Cold Stretch Dooms Taunton Against Wachusett

Taunton boys basketball Trent Santos
Taunton senior Trent Santos goes up for a three-point shot in the second half against Wachusett. (Ryan Lanigan/HockomockSports.com)
ByRyanLanigan_2016FollowRyanLanigan_2016
 
 
 TAUNTON, Mass. — Three years ago, Trent Santos, Tristan Herry, and Faisal Mass were thrust onto Taunton’s varsity team and right into the lineup after the Tigers lost nearly all of its anticipated starters due to disciplinary issues.

Taunton boys basketball

Since then, they’ve been one of the best trios in the Hockomock League, capped by the program’s first outright Kelley-Rex division title this season.

That wild journey came to an end on Wednesday after as the Tigers couldn’t overcome a cold stretch that spanned the second and third quarters, and a relentless effort on the offensive glass from visiting Wachusett. The 11th-seeded Mountaineers emerged with a 62-51 win to end Taunton’s season.

Click here for a photo gallery from this game.

“It was a great stretch,” said Taunton head coach Charlie Dacey of the past three seasons. “They measured up in every aspect. Practices have been great. They come in, full effort, they are committed. The off days, they don’t have to be here but they are. Just the right attitude, it’s been a real good three years.”

That trio led the Tigers to 34 league wins in the past three seasons, second only to Mansfield. Santos became the first 1,000-point scorer for the Tigers since 2014 and the trio combined to score over 2,100 points and played in four postseason games together, even without playoffs last year.

It was a game of runs in the first half, each team taking a turn with the wind in their sails. A 9-2 burst from the visitors to open the game was answered with a 14-7 run from the Tigers. Santos quickly matched his output from the first round in the opening minutes and drained a three inside the last minute but Wachusett’s Adam Bates was equal to the task with one of his own to make it 16-16.

Taunton boys basketball

Taunton carried some of its offensive momentum into the second quarter and quickly built on it. Santos (19 points, three rebounds) ignited the offense, dropping in a floater and then finishing through contact for a traditional three-point play while senior Jordan Costa contributed to the run from the free throw line. He was then fouled on a three-point shot and made all of his free throws. Mass (17 points, nine rebounds) then got one to go from the block and the Tigers had an 11-0 run to start the second.

After trading some buckets, including a strong take from Herry (eight points, five rebounds, four assists, two steals), Santos picked up his second foul and was forced to the bench midway through the quarter. Taunton’s offense stalled while Wachusett responded with its own 11-0 run to finish the quarter, including a three-point play and a three-pointer from Tucker McDonald.

That run put Wachusett ahead by a point, 30-29, at the halftime break.

Wachusett’s run didn’t stop with the buzzer though. The Mountaineers opened the third with a 9-1 surge, taking advantage of three offensive boards and two forced turnovers. In total, it was a 22-1 run for the visitors as the Tigers went without a field goal for nearly eight minutes.

And to make things worse for the Tigers, Wachusett hauled in nine of their 13 offensive boards in the second half.

“We came back, we were up 11 and thought we could turn the corner,” Dacey said. “We missed a free throw, gave up a couple of threes, and all of a sudden the momentum was right back in their hands. It was simple mistakes that doomed us, stuff that has hurt us all year long. A missed block out, a bad closeout, bad decision making…stuff you can’t come tournament time and we paid for those mistakes tonight.

“[Offensive rebounding] was the game. They didn’t outsize us really but those are hustle points, that’s just hustle and effort. They committed to that and we didn’t match it. We didn’t respond to what we had to, I didn’t think it was a matter of size. Giving up those extra possessions just killed us.”

Taunton boys basketball

Taunton refused to go without a fight despite the long cold stretch. Santos drained a three just before the midway point of the third. Minutes later, Mass had a three-point play and then scored off a feed from sophomore Troy Santos and the Tigers trailed by just three, 41-38, going into the fourth.

Taunton boys basketball

The Tigers cut it down to one point on a pair of occasions in the fourth. A putback from Herry early on made it 41-40 before McDonald sliced down the lane for two. Herry then found Mass for two to get it back to one, 43-42 as the clock ticked under five minutes to go.

Wachusett got a huge three from Jake Chaisson, just his first bucket since a layup gave the Mountaineers a 4-2 lead in the opening minutes. Taunton came up empty on a take to the rim and Wachusett answered with another triple, this one from Nick Ciccone for his first points of the game, and suddenly the Mountaineers surged ahead 49-42.

Taunton cut it down to five twice, both on points from Mass, and the Tigers had three looks on one possession after a pair of offensive boards but couldn’t get a shot to fall. A stop led to a free throw from Mass to make it a four-point game, 51-47, with just under two minutes to go but McDonald went iso and sank a fadeaway three from the corner for the nail in the coffin.

“We went 19-3 and won the Hock championship, and like I told them, it ends this way for all but five teams,” Dacey said. “It’s too bad but that’s the reality of tournament play.”

Click here for a photo gallery from this game.

As for the new tournament format, Dacey was in favor of the new matchups that it brings. A handful of early-round games wouldn’t have happened under the old sectional format, including this game and Franklin’s clash overtime clash with CM last night.

“I don’t have a problem with [the new format],” Dacey said. “There’s so much media out there, we got a good look at them and we had a scout at their last game. And just playing different people, that’s certainly more interesting than playing the same guys you play in the season. I kind of like the format…I’m not going to like the drive to Springfield some day but it makes it more interesting.”

Taunton boys basketball finishes the season at 19-3 and as back-to-back Kelley-Rex division champions, the latter their first-ever outright crown.

Taunton Escapes Upset-Minded Concord-Carlisle

Taunton boys basketball Faisal Mass
Taunton senior Faisal Mass splits a pair of Concord-Carlisle defenders for a second half basket. (Ryan Lanigan/HockomockSports.com)
ByRyanLanigan_2016FollowRyanLanigan_2016
 
 
 TAUNTON, Mass. — Survive and advance.

It might not have been Taunton’s motto heading into their clash with 38th seeded Concord-Carlisle, but after a stiff test from the visiting Patriots, it is now.

Behind a big performance from senior Faisal Mass, who tied a career-high with 25 points, and a boost off the bench from Cyrus Morissette and Jordan Costa, the 6th-seeded Tigers escaped with a 64-59 win.

Click here for a photo gallery from this game.

Concord-Carlisle proved to be a worthy challenger right out of the gate. The Patriots kept pace with the Tigers throughout the first half, and any time Taunton looked like it might create some separation, CC answered with a big shot paired with a defensive stop.

Taunton boys basketball

Taunton took the lead at the end of the first quarter on a late bucket from Morissette, who had one of his best offensive performances of his young career with 11 points. The Tigers never trailed from that point on, though not without constant pressure from the visitors.

“They were mixing up their defenses,” said Taunton head coach Charlie Dacey. They had a triangle-and-two, a box-and-one, a 1-3-1, and they just kept mixing them up. We didn’t react to that well at all. We have set offenses for each of those defenses but one person always was out of place. Just a little bit of panic and that’s all it was, a lack of composure at times on our part. And then when you don’t close out on their three-point shooters, you got trouble.”

“They’re pretty good, they put a lot of stress on you offensively. Their ranking was misleading, they aren’t a 38-seed. That doesn’t look like a 38-seed.”

Mass (six points, four assists) really got going on the offensive end in the third quarter, putting up nine of Taunton’s 15 points as the Tigers built a 48-40 cushion going into the fourth. Costa had a pair of putbacks in the first few minutes of the final frame and Mass had a basket and a free throw as Taunton’s lead peaked at 55-43 with 4:51 to play.

But just as Taunton settled into its biggest lead of the game, the Patriots responded with their best stretch of the contest. A 2-2-1 press resulted in a pair of quick Taunton turnovers as CC’s Liam Harrington (19 points) and Tucker Barach (17 points) turned steals into easy layups.

Then came another Tiger turnover on the offensive end and the Patriots punished the hosts with a three from Benjamin Brown, to make it 56-51.

Taunton boys basketball

The Tigers finally broke the press and sophomore Troy Santos found junior Matt Small, who alertly found Mass down low for two to briefly stop the bleeding.

Carl Headges drained a three for the visitors while Small tacked on a free throw for Taunton. Troy Santos added another with 1:47 to go to extend the lead to 60-54 but Headges drove for two. Taunton stepped out of bounds on one end and then Headges drained another three — the Patriots’ 10th make on 36th attempt from deep — and Taunton’s once 12-point lead was down to one, 60-59, with 47.4 to go.

Taunton got the ball where it needed to as Mass took his man one-on-one and drew the foul, sinking both free throws with 22.1 seconds remaining. The Tigers got their first fortuitous bounce on the other end as the ball hit off a Concord-Carlisle player’s foot and went out of bounds. Senior Tristan Herry (eight points) sank two more free throws with 10.3 seconds left to ice it.

“That was a little bit of grit,” Dacey said of grinding it out at the end. “We had to get a stop and we had some loud turnovers before that to bring the game into a competitive state. All we had to do was get the ball over halfcourt, and again it came down to one guy being out of place. We have to tune it up.”

Although Taunton senior Trent Santos (five points, nine rebounds) got free and buried the first shot of the game, the Patriots’ had a clear plan on defense to try and deny the Hockomock League MVP the ball as much as possible. That meant opportunity for others, and Morissette and Costa (nine points, four rebounds) took advantage in the first half.

Taunton boys basketball

Morissette entered late in the first and closed the period with a strong drive to the basket for two just before the buzzer to put Taunton ahead 15-14.

Costa, who missed the last nine games of the season due to injury, made his return in the second and made an instant impact. He hauled in a missed three and converted a putback, and then played good defense on the other end and got the rebound.

Two plays later, Herry kicked it to Morissette for an open three that put Taunton ahead 22-16. The Tigers forced a turnover and Morissette battled through contact for two on the next trip. The Tigers got a key stop and then Mass found Costa for two more as Taunton opened up a 26-16 lead in the second.

“Costa was big, Cyrus too,” Dacey said. “Those were hustle points from those two, those are points that are always going to be there. But we have to refine how we run stuff against these junk defenses. We got a warning tonight and now let’s see how we handle the warning.”

Taunton had a slow start to the second half with just four points over the first four minutes, and the Patriots used a 10-4 burst to cut the deficit down to one possession.

Click here for a photo gallery from this game.

Mass responded with a strong take for a traditional three-point play and then Trent Santos finished a tough layup for just his second bucket of the game. Morissette added another basket and Mass finished with four straight points to close the quarter.

“He was taking it off the dribble, which will be open,” Dacey said of Mass. “When he gets that man-to-man look, he can go by them. That was our “adjustment” — give the ball to Faisal and take it to the rim. Given who was out there, he was the guy to go to in that late situation. A couple of other guys were in a funk and [Faisal] has always been confident, he wants the ball.”

Taunton boys basketball (19-2) advances to the Round of 16 to take on #11 Wachusett, who secured a 75-55 win over Bridgewater-Raynham. The MIAA has yet to post the date and time but the game is likely to be Wednesday.

Monday’s Schedule & Scoreboard – 02/21/22

Today’s games are listed below.

Boys Basketball
Attleboro, 67 vs. Durfee, 42 – FinalAfter falling behind in the first quarter, Attleboro dominated the final three quarters to earn a season sweep of Durfee. Playing shorthanded without leading scorer Evan Houle, the Bombardiers got a huge boost from junior Jaiden Outland, who hit four three pointers and finished with career-high 18 points to pace the Attleboro offense. Durfee held a 18-14 lead after eight minutes but Attleboro came storming back in a 22-point second quarter with Outland netting eight point, Jake Struminski adding six of his eight points, and Colin Morais chipping in with five of his 15 points. The Bombardiers won the second quarter 22-5, taking a 36-23 lead into the locker room.

Canton, 66 vs. Fenway, 49 – FinalHolding a six point lead at the break, Canton used a 19-point third quarter to stretch the lead and eventually finish off Fenway for the second time in as many days. The Bulldogs got scoring contributions from six players in the big third quarter with senior Lanse Dorcelus scoring six of his team-high 16 points, senior Nate Mei adding five of his 13 points, and Matt Chafin (11 points), Dillon Nguyen, Conor Hunter, and Bahsor Mahn (eight points) all scored in the quarter as Canton turned its halftime lead (32-26) in a 51-36 advantage going into the fourth. Jacob Solomon added a trio of threes and finished with nine points.

Foxboro, 58 vs. Medfield, 54 – FinalTied at halftime, Foxboro pulled ahead for good with a big third quarter to land a key win over Division 2 foe Medfield. Foxboro had a 20-15 lead after a quarter but the teams went into the locker room at halftime deadlocked, 30-30. Five different Foxboro players scored in the third and the Warriors had their best defensive frame of the game, winning the third 17-9. Alex Penders had five of his 14 points, Andrew Finn and Cam Barreira each sank a three, Sam Golub (nine points) added a basket, and Dylan Gordon had four of his team-high 22 points to help Foxboro pull away.

Franklin, 43 vs. Leominster, 30 – FinalAnchored by one of its best defensive efforts of the season, Franklin landed an impressive win over one of the two ranked teams in Division 2. Junior Ben Harvey had a fantastic showing on the defensive end, holding one of Central Mass’ best players Justin Dadah Jr. to just one three-pointer in the fourth quarter. The Panthers used a 16-0 run across the first and second quarters to create separation. Sophomore Sean O’Leary scored eight of his 11 points in the opening half while Harvey got it going on the offensive end with six points in the second. Geino Scaringello gave the Franklin offense a big boost in the second half with all of his nine points coming over the final two frames.

King Philip, 68 vs. Falmouth, 36 – FinalKing Philip poured in 26 points in the third quarter to run away with a big win over Falmouth in the first round of the Somerset-Berkley tournament. The Warriors built a 27-16 lead at halftime, getting a trio of three-pointers from Grant Kinney in the first half and one apiece from Braeden Sottile (10 points) and freshman Tommy Kilroy. Junior Will Laplante took over in the third, hitting three more threes and went on to finish with 16 of his team-high 24 points after the halftime break. Charlie Grant and Sottile also hit threes in the third quarter for KP, who had 12 makes from three-point range.

Mansfield, 56 vs. Westford Academy, 41 – FinalClick here for a Photo Gallery from this game. Mansfield struggled in the opening quarter against Westford’s zone, but the Hornets turned things around in the second quarter to send the teams into the locker room tied. In the second half, Mansfield locked down defensively, allowing only one point in the third and 12 points in the half, to pull out a win against a team ranked in the top 10 in Div. 1 and advance to the final of the Roundball Classic. Matt Hyland led all scorers with 16, 10 in the second half, and added nine rebounds, five assists, and four steals. Chris Hill added 13, including seven in the second to help the Hornets even up the game and 4-for-4 from the line in the fourth quarter. Andrew Slaney nailed four threes, including two in the first to keep Mansfield close, and finished with 12 points. Mansfield hit eight from beyond the arc as a team and will face the winner of Whitman-Hanson and Brockton in Wednesday’s final.

Milford, 46 vs. Shrewsbury, 57 – Final

Sharon, 59 vs. Walpole, 71 – FinalSharon trailed by just three at halftime but Walpole exploded for 27 points in the third quarter to run away with the win in the championship game of the Davenport Classic. Sophomore Nate Katznelson dropped a career-high 27 points for the Eagles, but Walpole’s balanced attack — five players scored in the third — and successful three-point shooting in the third (five makes) ended up the difference.

Stoughton, 59 vs. Milton, 38 – FinalAfter a back-and-forth first quarter, Stoughton dominated the middle quarters to build a double digit lead that never relinquished the rest of the way. Junior Rayan Sablon hit four three-pointers in the first half and finished with 22 of his career-high 31 points to help the Black Knights get the win. Connor Andrews added nine of his 17 points in the opening half as Stoughton built a 34-19 lead at halftime and had a 46-25 lead going into the fourth.

Taunton, 77 @ New Bedford, 42 – FinalTaunton senior Trent Santos scored his 1,000th career point as the Tigers rolled to a big win to finish the regular season. Santos finished with 29 points in the win and hit the milestone with — fittingly — a pull up three in transition in the fourth quarter. Santos had five threes in the game and 10 total makes. Chris Volcy came off the bench and scored half of his 12 points in Taunton’s 25-point second quarter, turning a close game into a blowout by halftime (43-21). Faisal Mass added eight points for Taunton, which had nine players get in the scoring column.










Girls Basketball
Attleboro, 61 @ Durfee, 30 – FinalThe Bombardiers held Durfee to 12 points in the first half, building a 32-12 lead through two quarters and never looking back to record a fifth straight win. Meghan Gordon scored 12 of her 16 points and Lindsey Perry scored all seven of her points in the first half to get Attleboro off to a great start. Vanessa Ellis scored 13 points (eight in the second half) and Rylie Camacho buried four three-pointers and finished with 12. Avery Vieira scored six of her eight points in the fourth.

Foxboro, 61 vs. Cambridge, 30 – FinalKailey Sullivan scored 23 points, knocking down five three-pointers, as the Warriors rolled to a big win in the opening round of the Warrior Classic. Nine players scored for Foxboro, which will face Walpole on Tuesday night in the final.

Mansfield, 54 vs. Westford Academy, 55 – FinalClick here for a Photo Gallery from this game. Abigail Chambers hit a three from six feet behind the arc with only 4.5 on the clock and Westford pulled out a come from behind win in the first round of the Roundball Classic. The Hornets had led 54-48 in the closing minutes, but Westford closed the game on a 7-0 run. Abby Wager scored a team-high 22 points, including 10 in the fourth quarter, to pace the Hornets. She added six rebounds and four steals. Kara Santos chipped in with nine points (five in the fourth) and Bridget Hanley added nine points, five assist, and two blocks. Natlya Gill came off the bench and scored seven points. Mansfield will face Natick on Wednesday afternoon in the consolation round of the tournament.

Taunton, 52 vs. New Bedford, 59 – FinalTaunton and New Bedford had a shootout in the second half, as the teams combined for 68 points, but the Tigers weren’t able to pull off a comeback in the season finale and the Whalers earned a split of the season series. Kameron St. Pierre had a team-high 17 points for the Tigers, all of them in the second half, and knocked down three from beyond the arc. Liv Gannon scored nine, all in the first half, and Cali Melo and Abby Souza each scored eight points for the Tigers.

Canton, 46 @ Westwood, 40 – FinalThe Bulldogs closed out the regular season by winning the title at the Riley Classic and beating one of the teams ahead of them in the Div. 2 power rankings. Fay Gallery scored 17 points, dished our four assists, and had three steals to lead the way for Canton. Kiara Cerruti added 16 points and three steals and Sydney Gallery had seven points, five boards, and three assists. Canton also got a lot of help on the glass, with Han Hong and Erin Beatty each pulling down six rebounds and Samya DaSilva grabbing five boards. Marissa Staffiere made a pair of clutch free throws at the end to help seal the win. Fay Gallery was named tournament MVP and Cerruti was named to the all-tournament team.

King Philip, 49 vs. Archbishop Williams, 28 – FinalKP jumped out to a 16-2 lead after one quarter and extended that lead to 34-6 at halftime, running away with a big win in the consolation round of the end-of-season tournament. The Warriors had 48 points through three quarters. All 14 players saw time on the court and 11 ended up on the score sheet. Liv Lafond led the Warriors with 10 points, while Emily Sawyer had eight and Kylie Watson and Julia Marsden each scored seven points in the win. Olivia Ali knocked down a three-pointer for her first career varsity points.

Boys Hockey
North Attleboro, 1 vs. Walpole, 3 – Final

Mansfield, 3 vs. King Philip, 6 – Final

Stoughton, 1 @ Rockland, 2 – Final (OT)After being shutout by Rockland in the first time around, Stoughton pushed the Bulldogs to the limit this time around before falling in overtime. Joe McNulty had the goal for the Black Knights, Steven Westerlund had a strong game defensively, and Chris Andrade played well in net with 29 saves.

Girls Hockey
Mansfield/Oliver Ames, 4 vs. Dedham, 0 – FinalMOA freshman Emma Rabinovich sparked the offense with her first career goal less than a minute into the game and the Warriors never looked back, skating to a shutout win over Dedham. Rabinovich lit the lamp 30 seconds into the game and then Kylie O’Keefe doubled the lead with a minute left in the period to make it 2-0. Cammy Shanteler (from O’Keefe) and Cataline Kipp each added a goal for the Warriors. Jess Widdop made 35 saves in net to earn the shutout for MOA.

King Philip, 5 vs. Milton, 0 – Final

Friday’s Schedule & Scoreboard – 02/18/22

Today’s games are listed below.

Boys Basketball
Attleboro, 57 @ Mansfield, 64 – FinalPropelled by a strong first quarter (21 points) and a pivotal third quarter (18-4), Mansfield held off a strong fourth quarter from Attleboro to finish league play with a win. Matt Hyland got the Hornets off to a strong start with half of his team-high 16 points in the opening eight minutes and five other Mansfield players got into the scoring column, including threes from Andrew Slaney (12 points) and Chris Hill (12 points) for an early 21-13 lead. Colin Morais (17 points), Jaiden Outland, Neo Franco, and Jake Struminski each hit a three in the second but Dante James had one for Mansfield and Anthony Sacchetti had six points to help the Hornets ahead at the break (39-30). Hyland had another eight points in the third and Slaney added a pair of triples while the Hornets held the Bombardiers to just four points to break the game wide open, taking a 57-34 lead into the fourth. Attleboro made a late push with Morais, Outland, and Franco hitting fourth quarter threes to get the deficit down to single digits.

Foxboro, 51 @ Canton, 47 – FinalCanton continually cut into Foxboro’s lead throughout the game, eventually pulling even with the Warriors but it was senior Dylan Gordon who converted the go-ahead layup and then sank a pair of free throws in the final seconds to ice the win. Junior Alex Penders (12 points), Ryan LeClair (seven points), and Sam Golub (six points) helped Foxboro build leads after the first (12-5) and second quarters (22-18). Lanse Dorcelus hit on three of his four threes in the second and both Matt Chafin and Nate Mei added one each to close the gap by halftime. Chafin and Ashton Cetoute hit from downtown in the third as the Bulldogs made it 36-36 going into the fourth. Gordon finished with 15 of his 17 points in the second half, his lone field goal of the fourth being the go-ahead bucket followed by two free throws. Cam Barreira, fresh off his best shooting performance of the season in a win at Stoughton, came through with a pair of clutch threes in the fourth.

Franklin, 75 @ King Philip, 50 – FinalFranklin’s offense roared to life in the opening half, putting up 21 points in the opening quarter and then 25 more in the second on its way to a big win over King Philip. Sophomore Andrew O’Neil hit five three-pointers, three in the first half, to spark the Panthers’ offense. O’Neill finished with a team-high 21 points while senior Sean Vinson scored all 19 of his points in the first half. King Philip cut into the deficit by winning the third quarter (16-9) with senior Braeden Sottile dropping half of his team-high 20 points in the quarter. But Franklin’s offense got back on track with 22 points in the fourth, with O’Neill adding two more threes and both Evan DaSilva and Caden Sullivan connecting from downtown.

Milford, 48 @ Taunton, 68 – FinalTaunton only led by two possessions going into the fourth quarter (49-43) but the Tigers took care of business in the final eight minutes, running away with a win to clinch the Kelley-Rex division title outright for the first team in program history. Senior Trent Santos hit four of his six three-pointers after halftime and finished with a game-high 26 points to lead the charge. Faisal Mass added 15 points in the win. Milford freshman Andrew Rivera hit a trio of threes and finished with a team-best 23 points.

North Attleboro, 46 @ Oliver Ames, 63 – FinalNorth Attleboro came out of the gates with 16 points in the first quarter and only trailed by two possessions at halftime but a switch to zone defense from Oliver Ames stalled the Rocketeers’ offense and the Tigers pulled away to finish their regular season with a win. OA held a 30-24 lead at halftime and then got a balanced scoring attack in the third to double its lead from six to 12, carrying a 44-32 lead into the fourth. Drew Baxter had four of his 10 points in the third, MJ Jean Baptiste and Zach Tagliamonte (10 points) each had three, and Dan Reily and Jake Grimaldi each chipped in with a bucket. CJ Williams finished with a team-high 11 points for OA, who had 10 players factor into the scoring. Brody Rosenberg hit a trio of threes to lead North with 13 points, Gavin Wells also had a three trifectas for 11 points and Casey Poirier scored 10 first half points for the Big Red.

Sharon, 65 @ Stoughton, 61 – FinalClick here for a Recap and Photo Gallery from this game.










Girls Basketball
Mansfield, 52 @ Attleboro, 58 – FinalLindsey Perry scored a game-high 16 points, including 12 in the second half, to help the Bombardiers pull out a win and sweep the season series against the Hornets. Mansfield scored 18 in the first, including eight from Anna Darlington, to take a five-point lead after one, but Attleboro stormed back with a 15-8 second to take a two-point lead into the locker room. Vanessa Ellis, Rylie Camacho, and Meghan Gordon combined for 13 in the quarter. Perry and Gordon combined for 13 points in the third, as the Bombardiers extended the lead to six after three, which they were able to hold onto over the final eight minutes. Perry scored six points in the fourth, including 4-of-6 from the free throw line. Gordon finished with 11 points and Ellis and Camacho each scored 10. Abby Wager led the Hornets with 15, including nine points in the third quarter alone, while Darlington finished with 10. Olivia Salisbury chipped in with eight points for the Hornets.

Canton, 44 @ Foxboro, 49 – FinalSeven Warriors were on the score sheet as they held off Canton to sweep the season series with the bulldogs. Kailey Sullivan was the top scorer for the home team with 14 point and Erin Foley added 11. Ava Hill went 6-for-6 from the line to help Foxboro seal the win.

King Philip, 24 @ Franklin, 49 – FinalKP led 10-8 after the first quarter but Franklin held the Warriors to only 14 points over the final 24 minutes to finish the league campaign unbeaten for the third straight season. The Panthers took the second quarter 11-2 and outscored KP 30-12 in the second half for their 42nd straight league win. Olivia Quinn led the way for the Panthers with 13 points, including nine in the second quarter, and went 6-for-6 from the line. Stefany Padula hit a pair of threes and scored eight points, Brigid Earley had seven, and Katie Peterson added six points for Franklin. Liv Lafond was KP’s leading scorer with eight points, Leah Santoro had six, and Emily Sawyer and Jordan Bennett each scored four points in the loss.

Taunton, 37 @ Milford, 54 – FinalWithout the league’s leading scorer, Kameron St. Pierre, Taunton struggled offensively early and the Hawks took advantage to pull out a win in their final league game of the season, splitting the seasons series. Milford jumped ahead 14-3 after the first and extended the lead to 14 by halftime. Maddalena Mannucci Pacini scored eight of her game-high 15 points in the first half for Milford. Taunton took the third quarter to slice into the Milford lead, but then the Hawks exploded for 24 points in the fourth, led by Brooke Ferreira’s nine, to seal the win. Ferreira finished with 12 and Jill Araujo added a dozen as well. Cali Melo led Taunton with 10 points and Jillian Doherty added nine, all 19 of their combined points coming in the second half. Lex Haywood chipped in with five.

Oliver Ames, 78 @ North Attleboro, 33 – FinalOA closed out the league campaign with a big road win. The Tigers jumped out to a big lead early in the game and seemed to have an answer for every defensive switch that North threw at them. Senior Caroline Peper exploded for a game-high 24 points and the Tigers got a big boost on the offense end with 12 points apiece from a trio of sophomores: Jasmyn Cooper, Sarah Hilliard, and Kaydance Derba. Summer Doherty scored 11 of her team-high 12 points for North and Maryellen Charette added nine.

Stoughton, 44 @ Sharon, 53 – FinalClick here for a Recap and Photo Gallery from this game.

Taunton Storms Past Mansfield For Share Of Kelley-Rex

Taunton boys basketball Trent Santos
Taunton senior Trent Santos pulls up for a three in transition in the fourth quarter against Mansfield. (Ryan Lanigan/HockomockSports.com)
ByRyanLanigan_2016FollowRyanLanigan_2016
 
 
 TAUNTON, Mass. — Not many players in the state have the license to take a pull-up three on a fast break in any ordinary game, let alone a tie game in the fourth quarter with the league title at stake.

Taunton’s Trent Santos is an exception.

Santos drained the shot with 4:30 to go to put the Tigers ahead for the first time in the second half, a lead that never vanished as Taunton used a dominant fourth quarter to secure a 56-46 win, clinching at least a share of the Kelley-Rex title.

Click here for a photo gallery from this game.

Taunton boys basketball

Taunton can become the first team besides Mansfield to win the division outright since 2012 with a win over Milford on Friday. Santos finished with 11 of his 27 points in the final quarter along with seven rebounds, three assists, and three steals.

“I know coach wouldn’t have been too happy if I missed that shot but we were on a run and the momentum was crazy, I just felt it so I shot it and when it went in, I was relieved,” said Santos. “Franklin and Mansfield, all of their help defense and how they force you way out, they do a really good job with it. But that shot, we were on a run there so I felt it.”

Santos’ pull-up three was the midway point of a stunning turnaround for the Tigers. Mansfield’s suffocating defense held the hosts without a point for the final five minutes of the first half, and limited Taunton to 12 hard-earned points in the third quarter.

Going into the fourth, Taunton scored on back-to-back possessions just twice. Once in the first quarter on a putback from Santos and then a three from Faisal Mass (12 points, 11 rebounds, two blocks). And once in the second quarter, a three from Troy Santos (eight points, six rebounds) followed by a layup from Trent Santos. The Tigers didn’t have a significant run at any point through the first 24 minutes.

A commitment to an improved defensive performance and better rebounding (13-4 in the fourth) led to a spirited offensive performance over the final eight minutes as the Tigers opened the quarter with a 14-0 run, and in the end, outscored the Hornets 20-2.

“It was really our defense in the fourth quarter,” Santos said. “We all locked in and committed to rebounding and getting out on the break and we were able to hit some big shots to go on that run that won us the game. It feels amazing, the atmosphere in here was crazy, and in that fourth quarter, it was really fun to play basketball.”

The fourth quarter fittingly started with a stop for the Tigers, first a steal and then a miss from Mansfield. Although Taunton was off on its first shot, sophomore Cyrus Morissette came up with a pair of offensive boards to keep the possession alive and he found Tristan Herry for his lone make from the field, a three-pointer.

Another stop was hauled in by Herry, and he quickly pushed it up for Santos, who didn’t hesitate before draining a three. Out of a timeout, Taunton forced a shot clock violation, Mansfield got a stop of its own, and then Mass came down with a board after the Hornets missed again.

Morissette took a pass at the top of the key and bullied his way to the basket, banking it in to tie it at 44-44 with under five minutes to play.

Then came the steal from Santos, the pass from Herry, and the pull-up three from Santos that put Taunton ahead for good.

“They kind of just locked in collectively defensively,” said Taunton head coach Charlie Dacey. “We got some stops and obviously came down the other end and hit some shots. Trent hit some shots, maybe not recommended shots but he’s been taking them and making them all year. And Tristan had a big three too, and Cyrus getting to the rim was another one. A lot of small things added up.

“They’ve been working hard all year long and we’ve been pushing them in practice, we really have. And they’ve responded. Other teams I’ve had in the past haven’t always done that. They show up every day and they go, and that’s unique in high school.”

Mansfield had a couple of chances to get back into it but had a travel to start and then missed on a pair of three-point attempts. They got a couple of stops but couldn’t get it going on offense, missing another three and then a pair of free throws.

Taunton boys basketball

Taunton came back the other way and Santos got his man in the air on a fake, took a step to his right, and then drained another triple — his third of the quarter — to make it 50-44 with 1:43 to go.

“That momentum is huge for us, just huge. Success breeds success…it’s at that point, I’m hands off,” Dacey said. “It’s always Mansfield or Franklin, and then us. This year, now it’s us. It’s great for the kids, it’s good for the psyche of the school.”

Taunton boys basketball

Mansfield finally broke its cold spell when sophomore Trevor Foley (10 points, 10 rebounds, four blocks) converted a putback to cut it to four points. Mansfield scrambled on defense to try and double but Santos was able to find Morissette cutting to the basket for two and a 52-46 lead with under a minute to go, icing the win.

“I thought we did a really good job rebounding the and then we gave up the three to Herry off an offensive rebound, and then Santos came down and hit another one and I could see faces on my guys deflated,” said Mansfield head coach Mike Vaughan. “I just said to them, when you wear this uniform, you always believe we’re winning. I felt like we played not to lose instead of going out to win. There were so many things in the last four minutes that weren’t what we typically do.

“I thought we did a good job contesting shooters and making them work for everything. I don’t know if they got an open look really throughout the game so I was happy with what I thought was high-level defense. If you’re holding them to 56, you’re doing a pretty good job defensively.”

Santos got off to a great start to the game. After being shut out in the first half during the first meeting in Mansfield, Santos exploded for 12 points out of the game as the Tigers staked a 15-13 lead after eight minutes.

“It’s my eighth time playing [Mansfield] and I get more sick of it every time I play them, they do such a good job moving the ball and forcing us into tough shots and getting us tired, that’s how they win,” Santos said. “For us to really just commit and lock in and finish strong, I think that’s really what won us the game.”

Mansfield took control of the game with a 13-0 run to end the first half. Matt Hyland (17 points, six assists, two steals, two blocks) sandwiched a pair of makes around a putback from Foley to tie the game. Hyland then found Foley for two, Hyland drained a three-pointer, and then a layup from Hyland following a block from Foley had the visitors up 31-24 at the break.

An early three from Troy Santos and a take from Mass got Taunton going early in the third but Mansfield countered with a free throw from Anthony Sacchetti and a transition bucket from Hyland. Chris Hill dropped in a baseline jumper, Sacchetti cut to the basket for two more, and another bucket from Foley had the Hornets ahead, 44-36, going into the fourth.

Mansfield is still mathematically alive for their 10th straight Kelley-Rex title but the Hornets would need to beat both Milford and Attleboro to close the week and would need the Scarlet Hawks to land an upset over Taunton on Friday.

Click here for a photo gallery from this game.

Taunton boys basketball

But if Taunton wins on Friday, it will give the Tigers the division title outright. It would be the program’s second straight (after sharing with Mansfield a year ago), and first outright Hock title.

“We still have to win on Friday against Milford, but we definitely had a sour taste in our mouth from last year in the loss at Mansfield, seeing them cut the nets down,” Santos said. “It really felt good to get one back here, against them especially.

Taunton boys basketball (14-1, 16-2) will host Milford on Friday for a chance to clinch the league crown, but the Scarlet Hawks will first travel to Mansfield (12-2, 15-4) on Wednesday night for a date with the Hornets.

Sunday’s Schedule & Scoreboard – 02/13/22

Today’s games are listed below.

Boys Basketball
Attleboro, 57 vs. Catholic Memorial, 52 – FinalAttleboro senior Alvin Harrison dropped a team-high 18 points and junior Jaiden Outland had some key plays in the final minutes to help Bombardiers secure a win over visiting Catholic Memorial. Senior Colin Morais converted a tough layup with 1:30 to go to put the Bombardiers ahead 52-49, but CM made it a two-point game with a free throw. The Knights had a chance to tie the game after an Attleboro turnover with just a minute to go both Outland raced back and combined with Harrison to steal the ball back. Outland sank a key free throw, and then leading by just one, he scored on a breakout with just under 20 seconds left to make it 55-52. Morais finished with 10 points while Outland had a career-high nine points for Attleboro, who overcame a 30-21 halftime deficit, starting with a 20-point third quarter in which seven players scored.

Milford, 78 vs. Ludlow, 21 – FinalMilford had 12 players get into the scoring column in a big win over Ludlow, its second win in a three-day span. Freshman Gustavo Coutinho hit three of the Hawks’ 11 three-pointers and finished with a career-high 18 points to lead the offense. Senior Justin Luchini scored all of his 13 points in the first three quarters while freshman Andrew Rivera had nine of his 11 points in by halftime.

Taunton, 67 vs. Durfee, 54 – FinalTaunton senior Trent Santos sank five three-pointers and finished with 12 makes from the field for a game-high 35 points as the Tigers avenged their loss to the Hilltoppers in December. Faisal Mass added 20 points and sophomore Troy Santos chilled in with eight points for Taunton, who had a 36-32 lead at halftime.

Girls Basketball
North Attleboro, 45 @ Sharon, 49 – FinalTess Letendre led three Eagles in double digits to help them split the season series with the Rocketeers. Sharon led by two at halftime, but North came up with 17 points in the third quarter to take a five-point lead into the fourth. Sharon held the visitors to just six points in the fourth quarter to pull out the win. The Eagles scored 15 in the final quarter, including 6-for-10 at the line. North was only 5-for-12 from the free throw line for the game. Jasmine Davis added 12 points and Rachael Hager scored 11. Summer Doherty was North’s top scorer with 14 and freshman Sam Faria added 10. Ava McKeon and Sam Sweeney each scored seven points in the loss.

Boys Hockey
Canton, 4 vs. Reading, 3 – Final (OT)Eamon Kelly scored his second goal of the game to give Canton the overtime win and seal the Walter Brinn Division championship of the Ed Burns Coffee Pot Hockey Classic. Reading twice had the lead in the game but Kelly, who was named tournament MVP, tied it at 1-1 and Patrick Drury made it 2-2. AJ Thomas put the Bulldogs ahead for the first time late in the second period, but the Rockets were able to score with 27 seconds left in the third to force the extra period. It was Canton’s 15th straight win.

Franklin, 0 vs. Natick, 2 – Final

Girls Hockey
Franklin, 3 @ Mansfield/Oliver Ames, 2 – Final – Maggie McCaffrey scored a pair of goals, including the game-winner with three minutes left to play, to help the Panthers pick up the road win. Molly Hurley had the first goal for the Panthers while Lindsey Dennett, Shaw Downing, Samantha Wong, and Dana Stott each had an assist. Maeve Anastasia and Kylie O’Keefe each scored for MOAF, the latter tying the game at 2-2 with nine minutes to play. Cammy Shanteler, Cierra Doherty, and O’Keefe each had an assist for the Warriors.

Friday’s Schedule & Scoreboard – 02/11/22

Today’s games are listed below.

Boys Basketball
Taunton, 52 @ Attleboro, 48 – FinalTaunton senior Trent Santos sank a pair of free throws with 4.9 seconds left to ice the win for the Tigers. Santos scored eight of his 16 points in the final frame, hitting of half of his four three-point field goals to lead the Tigers, who trailed 14-9 after a quarter but held the hosts to two points in the second quarter to seize a 20-16 edge at the break. A three-pointer from Attleboro’s Evan Houle put the Bombardiers up 41-38 with four minutes to go but Taunton sophomore Cyrus Morrisette finished a tough take to the rim, Tristan Herry (14 points) drew an offensive foul, and a layup from from Faisal Mass put the Tigers ahead 42-41. Colin Morais (20 points) hit two free throws as Attleboro jumped ahead again but a tough floater in the lane from Herry gave Taunton the lead again, this time for good. Santos added a three with 90 seconds to go to pad Taunton’s lead. Evan Houle added 14 points for the Bombardiers, hitting four three-pointers in the second half.

North Attleboro, 38 @ Canton, 59 – FinalCanton connected on eight of its 10 three-pointers in the first half, racing out to a big lead that it never relinquished in a win over North. Nate Mei (13 points) had two of his triples in the first eight minutes and Lanse Dorcelus scored 18 of his 20 points in the first half as Canton established double-digit leads at the end of the first quarter (21-10) and at halftime (38-15). Matt Chafin and Ashton Cetoute added third quarter triples to help the Bulldogs keep a large lead (51-26) going into the final quarter. Brody Rosenberg and Givany Carney each had 12 points for the Rocketeers.

Sharon, 64 @ Foxboro, 60 – FinalLocked in a close contest the entire way for the second straight game, Sharon emerged with a hard-fought victory on the road over Foxboro. The Eagles’ largest lead of the second half peaked at nine less than a minute into the second half, but it was closer than that the rest of the way. In fact, a 10-0 burst from the Warriors quickly erased that and the teams stayed within two possessions the rest of the way. Sharon carried a 53-51 lead into the fourth quarter and got five points from Matt Baur (16 points), four from Jacob McLoughlin (nine points) and a bucket from John Baez (nine points) to hold on for the win. Dylan Gordon (16 points) banked in a three with just under four minutes to to cut the deficit to one, 59-58 but a strong take from McLoughlin a minute later pushed it back to three. Alex Penders (16 points) cleaned up his own miss with 2:30 to go to one again cut it to one. McLoughlin hit a floater with under a minute to go and Baur added a free throw and the Eagles ended the game without giving up a point over the final two minutes. Donyae Pierre had a big first half for the Eagles, scoring all 12 of his points then to help the Eagles establish a 38-32 halftime lead.

King Philip, 63 @ Milford, 65 – FinalMilford senior Justin Luchini grabbed an offensive rebound and kissed it off the backboard with 1.6 seconds left to give the Scarlet Hawks the win over King Philip. Milford missed on its first layup attempt but Luchini (19 points) poked the rebound free and put it back up and in for the winner. Milford held a 42-29 lead at halftime before King Philip came storming back. Senior Paul Roberts added 14 points, freshman Andrew Rivera added nine points, and junior Wyatt Zagami chipped in with eight points for Milford.

Mansfield, 56 @ Franklin, 55 – FinalClick here for a Recap and Photo Gallery from this game.

Stoughton, 46 @ Oliver Ames, 42 – FinalAnchored by senior guard Josh Rivera, Stoughton had one of its best defensive performances to secure a road win at OA and its first season sweep of the Tigers since the 2010-2011 season. Defense was the story for both teams from the get go, with OA taking an 8-7 lead after one and Stoughton carrying a 17-14 lead into the locker room at halftime. The Black Knights got the offense going, closing the third on a run capped by a three from junior Rayan Sablon (career-high 26 points) at the buzzer. Sablon went on to score 10 points in the fourth for Stoughton, who pushed the lead to as much as nine before a couple of threes from OA’s Zach Tagliamonte (10 points). Rivera capped it with three free throws down the stretch. CJ Williams added a team-high 12 points for the Tigers.










Girls Basketball
Attleboro, 81 @ Taunton, 47 – FinalClick here for a Photo Gallery from this game. – Attleboro’s offense was clicking on all cylinders on Friday night, as the Bombardiers scored at least 19 points in each quarter to pull out the road win. Meghan Gordon scored 30 points and pulled down 14 rebounds to lead Attleboro, which also got 12 points and 14 rebounds off the bench from freshman Vanessa Ellis. Taunton started well on senior night, as Olivia Gannon scored all eight of her points and Abby Souza scored four of her nine in the first quarter, but Gordon was also on fire from the opening tip, matching Taunton’s total with 14 points in the first eight minutes. Attleboro extended its lead in the second with Gordon scoring seven and the Bombardiers knocking down three triples. Kameron St. Pierre (team-high 16 points) kept the Tigers close by knocking down four from deep and racking up 12 points. Attleboro stormed out of the break with a 22-point third quarter to break the game open. Gordon added another seven, while Lindsey Perry scored six and Lily Routhier added four. Kayla Goldrick scored nine points and dished out eight assists for the Bombardiers, while Routhier, Perry, and Avery Vieira had eight points apiece. Cali Melo had four points, three steals, and three assists and Jillian Doherty had four points for the Tigers.

Canton, 71 @ North Attleboro, 41 – FinalKiara Cerruti scored a game-high 23 points and pulled down 10 rebounds to lead the Bulldogs to the road win. In the process, Cerruti became the program’s all-time leading scorer with 1,068 points, surpassing the 1,057 points of Eileen Morneau. The game was tied at 7-7 after one, but then Canton went on a run, outscoring North 21-5 in the second to take control. Both teams found a rhythm on offense in the third, as they combined for 36 points, but a 24-12 fourth quarter put the game away for the Bulldogs. Fay Gallery added 13 points, five rebounds, and seven assists and Erin Beatty had eight points and six boards for Canton. Maia Mahoney added six points and Han Hong had four assists in the win. Summer Doherty was North’s top scorer, finishing with 15 points (all in the second half) and Taylor McMath had seven.

Foxboro, 72 @ Sharon, 52 – FinalFoxboro bounced back with a big win on the road and clinched its place in the state tournament. The Warriors were led by its underclassman backcourt, as freshman Kailey Sullivan scored a career-high 26 points and sophomore Camryn Collins finished with 24. Jasmine Davis scored 19 points to lead the Eagles and Rachael Hager added 17.

Franklin, 65 @ Mansfield, 34 – Final

Milford, 29 @ King Philip, 35 – FinalThe Warriors outscored Milford 11-5 in the fourth quarter to pull out a defensive struggle. The first quarter was a struggle for both teams on the offensive end and finished 5-4. In the second, KP found the range to score 13 points and extend the lead to eight at the break. Maddie Paschke and Leah Santoro each scored four points in the quarter to help KP build its lead. Both would finish with six on the night. The Hawks stormed back in the third, coming out of halftime with a 14-6 quarter to tie things up heading to the fourth. Maddalena Mannucci Pacini scored six of her game-high 11 points in the third and Emily Croteau added all four of her points in the frame. KP got baskets from five different players in the fourth and held Milford to two made baskets to seal the win. Emily Sawyer led the way for the Warriors with eight points and Julia Marsden added five. Jill Araujo scored five for the Hawks and Khatrina Leger chipped in with four.

Oliver Ames, 70 @ Stoughton, 27 – FinalOliver Ames built a double-digit lead by halftime and never looked back in a win on the road at Stoughton. Caroline Peper and Jasmyn Cooper each scored 15 points for the Tigers, who led 31-15 at the halftime break. Anna Murphy chipped in with 10 points for the visitors. Senior Kate Bulger led all scorers for Stoughton with 11 points and sophomore Alyssa Edwards grabbed eight boards.

Boys Hockey
Mansfield, 2 @ Canton, 7 – Final

Girls Hockey
Canton, 4 vs. Lincoln-Sudbury, 0 – FinalAudrey Koen scored a pair of goals and Carolyn Durand made 19 saves to earn the shutout, as Canton picked up a big non-league win. It is the fifth straight win for the Bulldogs. Tess Khoury scored one and had a pair of assists, while Payton McDonough had a goal and assist. Allie McCabe had two helpers in the win.

Franklin Secures Statement Win Over Taunton

Franklin boys basketball Sean Vinson
Franklin senior Sean Vinson goes up for a shot against Taunton’s Faisal Mass in the first half. (Ryan Lanigan/HockomockSports.com)
ByRyanLanigan_2016FollowRyanLanigan_2016
 
 
 FRANKLIN, Mass. — The Franklin boys basketball team sent a message loud and clear to the rest of the Hockomock League and Division 1 on Tuesday night.

The Panthers are a serious contender.

Behind a near flawless opening three quarters, Franklin handed Taunton its first league loss of the season, and did so in emphatic fashion with a 77-48 win.

Franklin boys basketball

Franklin hit from deep early, which opened things up for the Panthers to successfully attack the basket, and the offense clicked on all cylinders the rest of the way. The hosts connected on 10 of their 11 three-pointers in the first three quarters and shot just under 70% from two-point range, carving up the Tiger’s defense.

Click here for a photo gallery from this game.

With the win, Franklin extended its win streak to eight games, snapping Taunton’s 10-game unbeaten stretch in the process.

“That’s definitely our best game, no question,” said Franklin head coach CJ Neely. “Considering the opponent, considering the executing we had tonight. We challenged the kids to be more than a good team…but if you want to do special things in this league, you have to beat teams like Taunton and Mansfield.

“I thought tonight, the big difference was all the stuff that won’t make the paper…the extra slides, guys having each other’s backs, being there for rebounds. I thought top to bottom, everyone that went in the game gave us good minutes.”

Sophomores Sean O’Leary (25 points, six rebounds, five assists) and Henry Digiorgio (24 points, 12 rebounds) kickstarted things for the Panthers with back-to-back threes, O’Leary added another one and sophomore Andrew O’Neill joined the early three party.

Digiorgio capped the opened quarter with his fourth make from the floor and his second three just before the buzzer as Franklin jumped ahead 21-11.

Franklin boys basketball

With Taunton committed to closing out on the three-point line, the Panthers found success doing something they struggled with during the first meeting: attack the basket.

In the Tigers’ win in mid-January, Franklin didn’t have a two-point field goal in the first half and didn’t score one until just over three minutes left in the third quarter. That was far from the case this time around.

After two takes in the first quarter, the Panthers took advantage of the space in the paint it created from its three-point shooting.

O’Leary took it to the rim for two, senior Will Tracey found classmate Sean Vinson cutting to the basket for two, and after Taunton’s Trent Santos (20 points), who leads the league in scoring, scored his first bucket of the game, O’Leary went right through the defense to answer with a layup of his own.

Vinson, O’Leary, and Digiorgio all converted tough, contested takes and then Will Tracey splashed in a three as the Panthers pushed its lead to 20. Santos hit a late three to cut into the deficit but Franklin led 39-22 at halftime.

“It’s no secret we like to shoot from the outside, we challenged the guys in the offseason to improve there to open things up…but because of the first game against them, we emphasized getting a paint touch, attacking the rim a bit more and not being trigger happy,” Neely said, as Franklin shot 8-for-12 from two-point range in the second quarter. “I thought the guys responded well to the coaching and did a really good job of believing in each other, they’ve been focused in and it showed tonight.

“I thought our sharing of the ball and our aggressiveness to the rim…we attacked them. We didn’t try to just survive their pressure, we went right at them. They don’t go deep with their rotation so we wanted to run them up and down and get them moving the whole game.”

The third quarter turned out to be the most dominant from the hosts, though it didn’t start out like it. Santos hit an early three off a pass from Tristan Herry (12 points), and then grabbed a steal that led to an easy two.

But before Taunton could cut into the deficit any further, Digiorgio drained a three, Taunton missed from deep, and then O’Neill sank another triple to force a Taunton timeout as the lead jumped back up to 45-27.

“The thing I liked the most was the response to their run that they had right off the bat,” Neely said. “We talked about them being a really good team and we knew they’d come out and get after it. They have a lot of pride, they are an excellent team and I love some of the guys over there as far as how they compete and play the game. The response we had, that was a huge momentum swing for us.”

That ended up sparking a massive 29-2 run, as the Panthers continued to click on offense while Taunton couldn’t find any rhythm against the Franklin defense.

Franklin hit on 13 total shots in the quarter, O’Leary adding one more three while the Panthers continually pierced the defense for 11 two-point field goals. Overall, Franklin shot 18-for-25 from two-point range (72%) in the game while Taunton was just 12-for-48 from the field through the first three quarters, with Santos responsible for half of this makes.

Click here for a photo gallery from this game.

Taunton finished with just eight turnovers and but Franklin dominated on the boards (45-19) and doubled the number of assists the Tigers had.

“They were very much disciplined on the offensive end and we didn’t respond…close outs, rotations, just fundamentally we just didn’t show,” said Taunton head coach Charlie Dacey. “And they are tough, they make you execute. If you make a mistake on defense, they punish you. And we made enough and we got punished. It was a bit of a clinic, now how much are we going to learn from it?”

Franklin boys basketball (11-2 Hockomock, 15-2 overall) has another crucial Kelley-Rex clash this week when it welcomes rival Mansfield on Friday. Taunton (12-1, 13-2) is on the road against with a visit to Attleboro.

Taunton’s Big Second Half Proves Too Much For KP

Taunton boys basketball Trent Santos
Taunton senior Trent Santos (34 points) goes up for a shot in between a pair of King Philip defenders in the second half. (Ryan Lanigan/HockomockSports.com)
ByRyanLanigan_2016FollowRyanLanigan_2016
 
 
 WRENTHAM, Mass. – After combining for over 150 points in their first meeting, it looked like Taunton and King Philip were set for another barn burner on Saturday night.

The two squads went toe-to-toe for the first two quarters, trading baskets back and forth with both sides finding success on offense, resulting in over 70 points through 16 minutes of action.

That offensive success only continued for one squad though as Taunton continued to light up the scoreboard and ran away with a 75-53 win after dominating the final two frames.

Click here for a photo gallery from this game.

“I thought our defense led into our offense in that second half,” said Taunton head coach Charlie Dacey. “It’s like every other team out there, when we play with confidence we play a lot better. Our confidence usually comes from the offense, but it should come from the defense because we work so hard on it.”

King Philip shot nearly 70% in the opening eight minutes en route to 21 points and hit a total of seven threes from the floor in the first half for a total of 34 points.

Taunton got stronger as the half went on, hitting five shots from the field in the first and then eight more in the second. Cyrus Morissette and Matt Small (nine rebounds) gave the Tigers necessary secondary scoring with King Philip’s defense zeroed in on Trent Santos, who still fought his way to 16 points in the first half.

Santos, who finished with 34 points on 10-for-18 shooting from the floor and 9-for-10 at the free throw line, picked up right where he left off and gave the Tigers a big boost early in the third, which turned out to be the game-changing quarter. Santos took a pass from Tristan Herry (10 points, six assists) and drained a three, and then Troy Santos stepped in to draw an offensive foul. On the ensuing possession, Herry found Trent Santos again for another triple as Taunton’s four-point edge at half quickly grew to 44-34.

Will Laplante (22 points, five rebounds) drilled a deep three, and Braeden Sottile (seven points, 11 rebounds) cleaned up his own miss to get KP within two possessions at 45-39 but the Tigers closed the final five minutes of the frame with a 10-3 run.

Faisal Mass, who missed the majority of the first half after picking up a pair of fouls, drove to the basket for two, and then Herry converted a putback after getting possession for the Tigers with a steal.

Sottile drained a three off a pass from Grant Kinney (eight points) but Santos answered with another triple of his own and then Mass showed off his range with a nice step-back three-pointer with just over a minute to go. And then Taunton drew another charge on the other end to get the ball back, taking a 55-42 lead into the fourth.

“It was Faisal,” Dacey said of the difference in the second half. Mass scored 14 points and hauled in all five of his rebounds after the halftime break. “Having him on the floor, he stabilizes things underneath. We’re a better rebounding team, we’re not a great rebounding team but we’re certainly better with him on the floor. Matt [Small] does everything he can but Faisal has some strength and some bulk underneath.”

The momentum continued for Taunton to start the fourth, this time in the form of a 12-4 run. Morissette attacked the offensive glass for two, Mass (19 points, five rebounds) dropped in an easy two after a nice pass from Herry, Santos drove to the basket for two and then added two free throws, and then Mass and Santos took turns with two points apiece as the Tigers’ lead ballooned to 67-47 just before the midway point of the fourth.

After King Philip put up 34 points in the first half, the Warriors had just 19 points in the second half. Taunton sophomore Troy Santos had a big showing defensively for the Tigers.

Click here for a photo gallery from this game.

“I thought a lot of their shots in the first half, even ones they made, were contested tough shots,” said King Philip head coach Dave DeStefano. “I thought we did a great job in the first half but they grabbed the momentum the first four minutes of the second half and we just couldn’t keep up. They hit a lot of tough shots on us, they did a great job on offense in terms of getting Trent open on a lot of action, and because of that, it got other guys involved.

“We got a little stagnant with our ball movement in the second half. I think we tried to do a little too much one-on-one, and I think we saw what they were doing offensively and we tried to hurry up to catch up when we didn’t need to, and that led to shots that weren’t the best for us, times we could have gotten better looks.”

Taunton boys basketball (12-0 Hockomock, 12-1) has a quick turnaround as they return home for a Sunday matinee with New Bedford at 2:00. King Philip (2-9, 4-10) also is right back in action on Sunday with its final crossover game on tap with a visit to Foxboro for a 1:00 PM tipoff.