For the first time since the inaugural HockomockSports.com Charity Basketball Classic, a pair of seniors won the Three Point Contests. Mansfield’s Phil Vigeant and North Attleboro’s Ashley Ahern came away with the hardware at Mansfield High School, edging out Taunton’s Tommy MacLean and Attleboro’s Julia Strachan in the finals.
Both Ahern and Strachan put on a show in both rounds. Strachan had the highest total of any shooter – male or female – in the first round, connecting on 19 shots from beyond the arc. Ahern wasn’t far behind, hitting 17 trifectas to advance to the finals. In the final round, Ahern caught fire and hit an impressive 20 shots (on 25 tries) to edge Strachan (16 makes in the final). Ahern set the record for most three’s made by a female (20) in a round and tied Mansfield’s Ryan Boulter for most makes in a round for either male or female. Her total of 37 shots made between two rounds is also an event record. Only North Attleboro’s Brent Doherty (39) made more in 2016, but went to overtime in the final.
On the boys side, Vigeant had the top score in the first round with 16 shots made. MacLean made the final with 15 made shots, just edging Stoughton’s Matt Valle (14). In the final, Vigeant hit his very last shot to get 14. MacLean hit his final three shots but came up just short with 13.
Though MacLean came up short in the final, he now holds the record for all-time shots made in HockomockSports.com Three Point Contest History. In four years, MacLean has drained 65 trifectas. North Attleboro’s Brent Doherty sits in second all time with 62 while Boulter is third overall with 44. Sharon’s Jimmy Fitzhenry hit 12 shots in the first round, setting a new school record for a male player. Valle’s 14 threes is also a Stoughton record for a male shooter.
TAUNTON, Mass. – Not only did Needham make 11 threes in Saturday night’s Div. 1 South final at Taunton High but the Rockets also timed them perfectly. Five of them in the first quarter, including one from just inside half-court by Thomas Shaughnessy at the buzzer, a big three to end a Mansfield run in the second, and three in the fourth quarter that each time matched a Mansfield basket.
The long range shooting of Thomas Shaughnessy (game-high 26 points, including four threes) and Matthew Shaker (20 points, including six triples) and strong play defensively to limit the Hornets on the offensive end propelled Needham to its first ever sectional title with a 65-56 victory.
“Any time a kid can hit from that range, it changes the way you play and good basketball players at this stage make big plays,” said Mansfield coach Mike Vaughan. “I thought we didn’t make enough of them down the stretch to weather that and give us a fighting chance to go on a run.”
Needham brought four busloads of fans to the game and the energy of the crowd translated to the play on the court, as each of the five threes in the first quarter was followed by a salute of some sort to the crowd. Shaker buried three from beyond the arc in the first and Shaughnessy had 10 points, including a pair of threes.
Mansfield, which is normally a team that makes a fair amount from long-range as well, knocked down only one three, from junior John McCoy (11 points) but were having some success taking the ball to the basket. Senior Max Boen had four of his 10 points in the first but also added three of his six assists and three of his four steals.
In the second quarter, the Hornets started to put things together on the offensive end and limited Shaughnessy to just a single point. An 10-0 run to start the second, capped by a Tyler Boulter (10 points) three put Mansfield in front, but Brandon Monheimer hit a pull-up jumper and then Connor Reidy hit a three-pointer (his only bucket of the game) to give Needham a slight edge.
“We never got that separation that we needed,” said Vaughan, “and we didn’t get any easy baskets. Probably after watching the film what I’m going to be most frustrated with is we didn’t get the easy baskets that we typically try to get in games.”
Phil Vigeant stole the ball at mid-court and scored plus a foul to give the Hornets a 33-32 lead at the half. In the third quarter, it felt as though Mansfield may just start to pull away against the Rockets, who were making the program’s first ever trip to the South final, but again clutch shooting put the Rockets back in front.
Boen skipped a pass across to Christian Weber for a three from the corner and then scored on a pair of drives, including one acrobatic finish in the lane with his back to the basket. Each time, Needham had a response and Shaughnessy gave the Rockets the lead for good with a three that made it 47-44 and assisted on a basket by Mike Klemm at the buzzer for a five-point lead heading to the fourth.
“They want the game kept in the 50s for pace and we want the game in the 60s and trying to hold them in the low 50s and we just never got anything in transition, we never got any easy baskets,” Vaughan explained. “Even when we ran and jumped them and tried to speed them up, they did a good job of making possessions long and slowing the game down.”
In the fourth, Mansfield could not find a way to make a run. Every time the Hornets scored, Needham responded with a basket of its own to only increase the excitement of the crowd, which the Rockets clearly fed off.
Boulter buried a three to start the quarter but Shaker answered right back with his fifth of the night. Vigeant knocked one down at the other end to bring Mansfield back within two only for Shaker to hit one from five or six feet behind the line.
Vaughan said, “He hit two that were 25-26 feet away and, the way that we defend, those are indefensible. You have to live with those.”
Boulter scored off an assist by Sam Goldberg but Shaughnessy got free for a corner three that was the dagger for the Rockets. Needham shot 7-for-8 from the line in the final minutes to seal the win and bring the fans storming out onto the court to celebrate.
“We were holding the ball longer than normal on possessions,” said Vaughan. “We were having a hard time reversing the ball. In the first half, I thought we played 24-25 feet away when we want to work 19 feet and in.”
Mansfield finished at 23-3, including 15-1 in the Hockomock League.
BROCKTON, Mass. – Mansfield has been known for its ball movement, decisive three point shooting and machine-like offense.
But they’re a pretty good defensive team as well — and the top-seeded Hornets proved that on Monday night.
In a game with points coming at a premium, Mansfield’s defense shined and its offense made just enough plays down the stretch to pick up a 43-39 win over #4 Bridgewater-Raynham in the D1 South Semifinals.
The Trojans came into the contest averaging 67.5 points per game. It marked just the second time that B-R was held under 50 points — the only other time was when Mansfield beat the Trojans (52-45) back in January.
“Talk about a fantastic game on both ends, by both teams on the defensive end,” said Mansfield head coach Mike Vaughan. “I don’t know if we can say our offense or their offense was bad, I think the defense on both ends was that good. We had to have a great game plan [defensively] and I think our guys executed it. B-R had a great game plan and they executed it too. I think it came down to a few late baskets, a couple of free throws down the stretch, a couple of big rebounds we were able to secure that put is in a position to win the game.
“What tremendous effort by B-R and what they took away from us. I’m proud as hell of our guys that they were able to execute our game plan, even in a grind. Sometimes it gets hard, you lose focus or you lose track. Every defensive possession mattered and I don’t think we gave up one that were I said OK we did what we had to do our best to minimize their opportunities.”
Though there weren’t many big runs, one of the most important stretches of the game came at the midway point of the final quarter. Bridgewater-Raynham used a 5-0 spurt to tie the game 35-35 on a three point play from EJ Dambreville (18 points, 13 rebounds) and a basket from John Tesson (eight points, eight rebounds) with 3:33 to play.
On the ensuing possession, with the shot clock in single digits, Mansfield had its response on the other end. Max Boen (eight points) drained a three to put the Hornets back up, 38-35, with just over three minutes to play. It was just Mansfield’s second three-pointer of the game. After making their first attempt of the game, the Hornets missed 15 straight until Boen’s shot.
“The three by Boen was huge, that was just a huge basket for us,” Vaughan said. ”Especially considering he missed some in the first half, a couple uncontested ones. He was bummed out a little in the locker room and I just said to him ‘Just go get one, shoot like yourself.’ And he did it. That’s what seniors do, that’s what good basketball players do. They find opportunities and he made it.”
The Hornets came up with a big stop on the other end as Dambreville was called for an offensive foul. On the offensive end, Mansfield used up the majority of the shot clock before Christian Weber found Sam Goldberg (11 points, 11 rebounds) down low. Goldberg was fouled and added a three throw to put Mansfield up 39-35 with just over two minutes to play.
On the defensive end, Sam Hyland came up with a big block for the Hornets. The Trojans got possession back but Bobby Long was whistled for an illegal screen to give Mansfield the ball back. Mansfield took all 30 seconds of the shot clock, unable to get a shot off before the buzzer.
But once again, Mansfield was disciplined on defense and stepped in to take a charge from Hesson.
“[B-R] is good and they’re talented and they can put five guys on the floor at any time that can score,” Vaughan said. “We preached for a couple of days at practice this week that we had to be disciplined, we had to keep the ball in front of us. This wasn’t the same B-R team we played a month and a half ago. I thought the guys answered the test. Guys had to take on some matchups – we had some mismatches in the post, we had help, guys got beat off the dribble, help defenders slid in to take the charge. Overall, what a great defensive effort from both teams and I’m proud of our guys that we were able to maintain that for 32 minutes.
Mansfield missed on the other end at the end of the shot clock but B-R couldn’t convert either. Goldberg hauled in the rebound – his fifth of the second half – and was fouled. He made both to put the Hornets up 41-35 with 20 seconds to play. B-R scored on the other end but Phil Vigeant (nine points, three rebounds), iced the game with two free throws with 11.7 seconds to play.
“I thought defensively they did a tremendous job of keeping us away from the hoop,” Vaughan said. “In the second half, I thought we did a better job of loosing them up and getting some back cuts scoring behind them. A couple times we didn’t score but we got fouls, which gave us opportunities late in the game to get to the line being in the bonus. Overall I was just happy with the focus, by both teams but more that we were able to maintain it for 32 minutes.”
Mansfield’s started the game with a terrific first possession, filled with plenty of ball movement and then a three from Vigeant. But that would be their last made three point until the final minutes of the game. The Hornets were just 1/9 from three point in the opening quarter.
However, Mansfield got an offensive boost from an unlikely source. Evan Christo, who had been one of the top defenders for the Hornets, came alive with four points and four rebounds in the opening quarter. Christo put Mansfield up 5-0 with a put back and then 9-4 with another late in the period.
He scored the opening basket of the second quarter and added a huge block in a one-on-one situation in the fourth quarter while Mansfield held on to a four point lead.
“He’s by far one of the most underrated players we’ve had here in terms of his contributions because he doesn’t score a lot of points night in and night out,” Vaughan said of Christo. “But talk about a big block, taking the guy one on one and then secured the rebound so it wasn’t a loose ball, it was our ball. Just the stuff he’s bringing to the table night and night out. He doesn’t need much praise to do it either. He’s just a tremendous young man who’s playing at a high level right now and defensively, he’s kind of our anchor right now.”
After taking a 16-15 lead into halftime, the Hornets fell behind twice in the third quarter, and even were tied with a minute to play in the third. However, John McCoy found Goldberg cutting to the basket and the senior drained two free throws to give the Hornets a four point lead (30-26) going into the fourth.
“We just had to stick to what we did well all year,” Goldberg said. “Shots weren’t falling but we had to just keep shooting and attacking the basket, get down hill. B-R did a great job of getting up on us so we utilized back door cuts and slips in the second half.
“They have a similar build that we do in that they’re athletic, medium sized guys. I thought our best strength defensively was being able to switch on everything. Being able to match their intensity and athleticism was huge for us.”
Goldberg scored nine of his 11 points and five of his 11 rebounds in the second half.
“I thought in the first half he was passive,” Vaughan said of the Hockomock League MVP. “When we came out of the locker room [at halftime] I told him this isn’t how you want to end your career. In the second half, I thought he did a better job of asserting himself on both ends, both offensively and defensively. Just a few points here and there, a couple of free throws, or a couple aggressive drives to the basket can swing a game like this either way. We just happened to be on the winning end.”
Mansfield boys basketball (23-2) advances to the D1 South Final to take on #3 Needham (19-4). It marks the fourth time since 2011 that the Hornets have reached the sectional final while this is Needham’s first ever appearance. The teams will square off on Friday at Taunton High. The time has yet to be announced by the MIAA.
Boys Basketball D1 South
#1 Mansfield, 71 vs. #8 Quincy, 43 – Final – Mansfield drained 12 three pointers and had a significant rebounding advantage to knock off the Presidents. Sam Goldberg had a team-high 12 points and hauled in eight rebounds. Tyler Boulter (11 points), Christian Weber (nine points), John McCoy (eight points), Phil Vigeant (eight points) Ryan Otto (six points) and Max Boen (five points, five rebounds) each had at least one trifecta for the Hornets. Mansfield advances to the Div. 1 South semifinal to face No. 4 Bridgewater-Ranyham.
#10 Foxboro, 40 @ #2 Westwood, 52 – Final – Foxboro cut the deficit to just three points with less than four minutes to play but couldn’t complete the comeback against the Tri-Valley League co-champion Wolverines. Joe Morrison (eight points) drained a three with just over three minutes to play to cut it to 42-39. However, Westwood finished the game with a 10-1 run to advance. Morrison held TVL MVP Tim Giovino scoreless in the first half. Giovino finished with 13 points – six on free throws and also hit a transition three. Senior Jamaine Few had a team-high 12 points while classmate Mark Clagg chipped in with seven points.
Hockey D1 South
#4 Franklin, 3 vs. #13 Brockton, 1 – Final – Franklin advances to the Div. 1 South quarterfinal and will face Framingham on Sunday, 3/5 at 4:45 p.m. at Gallo Arena in Bourne.
#8 Mansfield, 1 vs. #9 Xaverian, 2 – Final – Mansfield sophomore Coleman O’Brien tied the game in the second period but Xaverian retook the lead, scoring the game-winner within a minute. Tony Rullo had 33 saves for the Hornets.
Attleboro, 86 @ Durfee, 80 – Final – Attleboro erased a 10-point deficit to begin the final quarter, rattling a 16-2 run over the final three minutes of the game to earn a season sweep of the Hilltoppers. Trailing 78-70, Bombardier senior Jake Dunkley (28 points) drained a three and then junior Nate Douglas poured in nine straight points of his own. With Attleboro up 84-80 with 17 seconds to go, Lucas Boucicaut hit a pair of free throws to ice the game. Douglas finished with 20 points while freshman Qualeem Charles added 14 points and Elvin Sam chipped in with 10 points.
King Philip, 79 vs. Greater New Bedford, 67 – Final (OT)
Mansfield, 80 vs. Weymouth, 35 – Final – Mansfield set the tone early, jumping out to a 21-4 lead at the end of the first quarter. Phil Vigeant led the way with 13 points and five rebounds while Sam Goldberg added 11 points and six rebounds, Christian Weber had 10 points and six assists and Evan Christo added 10 points and three boards.
North Attleboro, 68 vs. Bishop Feehan, 51 – Final – North Attleboro senior Brent Doherty tied a career-high with 28 points as the Rocketeers picked up their seventh straight win. Big Red scored 24 points in the first quarter, building a double-digit lead then and never looking back. Doherty added a half court buzzer beater at the halftime buzzer to give North a 39-27 lead at the break. Senior Jonny Friberg added 16 points and 12 rebounds while classmate Kyle McCarthy chipped in with 11 points.
Attleboro, 94 vs. Durfee, 58 – Final
Mansfield, 54 vs. Abington, 59 – Final – Mansfield junior Meg Hill scored a team-high 21 points, added 10 rebounds and had four blocks and was named to the Roundball Classic all-tournament team. Ann Maher added 14 points for the Hornets and was also named to the all-tournament team.
North Attleboro, 42 vs. Bishop Feehan, 74 – Final
Oliver Ames, 51 @ Norwell, 34 – Final – Norwell cut a double-digit deficit down to six heading into the final quarter but the Tigers held the Clippers to just four points in the final frame. Kayla Raymond led OA with 19 points and 10 Rebounds while Abby Reardon finished with 13 points and five assists.
Attleboro, 3 vs. Dighton-Rehoboth/Seekonk, 3 – Final
Foxboro, 5 @ Blue Hills, 2 – Final
Franklin, 3 vs. Marshfield, 4 – Final
King Philip, 1 vs. Medway, 3 – Final
Mansfield, 3 @ Winthrop, 2 – Final
Stoughton, 3 vs. Norton, 1 – Final – Luke Bainton, Sean Doherty and Brendan Campbell each found the back of the net to help the Black Knights end the season with a win.
Franklin, 0 @ Mansfield/Oliver Ames, 2 – Final
King Philip, 0 @ Medfield, 3 – Final
Stoughton, 0 @ Ursuline Academy, 6 – Final
MANSFIELD, Mass. – Unlike some of the other teams that Mansfield will face on its state tournament run, the Hornets are not reliant on one or two scorers to power the offense. Instead, Mansfield utilizes its depth and can turn to a number of different players to score in its motion offense.
On Monday night in the nightcap of day one of the Roundball Classic against Brockton in the Albertini Gym, the Hornets showcased that depth with three players in double digits and 10 players on the scoresheet. Mansfield beat the Boxers 66-42 and advanced to the final of the tournament to face Weymouth.
“I’ve been out scouting the past couple days,” explained Mansfield coach Mike Vaughan. “Everyone’s talking about, it’s the single players versus the depth of the team and I think our scout is that the depth of our team is ultimately going to make this a potential team that can make a run.”
Even though a balanced attack is Mansfield’s strength, the Hornets also know that when they need baskets they can turn to senior Sam Goldberg. The forward put in another strong performance with a game-high 15 points to go along with six rebounds and five assists.
“I told him that he’s playing at an MVP-level right now,” said Vaughan. “He’s getting into a great rhythm, he’s not forcing it, he’s letting the game come to him.”
The Hornets controlled the game in the first quarter, but could not take advantage of the dominance because they could not make shots. Mansfield missed several layups and open looks from deep but still held a 12-6 lead behind four points each from Goldberg and classmate Phil Vigeant.
Mansfield broke the game wide open in the second. The Hornets closed out the half with a 13-2 run that opened up a 17-point lead by the break. Senior Benjamin Albanese got the run started with an offensive rebound in traffic, kicked it out to Max Boen who fired a pass to Vigeant for the layup.
Albanese added the next five points and then assisted on a three by Boen. Christian Weber finished the run with a drive to the basket for his lone hoop of the first half.
Vaughan said, “Their athleticism, I think, bothered us a little bit in the first quarter and probably made us play a little faster than we wanted. We settled down and saw the ball go through the bottom of the net a few times I think it changed the way we played.”
Brockton made a run to try and keep it close in the third quarter behind nine points from Quran Harris, but Mansfield continued to make the shots it needed, including Vigeant (12 points) drilling a three off a Weber pass to extend the lead back to 13.
“Phil’s just been steady all season,” said Vaughan. “He seems to be making a big shot when we need it the most. Tonight, we kind of felt like nothing was going right and then, bang, Phil steps up and knocks down a three at two different points of the game.”
Weber added a three-pointer and then Sam Hyland tossed an alley-oop to Goldberg. With just six seconds on the clock and the ball under the Brockton hoop, Mansfield turned to Weber to close out the quarter. The senior raced up court, weaved through traffic and hit a floater at the buzzer for a 46-30 lead.
“We had to talk to him at halftime and let him know that 1-for-6 and a couple of turnovers is not the way he needs to play,” said Vaughan. “He kept trying to force things to the basket…Once he made the three at the top of the key then everything started going for him.”
Weber (six assists) added five more of his 12 points in the fourth and Vigeant drilled another deep three. Ryan Otto and Goldberg each added four as the Hornets cruised to the victory and a spot in the final.
Mansfield (19-2, 15-1) will face Weymouth, coached by former Franklin head coach Dean O’Connor, in the final on Wednesday at 7:15.
Taunton, 72 @ Attleboro, 82 – Final – Taunton used a 13-0 run over the end of the third and the beginning of the fourth to cut the deficit to two (59-57) but Attleboro had a response of its own, rattling off a 15-4 run to secure the win. Andrew Milliken hit a pair of threes, Jake Dunkley added four points, Elvin Sam drained a three and freshman Qualeem Charles converted a putback to put Attleboro up 74-63 with just two minutes to go. Dunkley finished with a team-high 21 points, Sam added a career-high 14 points, Milliken had 13 points, Nate Douglas chipped in with 11 points and Charles notched a double-double with 10 points and 10 rebounds. Taunton senior Tommy MacLean dropped a game-high 25 points while Malik Charles, Dante Law and Lens Esquil each scored 10 points for the Tigers.
Canton, 66 @ Stoughton, 69 – Final – Stoughton junior Cam Andrews hit a deep three pointer with just seven seconds left to lift the Black Knights to a win. Andrews finished with 18 points for Stoughton. Canton sophomore Devin Foster scored a career-high 30 points for the Bulldogs.
Oliver Ames, 43 @ Mansfield, 61 – Final – Oliver Ames was able to keep pace with the Hornets for 16 minutes, trailing just 29-26 at halftime but Mansfield created separation in the third quarter and never looked back. The Hornets outscored the visitors 16-7 in the third quarter to take a 45-33 lead going into the final period. Mansfield senior Sam Goldberg scored 17 points and hauled in 12 rebounds while classmate Evan Christo was a perfect 6-6 from the field for 13 points. Phil Vigeant added nine points and Max Boen had seven points and seven rebounds. Nick Welch led OA with 16 points and Dylan Mahoney chipped in with 12 points.
Sharon, 78 @ Milford, 65 – Final – After a high scoring first quarter (23-22, Sharon), the Eagles took a seven point advantage (42-35) in the locker room at halftime. Sharon extended its lead to double-digits in the third, eventually taking a 61-50 lead into the final quarter. Milford cut the deficit to five, 65-60, with 4:40 to play but Sharon closed the game with a 13-5 run. Senior Ricardo Ripley connected on a three in the run, Tommy Modelevsky came up with a timely steal and Sharon was efficient at the free throw line down the stretch. Ripley finished with a team-high 20 points, junior Malik Lorquet had 17 points and 15 rebounds and sophomore Alex Kaufmann chipped in with 15 points.
Attleboro, 71 @ Taunton, 44 – Final – Jordyn Lako scored a career-high 24 points for the Bombardiers.
Stoughton, 74 @ Canton, 62 – Final (OT) – Freshman Shyanne Trinh scored 22 of her career-high 32 points in the second half and overtime to lead the Black Knights. Senior Lili Njiem added 14 points, Val Whalen added 12 points, and freshman Aliyah Wright chipped in with 10 points. Junior Jordan Motley added 13 rebounds and seven blocks. Canton’s Emma Murphy and Jess Powers each had 12 points.
King Philip, 52 @ Franklin, 58 – Final – Franklin rallied from 10 points down to start the fourth quarter with a 27-11 run to close out the game. Ali Brigham led the way for the Panthers with 17 points to help Franklin move within one game of tournament qualification. Shannon O’Connor was the top scorer for KP with 14 points.
Mansfield, 61 @ Oliver Ames, 49 – Final –The Hornets scored 40 points in the second half to close out the league campaign with a win. Jen Peel paced Mansfield with 17 points, while Meg Hill chipped in with eight points in the second half and pulled down 11 rebounds. Brenna Burkett was OA’s top scorer with 10 points and Niyera Mitchell had nine.
Milford, 38 @ Sharon, 41 – Final – Emma Eberhardt scored a team-high 15 points and added five steal and three blocks for the Eagles. She also went 3-of-4 from the line in the final 30 seconds to seal the win. Shira Stoller had 12 points and 10 rebounds in the win.
FRANKLIN, Mass. – Another chapter in the storied rivalry between Mansfield and Franklin is complete.
And it looks a lot like last year.
For the second straight season, Mansfield won the second game of the series on the road in Franklin after the Panthers won the first contest. This time, the Hornets prevailed 60-43.
Last year’s two contests mirrored each other because of big comebacks from the visiting team.
This year’s two contests mirrored each other because of double digit victories.
Mansfield raced out to a 17-6 lead after the first quarter, with senior Sam Goldberg (12 points, eight rebounds, four assists) putting an exclamation mark on the frame with an off balance three at the buzzer.
In comparison, it was the Hornets who were held in check to just five points in the first matchup. It took until the 3:49 of the third quarter of the first game for Mansfield to reach 17 points the first time around.
“We got a much better start than the first game,” said Mansfield head coach Mike Vaughan. “It’s probably very similar to the first game. After the first game, CJ [Neely] said that at some point they got a little lucky that we missed shots. And to be honest, I have to say the same thing. We got a little lucky they missed some early shots and we were able to capitalize on and create a little separation. I thought our defense was really solid.
“The score doesn’t really represent the level of play and the level that Franklin’s at…that’s a dynamite program that’s going to do great in the state tournament. We’re fortunate we’re playing better, we’re more consistent. Our defensive energy has been fantastic. Now its just a matter of taking care of KP on Tuesday.”
As Mansfield was able to keep the Panthers from scoring the post — largely due to double teams and strong help defense on Franklin center Connor Peterson — the Panthers found life in outside shooting from the hand of Connor Goldstein (21 points).
The Panthers had their best offensive quarter in the second with Goldstein recording 12 of the team’s 18 points to cut the deficit to single digits, 31-24, at halftime.
“[Our post defense] was great,” Vaughan said. “I thought Evan [Christo] did a good job of coming in and that changed our matchups. It kind of eliminates Sam from early foul trouble and moves him off the ball to be a help defender. We were able to do some things with two forwards. Peterson’s a great player, one of the best in the league. For us to be able to neutralize him, we had to throw two bodies at him.”
It looked like that momentum of Franklin’s strong second quarter was going to carry into the third quarter when the Panthers got a steal and easy bucket to start the quarter and a three point play from Jalen Samuels (eight points, five rebounds) cut the lead to 33-29.
But in true Mansfield fashion, as they did time and time again throughout the game, the Hornets answered.
It was an 8-0 run that spanned nearly the rest of the quarter. First, Max Boen (14 points, six rebounds, three assists), scored off a feed from Phil Vigeant (12 points, three assists). Then it was Evan Christo from Boen, followed by two from Boen from Goldberg. Goldberg converted at the rim himself and Tyler Boulter added two free throws to make it 43-29. Goldstein added a three before the buzzer to cut into the lead for Franklin, ending a scoreless drought of over five minutes.
“We talked at halftime about getting one third quarter run,” Vaughan said. “We knew they’d make adjustments and come out and make a push at it, and they did. That’s just a sign of a good team. They cut into it. We had to weather the storm and go on our run ourselves.”
It looked like Franklin had some momentum to build off of when Goldstein drained another corner three.
But on Mansfield’s ensuing possession, Vigeant answered with a trifecta of his own to swing the momentum right back in the visitors’ favor.
“I think it’s a credit to Mansfield, they did a great job. They came in well prepared obviously, they always do,” Neely said. “It’s two good teams that are going to battle like they always do. It’s 3-3 over the past couple of years. We know it’s going to be a battle. Sometimes shots are going for one side and not for the other. And big runs happen and all of a sudden…you know. When things get tough, you have to get back to the basics of what makes your team great instead of panicking and forcing things. I thought we forced things too much tonight.”
Vigeant’s three was the start of what turned out to be a 12-0 game-sealing run from the Hornets. Goldberg added three free throws, Vigeant scored two straight field goals and Boen scored on a feed from Christian Weber (12 points) to put Mansfield up 58-37 with 2:25 to go.
“It’s huge because you can’t have guys take plays off, you can’t have guys lay an egg,” Vaughan said of the balanced scored. “I thought Max played well early, I thought Weber had some huge plays, I thought Goldberg stepped in and made some plays when he had to. Those are the things you have to do to beat good teams. You have to maximize as many possessions as you can.”
Similar to how Franklin was about to limit Mansfield’s offense to just 25% shooting from the floor in the first game, the Hornets held Franklin to just 30% from the floor and the Panthers attempted just seven free throws.
“These games never disappoint,” Vaughan said. “They’ve been great for a long time. The level of play and energy and passion from the kids is second to none. You can’t beat it. There’s no lack of coaching, there’s no lack of passion and effort from either team. We were fortunate to get this one, they got the first one.”
Mansfield boys basketball (16-2 overall, 13-1 league) takes over sole possession of first place in the Kelley-Rex division with the win. The Hornets can clinch a share of their fifth straight division title with a win on Tuesday at King Philip. Franklin (14-4, 12-2) will attempt to bounce back on Tuesday at Attleboro.
MANSFIELD, Mass. – As if Mansfield didn’t have a good enough first half, building an impressive 43-14 lead by the break, the Hornets were nearly flawless in the third quarter to put an end to any comeback bids.
The Hornets went 11/13 from the field in the third quarter, running away with an 83-41 win over the visiting Rocketeers of North Attleboro.
Even more impressive, the Hornets had 10 assists on the 11 made field goals — the lone bucket without a field goal was a putback on a miss. The Hornets did have four turnovers in the period but had just one missed shot that resulted in a defensive rebound for North.
“I thought right from the get-go we did a tremendous job of setting the tone defensively,” said Mansfield head coach Mike Vaughan. “Then offensively we picked our spots and got into a nice rhythm. We picked our spots when to dribble, when to keep the ball moving, when to break guys down off the dribble. The point totals were awesome to me, getting that many guys in the book and scoring six, eight, 12, 15 points is a good thing.”
Christian Weber had a terrific game with 15 points, six rebounds and five assists — scoring six points and adding two assists in the third quarter — while Sam Goldberg added 15 points and four rebounds. Max Boen recorded 14 points and eight rebounds after missing one game with an injury, Tyler Boulter netted eight points and Evan Christo finished with seven points and three rebounds.
In the third quarter, Goldberg netted eight points, Weber had six, Boen had four, Ryan Otto and Phil Vigeant each hit a three and Boulter added two. Ben Albanese had four assists, Weber had three, Vigeant had two and Sam Hyland had one helper.
“We made the right choices on both ends of the floor,” Vaughan said. “I thought we did a good job of when we helped, and when we didn’t, and we never really over-rotated. Offensively I thought Weber did a great job in transition of picking when we go and put pressure and when we pull out and reverse. I thought the combination was good. We’re getting healthy and as we get our sea legs underneath us a group, I think this is a little bit of a sign we can be down the stretch. They’re starting to believe and good things are starting to happen.”
Things couldn’t have gone much better for the Hornets to start the game while things couldn’t have been much worse for the Rocketeers.
North’s Brent Doherty (seven points) scored the opening basket of the game but Mansfield came storming back to build an 11-2 lead midway through the first quarter. The second four minutes continued to go in Mansfield’s favor and the Hornets held a 21-4 advantage after just eight minutes.
Mansfield shot 8/18 from the field in the first quarter, including a trio of trifectas. Meanwhile, North Attleboro was just 2/15 field (0/6 from deep), including misses on some open looks.
“All the credit in the world goes to Mansfield,” said North Attleboro head coach Sean Mulkerrins. “Their kids shared the ball well, they made shots early and they are tough team to play against from behind. When you get behind a team like Mansfield, the kids naturally start to press a little bit. We talked at halftime about still trying to do our stuff and be us and not get out of our comfort zone. Mansfield defended really well, they shot really well and that’s why they are who they are.”
The Hornets kept up its efficient offense in the second quarter, shooting 10/16 from the field with four more assists. Mansfield totaled 20 assists for the game.
“The ball distribution was great. Everyone was moving the ball, it wasn’t just one or two guys. I thought everyone did a good job sharing the basketball.”
Mansfield (11-2 overall, 9-1 Hockomock) is back in action in a big non-league clash with Bridgewater-Raynham on Sunday at 5:15. North Attleboro (8-5, 5-4) will take on Milford at 11:45AM at the Dunkin Donuts Center in a battle of Davenport division leaders.
Attleboro, 59 @ Taunton, 68 – Final – Tommy MacLean scored 18 points for the Tigers and Lou Vendrell chipped in with 17. Taunton held Attleboro to six points in the fourth quarter to pull out the victory.
Stoughton, 65 @ Canton, 70 – Final – Sophomore Devin Foster paced the Bulldogs with 17 points and Tony Harris scored 15 points and pulled down nine boards, as Canton held off a “furious” rally by the Black Knights. Jake Verille scored a career-high 14 in the win. Cam Andrews had a game-high 24 points for Stoughton.
King Philip, 49 @ Franklin, 64 – Final – Freshman Chris Edgehill scored a career-high 16 points for the Panthers and Josh Macchi had 14 in the win.
Mansfield, 72 @ Oliver Ames, 42 – Final – The Hornets broke the game open with an 18-7 second quarter to take a 20-point lead by halftime. Christian Weber led the way for Mansfield with 17 points and Tyler Boulter added 15. Phil Vigeant (11 points) and Sam Goldberg (10) each reached double-digits for the Hornets.
Milford, 65 @ Sharon, 42 – Final – Zack Tamagni scored 22 points to lead the Hawks to the division win. Anthony Arcudi added 15 points and Kayden Kelly scored eight points and pulled in 18 rebounds. Sharon was led by Jimmy Fitzhenry with 11 points.
Taunton, 28 @ Attleboro, 66 – Final
Canton, 41 @ Stoughton, 54 – Final – Val Whalen had another strong game for the Black Knights, scoring 19 points and pulling down 11 rebounds. Freshman Aliyah Wright added 10 points for Stoughton. Hannah Jerrier had a team-high 11 points for the Bulldogs.
Foxboro, 47 @ North Attleboro, 53 – Final – Ashley Ahern had a team-high 16 points for the second straight game to help North Attleboro take a two-game lead on the Warriors in the Davenport division. Samantha Taggart also scored 16 for North. Ashley Sampson had a game-high 21 for the Warriors and Lauren Flahive added nine fourth quarter points and pulled in nine rebounds in the loss that ended a six-game win streak for Foxboro.
Franklin, 67 @ King Philip, 36 – Final – Kate Morse was the top scorer for the Panthers with 15 points. Megan O’Connell added 11 for Franklin, while Ali Brigham and Erin Skidmore each scored 10 and Carli Koffinke had nine points. KP was led by Shannon O’Connor with 14.
Sharon, 37 @ Milford, 48 – Final – The Eagles battled back to cut the lead to eight points in the fourth quarter, but Milford’s Kate Irwin scored eight of her 15 points in the quarter, including 5-of-6 from the line, to seal the win for the Hawks. Emma Eberhardt led the Eagles with a team-high 13 points and pulled in 12 rebounds, while Shira Stoller scored eight and grabbed seven rebounds.
Stoughton, 1 @ Attleboro, 2 – Final – P.J. Elliott scored a power play goal in the second period that turned out to be the game-winner. Jake Parker had the other goal for Attleboro. Ryan Chipman had the Stoughton goal. All three of the game’s goals were scored in the second period.
Masconomet Quad (Oliver Ames) – Oliver Ames went 1-2 on the day, beating Burlington 47-24 but falling to Arlington (37-31) and to Masconomet (40-39). Anthony Berksza (145), Jay Fruci (220) and Dean Pacini (195) each went 3-0 on the day for the Tigers.
Canton, 87 @ Ashland, 89 – Final
Oliver Ames, 75 @ Franklin, 94 – Final
Milford, 106 @ Sharon, 62 – Final
Canton, 82 @ Ashland, 93 – Final
Oliver Ames, 57 @ Franklin, 113 – Final
Milford, 90 @ Sharon, 80 – Final