, 14 – Final (5 inn.)The Tigers scored in four of the five innings of play in a big win over visiting Franklin. Jaime Brown (three runs), Liana Duarte (three RBI), Mackenzie Handrahan (two RBI) and Kelsey White (two runs) each recorded two hits for Taunton while Payton Ceglarski chipped in with a pinch-hit two-run home run and Rylie Murphy had a pinch-hit two-run single. Jaylin Couto struck out three with four hits allowed in four innings of work. Alexis White recorded three strikeouts in one inning of relief. Ally Shea went 2-for-3 for the Panthers. Kylie Bouzan knocked in courtesy runner Maggie Hobby in the fourth inning for Franklin’s run.

King Philip, 16 @ Bishop Feehan, 6 – FinalKing Philip’s offense roared to life, belting out 16 hits in a big win on the road at Bishop Feehan. Hailey McCasland and Jessica Bonner (three RBI) each had three hits for the Warriors while Marjorie Guerrier, Meghan Gorman (three RBI), Brooke Taute, and Sydney Phillips each had two hits. Bonner put the Warriors ahead, 8-6, with a hit in the top of the sixth inning. Faith Turnese allows just one hit in three innings of relief work to earn the win.

Milford, 11 vs. Hopkinton, 2 – FinalMilford’s offense continued to roll, putting up 11 runs against neighboring Hopkinton. Jess Tomaso had a big day at the plate with three hits, including a home run and a double, whiling knocking in four runs and scoring once. Kelley Reichert went 3-for-3 at the plate with two RBI and earned the win in the circle, striking out six without allowing an earned run in five innings of work. Kate Irwin (double, stolen base), Emily Piergustavo (RBI, run), Emily Hartman (double), and Shannon Cormier (double, two runs) each had two hits for the Hawks.

Oliver Ames, 3 @ Coyle & Cassidy, 7 – FinalOliver Ames’ Kayla Georgeu was 2-3 with a single and an RBI double while Abbi Holmes and Colleen Larson both had RBIs as well. Lexie Campbell (1-4), Caroline Mahoney (1-3) and Katie Mills (1-2) all scored runs for OA.

Mansfield 13, @ Needham, 0 – Final (5 inn.)Sarah Cahill struck out seven and allowed only one hit as the Hornets starter and Felicity McMullin struck out one in relief. Mansfield started well with a run in the first before breaking the game open by scoring five runs in each of the second and third innings and adding a pair in the fourth. Caty DeMassi went 3-for-4 with a pair of RBI and Kerran Holmes went 2-for-2 with an RBI. The Hornets also got hits from Kara Bendanillo, Megan Letendre, Mady Bendanillo, Grace Benton, and Mary Muldoon.

Boys Lacrosse
Stoughton, 1 @ Canton, 16 – FinalCanton jumped out to a quick start, building an 11-1 lead by halftime. The Bulldogs had nine different scorers including first-career goals from senior Brian Ghostlaw and sophomore Tommy Ghostlaw. Freshman Dylan Coyne had a shutout in net in the fourth quarter for Canton.

Milford, 16 @ Northbridge, 5 – FinalMilford freshman Jack LeBlanc was impressive at the face off X in his first varsity game, winning 8-of-13 attempts to help the Hawks pick up the win. Brendan White (five goals) and Andrew Gallagher (two goals, four assists) paced the offense while Ryan Hazard had a strong all-around game with four goals and five ground balls.

Oliver Ames, 20 @ Milton, 0 – FinalOliver Ames received strong defensive efforts from Shane Murphy, Matt Saba, and Mark Vasapollo to help goalie Nick Gillis record a shutout on the road against Milton. Owen Gallagher paced the offense with six goals while Eric LeBlanc added three tallies.

Girls Lacrosse
Canton, 11 @ Oliver Ames, 19 – Final – Emalyn Duvall, Chloe Kilkelly, Ella Hogan, Olivia Piazza and Sofia Masciarelli all tallied points for OA while Ariana Waldorf had a strong game in net. Maggie Connolly scored four goals for the Bulldogs and Vicki Revenge stepped in as the back-up goalie to make 11 saves in the loss.

Mansfield vs. Watertown, 12:00

Milford vs. Ashland, 12:30

Sharon, 8 @ Hopkinton, 13 – FinalSabrina Robbins scored four goals and grabbed five ground balls for Sharon and Emma Eberhardt added a hat trick of goals, four assists, and six draw controls. Jenna Goldstein scored Sharon’s other goal and Bridget McManus led the Eagles defense with an interception and three ground balls.

Boys Tennis
Attleboro, 0 @ Mansfield, 5 – Final

Girls Tennis
Mansfield, 3 vs. Norton, 2 – FinalMansfield notched two wins in singles play and one in doubles to pick up a non-league win over Norton. The team of juniors Tessa Garufi and Hannah Podolske had the game of the match, earning a 7-6 (8-6), 7-6 (8-6) win at first doubles for the Hornets. Senior Sarah Doyle won 6-3, 6-3 at first singles while junior Elizabeth Elsner recorded a 6-4, 6-3 decision at second singles.

Milford, 0 vs. Hopedale, 5 – Final

Monday’s Schedule & Scoreboard – 04/09/18

Today’s games are listed below.

Baseball
Sharon, 5 @ Attleboro, 13 – FinalAttleboro overcame a 4-1 deficit, scoring three runs in the fifth inning to tie it, two more in the sixth in the take a lead, and then seven runs in the final inning to put the game to bed. Attleboro senior Drew Pagano earned the win in relief, tossing 2.1 scoreless innings. James Weir went 2-for-4 with two stolen bases and two RBI, Troy Gamache had two hits and an RBI and Sam Larkin chipped in with two hits. Sophomore Alvaro Espinel drew five walks, stole three bases and scored three runs while senior Corey McKenna had a two-run double and three stolen bases.

Foxboro, 3 @ Franklin, 0 – FinalFoxboro senior Steve McLaughlin tossed a complete game shutout, scatting three hits while striking out three to lead the Warriors to a win over Franklin. Chad Bearce (single) and JT Burke (double) each recorded an RBI as Foxboro scored single runs in each the first, second, and fourth innings. Anthony Mollica and Joe Cavaleri each had a hit for Foxboro. Franklin’s Jake Noviello struck out 11 batters in five innings of work with just two walks and no earned runs allowed.

King Philip, 17 @ Canton, 4 – FinalKing Philip’s offense exploded for 17 runs in its season opener to pick up a win on the road. Sophomore Robbie Jarest went 3-for-3 with an RBI while Jeremy Rhines had two hits, including a double, and an RBI. Rhines earned the win on the mound with five innings of work, striking out four batters without allowing an earned run. KP head coach Greg Kessler said Collin Cooke and Nolan Bradley had strong games defensively.

Mansfield, 9 @ Stoughton, 1 – FinalMansfield broke open a 1-1 game with two runs in the fifth and then added four more in the sixth, and two more in the seventh inning to turn a close game into a big win in both teams’ season opener. Hornets senior Tyler Dalton scattered four hits over four innings of work while striking out four to earn the win. Kevin Dow pitched three scoreless innings of relief. Offensively, Sam Nugent (RBI, run), Mike Hargadon (two RBI, run), Cullin Anastasia (RBI), Eric Longley (run), and Dow (two RBI, run) each had two hits for the Hornets. For Stoughton, Ruben Gonzalez, Mike Nazzaro and Will Eckhart each had a pair of hits. Eckhart allowed three earned runs in five innings of work while striking out four.

Taunton, 5 @ Milford, 2 – FinalTaunton senior Tyler Medeiros allowed just four hits in five-plus innings of work, striking out seven with two runs allowed to earn the win. Taunton scored three runs in the top of the fourth to take a 3-1 lead, added another run in the fifth inning, and tacked on an insurance run in the top of the seventh. Josh Lajoie (save), Christian Simoes, and Jacob Crawford each had two hits for Taunton while Jack Moynihan had a two-RBI triple in the fourth inning. For Milford, Danny Corsini allowed just two earned runs in six innings of work with three strikeouts. Colby Pires (RBI) and Matt Shaver (walk, two runs) each had a pair of hits for the Hawks.

Oliver Ames, 2 @ North Attleboro, 5 – FinalNorth Attleboro senior Nick Sinacola dazzled in his season debut, striking out 11 batters over six innings of work with five hits and two walks allowed. North scored single runs in the first, third, fourth, fifth and sixth. OA had a chance to tie the game with the bases loaded in the seventh inning but Peter Cohen came in to get the final out via strikeout. Nick Raneri went 2-for-3 with a double, Zach DeMattio went 2-for-3, and Nolan Buckley had a two-out RBI triple in the fifth for the Rocketeers. Oliver Ames senior Mitch Goulet was 1-for-3 with an RBI.

Softball
Sharon, 1 @ Attleboro, 13 – Final (6 inn.)Attleboro’s McKenzie Bergdoll had a strong day in the circle and at the plate to help the Bombardiers open the season with a win. Bergdoll struck out eight in four innings of work, allowing just two hits and one unearned run. At the plate, she had two hits and two RBI. Jenna Gittle finished the final two innings in the circle, striking out three while allowing two hits. Makenzie Killough and Ashley Macia each had big days at the play; Killough went 3-for4 with four RBI, including a home run while Macia was 3-for-4 with five RBI and a home run. Jordyn Lako chipped in with three hits and two RBI for Big Blue. “This was a good start with only three practices outside so far,” said AHS coach Mark Homer. “Everyone in the starting lineup contributed offensively.”

Canton, 0 @ King Philip, 25 – Final (5 inn.)King Philip’s Meghan Gorman had four of the Warriors 15 hits, including a two-run home run and a pair of doubles, finishing with five RBI. Brooke Taute contributed three hits, including a triple, and three RBI while Faith Turnese and Hailey McCasland each had multiple hits. Elise Pereira earned the win with a complete game, six strikeouts and just one hit allowed.

Foxboro, 3 @ Franklin, 2 – FinalChelsea Gibbons went 2-for-4 to lead the Warriors, while Hannah Davis and Jill Finn each had an RBI single in the victory. Foxboro’s Emma Rohan went the distance in the circle to get the win.

Stoughton, 1 @ Mansfield, 10 – FinalMansfield coach Lori Letendre called the opening game of the season “a great team effort,” as the Hornets got a strong start from Sarah Cahill, who allowed only three hits and struck out five, and had six players record at least two hits. Mady Bendanillo and Caty DeMassi both went 3-for-4 with DeMassi just a double away from the cycle. Sydney Woods, Felicity McMullin, Ella Verheggen, and Cahill each went 2-for-4. Every player in the Mansfield lineup had at least a hit or an RBI. Kerran Holmes also made a big play in left, turning a double play after a shoestring grab.

Milford, 8 @ Taunton, 7 – FinalClick here for a recap and photo gallery of this game.

Oliver Ames, 0 @ North Attleboro, 22 – Final (5 inn.)Bella Erti struck out six and allowed only three hits in five innings of work, while also registering three hits at the plate. Ashley Cangiano led the offense, going 4-for-4 with a homer and five RBI. Abby Gallagher scored four runs, while Olivia Capobianco scored three times and had a stolen base and Annabelle Hebard and Katy Daby each had triples. All four finished the game with two hits apiece. Lexie Campbell, Kayla Georgeu, and Katie Mills each had a hit for Oliver Ames.

Boys Lacrosse
Attleboro, 2 @ King Philip, 15 – Final

Canton, 2 @ Foxboro, 13 – FinalFoxboro built a 7-0 lead by halftime and never looked back to earn a league win over division foe Canton. Louis Piccolo collected eight points – three goals and five assists – to pace the Warriors’ offense. Shayne Kerrigan went 15-for-17 at the face-off X and Bobby Yerardi chipped in with three goals.

Sharon, 4 @ Franklin, 13 – FinalFranklin junior Jacob Alexander dominated the face-off X, winning 17 of 21 attempts to help give the Panthers the edge in possession. Eric Civetti paced the offense with six goals and assist while Zach Alexander, Jacob Alexander, Jake Davis and Nitin Chaudhury each scored once for the Panthers. Will Davis made five saves in net for Franklin.

Mansfield @ Stoughton – Postponed to a date and time to be announced.

Oliver Ames, 10 @ Milford, 8 – FinalOliver Ames senior Eric LeBlanc had a hand in over half of the Tigers goals, helping his side earn its first win of the season. LeBlanc scored five goals and had one assist to pace the offense while Shane Kilkelly added two goals and three assists and Frankie Ireland finished with a goal and two assists. Milford freshman goalie Evan Hazard made 15 saves in net while Andrew Gallagher had a team-high five points with two goals and three assists. Mike Demko and Brendan White each scored a pair of goals while Chase Blanchette had a strong game defensively with six ground balls.

Taunton, 0 @ North Attleboro, 12 – Final

Girls Lacrosse
North Attleboro, 16 @ Taunton, 0 – FinalNorth Attleboro had eight different goal scorers, as new coach Colleen Carchedi gets her first win on her Rocketeers debut. Kayla Moulin earned the shutout in net. Alana Tavares grabbed two draw controls for the Tigers, while Hannah Moniz and Rosemary McGrath each had three ground balls.

King Philip, 17 @ Attleboro, 3 – Final KP had seven different scorers and improved to 2-0 on the season. Katie Crowther led the way for the Warriors with seven goals and two assists, while Caroline Klim chipped in with three goals and three assists. Alli Meehan and Olivia Tormey each added two goals and an assist, while Dana Truini, Victoria Tormey, and Ali Wilson each scored once in the win. Caroline Watson made eight saves for KP.

Foxboro, 19 @ Canton, 0 – FinalSophia DiCenso scored three goals and Caroline Boudreau recorded four assists, as Foxboro used 13 different goal scorers to get the division win. Sara Addeche picked up the shutout in goal.

Franklin, 18 @ Sharon, 5 – FinalFranklin junior Annie Walsh and sophomore Erin Walsh combined for 15 points to lead the Panthers to a win on the road at Sharon. Annie had seven goals and two assists while Erin finished with four goals and two assists. Katie Jones added two goals and two assists while Nicole Houlihan had two goals and Corinne Lewis had a strong game defensively with two ground balls. Gianna Cameron made seven saves in the win while Kate Morse made her season debut after suffering an ACL injury this past Fall. Sabrina Robbins scored a pair of goals, grabbed four draw controls, and three ground balls, while Emma Eberhardt added a pair of goals and five draw controls for the Eagles. Sharon also got a goal and an assist from Lydia Chase and 13 saves from goalie Rose Wald.

Mansfield, 16 vs. Holliston, 12 – Final

Milford, 6 @ Oliver Ames, 16 – Final – Oliver Ames’ Chloe Kilkelly and Olivia Piazza combined for seven goals and six assists to lead the Tigers to a win.

Boys Tennis
Sharon, 5 @ Attleboro, 0 – FinalIt was a clean sweep for Sharon with all five matches ending in straight sets. Fred Bondar won 6-2, 6-2 at first singles, Danujan Thirumavalavan, won 6-1, 6-1 at second singles and Ashwin Sreevatsa won 6-0, 6-1 at third singles for the Eagles. The team of Max Brody and Russell Rapaport earned a 6-2, 6-0 decision at first doubles while Arie Chinnappan and Alex Aspel won 6-1, 6-2 at second doubles.

Canton, 0 @ King Philip, 5 – FinalKing Philip’s Marco DiStefano rallied after losing the first game to win the second and take a third set tiebreaker to complete the Warriors sweep. DiStefano won 2-6, 7-6 (5), 10-7 while Nick Putney (6-2, 3-6, 6-1) also went three sets at second singles. Jack Cannon won 6-1, 6-1 at third singles, Aidan Ignatius and Nick Ihley won 6-0, 6-1 at first doubles and Sean Desrochers and Nate Ihley didn’t lose a single game (6-0, 6-0) at second doubles.

Foxboro, 1 @ Franklin, 4 – FinalFranklin swept singles play and took another win at first doubles to beat Foxboro. Rohan Herur (6-1, 6-3), Liam Marr (6-0, 6-1) and Tony Calderone (6-4, 6-3) took care of business in singles action while Tyler DiPalma and Derek Wu rallied from one set down to earn a 3-6, 6-2, 6-3 win. Foxboro’s team of Justin Neale and Brady Gardner earned a 6-3, 3-6, 6-3 win at second doubles.

Stoughton, 1 @ Mansfield, 4 – FinalThe Hornets picked up a pair of wins in singles as well as doubles to defend home court against Stoughton. Luke Nickerson won 6-0, 6-1 at first singles and Peter Lally earned a 6-1, 6-0 decision at third singles. The team of Jalaj Singh and Danny Radev notched a 6-0, 6-0 win at first singles while Ben Salden and Yash Sakitarkar won by the same score at second doubles. Stoughton’s Erik Anderson won 6-4, 6-4 at second singles.

Milford, 0 @ Taunton, 5 – FinalTaunton’s Mike Briggs (third singles) and Alex Pugh and Trevor Hart (second doubles) each won in straight sets without dropping a game to pace the Tigers. Francois Hennaux won 6-0, 6-2 at first singles, Brett Beaulieu earned a 6-1, 6-0 at second singles and the team of Charlie Fiske and Dylan Kullas notched a 6-0, 6-2 win at first doubles.

North Attleboro, 5 @ Oliver Ames, 0 – FinalNorth Attleboro won all five matches in straight sets without dropping a single game to record a win on the road. Richard Bermudez (first singles), Christian Bermudez (second singles) Jonah Manso (third singles), the team of Ben Pfeffer and Sam Gallagher (first doubles) and Alex Pfeffer and Alex Rinaldi (second doubles) all won 6-0, 6-0.

Girls Tennis
Taunton, 4 @ Milford, 1 – FinalThe Tigers notched a pair of wins in singles play and two more in doubles to take home a win from Milford. Vanessa Rosa won 6-1, 6-0 at second doubles and Jocelyn Pagliuca took a 6-2, 6-1 decision at third singles. The team of McKenzie Lurie and Sam Martin dropped just one game (6-0, 6-1) at first doubles and Amanda Pugh and Brianna Ferrier did the same (6-1, 6-0) in a win at second doubles. Milford’s Julie Rabinowitz won 6-3, 6-3 at first singles.

Attleboro, 0 @ Sharon, 5 – FinalSharon dropped a total of three games in singles action and two total in doubles play in a sweep over Attleboro. Nupur Shukla won 6-0, 6-1 at first singles, Lulu Yuan didn’t lose a game (6-0, 6-0) at second singles and Emily Wen earned a 6-1, 6-1 win at third singles. The team of Katie Merport and Sophia Fein earned a 6-2, 6-0 win at first doubles while Rithika Neti and Lauren Glass didn’t lose a game in a 6-0, 6-0 win at second doubles.

King Philip, 5 @ Canton, 0 – FinalKing Philip won all five matches but some were closer than the score indicates. Erin Regnier won 6-0, 7-5 at first singles, Meghan Sepich earned a 6-1, 6-4 victory at second singles and Caitlin Gonser walked away with a 6-0, 6-1 win at third singles. The team of Grace Ely and Mia Valencia squeaked out a win at first doubles (5-7, 6-4, 10-8) while Katarina and Schneider and Lucy Barnard dropped just two games in a 6-0, 6-2 win at second doubles.

Franklin, 0 @ Foxboro, 5 – FinalFoxboro won three matches without losing a single game in a sweep at home over Franklin. Sophia Prinos (first singles), Pam Nelson (third singles), and the team of Julia Muise and Sarah Prag (first doubles) each won their match 6-0, 6-0. Kayla Prag won 6-0, 6-3 at second singles for the Warriors and Olivia Dantona and Kendall Milender emerged victorious (6-2, 6-3) at second doubles.

Mansfield, 5 @ Stoughton, 0 – Final – Mansfield opened its season with a win, winning all three singles matches in straight sets. Senior Sarah Doyle won 6-0, 6-2 at first singles, Elizabeth Elsner took a 6-0, 6-2 win at second singles and freshman Aryann Khosravani won 6-1, 6-3 at third singles. Junior Tessa Garufi and sophomore Samantha Sternberg won 6-3, 6-1 at first doubles while junior Hannah Podolske and senior Cindy Gu prevailed with a 6-3, 3-6, 10-7 win at second doubles.

Oliver Ames, 2 @ North Attleboro, 3 – Final North Attleboro edged out Oliver Ames with a pair of wins in singles play and one win in doubles. Jordan Willis had a convincing 6-1, 6-0 win at first singles, senior Katie Ovoian won 6-1, 6-4 at third singles and the team of seniors Leah Marceau and Shurobhi Nandi prevailed 6-4, 7-6 (7-0) at first doubles. For Oliver Ames, Tate Hadges won 3-6, 6-4, 6-4 at second singles and Olivia Groebe and Rachel Stryke notched a 4-6, 6-0, 6-2 win at second doubles.

Boys Volleyball
Taunton, 3 @ Brockton, 0 – FinalTaunton picked up a convincing win on the road behind a balanced attack. Malik Charles had a team-high eight kills while Alex Tavares (four blocks), Lens Esquil (three blocks), and Lance Law (four aces) all registered seven kills. Ricardo DaFonseca finished with 32 assists for the Tigers.

2018 Hockomock League Baseball Preview

2018 Hockomock League Baseball Preview

By HockomockSports.com Staff

2018 Hockomock League Baseball Preview

Attleboro

2017 Record: 6-14
2017 Finish: Missed playoffs
Coach: Matt Bosh

After missing out on the postseason a year ago, Attleboro head coach Matt Bosh believes his team’s depth and versatility will help the Bombardiers get back there.

Junior Eoin Kelleher is back to lead the pitching staff after a stellar sophomore season in which he earned HockomockSports.com Underclassman of the Year honors. Kelleher posted a 1.00 ERA in 35 innings of work, including throwing a no-hitter against rival North. Senior captains Jason Weir and Jon Candiales, senior Drew Pagano along with junior Sam Larkin will all see time on the mound for Big Blue as well.

Candiales and Weir also anchor the offense with the former patrolling shortstop and the latter seeing time in both the outfield and first base. Candiales gives the Bombardiers power from the left side of the plate while Weir is a three-year starter that gives Bosh flexibility in the lineup. Larkin will be in the outfield when he isn’t pitching and can use his speed to hurt teams. Corey McKenna returns as the starting second baseman while senior Dakota Kirby is back behind the dish after a year off. Kirby will add pop to the lineup as he hit 0.425 as a sophomore with 10 RBI.

“The biggest improvement that I see from last year is our team speed and athleticism,” Bosh said. “We have a lot of guys that can play multiple positions and we’re very athletic. We have a high number of kids who can play anywhere.”

Canton

2017 Record: 6-12
2017 Finish: Missed playoffs
Coach: Greg Digirolamo

A strong core of returning players and a good amount of depth will be keys for the 2018 Canton Bulldogs baseball team.

After losing just four players from last year’s team, there is a good mix of experienced players and talented youth for head coach Greg Digirolamo to work with. The Bulldogs will look to three senior captains to the lead the way: Matt Casamento, Robbie Wilkinson, and Tommy DeLello. Casamento is a three-year starter in center field, DeLello will man first base and Wilkinson will try to carry over the momentum from an impressive junior year into 2018. Wilkinson went 3-1 last year with a 1.58 ERA and 13 strikeouts in 31 innings pitched.

Wilkinson will be joined in the pitching staff by seniors Austin Maffie, Niko Donovan, and Ryan Hickey, along with juniors Paul Corcoran, Robbie Sullivan, and Kevin McGonigle. Freshman Matt Connolly will also figure into the mix on the mound.

Casamento anchors the defense from the center field spot while junior catcher Matt Pigeon and sophomore shortstop Nate Quan bolster the defense up the middle.

“It’s a good group of kids that like to compete every day, what else can you ask for as a coach?” Digirolamo said. “For us the biggest thing will be seeing live pitching. If we’re to have any success this year we’ll need to do a better job at the plate.”

Foxboro

2017 Record: 7-14
2017 Finish: Reached D3 South First Round
Coach: Derek Suess

New Foxboro head coach Derek Suess sees a little bit of the past in his first team as head coach. Suess, a former Warrior himself, said the 2018 version of Foxboro reminds him of a team that won 15 games during his senior year just over a decade ago.

“This team is hungry to put the program back on the map,” Suess said. “I couldn’t ask for a better senior group to lead us. They remind me of the senior group I was a part of in 2007 in which we won 15 games. With a good mix of underclassmen, I’m looking forward to seeing everyone’s hard work pay off on the field.”

After losing a painful eight games by just one run a season ago, including a near upset of third-seeded and D3 South Finalist Norton in the playoffs, the Warriors will be looking to turn those losses into wins this time around.

“We need to make more winning plays to put those tallies in the win column,” Suess said.

Junior Anthony Mollica will spearhead the offense after leading the Warriors with a 0.367 batting average a year ago. Senior Chad Bearce and sophomore Joe Cavaleri will bolster the middle of the lineup, freshman Sean Yoest has shown flashes early on at the dish, and seniors Joe Freitas, Matt Rongione, and Jack Franceschelli provide the Warriors with some speed.

Senior Steve McLaughlin returns after an impressive 2017 season. Despite posting an 0-6 record, McLaughlin struck out 24 batters in 32.2 innings of work and posted a 1.73 ERA. McLaughlin will be joined by Cavaleri, Yoest, and junior Guy Quartarone in the rotation while senior Robert Theriault returns behind the dish after getting a year of experience last season.

Franklin

2017 Record: 18-6
2017 Finish: Reached D1 South Quarterfinal
Coach: Zach Brown

Focusing on pitching and defense, the Panthers will be looking to get better each and every day as they try to replicate the success from a season ago.

Franklin won the Kelley-Rex division last year, its first league title since 2012. And the mix of pitching and offense put the Panthers in some conversations for Super 8, but the Panthers ended up in the D1 South and bowed out in the quarterfinals after being forced to play on back to back days.

The arms that helped the Panthers have so much success last year as almost all back, starting with staff ace senior Jake Noviello. The Fairfield-commit struck out a Hockomock-best 61 batters a year ago, going 6-2 with a 1.65 ERA in 55.1 innings of work. Noviello is complemented by lefty Jason Ulrickson (7-0, 0.80 ERA, 35 K), Bryan Woelfel (3-2, 0.91 ERA, 4 SV, 31 K) and senior James Leofanti.

The defense will be anchored by a pair of returning starters in junior shortstop Alex Haba (0.360, 12 runs) and junior catcher Jake Macchi.

“While we are returning a number of experienced arms we are also turning over a number of positions last season,” said Franklin head coach Zach Brown. “So, we will be young or inexperienced at a number of positions. Offensively, my hope is that as the season progressing we will be able to develop an identity and find a way to manufacture runs.”

King Philip

2017 Record: 10-11
2017 Finish: Reached D1 South Preliminary Round
Coach: Greg Kessler

After just squeaking into the postseason a year ago, first-year KP head coach Greg Kessler is hoping his team will be in contention for a Kelley-Rex division title in 2018.

One reason for that is the senior class and the handful of returning players that have plenty of experience at the varsity level. Ben Furfari returns as a key piece of the Warriors’ outfield and lineup. He hit 0.298 last season and will provide the power on offense. Senior Pat Limerick, committed to play at St. Joseph’s (ME), will set the tone as the leadoff hitter.

On the mound, senior Jeremy Rhines (2-1, 1.45 ERA) and junior David Morganelli will be the main options while hard-throwing senior Liam Rohan will also be in the mix. Nolan Bradley returns behind the plate as one of the top catchers in the league while sophomore Robbie Jarest will step in to take over at shortstop.

“We have a great group of senior this year,” Kessler said. “They have been dedicated to the weight room and leading our underclassmen. They continuously strive to build a team that will compete for the Hock championship. They deserve to have a great year. I guarantee that will be the most vocal and most energetic team in the Hock. We pride ourselves on being positive and enthusiastic every pitch.”

Mansfield

2017 Record: 14-8
2017 Finish: Reached D1 South First Round
Coach: Joe Breen

There is a lot of optimism surrounding the Mansfield baseball program this season. And with the arms they have back, there’s good reason for it.

Senior Tyler Dalton, a UMass Amherst commit, returns after missing the majority of his junior year with an injury. Dalton was tremendous during the 2016 season as a sophomore, posting a 6-2 record while striking out 35 batters and posting a 1.78 ERA. He will be joined on the Hornets’ staff by senior Kevin Dow (UMass Amherst commit, 4-1, 1.93 ERA), junior lefty Connor Sheehan (2.82 ERA, 28 K), and junior Kyle Moran (three saves). Sophomore John Carney will also likely see time on the mound for the Hornets.

Senior catcher Cullin Anastasia returns after being named to the 2017 HockomockSports.com Second Team. Anastasia had 19 hits a year ago, knocking in 10 runs and scoring 10 runs as well. Sam Nugent will give the Hornets a spark in center field and on the base path with his speed, Moran picked up plenty of experience at third base last season, and Eric Longley will provide Mansfield with some pop in the middle of the lineup.

“We will rely heavily on our pitching staff this season to keep us in games and look to make the plays behind them and be aggressive with our offensive and baserunning approach to get those guys a few runs per game,” said Mansfield head coach Joe Breen. “As always, we will turn to our senior class to set the tone and for our underclassmen to blossom under their leadership.”

Milford

2017 Record: 12-10
2017 Finish: Reached D2 South Quarterfinals
Coach: Alex Dion

Milford baseball starts a new chapter in its historic history as longtime assistant Alex Dion takes over the reigns of the program.

Dion’s first challenge will be having to overcome the loss of a dozen seniors, including team ace Alex Macek, reliable infielders Zack Tamagni and Anthony Arcudi, and hard-hitting outfielder Ryan Goncalves. However, the good news is that Dion has one of the best players at his disposal in Stonehill-commit Aidan Wilde. Wilde had 59 hits between his freshman and sophomore years and added 21 more in the regular season a year ago. After seeing time as a catcher last season, Wilde will mainly man the corner infield positions in 2018.

Wilde will be complemented by junior Matt Shaver, who picked up some experience a year ago at both shortstop and on the mound. The Hawks will rely on Shaver to anchor the defense from short and give the offense a spark from the leadoff position. Junior Tyler Almeida will step in behind the dish and will provide some offense from the left side of the plate. Sophomores Luke Rosa and Colby Pires look to be in the mix as well as junior Nick Marcolini, who will pitch and patrol the outfield.

“We graduated a strong senior class this past year and are now in a situation where we have a lot of new players who we will look to take advantage of new opportunities,” Dion said. “I am excited about the athleticism that we have on our roster and the energy that these guys bring to practice each day. I think our philosophy is simple, but we preach a team-first mentality to our guys and strive to get quality pitching, play clean defense and get timely hits to win games.”

North Attleboro

2017 Record: 8-10
2017 Finish: Missed playoffs
Coach: Mike Hart

North Attleboro didn’t have to go far to find its new coach. Mike Hart takes over for Paul Tobin and Hart truly bleeds Big Red – a graduate from the school and three-sport coach.

And expectations are high for the Rocketeers after just missing out on the postseason a year ago. Senior captain Nick Sinacola returns after having an MVP-caliber junior season. Big Red will rely on Sinacola on both sides of the plate, leading the offense (he batted 0.415 last year with 15 runs scored) and being the ace of the staff (48.1 IP, 49 K, 2.01 ERA). Senior captain Zach DeMattio is also back after being named to the 2017 HockomockSports.com First Team, batting 0.333 with 15 RBI and three home runs. Big Red also gets senior Nate Pearce (0.371) back after a strong junior year.

Senior Peter Cohen (24 IP, 0.29 ERA) will look to build upon a superb junior year while Nolan Buckley and Jeff Gale bring experience to the outfield. Aidan Harding also has varsity experience and will be in the mix to get innings on the mound along with juniors Matt Wanless, Jake Palmer, Matt Seavey, Nick Raneri, and Ben Arrighi.

“We have a truly industrious group of players,” Hart said. “We’re going to keep moving guys around until we find the lineup that works for us. Some may have to play multiple positions, depending on whose pitching on any given day. We had a decent season last year, with many guys getting some varsity time, but we’re still unproven. We need to continue to improve every day and only worry about the things we can control. Guys will be competing every day all season, which will only make us better. We will approach each day, with a great attitude, high effort, and a steadfast approach.”

Oliver Ames

2017 Record: 14-9
2017 Finish: Reached D2 South Semifinals
Coach: Joe Abarr

A lot of the players that helped Joe Abarr have a successful first season as head coach last year are back, which means the Tigers are aiming to replicate that success.

Despite finishing in a tie for third in the Kelley-Rex, the Tigers put together the best playoff run of any Hock team, knocking off #2 Dighton-Rehoboth on the road to reach the sectional semifinals. Junior Matt McCormack is back after earning a spot on varsity late in the season this year, and along with classmate Tom Parker, should give OA a solid 1-2 punch. With a handful of capable arms in the mix, the third spot in the rotation is still up for grabs.

Abarr won’t have to worry much about anything hit to the left side of the infield as the Tigers return third basemen Chris Pearsons and shortstop Matt Muir, two of the top defensive players at their positions. Both are capable hitters as well and will provide some pop to the lineup. Another returning starter is senior Mitch Goulet. Goulet had a breakout junior campaign in center field (0.347, 7 RBI), catching fire in the second half of the year. Abarr is hoping that momentum will carry over to this season.

The Tigers have a battle for the spot behind the plate as both junior Jake Erlich and junior Reid Latham are back, both with experience behind the dish.

“We have a great core of returning players that will be the backbone of the program,” Abarr said. “We have to fill positions in the outfield and at first. If we have some guys step up in that role we should have a decent lineup from top to bottom.”

Sharon

2017 Record: 6-14
2017 Finish: Missed playoffs
Coach: Kee Arguimbau

Sharon is aiming to improve on its six-win season in 2017, and will be looking to ride its senior leadership to do so.

Senior captains Max Tarlin and Drew Naisuler are two of the most experienced players in the league and will be spearheading the Eagles’ offense and defense this year. Tarlin (5-4, 46 K, 1.11 ERA) is the anchor of the pitching staff, picking up five of Sharon’s six wins last season. When he’s not on the mound, expect to see Tarlin patrolling shortstop. Naisuler returns as the team’s No. 4 hitter to provide some pop to the lineup and will be a key defensive piece at both center field and first base.

The Eagles will also rely on senior Ben Schwartz, who will mainly be catching this year as well as being a major offensive contributor. Junior Noah Kamens will be a major piece of the pitching puzzle after impressing during his sophomore year. Similar to Tarlin, Kamens will be a major player in the offensive lineup and will see time off the mound spent in the outfield. Spencer Singer is transitioning to the outfield and will continue to be one of the players the Eagles look at for offensive production.

“I have a lot of guys who are multifaceted baseball players and I can foresee a lot of games being played with straight nine in the lineup,” Arguimbau said. “We have great senior leadership and some very promising sophomores that are going to play a major role in our season’s success.”

Stoughton

2017 Record: 15-6
2017 Finish: Reached D2 South First Round
Coach: Mike Armour

There are a lot of questions to be answered for this year’s Stoughton baseball team, but head coach Mike Armour is excited for his players to rise to the challenge.

The Black Knights graduated nearly their entire team (10 of its 13 rostered players), which won its second straight Davenport division title. So not only will Armour be leaning heavily on his three returning players, he is looking for new faces to seize the opportunity.

“This is an exciting year for our program,” Armour said. “It’s an awesome opportunity for our younger guys. The JV and freshmen teams both over 15 or more games last year, so we’re looking for them to carry that winning attitude into this season. I expect our team to play with heart and execute the fundamentals to make us a competitive team.”

2017 HockomockSports.com First Team selection and senior captain Ruben Gonzalez returns as one of the top players in the league, both defensively at shortstop and offensively at the plate. Senior Matt Hadley and junior Evan Gibb, both captains, are the other two returning players for the Knights. Gibb has plenty of varsity experience behind the plate and Hadley, although he will miss some time with injury, will be key piece in the outfield.

Meanwhile, Armour is looking for sophomores James Genest (first base) and Michael Nazzaro (third base/catcher) to step up and play important roles both offensively and defensively this season. Juniors Kyle Gagnon, Kevin Dixon, and Cian Swierzewski will see time in the outfield and classmate Robbie Seaman will be in the mix for middle infield.

For pitching, Gibb will see time on the mound as well as behind the play. Senior Will Eckhart has some varsity experience and junior Zak Paquette will likely log some meaningful innings for the Knights. Seniors Tim Kellogg, Talyor Atkinson, and Mike Anderson provide infield depth and Jack Brown and Ryan Semler will be in the mix in the outfield.

Taunton

2017 Record: 12-10
2017 Finish: Reached D1 South First Round
Coach: Blair Bourque

There are a lot of good pitchers in the Hockomock League this year, and it looks like the Tigers’ staff could be right near the top of the list.

Taunton returns senior Tyler Medeiros, who had a terrific junior campaign and will get junior Jack Moynihan back on the mound. Moynihan was impressive during his freshman year two seasons ago but an injury limited his action on the mound last season. Medeiros fanned 68 batters in 56.1 innings of work, posting a 1.98 ERA to anchor the staff. Look for senior Trevor Pietrzyk and juniors Griffin Tomaszycki and Josh Lajoie to get some meaningful innings on the mound as well.

“Tyler clearly emerged as our top pitcher last year,” said second-year head coach Blair Bourque. “Fortunately, he’s a big kid and was able to put us on his back and carry us. Hopefully, we’re able to provide more support for him this year.”

Moynihan will also play a big role in Taunton’s offense this year. While patrolling third base, Moynihan will try to provide some pop in the middle of the lineup. The Tigers also get their top two batters back with senior shortstop Jacob Crawford (0.350, 15 runs) and senior Christian Simoes (0.340, 12 RBI).

Taunton will carry nine seniors and eight juniors this season so experience will be key.

Saturday’s Schedule & Scoreboard – 11/18/17

Today’s games are listed below.

Football
D3 State Semifinal

#1 North Attleboro, 29 vs. #2 Tewksbury, 21 – Final
1st Quarter: (NA) Brendan McHugh 1-yard rush, Geoff Wilson XP good.
2nd Quarter: (T) James Connolly 39-yard pass to Braden Hiltz, 2pt pass good; (NA) Chad Peterson 51-yard pass to B. McHugh, G. Wilson XP good; (T) J. Connolly 8-yard pass to B. Hiltz, XP good.
3rd Quarter: (NA) Nathan Pearce 5-yard rush, C. Peterson 2pt pass to Nolan Buckley.
4th Quarter: (NA) B. McHugh 56-yard rush, G. Wilson XP good; (T) J. Connolly 15-yard pass to Brandon Winn, 2pt rush failed.

Boys Soccer
D2 State Final

#4 Oliver Ames, 1 vs. #8 Concord-Carlisle, 2 – Final (2OT)OA senior Michael Nikiciuk gave the Tigers’ a 1-0 lead in the 18th minute of the game, heading in a long throw in from Chris Lawrence. Concord-Carlisle scored the tying goal in the 68th minute and then scored the game-winner in the 98th minute in double overtime.

Boys Soccer
2017 HockomockSports Soccer Charity Classic (@ Attleboro)

Team Lanigan, 8 vs. Team Perry, 9 – Final

Girls Soccer
2017 HockomockSports Soccer Charity Classic (@ Attleboro)

Team Lanigan, 3 vs. Team Perry, 6 – Final

Peterson Helps Rocketeers Advance Past Walpole

North Attleboro football
Senior quarterback Chad Peterson (7) accounted for four touchdowns, two rushing and two passing, to lead North Attleboro to a first round win over Walpole at Community Field. (Josh Perry/HockomockSports.com)

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NORTH ATTLEBORO, Mass. – After a slow start to the game, North Attleboro put the ball in the hands of senior quarterback Chad Peterson and the Amherst College-commit came through with four touchdowns, two through the air in the first half and two more on the ground in the second, to lead the Rocketeers to a 28-14 first round win against Walpole.

Click here for a photo gallery from this game.

North was able to survive and advance, despite the defense allowing more than 200 passing yards against Walpole’s spread formation, including 163 receiving yards (on 11 receptions) by wideout Chase Conrad.

“We knew they could throw the ball, so defensively we wanted to put pressure on the quarterback, which I thought we did a decent job of earlier but then they did a good job picking the pressure and we didn’t do a particularly good job covering the guys behind it,” said North Attleboro coach Don Johnson. “So, that kept them in the game.”

The North defense showed its ability to get pressure straight up the middle on the first Walpole series when Ryan Clemente dislodged the ball from Rebels running back Drew Van klock, hitting him just as he received the ball.

North returned the favor with a fumble five plays later but again the defense kept the pressure up on Walpole senior quarterback Brett Lavanchy (17-32, 223 yards). Geoff Wilson, Sam Bullock, and Zach DeMattio all forced Lavanchy into rushed throws and Wilson’s sack led to a Rebels punt.

North took over on its own 15-yard-line and proceeded to put together a 12-play, 85-yard drive to open the scoring. Nathan Pearce (11 carries, 96 yards) got the drive going with a 28-yard jet sweep to the far sideline and North kept advancing into the red zone until Peterson was sacked to force a third and 18. Peterson hit Pearce on an eight-yard screen and, on fourth and 10, found Ryan Gaumond on the near sideline for 16 and a first down.

Two plays later, Peterson bought time and found Nolan Buckley open in the back of the end zone for an eight-yard touchdown.

Walpole responded quickly. Conrad returned the kick to the Walpole 45 and it took the Rebels only six plays to get on the board. DeMattio and Adam Eberle combined on a sack to force third and 13 from the North 47, but Walpole caught the Rocketeers in an all-out blitz. Lavanchy’s screen pass found Conrad in space and he took it the distance.

A missed extra point kept North in the lead, but the Rocketeers failed to take advantage on the next drive, turning it over on downs at the Walpole 16.

“Walpole played tough,” said Johnson. “I thought they did a great job on defense and worked hard to make us earn it.”

He added, “We thought we’d be able to move the ball on the ground, but I thought they played really well on defense in the first half. They did some different things that we hadn’t seen on the film. They jumped into a 50 double eagle look there and we hadn’t seen them do that all year long.”

Jonathan James and Bullock combined on a sack to end Walpole’s drive and get the ball back for North with just 51 seconds remaining in the half. The Rocketeers took over at the 50 and Peterson proceeded to march the hosts down field, needing just five plays to add a big score before the break. All three completions on the drive went to Devin Slaney, including the 26-yard touchdown.

The Rocketeers got the ball back to start the third quarter and promptly extended the lead. Pearce broke a 31-yard run to get the ball into Walpole territory. Peterson would take it the final 16 yards on a pair of carries to make it 21-6.

“I thought that was key, coming out get that first drive and score in the second half,” said Johnson. “I thought that was a big momentum swing there.”

He continued, “I never felt like we were out of control, but I just never felt like we could finish things. It just took a while for us tonight.”

Walpole’s ability to move the ball through the air meant that the game was far from over and the Rebels immediately responded to cut the lead back to one score. Conrad had another big return to get the ball near midfield. A 26-yard catch moved the drive inside the North 30 and then it was finished with a 16-yard catch in the back corner. Lavanchy and Conrad connected on the conversion as well.

“At halftime, they definitely went in there to pick up the middle blitz,” said DeMattio, “so we tried coming off the edge to try and stop the sprint out.”

After a North punt, the Rebels were on the move again, getting the ball inside the Rocketeers’ 10. Lavanchy was forced to throw a pass away on first and goal then was stuffed for a four-yard loss on a keeper by Jason McNeany and Marc Burns. On third and goal, Clemente got loose in the backfield for North’s fifth sack of the game. With Gaumond in coverage, the fourth down pass went out the back of the end zone.

North took over on its own 17. The Rocketeers put together a 13-play, 83-yard drive that put the game away. While the bulk of the drive consisted of runs by Peterson (13 carries, 88 yards), Pearce, and Nick Raneri (13 carries, 54 yards), there were also two big completions from Peterson to Gaumond on the far sideline. Peterson capped the possession with a seven-yard keeper to seal the win.

“It was a tough first game, but it was fun,” said DeMattio. “You can definitely see a lot more people coming out, bigger crowds, lot more intense.”

When asked about the prospect of hosting league rival Stoughton next week, DeMattio added, “They’re definitely a run-heavy team, so it will be good for them to come back to Community Field and get a good game for everyone.”

North Attleboro (7-1), the top seed in Div. 3 South, will host the Black Knights (6-2) on Friday night at Community Field.

Johnson said of what was at the time only a potential rematch with Stoughton, “I don’t like playing anybody a second time. They get to know all your secrets.”

Click here for a photo gallery from this game.

Friday’s Schedule & Scoreboard – 10/27/17

Today’s games are listed below.

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

D2 South
#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.

D3 South
#1 North Attleboro, 28 vs. #8 Walpole, 14 – FinalClick 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.

D5 South
#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.

Boys Soccer
Stoughton, 0 @ Canton, 6 – FinalCanton 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 – FinalKing 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.

Mansfield, 0 @ Oliver Ames, 0 – FinalClick here for a recap and photo gallery of this game.

Milford, 2 @ Sharon, 1 – FinalMilford 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.

Girls Soccer
Canton @ Stoughton, 3:45
Foxboro, 0 @ North Attleboro, 4 – FinalNorth 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 – FinalChloe 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 – FinalMaggie 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.”

Field Hockey
Foxboro, 1 @ Mansfield, 1 – Final

King Philip, 3 @ Franklin, 0 – FinalKing 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 – FinalOliver 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 – FinalTaunton 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.

Volleyball
Canton, 1 vs. Duxbury, 3 – Final

Franklin, 3 vs. Bishop Feehan, 2 – FinalFranklin 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 – FinalNorth 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 – FinalOliver 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.

Taunton @ New Bedford, 5:00