2017-2018 Hockomock Boys and Girls Hockey Preview

2017-2018 Hockomock Boys and Girls Hockey Preview
Canton and North Attleboro will once again battle for the Davenport division crown this winter, as Hockomock League hockey kicks off a new season. (Ryan Lanigan/HockomockSports.com)

By HockomockSports.com Staff

2017-2018 Hockomock Boys Hockey Preview

Attleboro

2016-2017 Record: 6-12-2
2016-2017 Finish: Missed Postseason.
Coach: Mark Homer

Attleboro struggled in its closing games of 2016-17 and narrowly missed out on a place in the state tournament via the Sullivan rule. This year’s Bombardiers are hoping that a mix of youth and experience will be enough to get the team over the hump and back in the playoff mix.

The main scoring threat for Attleboro this season is senior forward Jake Parker, a HockomockSports.com Second Team selection last winter who led the team with 20 goals despite facing regular double teams and playing loads of minutes. Parker will be joined up front by sophomore Ryan Morry, who is coming off a solid rookie campaign and will try to take advantage of the opportunities Parker creates near the net.

Attleboro’s experience is on the defensive side of the ice. Seniors Eddie Noel and Sam MacKenzie and junior Kyle McCabe provide size, physicality, and reading of the game to protect the Bombardiers goal. Attleboro coach Mark Homer, in his second season with the team, is expecting the defensemen to be aggressive in the zone and be more prepared to clear the puck. The Bombardiers are also experienced in goal with junior Evan Andrews and sophomore Derrik Rivet offering a solid one-two between the pipes.

“As a team, we are working on becoming more competitive in our games at all phases of the game, said Homer. “We will strive to be better today than we were yesterday but not as good as we will be tomorrow. Our success will be measured by how hard we work and not by our wins and losses.”

Canton

2016-2017 Record: 16-5-3
2016-2017 Finish: Reached Div. 2 South Semifinal.
Coach: Brian Shuman

After another league title in 2016-17 and a run to the Div. 2 South semifinal, Canton has started this season with a win and a draw (that turned into an overtime win in the final of the Gormley Cup) and the expectations remain as high as ever for one of the teams to beat in D2.

Last season, Canton was by far the league’s best defensive team, allowing only 32 goals in 24 games. The next best defense allowed 48 goals. But, the Bulldogs will need to rebuild the blue line this season after the graduation of HockomockSports.com Player of the Year Jackson Maffeo and Third Team selection C.J. Martin. Defensemen Brad Murphy and Nick Allen have experience and will be counted on to step up to bigger roles this year.

The key for the Canton defense, which has allowed only one goal in two games so far this season, will be junior goalie Quinn Gibbs. He was a HockomockSports.com First Team choice last year with a league-best 0.924 save percentage and there is hope he can get even better with a year of experience. Offensively, the Bulldogs bring back most of the goals from last year with Ryan Nolte, Johnny Hagan, Bubba McNeice, and Jack Goyetch all returning this season and all having scored big goals in big moments for Canton during last season’s tournament run.

“I think the most important determinant of our success will be whether we can find some depth at forward and defense,” said Canton coach Brian Shuman. “Teams need more than two lines and four ‘D’ to make a deep run, so we need some guys to compete for those remaining spots.”

Foxboro

2016-2017 Record: 6-12-2
2016-2017 Finish: Reached Div. 3 First Round.
Coach: Mark Cedorchuk

Foxboro saw improvement last year, increasing its win total, goals for, and allowed fewer goals than the season before. Head coach Mark Cedarchuk is hoping that trend continues this season as the Warriors look to try and compete for the spot in the postseason.

The Warriors will be relying on a mix of experience as well as youth to try and compete in the Hockomock League this year. Senior captain Aidan Sullivan (two goals, six assists) has been an anchor of the team’s blue line unit over the past couple of seasons and will be relied upon to lead the way again this year. Senior captain Taylor Sharfman is another defenseman that gives the Warriors two capable and reliable options in the back. Junior Tanner Kennedy is also back after a solid sophomore year and Warriors added junior Brendan Tully to the defensive unit.

On offense, Foxboro graduated its top three goal scorers but sophomore Ronnie MacLellan (four goals, seven assists) is back after a strong sophomore year. He will be joined up front by senior Sam Garrabrant and sophomore Sebastian Ricketts, who had four goals and two assists last year.

Foxboro will have to find a replacement for goalie John Cronin, a multi-year starter in between the pipes for the Warriors. Foxboro has three goalies – freshman Jack Spinney, sophomore Espen Reager, and freshman Connor Callahan – listed on the roster.

“With a combination of experienced upperclassman and talented underclassman, we’re looking forward to an exciting and competitive season,” Cedarchuk said.

Franklin

2016-2017 Record: 14-9-1
2016-2017 Finish: Reached Div. 1 South Quarterfinal.
Coach: Chris Spillane

Although last winter was atypical for the Panthers, losing two games in the league for the first time in several years, Franklin won another league title and with 20 players back for this season the expectation is that a seventh straight league crown is a distinct possibility – not to mention making a run in the state tournament.

Experience will be the key for the Panthers. Most of the forwards were members of the team that won the state championship two years ago and know what it takes to get goals against top competition. Leading scorer Brendan O’Rielly is back after scoring 20 goals and recording 11 assists last season. He should have plenty of help up front with classmates Luke Downie, Jeremy Miller, T.J. Durkin, and Ken Demerchant, who are all three-year varsity players for the Panthers.

Defensively, Franklin has lost several talented young defensemen to other programs in recent seasons, but still boasts a strong defensive corps heading into this winter. Jack McGrath, Matt Crane, Connor Norton, Cam Cassella, and sophomore Tom Tasker will all contribute to the defensive pairings this season and that depth will be important over a long season. The goalie position is a battle between three seniors, including returning netminders Owen Ginley and Dan Sheehan, who both saw time last year.

“I will be looking to our leading goal scorer from last year Brendan O’Rielly to once again lead the offensive charge,” said Franklin coach Chris Spillane. “From a small practice sample (one skate) I was impressed with our team speed.”

King Philip

2016-2017 Record: 4-16-0
2016-2017 Finish: Missed Postseason.
Coach: Paul Carlow

King Philip finished just below .500 in the league last season, and just five points out of second place in the Kelley-Rex division, but struggled in the non-league schedule, losing all 11 games outside of the Hock. The Warriors will look to improve that considerably this year with an experienced roster that wants to challenge for a league title.

KP returns 13 players from last year’s squad and that experience will be vital to allow the Warriors to compete not only in the league but against a schedule that has been bolstered because of the program’s move up to Div. 1 several seasons ago. Offensively, the attention will be on senior forward Collin Cooke, who chipped in with 10 goals and seven assists and has been drawing the focus of opposing defenses for several years. Senior Gavin Maxwell had nine goals and eight assists last season and will again be a solid counterpoint to take some of the pressure off Cooke in the attacking zone.

On the defensive side of the ice, KP continues to be a physical team that likes to be aggressive attacking the puck. Senior defensemen Will Connor will get some help at the back with the return of senior Mike Curtin from juniors, who head coach Paul Carlow said could be an “anchor” on defense. Senior Shane Frommer, fresh off a stellar football season and another Super Bowl title, will quickly transition from the gridiron to be the team’s starting goalie, after posting a 2.66 goals against average in 2016-17.

“Our strength is that we have a total of 13 returning players from last years team,” said Carlow. “We have experience up front and on the back end. We should see some team chemistry with this many returning players.”

Mansfield

2016-2017 Record: 12-8-2
2016-2017 Finish: Reached Div. 1 South First Round.
Coach: Mike Balazarini

In last year’s state tournament, Mansfield held its own against perennial power Xaverian before losing 2-1 in the opening round and that defeat is spurring the Hornets on this season, as the team has built a deep roster that believes it can challenge for the Kelley-Rex crown.

Team speed is going to be a strength for the Hornets this season, even without several key pieces from last winter, including breakout freshman Chris Jenkins, lost to graduation or to juniors. Senior forward Dylan Tivnan and Cullin Anastasia will be back to man the top scoring line along with freshman Coleman Jenkins. The second line will feature a lot of youth with sophomore Jake Lund and freshman Matt Copponi alongside junior Chris Copponi.

Seniors Tyler Oakley and Tim Arnold will be the leaders on the defensive side this year, while senior Ryan O’Hara and juniors Nick Levine and Austin Ricker will give the Hornets depth in the defensive unit. That depth should make things easier for sophomore Sean McCafferty, who will be stepping between the pipes for Mansfield this season.

“I think everyone wants to pick up where he left off last year,” said Mansfield coach Mike Balzarini. “We’ve had a good mindset early on this season. We have some new faces and everyone has gelled so far. We can’t take everyone lightly, we have to play every shift as its out last.”

North Attleboro

2016-2017 Record: 14-4-4
2016-2017 Finish: Reached Div. 2 South Quarterfinal.
Coach: Ben McManama

North Attleboro is coming off its most successful season in program history, and will be starting a new chapter with new head coach Ben McManama.

The Rocketeers will be tasked with finding replacements for some of the top players in the league from a season ago. Someone will need to step up in order to fill the void left by Zach McGowan (19 goals, 13 assists for 32 points – third most in the Hockomock) as well as Hunter Sarro’s 22 points and Erik Clements’ 20 points.

Senior Jason McNeany is a key piece back for the Rocketeers, fresh off a terrific football season. He scored 13 goals last season and added 13 assists, and has been a big piece of the offense for many years now. He will be counted on to be a leader this season, both in the locker room and on the ice.

Oliver Ames

2016-2017 Record: 14-7-1
2016-2017 Finish: Reached Div. 2 South Quarterfinal.
Coach: Sean Bertoni

Under first-year head coach Sean Bertoni, Oliver Ames proved to be a strong skating team that could cause a number of problems with its dangerous attack. That speed up front will be put to the test again this year, as the Tigers look to jump from second in the Kelley-Rex division to the top of the standings.

The Tigers have a number of talented forwards returning from last season’s team, which reached the Div. 2 South tournament and beat Nauset only to run into state finalist Scituate in the second round. That loss will provide motivation for junior forward Brett Williams, who was on the HockomockSports.com Second Team with 12 goals and eight assists last year, and the rest of the OA forwards. Williams will be joined up front by seniors Eric LeBlanc and Rory Madden and junior Max Ward.

On defense, junior Matt McCormick returns to be one of the top four along with senior Mike Nikiciuk. Both players will provide leadership for a defensive unit that promises to be aggressive in both zones, as Bertoni continues to implement his system at OA. Sophomore goalie Owen Connor will be the new goalie for the Tigers.

“We will continue to use our team speed and play an aggressive style offensively and defensively,” said Bertoni. “We hope to compete at a high level in all three zones. If we bring an aggressive forecheck we can create turnovers which should result in production.”

Stoughton

2016-2017 Record: 7-12-2
2016-2017 Finish: Missed Postseason.
Coach: Dan Mark

Numbers are a bit down for the Stoughton High hockey team this season, so the Knights will be relying on their most experienced players to lead the way, especially early on.

On offense, the Knights boast senior Brendan Campbell at center and junior Sean Doherty at wing. Campbell had a team-high in points last season, finishing second with 11 goals while recording a team-best 15 assists for 26 points. Doherty was third on the team, tying for the team lead with 12 goals and finishing with 25 points.

Senior Cam Nelson and junior Josh Hough will be the leaders of the Knights’ defensive unit. Hough is a captain along with Campbell and Doherty and has the most experience on the blue line. Nelson also saw plenty of time last season, recording an assist.

“We are an inexperienced team that will improve as the season goes on,” said Stoughton head coach Dan Mark.

Taunton

2016-2017 Record: 12-9-2
2016-2017 Finish: Reached Div. 2 South First Round.
Coach: Kris Metea

Taunton has grown by leaps and bounds over the past couple of seasons, setting new program bests for wins and making the state tournament two seasons in a row. This year’s team features only three seniors, so the Tigers will be hoping recent success will continue with a youthful lineup.

Senior forward Will Walsh has returned from junior hockey and will provide a boost to the front line, which head coach Kris Metea has high hopes for this season. Senior Jake Roberts is also back for the Tigers after scoring 18 points last year and junior Cam Sneyd is back after a 16-point season last winter. Metea is counting on high energy from the offensive unit and believes that the roster is capable of creating loads of scoring opportunities.

Sophomore Sean Bunker will be in net for the Tigers and the defensive unit is fairly inexperienced, although the coach believes that by working together Taunton will be able to put together a solid back line. The hope is that defense will become a strength of the Tigers by the end of the season.

“The players enjoy wearing the orange and black and look forward to coming to the rink every day,” said Metea. “The coaching staff has preached about enjoying the journey of a season and the developmental process. These players strive to work hard and get better every day. They will be fun to watch grow throughout the season.”

2017-2018 Hockomock Girls Hockey Preview
Colleen Kelleher and Canton will be one of the favorites to win the inaugural Hockomock League girls’ hockey season, which begins this winter. (Josh Perry/HockomockSports.com)

2017-2018 Hockomock Girls Hockey Preview

Canton

2016-2017 Record: 14-5-6
2016-2017 Finish: Reached Div. 2 State Final
Coach: Dennis Aldrich

Canton is coming off a remarkable state tournament run that took the No. 14 seed all the way to the TD Garden and the program’s first state title game appearance since 2006. After years of competing in the SEMGHL Coastal division, the Bulldogs are excited for the first Hockomock League girls’ hockey season and enter the new season as favorites to bring home the first Hock title.

A number of key players are back from the team that battled Notre Dame Academy (Hingham) in the state championship game last March and will be counted on to put together another solid defensive effort that made the Bulldogs so tough to play against during the tournament run. Spearheading that defensive unit is senior goalie Colleen Kelleher, who was stellar throughout the state tournament with clutch saves in key situations.

On offense, Canton returns plenty of firepower. Juniors Maggie Malloy and Lauren Fitzpatrick emerged as big time scorers last year and came through with important goals to help the Bulldogs make a run to the Garden. Senior forwards Melissa Devane, Kendra Farrelly, and Andrea McNeil give Canton a loaded attacking unit that always seemed to pop up with goals when the team needed it most.

“The strength of the Bulldogs will continue to be a tenacious, smothering team defense, strong goaltending, and balanced, opportunistic scoring,” said Canton coach Dennis Aldrich. “We are proud to have our roster filled with 11 Canton team captains amongst our 22 rostered players.”

Franklin

2016-2017 Record: 4-15-1
2016-2017 Finish: Missed Postseason.
Coach: Marjorie Burke

Franklin enters the first Hockomock League girls’ hockey season with a young roster, but one that is expected to compete with the other four teams and have a shot at bringing home the inaugural title.

Junior Regan Paterson and senior Jackie Connelly will be expected to provide leadership and create scoring opportunities for a roster that is loaded with underclassmen. Both players provide speed and playmaking ability in the attacking zone and the Panthers will be counting on their experience to make the difference.

Leadership is going to be critical for this year’s team and head coach Marjorie Burke is looking to her senior class to provide direction for the youthful lineup on both ends of the ice. Among the seniors that Burke is looking to this season are Bella Trask, Caroline Hedvig, Maddie Hinkley, Jillian McGlaughlin, and Connelly.

“We are excited about the upcoming season,” said Burke. “We are young but look to be competitive.”

King Philip

2016-2017 Record: 11-10-2
2016-2017 Finish: Reached Div. 2 First Round.
Coach:

Three years ago, King Philip was the top seed in Div. 2 and after two more playoff appearance, the Warriors now have the opportunity to bring their recent success into the first ever Hockomock League girls’ hockey season and hope that an experienced lineup could make them the first Hock champs.

Junior Nicole Connor is off to a strong start this season and has the potential, according to KP coach Jack Unger, to be one of the top players in the Hockomock League this year. Connor will play both at forward and along the blue line, crucial versatility that makes her an important piece for KP. The Warriors return five seniors who will be the “backbone” of the squad, said Unger. Kyleigh Remmes, Olivia McCarthy, Jessica Daniels, Katie Crowther, and Talia Quinn give the Warriors depth all over the ice.

Lilly Potts returns for her third year in between the pipes, while sophomore Cristina Coleman will be the backup netminder. Freshmen Avari Maxwell and Jordyn Remmes will be instant contributors on offense, while classmate Marin Cormier will step in on defense. Sophomores Abby Carr and Sammy Robison are also expected to step in at forward this season.

“[The roster is] rounded out by a number of talented juniors who should be able to spread out the scoring amongst the three starting forward lines,” said Unger.

Mansfield/Oliver Ames

2016-2017 Record: 14-6-1
2016-2017 Finish: Reached Div. 2 First Round.
Coach: Mike Dalton

Mansfield, Oliver Ames, and Foxboro have joined forces since the 2014-15 season and have reached the postseason each of the past two winters, suffering an overtime loss to Walpole in the first round of the state tournament last year, and have started this season with an impressive win in the opener.

The Warriors will be led by Foxboro’s Catherine Luciano. The senior was the team’s leading scorer last year and scored a hat trick in the season opener to get off to another strong start. Joining Luciano on the top line will be Mackenzie Fraser and Isabelle Shanteller. Other contributors in the offensive zone include senior Kayla Dalton, Kristina O’Connell, and Lindsey Corning.

While the Warriors are expected to create a number of scoring opportunities, defense will be just as important if Mansfield/OA (MOA) is going to make it a third straight playoff appearance. Denea Reager, Ali Delano, and Emily Bubencick will all be critical components of the Warriors defensive unit. Senior Kerren Holmes will be back in goal this year to stifle the opposition, while freshman Cate Gallegher will be the backup netminder.

“A strong freshman class will assist the team with help on both offense and defense,” said MOA coach Mike Dalton. “The team looks to compete for a top position in the Hockomock League and secure a spot in the tournament.”

Stoughton

2016-2017 Record: 1-19-1
2016-2017 Finish: Missed Postseason.
Coach: Richard Grasso

The newest of the programs in the inaugural season of Hockomock League girls’ hockey, Stoughton is in only its third season of varsity play, but the Black Knights are counting on last year’s experience and the growth in the program to make them a team to watch out for this winter.

Two-time all-star Julia Russell will be one of the key defenders for the Black Knights, but also brings an offensive punch with her speed forcing opponents to worry about her carrying the puck through the neutral zone. Senior Sarah Widrow will join Russell at the blue line and provides consistency in the defensive zone. Both will be expected to provide leadership for the less experienced players on the roster and try to make Stoughton a team that is tough to play against.

The offense will be sparked by a pair of freshmen. Hailey Nelson and Morgan Lesso made an instant impact on their debuts, helping Stoughton start the season with a 6-5 win at Framingham in the season opener. Lesso recorded a hat trick against the Flyers to set a high standard in her first varsity action.

“Stoughton will be a much stronger team this year than last,” said Black Knights coach Richard Grasso. “However, this will be a great challenge for our program. We have a lot of respect for the teams in the Hockomock League. There’s a lot of talent out there and each team is well-coached.”

King Philip Crowned Sectional Champs Behind Shutout

King Philip field hockey
King Philip field hockey celebrates in front of its goal following the win. (Ryan Lanigan/HockomockSports.com)
 
ByRyanLanigan_2016FollowRyanLanigan_2016
 
 
TAUNTON, Mass. – With just under four minutes to play, top-seeded Somerset-Berkley ramped up its offensive pressure and had four consecutive penalty corners.

Holding a 1-0 lead, King Philip head coach Liz Hathaway thought about using her timeout to try and give her defensive group a breather to settle down. But instead of giving the Raiders a chance to draw something up, she put full trust in her defense and goalie.

All four of the corners were thwarted by KP’s defensive unit of Christina Hathaway, Carolin Klim, Emma Izydorczak, and Nicole Connor, along with senior goalie Abby Campbell.

The first corner had a shot from Somerset-Berkley defender Alex Millar blocked by a KP defender’s foot, giving the Raiders another chance. That ensuing corner found its way around the area but was blocked away at the near post by Campbell.

With just two minutes to go, the Raiders had another corner but once again KP’s defense stood tall and the Warriors walked away with a 1-0 win to win the D1 South Sectional title.

Click here for a photo gallery from this game.

“I was contemplating taking a timeout with two minutes left to get them to settle but I kind of wanted to get a big out to get some momentum and they ended up doing that,” Liz Hathaway said.

“I totally trust my team defense and my keeper. I knew in that situation, that they are prepared whatever came at us. They got a flurry of corners but I just believed in them and they got the job done. They knew what was at stake.”

Despite Somerset-Berkley having an 11-1 advantage in penalty corners in the second half alone, Campbell and the Warriors notched the shutout.

“We know we have to keep our composure, and we practice defending multiple corners in a row at practices,” Campbell said. “Coach trusts every single one of us, whether you’re on the sideline or on the field, she trusts us. I think it says a lot about this team and our chemistry. We’re always amping each other up to just clear the next one.”

After a start that featured little offense from either side, King Philip started to take control.

Sammy Robison took away a partial breakaway chance from Lucas Crook in the eighth minute, and Crook blasted a shot wide on the Raiders’ lone corner of the half.

“We just wanted to play Somerset-Berkley, the team,” Liz Hathaway said. “We wanted to avoid all the other stuff (Somerset-Berkley has two male players in the starting lineup) and just focus on our game. We didn’t really make any adjustments for them, we knew what to expect how they played, and we did it. We played great team defense.

Beyond that, the ball was mostly in KP’s attacking area. The first shot on goal came 18 minutes into the game when Christina Hathaway rifled a low shot that forced a big kick save from SB keeper Madison Ferrara.

KP had an 8-1 advantage on corners in the first half but only had two shots on target.

The Raiders had the first chance of the second half on a long shot from Camryn Crook but Campbell did well to come out and made a big kick clearance.

Click here for a photo gallery from this game.

King Philip turned that save into a counterattack flying up the field with some numbers. After slowing possession down in the offensive third, junior Alli Meehan ended up with the ball on her just outside the area. She used her speed to weave past a pair of defenders and release a shot on target.

The ball beat the goalie but was stopped by a defender’s stick just on the goal line, but the rebound popped right to Nicole Connor, who wasted little time depositing her shot into the cage.

“We knew we wanted to win in regulation and not going into 7-v-7 because from what I understand, they have two of the six field players who are faster and stronger. We didn’t want to get into that situation.

“That’s the game of field hockey, 1-0 never seems like enough but today it was.”

Connor’s goal came with just over 15 minutes to play. The Raiders earned over half of their 11 penalty corners after KP took the lead.

“It’s exciting to get the lead, but we treat it like its 0-0 because we don’t want to have a let up or a breakdown on defense,” Campbell said. “It’s a bit of a relief to get the lead but we know they’re going to come back that much harder at us so we have to be ready.”

King Philip field hockey (19-2-1) advances to the D1 State Semifinal to take on North sectional champion, Andover (20-0-1) on Tuesday, November 14th at Braintree High School at 5:00 PM.

“We’re just going to keep doing what we do and what works for us,” Liz Hathaway said. “We’ll do a little bit of scouting on the teams from the North. We’ll just keep playing our game, this is a loose team that knows how to turn it on at game time.”

Click here for a photo gallery from this game.

Wednesday’s Schedule & Scoreboard – 11/08/17

Today’s games are listed below.

Field Hockey
D1 South

#3 King Philip, 2 vs. #6 Duxbury, 1 – FinalKing Philip scored once in each half and never trailed in a win over Duxbury, advancing to the D1 South Final. Alli Meehan put the hosts up 1-0 in the first half but Duxbury tied the game in the final seconds of the first half. Claire Lawler scored on a penalty corner in the 40th minute for the game-winner. KP head coach Liz Hathaway noted that goalie Abby Campbell (seven saves) and Sammy Robison played well defensively for the Warriors.

#4 Canton, 2 @ #1 Somerset-Berkley, 3 – Final (OT)Click here for a recap and photo gallery of this game.

Volleyball
D1 South

#4 North Attleboro, 0 @ #1 Barnstable, 3 – Final

King Philip Edges Franklin In Double OT Thriller

King Philip field hockey
King Philip’s Liz Furfari tries to get around Franklin’s Regan Paterson in the second half. (Ryan Lanigan/HockomockSports.com)
 
ByRyanLanigan_2016FollowRyanLanigan_2016
 
 
WRENTHAM, Mass. – You couldn’t ask for much more out of a field hockey game between two rivals, and two of the top teams in the Hockomock League.

King Philip junior Dana Truini scored the game-winning goal just over halfway through double overtime to help the second-seeded Warriors edge #18 Franklin, 3-2, at Macktaz Field.

“It’s really tough [to play a team three times], that’s why I was worried about this,” said KP head coach Liz Hathaway. “I thought we had them when we scored in the first couple of minutes and I thought we were on a roll. Then they executed a great game plan. They force us to play a big ball game. Instead of working on possession and transfers, we kept trying to go big and they stepped up to intercept and go on the counter-attack. We did better with that in the second half.

Click here for a photo gallery from this game.

King Philip swept the regular season series, but the Panthers used all 30 minutes of each half to keep the game level.

First, it was scoring the tying goal to make it 1-0 with less than a minute to play in the first half.

And then in dramatic fashion, the Panthers knotted the scored at 2-2 with just 10.4 seconds to play in regulation, sending the game to overtime.

“I’m really proud of my kids, really proud of them,” said Franklin head coach Lisa Cropper. “The first two games in the regular season were close, the scores weren’t indicative how close the games were. And another close one today.

“A couple kids just played absolutely amazing. Amanda Lewandowski, a freshman, was all over the field, just fantastic. What can you say about Cassi? She played everywhere and everything, she was right on the whole time. And my goalie, [Christina Luccini], played a great game. They all did.”

After a scoreless first overtime period that featured end to end action, and scoring chances for both sides, the Warriors started to take control.

Franklin goalie Christina Luccini robbed Truini just two minutes into the second overtime period, making a point-blank save on a rebound chance.

Luccini came up big again just two minutes later, making a kick save on a chance from Liz Furfari inside the area. Thirty seconds later, Luccini turned away a big shot from Christina Hathaway.

KP finally beat Luccini on a cross just over seven minutes into double overtime, but Franklin defender Emily Valentino was in the right spot and kept Truini from getting a touch.

Before the Warriors put their sixth penalty corner into motion, Hathaway called a timeout, setting up a play.

Nicole Connor sent the corner to the stick of Furfari, who patiently waited before connecting a cross to the weak side where Truini buried it with a one-timer for the winner.

“I knew out seven on seven unit was really good because we just practiced it the other day in a scrimmage with Dover-Sherborn,” Hathaway said. “I knew if we could develop a three on two, or get some corners. Then I used the timeout so we could just calm down and execute the set play.

“The cross was set up to create a little scrum or tip to the weak side, and it worked out, and it was awesome.”

Franklin sent to game to overtime with a late corner. Cassi Ronan lifted a cross that fell into the area, and junior Regan Paterson pounced on the loose ball in the scrum and tied the game with 10.4 to play.

Click here for a photo gallery from this game.

The biggest stop of the game came in the final minutes of the first overtime period. A foot infraction was whistled against KP, and Franklin’s Victoria Quinn smartly hit the restart quickly, sending in junior Anni Walsh behind the defense.

But KP senior goalie Abby Campbell was quick off her line and came sliding out to make the stop.

Abby had some really smart goalkeeping decisions coming out and clearing over the sideline,” Hathaway said. “Kate Lindmark, Emma Izydorczak, Sammy Robison….they all played well, our defense was really strong.”

King Philip had a strong start to the contest, scoring on its first penalty corner of the game just over three minutes in. Furfari found Connor wide open in front of goal for an easy tap in a 1-0 lead.

Campbell made saves on Ronan in the 9th minute and then turned aside a chance from Walsh after she beat two defenders in the 13th minute.

Franklin continued its pressure, having the better of play after KP took the lead. Finally, with just 50 seconds left, Ronan used a looping shot off a corner that hit off a KP stick and in to make it 1-1 heading into the half.

Both teams had chances throughout the second half, with KP having the edge in play. Ronan’s hard shot through traffic was denied by Campbell in the 34th minute; Hathaway had a bid turned aside by Luccini in the 47th minute; and Luccini blocked a tough angle bid from Raegan Simeone in the 54th minute.

But KP earned a corner shortly after Simeone’s shot and took advantage. Connor connected with Furfari, who passed along to Hathaway straightaway from goal. Franklin’s defense nearly sniffed it out, just missing an interception on the pass, and Hathaway ripped a low bouncing shot that found the back of the cage for a 2-1 lead with 6:12 to play.

King Philip field hockey (16-2-1) advances to the next round of the D1 South tournament and will host #7 Needham. The game is currently scheduled for Monday, November 6th at 3:45.

Franklin finishes the season at 10-8-2, and the end of the year also marks the end of Cropper’s tenure as head coach. Cropper spent a total of 14 years with the program, the last eight as head coach. She was hired as head coach at Dean College earlier this Fall.

“The program gets great numbers, we started to get better athletes too,” Cropper said, giving credit to her assistant coaches, including former head coach Michelle Hess, and former assistant Kevin Cronin. “And the feeder program with Ryan Jette really helped a lot. So all those people I have to thank, and they deserve credit for the success of the program, it’s not just me. I like to think that I hopefully inspired the kids. “

Click here for a photo gallery from this game.