Holliston Youth Travel Basketball 1/11/24 Recaps

Despite the weekend storm many of the Holliston Travel Basketball teams were able to take the hardwood.  Holliston was able to gather an impressive six wins in nine games over the weekend.  Two of the 8th grade teams were able to showcase their talents at the Mohegan Sun Vertical Hoops Winter Championships with a combined 3 wins against some of New England’s top talent.  Great work 8th graders.  Now…..Let’s Go Panthers!

6th Grade Girls (White) 

Holliston took on Arlington at home in an exciting fourth game of the season. Arlington came out strong in the first quarter, but Holliston worked hard to keep Arlington to one bucket in the second. Sophya Teixera was the lead scorer in the game and added all 6 points in the first half. Domenica Bellamy and Elle Lessard were quick on their feet and with solid defense grabbed a total of 9 steals. Holliston needed to respond quickly to a full court press that Arlington initiated at the start of the game. With flexibility and great teamwork, Holliston players worked together to beat the press and drive the ball down the court multiple times. Selah Tetrault scored her first basket of the season (and her career!) and was strong on defense with a fabulous rebound in the second half. Kennedy Black, the team’s center, grabbed four rebounds and transitioned a steal to a fast break. In her first game of the season, Lindsey Walsh, shooting guard, contributed to a motion offense and confidently looked for open passes in the paint. Lindsay Haynes and Chloe Roche contributed strength to the defense with multiple jump ball conversions, while Mila Szabatura lead the team in calling all inbound plays and completing the passes consistently despite Arlington’s press. All players contributed to the fastest and most intense game they have experienced all season. Although the final score was 10-26 ending in a loss for Holliston, the players left the court with their ever-present commitment to their team and love of the game. They are a wonderful team to cheer on! Holliston is on the road against Westwood at 10:40 next week but returns for a home game on 1/21 at 8:40am. Bring your coffee and cheer them on!

8th Grade Girls

The Holliston Girls 8th Grade headed to Connecticut for the Vertical Hoops Winter Championships at Mohegan Sun this past weekend.  They faced teams from all over New England participated and faired quite well, losing only once to the eventual champions in their division.  The girls split their games on Saturday and had an exciting final game with a 26-23 overtime win. Gianna Sgrano and Corinne Bailey worked hard on the boards and offensively under the hoop. Skylar MacDonald made big contributions that don’t always show up on the stat sheet as a team leader, playing multiple positions on the floor, and making smart plays down the stretch in the overtime win. Keira Brannigan’s defensive presence was notable as well. Co-MVPs for the weekend go to Lucy Mancuso and Mia Faletra. Lucy netted 35 points on the weekend to go along with 12 steals. Mia Faletra ran the offense from the point, grabbed 6 steals in the overtime win, while also dropping 34 points for the tourney. Next up for the ladies is a busy Sunday with an early afternoon Sunday game at Westwood followed by a trip over to Watertown for a second event of the day. 

4th Grade Boys (Red) 

The Holliston 4th grade boys hosted Somerville (red) on Saturday 1/6 and picked up their first victory of the season by a score of 27-8!  The entire team was extremely unselfish and found open teammates for good shots throughout the game, especially looking ahead on fast breaks. Eight different players scored!  Andrew Levasseur led the team with 8 points and Grady Gum had 6 points.  Darian Harris, Jesiah Varghese, and Ayen Hemaratne played lock down defense on Somerville’s very quick guard, and each had a bucket each and multiple assists and steals.  Jack Donahue pulled down a bunch of rebounds as did Shalm Kollu.  Tyler Crean played his usual solid defense and scored 4 points.  Cade Burke scored and grabbed multiple rebounds.  The highlight of the game happened with 1 second left in the game when Lucas Zhang was fouled while shooting.  He sunk his second free throw attempt to cap off the victory! 

6th Grade Boys (Red) 

The Holliston 6th Grade Boys team (Red) turned in a great effort in the middle of a snowstorm to defeat Medway 35-15.  Brody Stanley had a fantastic game scoring 10 points (6 of which off of three-point shots) to go along with 4 rebounds and 3 steals.  Devon Doray had 10 points, while Ryan Magoon added 5 points to go along with 5 steals.  Dylan Dimmick pulled down seven rebounds and scored 2 points.  The rest of the team applied a smothering defensive effort from start to finish.  The team is 4-0 as it heads into their next game on Saturday against Milford at home (5:30 pm if you want to come and root them on at Adams!).

6th Grade Boys (White) 

The Holliston boys grade 6 team (white) started 2024 with a decisive win over Medway by a score of 29-16 and improved to a record of 3-6 on the season.  Leading the team in points was Leo Wagner (8), followed by Laksh Khatri (7), Leo DeFazio (4), John Gebski (4), Logan Kanavich (3), Micah Baltisoto (2), and Jackson Gannoway (1).  Rebounding made the difference in the game and was led by John Gebski (7), Lincoln Daniels (6), Laksh Khatri (5), Micah Baltisoto (5), Kirill Stotski (4), Noah Keller (3), Jackson Gannoway (3), Leo DeFazio (2), and Leo Wagner (1).  Earning the team’s Silver Swoosh award was John Gebski for his hard work in practice which translated to aggressive play and defense under the post.  The team will take its 2-game winning streak to Westborough on Sunday, January 12 with a 9:20 am tip-off. 

8th Grade Boys (Red)

The Holliston Boys 8th Grade Red team participated in the Vertical Hoops Winter Championships at Mohegan Sun this past weekend.  Teams from all over New England participated in this prestigious event, and the boys team acquitted themselves quite well.  In the first game, Holliston rolled all over Shelton, CT 49-16.  Connor McDonough led the way with 11 points on a perfect five for five from the floor, to go along with two rebounds.  Holliston took a tough loss in the next game, 35-21.  Points were harder to come by as the boys went a bit cold, but Anthony Faletra led the way with seven points, four boards, and three steals.  Splitting the first days’ games, the boys made it into the champions bracket, but were eliminated in their very next game to a tough St. Mark’s team, 49-31.  Gavin McGann contributed five points, an assist, two steals, and a block in that one to help keep the game close.  MVP for the team for the entire tournament was Nick Flannery, who finished the weekend with a total of 37 points, 15 rebounds, and four blocks.  Grayden Vaughn and Jack Whitten provided valuable production offensively and defensively throughout, while Nate Howell and Max Colletti provided a much needed inside presence.  Next up for the boys is a Friday night battle at Brookline followed by a Sunday morning matchup with Belmont, at home at 11:20am, perfect timing to not get in the way of the NFL playoff games!

Scott McAdams

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