Holliston Youth Basketball – Week 2
From Derek Cordon & Michelle Friedman
Providing you the scoops on hoops
We are back again with a recap of the Holliston Youth Basketball games of the week! While Week 2 of the season did not go quite as well as Week 1, we did see 20-point scorers, half court buzzer beaters, fourth quarter domination and a couple of blow out wins!
Boys’ 8th Grade – White
The Holliston 8th grade boys (White) team was slow to start in the first half and lost to Hopkinton by a score of 38-28. Even though the boys started out slow, they shook it off and picked up the intensity in the second half. Liam Brannigan led the team in scoring with 10 points. Sean Klein helped get Holliston back in the game playing lock down defense with multiple blocked shots and several key rebounds. This team has plenty of fight and the squad looks to rebound and get their first win of the season next week at home against Parkway.
Boys’ 8th Grade – Red
The Holliston 8th grade boys (Red) team continued their strong start to the season with another exciting win over Walpole by a score of 52-25. Once again, the full court press and pressure defense displayed by Holliston proved to be the difference maker forcing several turnovers that resulted in quick baskets. Cooper Firmani led the way for Holliston with 14 points and double-digit rebounds. Alessio Pinci, Tommy Quinn, Nathan Dickenson, Alex Robie, and Gabe DeJesus all had between 5 and 8 points spreading the scoring evenly across the entire team. In the second quarter Holliston picked up the intensity level and forced several Walpole turnovers leading to a 13-point halftime advantage. Sean Warner and Max Maurao provided the defensive spark needed and Tyler Mottor added some key steals and rebounds that helped to turn the momentum of the game in Holliston’s favor. Holliston will try to continue their strong start when they host an undefeated Hopkinton team at Adams Middle School on Sunday.
Boys’ 7th Grade
The Holliston 7th grade boys team won their home opener with an impressive victory over Ashland 45-28. Once again, the boys played well together on defense holding Ashland to just 12 points in the first half resulting in a 27-12 lead at halftime. Ethan Suhajda led the team with 12 points and had a commanding presence on defense blocking or altering many Ashland shots. Jack McDonald added 11 points including a perfect 4-4 from the free throw line and Luke McHugh chipped in 9 points along with some nice assists to help facilitate the offense. Holliston will welcome Hopkinton to the Adams Middle School for a Saturday showdown.
Boys’ 6th Grade
The Holliston 6th grade boys’ basketball squad lost a tough one on the road to Norwood, 45-36. The team was down big in the first half but made some good adjustments and clawed their way back to cut the deficit to 6 in the fourth quarter, but just couldn’t generate a final run. Nick Flannery stuffed the stat sheet in every single category, doing a little bit of everything for the team and dominating on the floor. Nate Howell came off the bench and provided a huge boost, working hard to box out Norwood in the paint and grabbing some key defensive rebounds. Colin Doherty also had some nice runs at the point guard position, running an aggressive offense and providing key ball handling against a team probing for turnovers. The team is now 1-1 on the season and looking to get back in the win column with our next game against Northboro at home on Saturday.
Boys’ 5th Grade – White
The Holliston 5th grade boys (White) team are off to a hot 2-0 start as they traveled to Dover Sherborn (Blue) for the 2nd game of the season. Once again Quinn McErlean got the team going early scoring 10 unanswered points in the 1st quarter before finishing with a season high 20 points. As Dover Sherborn tightened their defense and tried to battle back, the rest of the Holliston team stepped it up with great defense, rebounding and scoring. Chris Baker added 6 points, while Andy Heller got his first steal, and Animesh Gongireddy showed off his passing abilities in the 36-13 win. Holliston will next face Parkway at home for its most challenging opponent yet.
Boys’ 5th Grade – Red
The 5th grade boys (Red) team welcomed Milford this week to the Adams Middle School gym. The boys started fast and never looked back on their way to a 44-14 victory with solid offensive play. The boys also demonstrated strong rebounding and aggressiveness on defense. William Hayes again led all scorers with 19 points. Eli Boggess chipped in with 13, many of those resulting from being a force on the boards. Everyone chipped in defensively and the boys enjoyed the well-earned victory. Next week they travel to Dover Sherborn where they look to continue the strong momentum.
Boys’ 4th Grade
The Holliston 4th grade boys team paid a visit to Southborough and came up short losing 29-14. Nathan Eppinger led Holliston scorers with six points and was a force on defense. Nick Gorham provided solid play out of the point guard position, with excellent passing and overall good floor leadership. The game was tight through the first half with Southborough pulling away in the third quarter. Holliston fought up to the last minute as the boys never got down or gave up. Holliston is looking forward to their home opener vs Medfield at Adams Middle School on Sunday.
Girls’ 8th Grade
The 8th grade girls’ team had an early season bye week. They will be back in action on Saturday afternoon with a visit from Dedham.
Girls’ 7th Grade – White
The 7th grade girls (White) team welcomed Arianna Carbino to the active roster; Ari had off season surgery and has finally been given the green light to play by her doctor. Unfortunately, while her debut was spoiled with a 17-9 loss to Winchester, she showed some strong defensive play and notched her first basket of the season. Overall, Holliston’s zone defense did a great job keeping Winchester’s offense on the perimeter and not in the paint. Holliston will work to improve their offense and right the ship with a home contest against Hopkinton on Sunday.
Girls’ 7th Grade – Red
The 7th grade girls (Red) welcomed Bridgewater, one of the top teams in their division, in a matchup of two 1-0 teams. Despite Reese Friedman’s electrifying half court buzzer beater to close out the 1st quarter, Holliston fell 42-25. Hadley McAdams continued her scoring ways with 11 points to go along with 3 steals. Reese Friedman continued to run the point with precision and added another 7 points this week. Katie Joslin dropped 7 hard fought points for the Holliston offense as well. The 7th grade girls will be looking for their second win of the season as they travel to Bellingham on Sunday.
Girls’ 6th Grade
The 6th grade girls will remember this as a game of firsts with the first time the girls faced a trapping zone defense. Shoutout to guards Mia Faletra and Skylar MacDonald for quickly learning how to adjust to the defense. Mia Faletra led the team with 8 points and 8 steals, while Maddy Moore led the team in rebounds with 7 while putting 3 points on the scoreboard. Another first came from first year hoopster Keira Brannigan netting her first basket from the foul line. The final first was the first loss of the season 46 – 18. No doubt the girls will learn from this loss and hit the hardwood hard at practices this week. Holliston 6th grade girls will face Winchester’s squad with a road game on Sunday.
Girls’ 5th Grade
The Holliston 5th grade girls team traveled to Natick and despite being down two points with 6 minutes left in the game, Holliston went on a 12-2 run to close out an impressive 28-20 win. Sedona Cicciarella and Olivia Kerchner were dominant in their rebounding and Shamili Potturi had multiple steals at critical points in the game. Holliston’s late game press was relentless, holding their opponent scoreless in the last three minutes of the game for the second week in a row. Next up for the 5th grade girls is a home clash at the Adams Middle School against Medfield.
Girls’ 4th Grade
The Holliston 4th grade girls’ team was on the road this week to face a talented 1-0 Northboro team. Despite Ella Bennett scoring another 8 points this week, Holliston fell 24-10. Audrey Mancuso scored her first basket of the season to go along with an amazing 8 rebounds and 6 steals. Aahana Kulkarni played lock down defense on her opponent and came away with 5 steals of her own. Holliston looks to get back to their winning ways next Sunday with an away game at Milton.