Thursday’s Schedule & Scoreboard – 01/25/18

Today’s games are listed below.

Boys Basketball
Mansfield, 69 @ North Attleboro, 47 – FinalMansfield poured in 23 points in the first quarter, shooting nearly 80% in the frame, to grab a double-digit lead it never let go of. North kept pace with the Hornets in the second quarter (11-9 Mansfield) but pulled away even more in the third, taking a 50-30 advantage into the fourth. Mansfield seniors John McCoy (10 rebounds) and Sam Hyland (six rebounds) each had 17 points, a career-high for Hyland. Junior Josh Montague had a team-high 12 points and five rebounds for North, junior Jake Petersen had nine points and four rebounds and junior Matt Seavey added seven points.

Girls Basketball
Canton, 56 @ Taunton, 46 – FinalClick here for a Recap and Photo Gallery from this game.

Milford, 67 vs. Norwood, 42 – FinalMilford senior Kate Irwin poured in career-high 33 points, including her 1,000th career point on a free throw with 1:58 left in the game. Needing 32 points to reach the milestone entering the game, Irwin put on a show with her first ever 30-point game. She is the first Milford player to hit 1,000 since 2007 and second ever female player to do so (Jenna Macchi, 2003).

Boys Swimming
Attleboro, 37 @ Taunton, 53 – Final
Canton @ Mansfield, 7:00

Girls Swimming
Attleboro, 49 @ Taunton, 44 – Final
Canton @ Mansfield, 7:00

Gymnastics
Canton, 108.45 @ Oliver Ames, 143 – Final

Tuesday’s Schedule & Scoreboard – 01/23/18

Today’s games are listed below.

Boys Basketball
North Attleboro, 55 @ Attleboro, 52 – FinalTrailing by five in the fourth quarter, North Attleboro junior Nate Gonsalves drained a three to spark an 11-2 run for Big Red. Gonsalves then converted a layup with just over a minute to play, giving the Rocketeers a 51-50 lead. Ethan Friberg and Evan Rosenberg also scored in the run, and Josh Montague scored with just under a minute to play to make it 53-50. Attleboro’s Qualeem Charles and Montague traded two free throws apiece but the Bombardiers’ three-point attempt at the buzzer was just long. North Attleboro had nine players make the score sheet, led by Montague’s 16. Derek Shanks had a career-high 11 points while Gonsalves finished with eight. Dom Victor led Attleboro with 16 points, Charles added 10 points and sophomore Bryant Ciccio chipped in with nine points.

Canton, 46 @ Franklin, 74 – FinalFranklin raced out to a 17-6 lead at the end of the first quarter and built a 33-16 lead heading into the break in a big win over Canton. The Panthers extended the lead to 57-36 after three quarters. Junior Jalen Samuels and sophomore Chris Edgehill each scored 22 points in the win for the Panthers.

Foxboro, 45 @ Taunton, 55 – FinalThe Tigers extended their lead in each of the first three quarters and held off Foxboro’s late push to finish a win. Taunton led 13-7 after one, and then by 11 following the second (28-17) and third quarters (44-33). Foxboro cut the deficit to five in the fourth quarter (50-45) but the Tigers slammed the door shut. Senior Lens Esquil had a team-high 18 points while classmate Malik Charles added 10 points for the Tigers. Senior Joe Morrison netted a game-high 20 points for Foxboro while sophomore Brandon Borde chipped in with 10 points.

Stoughton, 60 @ King Philip, 55 – FinalClick here for a recap of this game.

Sharon, 53 @ Mansfield, 81 – FinalSharon cut the deficit to seven early in the second quarter but Mansfield rattled off a 16-4 run to close the half, creating a double-digit lead it never surrendered. Mansfield senior John McCoy had a team-high 21 points while Sam Hyland had a terrific all-around game with a career-high 16 points, nine assists, seven rebounds and two steals. Sharon senior Malik Lorquet had a team-high 18 points and 14 rebounds while Jimmy Fitzhenry added 12 points.

Milford, 36 @ Oliver Ames, 55 – FinalOliver Ames held Milford to eight points in the first, and nine in the second before building a double-digit advantage in the second half. OA senior Jack Spillane scored a game-high 20 points to lead the Tigers while Ethan Eckstrom and Matt Muir each chipped in with nine points. Milford senior Andrew Fraioli had 13 points and 15 rebounds for the Scarlet Hawks.

Girls Basketball
Attleboro, 50 @ North Attleboro, 49 – FinalSam Pierce knocked down the game-winning free throw with eight seconds remaining. The senior forward finished with 18 points and 10 rebounds in the win. Nyah Thomas also had a double-double for the Bombardiers with 11 points, 11 boards, and five steals. North got 13 points from Julia Santos and 12 points from Julia Feid.

Franklin, 52 @ Canton, 26 – Final Franklin had seven players score at least five points in the game and put in what head coach John Leighton called the “best defensive effort” of the season by holding Canton to four points in the first half. Megan O’Connell was the top scorer for the Panthers with 12 points, while Breanna Atwood added nine and Ali Brigham had eight.

Taunton, 27 @ Foxboro, 85 – FinalClick here for a Recap and Photo Gallery from this game.

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

Mansfield, 55 @ Sharon, 27 – FinalMeg Hill scored 21 points to lead the Kelley-Rex leading Hornets to a road win. Ann Maher added nine for Mansfield. Evanjuline Elisma and Telishya Herbert each scored nine points for the Eagles.

Oliver Ames, 60 @ Milford, 45 – FinalOliver Ames built a 19-point lead at halftime that was cut down to 11 heading into the final frame, and down to nine with under four minutes to play, but the Tigers finished with an 9-3 run to close the game. Kayla Raymond paced the Tigers with 20 points and 14 rebounds while Alex Sheldon notched a career-high 16 points. Senior Abby Reardon added 10 points and seven assists for the Tigers. Milford’s Kate Irwin had 16 points.

Boys Swimming
Stoughton @ Canton, 4:30
Oliver Ames, 108 @ Mansfield, 72 – Final
Taunton vs. Coyle & Cassidy, 4:00

Girls Swimming
Stoughton @ Canton, 4:30
Oliver Ames, 105 @ Mansfield, 65 – Final
Taunton vs. Coyle & Cassidy, 4:00

Wrestling
Taunton, 24 @ Josiah Quincy Upper School, 54 – FinalTaunton picked up wins from Josh Grasso (132), Guerard Theodore (145), Tyler Kennedy (160), Candido Santos, and Woudanly Danger (220).

Boys Gymnastics
Attleboro @ Newton North, TBD

Tuesday’s Schedule & Scoreboard – 01/16/18

Today’s games are listed below.

Boys Basketball
Franklin, 76 @ Attleboro, 72 – Final (OT)Franklin erased a five-point deficit over the final 90 seconds to send the game into overtime and then outscored the Bombardiers 8-4 in the final period to earn the win. Paul Mahon hit the tying three with less than a minute to play and then hit another triple early in overtime to put Franklin up 73-68. Jalen Samuels poured in a career-high 28 points along with 17 rebounds to lead the Panthers. Samuels scored eight of his points between the fourth and overtime. Sophomore Chris Edgehill added 20 points for Franklin. For Attleboro, sophomore Bryant Ciccio had a career-high 19 points, including 11 points in the fourth quarter to help the Bombardiers build a lead. Kevin Velazquez added a career-best 14 points while sophomore Qualeem Charles had 13 points and 11 rebounds.

Foxboro 48 @ Canton, 61 – FinalClick here for a recap of this game.

Mansfield, 73 @ King Philip, 54 – FinalAfter leading by just three at the half (34-31), Mansfield outscored the Warriors by eight in the third and then dropped 21 points in the final quarter to pick up a division win. Senior John McCoy paced the Hornets with 20 points and seven rebounds while Khristian Conner dropped 16 points. Sam Hyland added 12 points, six rebounds and three assists for the Hornets. KP’s Bruce Santillus scored a career-high 17 points.

Milford, 49 @ North Attleboro, 36 – FinalNorth Attleboro limited Milford to just 14 points at halftime, but could only score 16 of its own. The Scarlet Hawks offense came alive in the second half, outscoring North 35-20. Junior Brendan White scored nine of his game-high 16 points in the third quarter while Kayden Kelley had 10 points and 13 rebounds and Andrew Fraioli finished with nine points and nine rebounds. North Attleboro junior Josh Montague led the Rocketeers with 12 points.

Oliver Ames, 60 @ Taunton, 61 – FinalTaunton sophomore Dante Law hit a deep, contested three with just three seconds left to help Taunton earn a 61-60 decision over Oliver Ames. OA took the lead on a bucket from junior Ethan Eckstrom with 20 seconds left before Law hit the game-winner. OA held a 57-51 lead with five minutes to play but Taunton used a 7-1 run to tie the game. Taunton senior Lens Esquil had a game-high 19 points while junior John Martins had a career-high 13 points, including a trio of three-pointers in the second half. Law and Malik Charles each had 10 points. Jack Spillane led OA with 20 points while Matt Muir scored a career-high 16 points for the visitors.

Sharon, 65 @ Stoughton, 91 – FinalStoughton connected on 16 three-pointers en route to its best offensive performance of the season. Senior Cam Andrews scored 26 points (five three-pointers) while classmate Colin Sanda (five three-pointers) added a career-high 17 points and sophomore Ajahn Rue (four three-pointers) had a career-high 18 points, seven assists, and seven steals. Malik Loruqet led the Eagles with 20 points.

Girls Basketball
Attleboro, 51 @ Franklin, 63 – FinalClick here for a Recap and Photo Gallery from this game.

Canton, 34 @ Foxboro, 79 – FinalAshley Sampson poured in 28 points as Foxboro continued its unbeaten start in the league. Lily Sykes added 15 points and Katelyn Mollica had 11 for the Warriors.

King Philip, 28 @ Mansfield, 53 – FinalMeg Hill recorded another double-double with 18 points and 11 rebounds and also had four blocks. Ann Maher scored nine points and Maggie Danehy and Emily Vigeant each had seven for Mansfield. KP was led by Catherine Cummings with 11 points, while Faith Roy chipped in with five.

North Attleboro, 41 @ Milford, 51 – FinalKate Irwin scored 19 points for the Hawks, who move back into a second-place tie in the Davenport. Emily Piergustavo added 13 points for Milford.

Taunton, 22 @ Oliver Ames, 66 – FinalOliver Ames jumped out to a 32-18 lead at halftime and put on a dominant second-half performance to earn the win. OA senior Kayla Raymond continued her strong play with 28 points, five rebounds, and five steals while Ally Scolnick added 11 points in the win. OA head coach Laney Holbrook noted sophomore Erin Holmberg played great defense for the host Tigers.

Stoughton, 45 @ Sharon, 36 – FinalStoughton junior Hailey Egan dropped a career-best 14 points to lead the Black Knights to a division win on the road at Sharon. Senior Val Whalen added a team-high 13 rebounds while freshman Sydnee Hyacinthe had a game-high five steals for the Black Knights.

Boys Swimming
Oliver Ames, 94.5 @ Attleboro, 72.5 – Final

Girls Swimming
Oliver Ames, 92.5 @ Attleboro, 70.5 – Final

Boys Gymnastics
Attleboro @ Braintree, 7:00

Sunday’s Schedule & Scoreboard – 01/14/18

Today’s games are listed below.

Boys Basketball
Attleboro, 71 @ Oliver Ames, 57 – FinalClick here for a recap of this game.

Mansfield, 72 vs. Hanover, 44 – FinalMansfield senior Tyler Boulter connected on five three-pointers, scoring a season-high 17 points to lead the Hornets over the defending D3 state champions in an endowment game. Senior Sam Hyland added 13 points, four rebounds and four assists while both Damani Scott and Justin Vine had 10 points apiece.

Girls Basketball
Mansfield, 45 vs. St. Anthony’s, 56 – FinalMeg Hill had her second double-double of the weekend to lead the Hornets. Hill finished with 15 points, 12 rebounds, and five blocks. Maggie Danehy just missed out on a double-double of her own, scoring 13 points and pulling down nine boards. Mady Bendanillo had eight points, five assists, and four steals against strong competition from New York.

Sharon, 55 vs. Holliston, 56 – Final (OT)Click here for a Recap and Photo Gallery from this game.

Elias Lifts Franklin To Key Division Win Over Mansfield

Franklin boys basketball
Franklin’s Jalen Samuels dunks in the first half against Mansfield. (Ryan Lanigan/HockomockSports.com)
 
ByRyanLanigan_2016FollowRyanLanigan_2016
 
 
FRANKLIN, Mass. – Having three legitimate offensive options has made Franklin one of the top teams in the area. But its now safe to say senior Matt Elias gives the Panthers a fourth.

Senior Paul Mahon, junior Jalen Samuels and sophomore Chris Edgehill have been reliable options for the Panthers over the past year and a half, but Elias has elevated his game this season.

The senior sharpshooter scored a career-high 17 points, connecting on four three-pointers to lead the Panthers to a key 67-52 win over Mansfield, putting the teams into a first-place tie in the Kelley-Rex. It also marked Franklin’s first win in its current gym, which opened in 2014.

“Elias had a huge game,” said Franklin head coach CJ Neely. “He’s a silent assassin. When he’s playing well, we’re playing well. You go right down the line, we have guys that can play but he’s really stepped up for us all season long, he’s had big shot after big shot. He’s shooting with a lot of confidence, he’s playing with a lot of confidence and that’s what we’re going to need if we’re going to win games like tonight.”

It wasn’t Elias’ first big scoring output of the season, but it may have been his most valuable. It seemed almost all 17 of his points either gave Franklin a big boost or halted Mansfield from gaining any momentum of its own.

He drained a three just seconds after Mansfield hit their first triple, and then another just minutes later to erase Mansfield’s second — and final — lead of the game.

In the third quarter, Edgehill (14 points), the team’s leading scorer entering Friday night’s game, was forced to the bench after picking up his fourth foul with four minutes to go in the frame. Although Mansfield closed the gap some, Elias hit his third three of the game to make it 45-33 and the keep the Hornets at bay.

And after Mansfield was called for an offensive foul with under a minute to play, Elias beat the buzzer with a putback on the offensive end — a potential five-point swing — to keep Franklin up 47-36 going into the final period.

“Those five points were huge,” Neely said. “Jalen and Chris were both out so we were trying to survive that stretch as long as we could. Obviously having both those guys out is not ideal, it’s not how you draw it up. But I was saying if we could keep the lead around 10 we’d in in great shape. Matt’s been there for us all season and he was there again tonight for us and I’m proud of them.”

Elias then opened the fourth quarter with his fourth triple of the night, extending the lead to 50-37. And then with five minutes to play, after Mansfield gained some momentum off of an offensive putback, Elias came down the other end and converted a traditional three-point play to make it 54-42.

“Matt Elias went out and has a night for himself, talk about an all-star performance,” said Mansfield head coach Mike Vaughan. “That’s what he’s capable of doing, he’s put in the time. If there was an MVP tonight, it has to go to him. Every time I thought we were on a run or going to close the gap, Matt throws his ceiling shot through the bottom of the night.”

After a frantic first quarter, the Panthers held a 17-13 advantage. Mansfield’s offense shot 50% from the field but had seven turnovers. Things didn’t get any better for the Hornets in the second quarter either.

Franklin continued its solid play on both ends of the court, going 6-for-11 from the field while Mansfield’s turnover woes continued. The Hornets had eight turnovers in the second quarter alone (15 first half total) while shooting just 2-for-13 from the floor, including 0-for-8 from downtown.

“We got some looks in the first quarter and they didn’t fall,” Vaughan said. “We got tight, started to press, we started looking to the officials for calls. I think we tried to win the game in one possession, everyone wanted to be a superhero instead of just chipping away and doing what we do. We just dug ourselves too big of a hole.”

The Panthers outscored Mansfield 14-7 in the quarter and took a 31-20 lead into the halftime break.

“I know CJ praises his team and also criticizes his team when he feels like they were outplayed…tonight they were definitely not outplayed,” Vaughan said. “[Franklin] did an awesome job, they took things away, they were well prepared. Simple things that people in the stands might not notice, they did a really good job taking away. They played with a lot more energy, a lot more passion. They played with a chip on their shoulder and we kind of came in and laid down like things were going to be handed to us.”

While Mansfield made small runs throughout the second half, the Panthers pushed their lead to 18 by opening the second half on a 9-2 run. Samuels (18 points, six rebounds) drove to the basket for two, Mahon (six points, three rebounds) drained a three, Samuels converted at the rim again and Jack Rodgers hit a pair of free throws to make it 40-22.

Mansfield got it back to single digits with a 9-2 run of its own, but Elias’ third triple put an end to that surge.

When the Hornets got it back to single digits later in the fourth quarter on a drive by Sam Hyland (six points, seven rebounds), Elias’ three-point play pushed the lead back to 12.

“We tried to take away some of their best options,” Neely said of his defense. Mansfield finished with a season-high 26 turnovers. “They are a tough team to stop, they are one of the best offensive teams around. The way they move the ball and play together is kind of reminiscent of what we do so it’s always going to be a battle. But I think the guys really bought into the scout. We knew we had to be focused for the entire 32 minutes.”

“It’s been a long time,” Vaughan said of having so many turnovers. “My first couple of years we averaged around 20 a game and that was not fun. I think we had 14 or 15 at the half, which is too many. At the end of the day they were playing man to man, they weren’t pressing, they weren’t doubling, they weren’t doing anything special. Granted our shot percentage deserved to be low because they were good defensively but turnovers…that’s careless. That’s not moving, that’s bad concentration. Turnovers you can control, most of them. Anything beyond 12 or 13, that’s too many.”

John McCoy led Mansfield with 14 points and four rebounds while Tyler Boulter and Ryan Otto (six rebounds) each had 10 points. Damani Scott finished with eight points and 10 rebounds.

Franklin boys basketball (5-1 Hockomock, 8-1 overall) is back in action on Tuesday with a trip to Attleboro. Mansfield boys basketball (5-1, 7-2) will try to bounce back on Sunday against Hanover in an endowment game (won’t count towards tournament record) at 5:30.

Mansfield Escapes With Win After Late Taunton Surge

Mansfield boys basketball
Taunton’s Malik Charles looked to make a pass while being defended by Mansfield’s Nick Ferraz. (Ryan Lanigan/HocomockSports.com)

MANSFIELD, Mass. – Taunton’s comeback would probably have been enough to beat most teams in the league, and most teams in the area.

But the Tigers learned the hard way that you can’t leave the door open, even slightly, against Mansfield.

Taunton overcame a double-digit second-half deficit to take a fourth-quarter lead – its first advantage since the opening quarter – but it was the Hornets that made the plays down the stretch to earn a 61-56 victory.

Click here for a photo gallery from this game.

Mansfield held a 15-point point lead (44-29) in the first minute of the second half after Sam Hyland drained a three, and led 50-42 going into the final quarter.

But Taunton’s full-court pressure started to pay dividends in the final quarter. Sophomore Prince Brown converted a layup and junior Lou Vendrell (16 points) finished a traditional three-point play to get the Tigers within three.

Mansfield’ John McCoy (16 points, five rebounds) snapped the run with a bucket, but Taunton sophomore Dante Law (12 points, nine rebounds, seven assists) took a feed from freshman Diamond Blakely and splashed a three to get the visitors within two, 52-50, with five minutes to go.

The three sparked a 9-0 run for the Tigers as Vendrell followed with a triple of his own to give Taunton the lead. Mansfield missed a pair of threes and a putback attempt on the offensive end. Blakely hit the front end of a one-and-one to create a two-point margin, and senior Lens Esquil (19 points, 10 rebounds) forced a travel with a good defensive play to get Taunton the ball back.

Vendrell cashed in on a feed from Blakely to put Taunton up 56-52 with just under three minutes to play. But that would be the end of the Tigers’ night offensively.

Despite getting back-to-back stops defensively, Taunton had a turnover on the offensive end and was whistled for a travel on the defensive rebound. Mansfield’s cashed in when Hyland drove baseline for an easy two, making it a one-possession game.

The Tigers once again had a turnover with Khristian Conner sniffing out a pass, but the junior couldn’t convert at the free throw line. Taunton went to the free throw line on the other end but missed the front end of the one-and-one situation.

Once again, Mansfield seized the opportunity with McCoy taking his man one-on-one and finishing nicely at the rim to tie the game with a minute to go. Taunton’s offense once again went without a shot as a loose ball was pounced on by Hyland, giving the Hornets possession with 42 seconds to play.

On the ensuing possession, Hyland ended up with the ball on the way to the basket but after sucking the defense in, he dished to senior Justin Vine in the corner, who buried the go-ahead triple with 21 seconds to go. Taunton’s attempt at a tying three came up short and Conner iced the game with a pair of free throws.

“Taunton had a game plan and a method of what they were trying to accomplish,” said Mansfield head coach Mike Vaughan. “I thought we did a good job of dealing with it, I thought they disrupted our rhythm a little bit. We were still able to build a lead and get the ball to drop some. I thought defensively we did a really good job through three quarters and that helped us build that lead. I think their style of play wore on us. I think fatigue, mental fatigue, it all started to kick in.

“I think that was probably as good of a game plan that Taunton has had that they stuck with. Charlie [Dacey] has those kids playing hard and they did a lot of really good things. I’m happy and feel fortunate we got out of here with a win. If that game went on another minute or two, I’m not sure if its the same result. A couple of bounces, a couple of calls that went our way in the final minute helped move us in the right direction.”

Click here for a photo gallery from this game.

After giving up 25 points in the second quarter, the Tigers limited Mansfield to just 22 points in the entire second half. Until the final minute, Mansfield had just four points in the fourth quarter

“I think we got the tempo to go our way,” said Taunton head coach Charlie Dacey of the comeback. “We wanted to trap them but you have to be really careful trapping [Mansfield]. Even if you don’t make a mistake and you do trap them, they can send the ball all the way across the court, they are very smart. We were supposed to be trapping in certain places late and we didn’t execute. We had about three straight unwise decisions on the offensive end, and we’re back running our defense against their offense. I thought we did a halfway decent job against them. I don’t think we closed down the three-point shooting very well.

“That’s the way we have to play the game. We don’t score very easily, we just have to commit to full-court transition offense.”

It was only fitting for the Hornets that Hyland (13 points, seven rebounds) had the ball in his hand for Mansfield’s biggest possession, just moments after he came up with the loose ball on the other end to give the Hornets possession.

“We trust him so much,” Vaughan said of Hyland. “It wasn’t the play we drew up, the play was broken down. We want to share the basketball and get the best shot. We did a good job of reversing the basketball. He could have easily forced the shot up the middle, he could have gotten his own, Law was right there with him…but instead he dishes the ball out. Justin hadn’t really shot the ball, was in foul trouble in the first half so never really got into a rhythm, steps up and buries a big shot. That’s the part of winning an ugly game, guys step up.”

For Taunton, the comeback was doomed after the offense struggled after it took the lead. After going up 56-52 with just under three minutes to play, the Tigers had four turnovers, went 0-for-1 from the free throw line (missing the front end of a one-and-one) and missed its final shot after the Hornets took the lead.

“We just had to be better executing in the offensive end,” Dacey said. “We had it going our way, and then they started to press us and trap us, and that opened the court up for us and I thought we could get a layup but we struggled.”

A back-and-forth first quarter ended with the Hornets up by a pair, 14-12, with five different players scoring for the home team.

The separation came in the second quarter when Mansfield outscored Taunton 25-15. The Hornets closed the quarter on an 8-1 surge with buckets from Hyland, McCoy, a free throw from Damani Scott – who scored all eight of his points in the frame – and a late three from Ryan Otto. Otto’s three was Mansfield’s third shot (and third three-point attempt) of the possession after hauling in a pair of offensive rebounds.

Click here for a photo gallery from this game.

Taunton cut into the deficit by outscoring the Hornets 15-11 in the third quarter. After going down 15, Taunton rattled off a mini 7-0 run behind Esquil and Law. McCoy had his own 6-0 in response but the Tigers finished the frame with a 6-0 run, with Esquil and Law accounting for all scoring.

“You come off the break, you go right into Taunton, Attleboro, Franklin, KP…there’s not a night off in the next week,” Vaughan said. “The games all mean something to every single kid, no matter where anyone is in the standings. Everyone is trying to knock each other off right now because this gives you a jump start to the second half of the year. We’re going to give everyone our best shot and we’re going to get everyone’s best shot in the next week, including tonight. The league prepares us for the postseason, a game like tonight will help later. It’s always good to play ugly and get a win.”

Mansfield boys basketball (4-0 Hockomock, 6-1 overall) is back in action on Tuesday when it travels to play Attleboro. Taunton (2-2, 5-3) will try to bounce back when it takes a trip to Franklin. Both games are scheduled to tipoff at 6:30.

Mansfield Gets Back On Track With Win Over B-R

Mansfield boys basketball
Mansfield’s Sam Hyland had a terrific all-around game, including a strong defensive performance. (Ryan Lanigan/HockomockSports.com)
 
ByRyanLanigan_2016FollowRyanLanigan_2016
 
 
MANSFIELD, Mass. – After suffering its first loss of the season, Mansfield had a chance to right the ship before it began division play in the new calendar year.

In a rematch of last year’s D1 South Sectional semifinal, Mansfield did just that. The Hornets built an early lead and never looked back, capping 2017 with a 60-47 win over Bridgewater-Raynham.

“It’s huge,” said Mansfield head coach Mike Vaughan. “B-R has become one of the top teams in D1 South, we know we could potentially see them again in March.

“To give up the game against BC High where I thought we had some chances to close the gap late and didn’t…I thought tonight we did a much better job closing the game out, managing the clock better and things we needed to do to sustain.”

Mansfield created the necessary separation in the first quarter, outscoring the Trojans 16-6. The Hornets scored two more points than B-R in each the second (18-16) and third (12-10) quarters to stay ahead.

While seniors John McCoy (22 points and 11 rebounds) and Justin Vine (career-high 21 points) propelled the Hornets with their scoring, Sam Hyland had a terrific all-around game with nine points, 11 rebounds, six assists and four steals to highlight terrific defensive performance.

“He’s kind of our silent unsung hero through the end of 2017,” Vaughan said of Hyland. “He did a little of everything and his efficiency rating is off the charts right now. He’s shooting high percentages, he’s playing at such a good pace, he’s not turning the ball over, he doesn’t pick up stupid fouls. He’s just steady for us.”

Hyland also helped limit Bridgewater-Raynham’s top scorer, senior Doug Alves, to just five points on 1-for-9 shooting. Alves picked up two early fouls that kept him out for the final six minutes of the first quarter but was held in check by Hyland the rest of the game.

“He’s our go-to guy [defensively] for guards,” Vaughan said. “He doesn’t foul a lot, he doesn’t do stupid things, he doesn’t gamble, he just makes it very difficult [for opponents]. Tonight I thought he did a really good job on Alves and made it difficult for him. Alves got two fouls early unfortunately which probably took him out of his rhythm but Sam did a nice job.

Hyland helped restore Mansfield’s 14 point lead at the end of the third quarter, coming up with a steal and an easy layup. After B-R drained a three to open the fourth quarter, Hyland came right back down the other way and converted a traditional three-point play to prevent the Trojans’ from rattling off an early run in the quarter.

McCoy was the catalyst for the Hornets in their best quarter. The senior scored nine of his 22 points in the opening frame. McCoy’s back-to-back layups put Mansfield up 6-2; he then scored the Hornets’ final five points of the quarter, including a three in the final minute, to create the double-digit lead.

In the second quarter, the Trojans put together their best stretch of the game — an 11-2 run — but that only brought B-R within nine. That’s because Mansfield opened the second quarter with an 8-0 burst of its own.

“We had to stop turning the ball over,” Vaughan said of stopping B-R’s surge. “We go into moments where offensive rebounds are automatically theirs, and when they trap us we give them the ball. We’re trying to get the guys to find the open guy. We’ve thrown some passes that get some gasps from the crowd because it’s almost a turnover. That’s not how we want to play, we want to pass open. When they double, someone has to be open.”

Vine, who started his first game for Mansfield, sandwiched a pair of triples around a layup from McCoy to put the Hornets up 24-6. When Bridgewater-Raynham made its run, cutting it to 26-17, Vine drew a foul while shooting a three. He hit two free throws to halt the run, and then canceled a triple from B-R’s Connor Rubenskas with a trey of his own.

“He’s been doing a pretty good job in practice trying to find his rhythm and a role on this team,” Vaughan said of Vine. “I think today, getting that starting nod, playing with a chip on his shoulder and playing with confidence went a long way for him. When you have guys like Johnny and Sammy, Justin gets some open looks. The longer rotations get going to leave him more open and I think he did a good job of capitalizing.”

Senior Ryan Otto added seven points and seven rebounds for the Hornets, who won the battle on the boards 38-30.

Mansfield boys basketball (3-0 Hockomock, 5-1 overall) begins the 2018 calendar with a tough test, opening division play at home against Taunton (2-1, 5-1) on Friday, January 5th.

Mansfield Holds Off Late Foxboro Surge To Earn Win

Mansfield boys basketball
Foxboro’s Bobby Harrison attempts to drive past Mansfield’s Justin Vine in the first half. (Ryan Lanigan/HockomockSports.com)
 
ByRyanLanigan_2016FollowRyanLanigan_2016
 
 
FOXBORO, Mass. – Mansfield saw its 13-point fourth quarter shrink to just three inside the final minute, but senior Ryan Otto made a huge bucket to help the Hornets hold on for a 50-43 win over Foxboro.

Mansfield senior John McCoy drained a contested three with 6:39 to play to put the Hornets comfortably ahead 44-31, but then Foxboro orchestrated an impressive comeback.

Foxboro sophomore Brandon Borde played a vital role in the run, scoring six of his career-high 14 points and assisting on a bucket to Matt Rongione as Foxboro rattled off eight straight points.

Mansfield junior Damani Scott ended the Hornets’ drought with 1:53 to play, driving to the basket for two and a 46-39 lead. But a bucket from Teddy Maher, and then a steal and two free throws from Joe Morrison (14 points, nine rebounds, five assists, three steals) suddenly made it a one-possession game with 55 seconds to play.

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But on the ensuing possession, Mansfield had its biggest answer of the game. With the shot clock about to tick into single digits, Otto dished the ball to junior Tommy Dooling in the corner, but he quickly returned the ball to Otto who drained the three — his first made field goal of the game — to make it 49-43 with 35 seconds to play.

The Hornets came up with a defensive stop, Scott hit a free throw to extend the lead to seven and Mansfield picked up its first win of the season.

“I think we’re trying to find our identity,” said Mansfield head coach Mike Vaughan. “I don’t think its a lack of ability as much as its a lack of identity. We had a lot of empty possessions because of not doing things the way we do it. To Foxboro’s credit, they did a tremendous job defensively at taking away some things, and they got some opportunities they capitalized on. Obviously, Morrison and Borde offensively kept them relatively close. I thought Foxboro did a nice job.

“I thought we were better defensively in the second half, and we rebounded the ball much better. I think going forward we’ll be okay, we just to clean up some things and use this as a learning experience. It’s always good to get out one with a win when you didn’t play as well as you liked – and that’s not to take anything away from Foxboro.”

It was the second big lead that Foxboro erased. Mansfield got off to a strong start, racing out to a 10-2 lead over the first four minutes of play. But over the final four minutes of the opening stanza, Foxboro rallied with an 11-3 run to tie the game.

“I thought our guys showed a lot of fight and a lot of heart, in both halves,” said Foxboro head coach Jon Gibbs. “We got down 13-4 and we could have gone into a shell and we didn’t. We stayed together and got back into and the same thing in the fourth quarter. We could have quit both times and both times we stayed together and got back into it, so that was encouraging.

“We made a couple of defensive adjustments in the first quarter to get back into it. And then in the second half comeback, it was more offensive adjustments. We were having a hard time getting shots around the rim so we tried to open the court up a little bit more to give Brandon some room to attack and he was able to get downhill and make some good things happen, he had some baskets, got fouled, and was able to create for some of the other guys.”

Foxboro took its first lead of the game on a three-pointer from Devin Hassett, up 18-15, with 5:05 to play in the first half, but Mansfield close the half with a 13-5 run. John McCoy sandwiched a bucket and a three-point play around a bucket down low from Sam Hyland. Dooling hit his third three of the game and Hyland completed a traditional three-point play in the final seconds to take a 28-23 lead into halftime.

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McCoy tied a career-high with 17 points to lead the way for the Hornets, also pulling down six boards.

“He’s trying to get his legs back under him,” Vaughan said of McCoy. “He missed a week of practice. He probably logged more minutes than I thought we would play. We were happy with his production, I think that’s something he’s going to be doing all year, scoring inside out. Hopefully, as the year goes on the physical play plays more to our advantage. I thought there were a few times when he went to the rim there was some contact. If he gets those calls then he’s a much different player because he becomes almost undefendable.”

Mansfield’s first double-digit lead came midway through the third quarter when McCoy got to the rim for two and a 35-25 lead. Foxboro quickly cut it back to single digits on a bucket from Borde on an assist from Morrison down low but Khristian Conner drove hard to the basket to restore the 10-point lead on Mansfield’s ensuing possession.

“Foxboro isn’t going to come in undercoached, they are going to have some sort of identity and play hard,” Vaughan said. “They have two players on the floor that can score. I knew they probably wouldn’t get into the 50’s or 60’s so I knew we had to get there. I knew it’d be a rock fight. Jon does a great job getting his guys ready. But we’re glad to get out of here with a win.”

The Hornets kept that lead until the final seconds of the quarter when Foxboro sophomore Ryan Hughes converted a traditional three-point play off an offensive rebound to make it 39-31.

“Give credit to Mansfield,” Gibbs said. “Everyone knows about Mansfield’s offensive ability and their shooting ability but I don’t think they get enough credit for their defense. They are always one of the best defensive teams around. They made it really difficult for us to score, especially coming out of the locker room in the second half.”

Scott (five rebounds, two assists) and Dooling each finished with nine points for the Hornets while Hyland added six points and seven boards.

Foxboro hits the road for the first time, traveling to take on King Philip (1-0, 1-0) at the same time.

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2017-2018 Hockomock Boys Basketball Preview

2017-2018 Hockomock Boys Basketball Preview

By HockomockSports.com Staff

2017-2018 Hockomock Boys Basketball Preview

Attleboro

2016-2017 Record: 13-10
2016-2017 Finish: Reached D1 South First Round
Coach: Mark Houle

Attleboro will be looking to its youth to try and get back to the state tournament this season. With just two seniors and four juniors, half of the Bombardiers’ roster is made up of underclassman.

But just because the Bombardiers are young, doesn’t mean they aren’t experienced. Senior Nate Douglas, a returning starter, has been getting minutes on varsity since his freshman year, and classmate Elvin Sam emerged as a reliable shooter off the bench last season. Sophomores Qualeem Charles and Bryant Ciccio made big impacts during their rookie campaigns last season. Charles (6’5) will be a big presence in the post while Ciccio will be one of the primary ball handlers.

Charles will be joined by sophomore Jason Weir (6’2) in the post while junior forward Dom Victor will be a game-changer on both ends of the floor. At 6’4, his athleticism will cause a lot of matchup problems for opposing defenses. Douglas and Ciccio will be joined by Mason Houle, Kevin Velazquez and Tim Callahan in the backcourt.

“We will need to have our younger players step up this year,” said AHS head coach Mark Houle. “We expect to be a well-rounded team who can play a fast pace game or well in a half court set.”

Canton

2016-2017 Record: 9-11
2016-2017 Finish: Missed playoffs
Coach: Ryan Gordy

The goal is pretty clear for Canton this season. Not only do the Bulldogs want to reach the postseason for the first time since 2014, they want to compete for the Davenport division title.

With two of the top players back in the lineup, both goals are reasonable. Senior Tony Harris and junior Devin Foster, both HockomockSports.com Third Team selections a year ago, return to anchor a Bulldogs’ team that just missed out on the playoffs last year. They’ll be joined by Austin Maffie and Jake Verille, both returning starters, as well as Paul Corcoran, Kyle Fitzgerald and Ryan Lentol, who all have varsity experience.

Harris and Foster give Canton an immediate edge on offense with two talented scorers, but it will be important for others to step up and make plays all season long. On defense, the Bulldogs will rely on their quickness to try and bother teams.

“This is a fun group who have played a lot of basketball together, they like each other which helps with team chemistry,” said Canton head coach Ryan Gordy. “Hopefully that will translate into a good product on the court.”

Foxboro

2016-2017 Record: 12-10
2016-2017 Finish: Reached D2 South Quarterfinals
Coach: Jon Gibbs

The mantra “Defense Wins Championships” has been proven in many different sports, at many different levels. The 2017-2018 Foxboro Warriors are hoping that will be the case this season.

Head coach Jon Gibbs says that this team has the potential to be the best defensive team that he’s coached. “We have a lot of quick, tough, physical guards that move their feet well on the perimeter and are committed to the defensive end of the court,” he said. “I think this should be a major strength of our team.”

It helps that Foxboro returns the reigning HockomockSports.com Defensive Player of the Year in senior Joe Morrison. As a junior, Morrison routinely limited opponents’ best offensive player, and was a big reason why the Warriors allowed just 55.9 points per game.

Sophomore Brandon Borde returns to the starting lineup alongside Morrison. Borde had a strong freshman season and will likely see his role increase this year, especially on the offensive end of the court. Seniors Teddy Maher and Matt Rognione, both with plenty of varsity experience will both see plenty of time this year and will be relied upon to make plays.

“We have a very good mix of experience and youth,” Gibbs said. “Our seniors have shown excellent leadership thus far, practices have been competitive, and everyone is working hard to earn their spot and get better. We hope to keep building and improving each day so that we are peaking and playing our best basketball at the end of the season.”

Franklin

2016-2017 Record: 22-5
2016-2017 Finish: Reached D1 State Final
Coach: CJ Neely

After making it to the Division 1 State Final a year ago, the Panthers are hoping to be just as competitive this season. With three starters back, and a handful of experienced and talented bench players, the expectations for Franklin are certainly high.

Losing Josh Macchi to graduation will hurt, but the Panthers return their best player in senior Paul Mahon, along with two terrific young talents in junior Jalen Samuels and sophomore Chris Edgehill. When playing at his best, Samuels’ athleticism and offensive skills make him one of the toughest marks in the league. Edgehill really turned it on in the tournament and if he can sustain that level of play throughout the regular season, the Panthers will be a favorite for the league title.

Seniors Alex Klowan, Matt Elias, Jack Rodgers and Gavin Farnan all picked up valuable minutes a season ago and will be key pieces for the Panthers, whether its apart of the starting line up for coming off the bench. Having so many experienced players ready to come off the bench should give Franklin the upper hand on a lot of teams.

“Our strength on the offensive end will be in our balance and willingness to share the ball and create great scoring opportunities for the team,” said Franklin head coach CJ Neely. “On defense, we hope to make our opponents uncomfortable at all times and really focus on getting stops as a unit.”

King Philip

2016-2017 Record: 8-13
2016-2017 Finish: Missed playoffs
Coach: Mark Champagne

After losing just three seniors that played valuable minutes last season, and a full season complete under head coach Mark Champagne, King Philip is looking to take the next step this year and get back to the postseason.

The biggest shoes to fill are those left by Seth Sullivan and Will Weir, but the Warriors have five players back that either started or saw significant varsity minutes a season ago for a team that was just a couple games away from making the playoffs. Not only were they just a couple of games off, they were competitive in almost every game, including a three-point loss to Attleboro, a one-point loss to Taunton, and a three-point loss to Mansfield in a four-game span.

Seniors Tom Madden, Pharoah Davis, and Nolan Bradley are all back this season, along with juniors Kyle Layman and Bruce Santillus. Layman and Madden (both 6’4) will give the Warriors size in the frontcourt while Davis, one of the most experienced players in the league, will be the premier ball handler. Bradley provides King Philip with a threat from beyond the three-point line and Santillus showed this offseason the ability to fill the scoresheet up.

“With more familiarity comes trust, and a more comfortable time spent in the gym this season,” Champagne said. “Guys have worked hard in the offseason and we expect it to pay dividends as we get into our schedule. We have good depth and good leadership.”

Mansfield

2016-2017 Record: 23-3
2016-2017 Finish: Reached D1 South Final
Coach: Mike Vaughan

This might be the most turnover we’ve seen the Hornets have in quite some time, but just because there will be a lot of new faces doesn’t meet much will change for the Hornets.

Expectations are still sky high, as Mansfield will be looking to compete for another Kelley-Rex title (Mansfield has won five straight division titles). And when it comes to the postseason, the Hornets are aiming to get back to at least the spot they got to last year – the D1 South Final – with aspirations to go further.

All six seniors that graduated all played important roles over the past couple of years for the Hornets, including last year’s HockomockSports.com Player of the Year Sam Goldberg. However, Mansfield does bring back experience in Tyler Boulter, John McCoy, Ryan Otto and Sam Hyland. Senior Nick Ferraz will give Mansfield some depth in the frontcourt after missing last year to injury, and senior transfer Justin Vine gives the Hornets another shooting option.

Junior Damani Scott showed glimpses at the end of last when he was called up while Khristian Conner and Tommy Dooling should see increased roles this season.

“I think our strength will be controlling the tempo on offense and having a bend don’t break defensive mindset,” said Mansfield head coach Mike Vaughan. “I think we have lots of options with going small ball, playing with a taller lineup, or a good shooting line up. That creates lots of tough matchups over the course of the game.”

Milford

2016-2017 Record: 11-12
2016-2017 Finish: Reached D2 Central Quarterfinal
Coach: Paul Seaver

Although the Hawks graduated three of their top scorers from last year, expectations are still high in Milford. It will be tough to replace the offensive output of Zack Tamagni, Anthony Arcudi, and Nate Davila, but the Hawks will be relying on their size this season to get the offense going.

Senior Kayden Kelley is back for his third year starting on varsity and will be an important piece on both ends for Milford. Standing at 6’4, Kelley is a tough matchup and is one of the best rebounders in the league. He averaged 14.3 boards per game a year ago and led the league in double-doubles. Senior Shane Cosquete will start at point guard again this year, and will be relied upon on to set the offense in motion. He will likely be relied upon for more scoring this season.

Junior Brendan White will join the starting lineup after coming off the bench in 23 years ago. A physical presence, White brings energy and defensive toughness to the lineup. Transfers Andew Fraioli (6’5) and Joey Everett (6’3) give the Hawks depth in the frontcourt.

“We’ve improved statistically offensively and defensively over each of the past three seasons and that’s a trend that we will be hoping to continue here in 2017-2018,” said Milford head coach Paul Seaver.

North Attleboro

2016-2017 Record: 15-8
2016-2017 Finish: Reached D1 South First Round
Coach: Sean Mulkerrins

It’s no surprise that after graduating four starters, and the team’s sixth man that it will be a youth revolution in Big Red Country. Starters Brent Doherty, Johnny Friberg, Kyle McCarthy and Tommy Reynolds are gone, as well as Moni Cuevas, who played plenty of minutes off the bench.

The one returning starter is senior Chad Peterson, a familiar face in the Rocketeers’ lineup since his freshman year. And all four of the other returning players – senior Derek Shanks and juniors Matt Seavey, Josh Montague and Nate Gonsalves – all saw plenty of minutes last season.

While Peterson will likely take on a leadership role and see increased point production, expect Montague to emerge as a leading scorer for the Rocketeers. Shanks can stretch the floor some and hit mid-range jumpers, Seavey is a solid option in the post, and Gonsalves is a capable ball handler.

Offensive, North will rely on its size. On top of Seavey and Shanks, the Rocketeers have a pair of 6’6 forwards in Jacob Petersen and Owen Nassaney to add depth and size to the frontcourt. Junior Jonathan James, recovering from a football injury, will likely factor in as well.

“We are really looking forward to seeing how this new group gels,” said North Attleboro head coach Sean Mulkerrins. “With a lot of new faces, its really been a preseason spent trying to find our identity. We know we need to grow up really fast as the Hock won’t give us any nights off. We’re really pleased with how this group has responded to the coaching and is accepting the challenges that lay ahead. We are excited to see what this team can accomplish together.”

Oliver Ames

2016-2017 Record: 13-11
2016-2017 Finish: Reached D2 South Quarterfinal
Coach: Don Byron

Oliver Ames surpassed most expectations in its first year in the Kelley-Rex division, coming in third and opening the playoffs with a road win at Milton.

But the toughest part about the Kelley-Rex is that the challenge gets harder and harder every year. And with Oliver Ames losing three starters – Carter Evin, Nick Welch, and Dylan Mahoney – to graduation, the Tigers will be facing an uphill battle. The good news is that the Tigers have seniors Jack Spillane and Matt Muir back this year. Both were starters a year ago, and Spillane showed the ability to really fill up the stat sheet, scoring 25 points or more on three occasions.

Junior Ethan Eckstrom, a center, will see more minutes this season and his size will be key to helping defend opposing teams. Senior Noah Fitzgerald showed last year how much of a pest he can be on the defensive side of the ball, and the Tigers will rely on him to do so again this year.

Junior Jake Erlich earned his way into the lineup and picked up valuable experience last season. He will likely see an increased role this season and his strength help the Tigers in the post.

Sharon

2016-2017 Record: 7-13
2016-2017 Finish: Missed playoffs
Coach: Andrew Ferguson

It will be tough to replace Ricardo Ripley at point guard, but the good news for Sharon is that the majority of the Eagles that played valuable minutes last year as returning this season.

Senior Malik Lorquet broke out of his shell last year and showed that he can take over a game. Now a senior, Lorquet will be a focal point on both sides of the court for the Eagles. Senior Jimmy Fitzhenry can catch fire at any moment, and when he does, he is one of the most dangerous shooters in the league.

Alex Kaufmann also showed glimpses last year as a sophomore, both as a ball handler and a scorer. Between him, Lorquet and Fitzhenry, the Eagles have a solid offensive core to rely on. Jayvon Monteiro is one of the most passionate players in the league and will see an increased role at guard and be key to Sharon’s defense. Aidan Kane, Ben Kaplan, and Aaron Strong will all be important players off the bench for Sharon.

“Our goal is to improve upon last year, the end of the year was a confidence boost for our returning players and we’re hoping to carry over that momentum to this year,” said Sharon head coach Andrew Ferguson. “We have an experienced group of starters, but will be looking for our less experienced players to make a jump and help us at the varsity level.”

Stoughton

2016-2017 Record: 5-15
2016-2017 Finish: Missed playoffs
Coach: John Gallivan

Stoughton will be looking to improve on last year’s season, and the best way to do that will be to improve on the defensive end of the court.

The Black Knights haven’t had too much trouble on the offensive end, and with leading scoring Cam Andrews back for his senior year, it likely won’t be a big issue this year either. But the Knights have allowed a league-high in points each of the last two seasons.

Andrews led the Hockomock League in scoring last year with 17.8 points per game and will demand the attention of opposing defenses. Senior Colin Sanda can also hit from the outside and will be a solid second option for the Black Knights, who graduated eight players including reliable scoring options Cam Gomes and Matthew Valle.

In the frontcourt, junior David Bell (6’2) showed some potential at the end of last year and should factor in more in 2017-2018.

“Offensively we may create problems for some teams but our defense has to be better than it has been in the recent past,” said Stoughton head coach John Gallivan.

taunton

2016-2017 Record: 13-9
2016-2017 Finish: Reached D1 South First Round
Coach: Charlie Dacey

When it comes to pace, Taunton is hoping to be among the fastest teams in the league this season. The Tigers will still be young this year, but not as much as last year with plenty of young players returning after gaining experience last season.

Seniors Lens Esquil and Malik Charles both played last year and have shown improvement in their skills; they’ll be relied upon to be team leaders this season. Sophomore Dante Law had a tremendous freshman season, and hurt a lot of teams in a lot of ways. Whether it was from deep, like his six three pointers against Foxboro, or his ability to attack the basket, he’s one of the most dangerous young players in the league. Junior Lou Vendrell also emerged as a top scorer last season and could be one of the top shooters in the league this year.

Junior John Martins is another experienced player that is capable of scoring while Diamond Blakely and Prince Brown will share point guard duties. Naz Kenian, Tyler Medeiros, and Wesner Charles are all going to be options for head coach Charlie Dacey as well.

“We have much depth with tremendous team speed,” Dacey said. “If we can learn to harness this speed and use it productively we could be interesting.”

2017 HockomockSports.com Boys Soccer Awards

Oliver Ames boys soccer
Oliver Ames’ Matt Alvarado (right) celebrates his second half goal with Mason Galbato (left) and Cam Vella (center). (Ryan Lanigan/HockomockSports.com)