Week 11 Basketball Recaps

With February break upon us many teams had bye weeks, rescheduled games and even some of our dedicated sports reporters dared to leave Holliston on vacation.  Despite fewer games there were still many stars shining on the hardwood – Gianna Sgarano ripped an impressive 19 rebounds in the 8th grade girls victory over tri valley rival Westwood.  Ryan Baker scored 13 in the 5th grade boys (red) win over Southboro.  Not to be outdone Gwen Rosen dropped 12 points in the 5th grade girls (red) win over Winchester.  Keep reading for more highlights.  

Now let’s go Panthers!

4th Grade Girls (Red) 

Look for updates next week.

4th Grade Girls (White)

The Holliston 4th Grade Girl’s experienced another difficult loss on Sunday vs. Westwood.  The girls played hard and started the game off strong, but slowly lost momentum as the game progressed. Even though the game did not end the way our team would have wanted, everyone did put in a solid effort. Richa Yedugani played excellent defense and helped the team with her consistent, aggressive rebounding. Both Olive Bennett and Olivia Wing did a great job setting screens throughout the game.  Amelia Parker played strong the entire game by being aggressive defensively, getting some great steals and working hard offensively.  We have two more games this season and are hopeful they will be good, fun games!

5th Grade Girls (Red)

Holliston 20, Winchester 14:    Aarya Sharma had her game of the season putting up 4 points in the first quarter to show Winchester who will dominate this game.  Holliston powered through the first and second quarter, focusing on their defensive moves and studying the quick hands of Winchester, once the team understood their opponent things erupted in the third quarter.  Holliston routinely uses the third quarter to dominate and outplay nearly every opponent this season, today was no different. The team had over 8 rebounds and 4 steals in these 8 minutes of play, Rosen using their rebounding skills to look for the open passes being set up by Lauren de Vlaam and Ellie Brown. Ruby “The Tiger” Smith, coming off the bench in the third quarter showed remarkable domineering defensive skills to get not 2 but 3 jump balls in Holliston’s favor; all of this while nursing a tiger bite from earlier in the week. Charley Marcuard and Kendall Hanlon took over as key ball handlers, setting up quick picks, steals, and rebounds. The team continued into the fourth quarter with even more fierceness holding Winchester to zero points in the first 6 minutes of play, the full court press Winchester gave in the last 2 minutes gave Holliston a run for their money but proved too late and too little as Holliston had the game in the bag. Other key highlights: Rosen 12 points, Hanlon 2, and Brown 2 (plus 5 rebounds and 6 steals).  The team will have 2 key games this weekend against Arlington and Milton, stay tuned. 

5th Grade Girls (White)

Holliston 5th Grade Girls White team traveled to MA Premier to close out the season with a 32-28 Win over Mansfield.  Emma Sochanek scored with confidence, tallying 8 points to go along 4 steals and 3 blocks to help the Panthers cruise to victory.  Ailla Howden, Ryckie Reichheld, and Brooke Sawicki played above the rim, combining for 14 rebounds, while Cora Mcgillicuddy and Mary Toohey made it a cruel summer for Mansfield, registering a combined 8 steals.  The guard play for the Panthers kept Mansfield off balance with Emma “e-dogg” Whitehead leading the game with 5 assists and Brianna Cooper registering 17 points.  Despite the Panthers sluggish start to the season, the team turned it on in the second half winning 4 of their last 6 games and are peaking at the right time as they head into the playoffs next week.    

6th Grade Girls (Red)

The 6th grade girls (red) were on a bye week.

6th Grade Girls (White) 

Game 11 (2/18) – (L: 5-32):

On 2/18, Holliston 6th grade girls travelled to Dover-Sherborn to participate in their eleventh game of the season. With February break, Holliston only had 6 players and were outnumbered from the start of the game. Not to be deterred, the team of 6 played hard and never gave up. At the half, Dover-Sherborn was ahead 16-0, but Holliston continued to push and worked well together to get on the board in the second half with 5 points scored by Sophya Teixiera (5 points, with one of them being a 3-pointer – the team’s first of the season). Other hard-working players included Selah Tetrault, Lindsay Haynes, Mila Szabatura, Lindsey Walsh, and Chloe Roche. Although Holliston lost 5-32, the team of 6 did so without giving up and with terrific teamwork. Our final game is in Millis at 9am on 2/25. We’d love to see you there!

7th Grade Girls (Red)

The seventh-grade girls, team red, traveled to Medfield for another rematch.  Hindered by school vacation week, “the mighty six” showed up ready to take on a full squad from Medfield.  The game was close through three quarters, but in the fourth quarter a team of six players couldn’t keep up with Medfield’s deep bench and rested players.  Sadly, Holliston lost 26-20.  Mackenzie McDonald led the team in scoring with 13 points and she had four rebounds.  Riya Yedugani scored 6 points and had seven rebounds.  Sedona Cicciarella pulled down an impressive 9 rebounds.  Next week the girls host a tough Millis team.  Fortunately, they will have their full squad back.

7th Grade Girls (White)

Date: 2/18/24

Location: Natick Community Center

Opponent: Natick

Score: 25-3 (L)

Missing several key contributors and playing with only six, the Holliston girls battled against a Natick team at the top of the division.  Olivia Yang led the team playing nearly the entire game at the point guard position playing tough defense with several steals and facilitating the offense all game.  Ashten Arsenault and Kaylin Hayes led the team in scoring with huge buckets early in the second half to keep the girls within striking distance.  Riley Whitehead and Diya Simhadri controlled the paint the entire game with several key boards against the taller Natick squad.  Finally, sharpshooter Maria Burke contributed at several key positions and made key stops on the defensive end.

8th Grade Girls

The 8th grade girls played Westwood on Sunday at The Charles River School in Dover. Holliston jumped out to a quick lead, but Westwood climbed back in and Holliston held just a two point lead at the half 17-15.  Down the stretch, a huge hoop by Lily Ingoldsby lifted the team, and Holliston ended up winning 43-37. Lily also had 5 rebounds in the contest.  Underneath the hoop, Gianna Sgarano hauled in a season high 19 rebounds, while Corinne Bailey tossed in 8 points and grabbed 9 rebounds. The guard duo of Lucy Mancuso and Mia Faletra were strong again in all areas.  Lucy shot 60% from the field, finishing with 19 points (11 in the 4th quarter), 5 rebounds, 5 assists, and 6 steals, while Mia contributed 12 points, 4 rebounds, 6 assists, and 4 steals while facing full court pressure for a good portion of the game. The girls have one more regular season game in their middle school careers next week at Somerville before the playoffs start up.  In addition, on Sunday, the girls will head into Chestnut Hill for their (almost) annual trip to watch the Boston College women play at noon. 

4th Grade Boys (Red)

Look for updates next week.

4th Grade Boys (White) 

Look for updates next week:

5th Grade Boys (Red) 

 Look for updates next week.

5th Grade Boys (White) 

The Holliston 5th Grade Boys team (White) lost a tough game on Saturday afternoon in Ashland, 36-28. The game was close throughout, but every time Holliston got close, Ashland made clutch baskets to keep their lead. Ryan Baker led Holliston with 22 points, 5 rebounds and 4 steals. Joe Sgarano had 4 points and Cole Dennison had 2 points and 9 rebounds. Donovan Vail had 6 rebounds and 3 steals. 

On Sunday, Holliston got back to their winning ways with a 50-22 win in Southboro. Holliston got off to a hot start and never looked back, scoring 17 first quarter points. Seven different players scored for Holliston. Ryan Baker led the way with 13 points. Owen Jacquet had 11 points, Logan McDonough had 9 and Joe Sgarano had 8. Owen Callahan played strong defense to close out the game. Holliston looks to end their regular season with a win on Sunday in Westboro.

6th Grade Boys (Red) 

The Holliston 6th Grade (Red) Boys team was short-handed this past weekend but still came away with a 43-27 win versus Walpole in a very competitive game.  Holliston came out strong, building a nice lead in the first quarter, but Walpole chipped away at the lead eventually tying the game early in the second half.  Holliston began to pull away after that, with Brody Stanley getting a hot hand scoring 8 points in the third period (10 points overall) followed by an explosive fourth quarter from Gavin Bausch (8 points in the fourth with 11 points overall) to seal the win.  Austin McGuire was phenomenal, with 16 points and fantastic defense.  Ryan Magoon (4 points), Devon Doray (2 points), Dylan Perrett and Dylan Dimmick were fantastic as well, providing many steals, rebounds and overall tough defense.  The team is now 9-2 on the season and heading into its last game before the playoffs.

6th Grade Boys (White)

The 6th grade boys defeated Milford 22-18 to improve their record to 6-7 on the season.  Leading the team in scoring were Laksh Khatri (6) and Nolan Burke (6), followed by Leo Wagner (4), Logan Kanavich (2), Noah Keller (2), and John Gebski (2).  Leading the team in rebounds were Laksh Khatri and John Gebski with 8 a piece, followed by Noah Keller (4), Micah Baltisoto (2), Logan Kanavich (2), Nolan Burke (2), Leo Wagner (2), and Leo DeFazio (1).  The team’s Silver Swoosh award was given to Nolan Burke for his composure under pressure and timely defensive disruption.  The team closes out its season with a double-header next Sunday versus Westwood and Ashland.  

7th Grade Boys (Red)

The 7th Grade Panthers delivered an impressive 47-41 win against Wellesley. The short-staffed Panthers started slow with a quick 11-0 deficit, but started the comeback by finishing the first quarter 15-7. This team never gives up and keeps fighting. The Panthers dominated the final three quarters. As usual, the Panthers stifled Wellesley with swarming defense and kept them off the boards. Holliston’s transition offense was in full effect taking advantage of quick outlet passing and smart decisions on the fast break. 

Leading the charge on the offensive end was Quinn McErlean with 12 points, followed by Will Hayes (9), Chris Baker (8), Eli Boggess (6), Charlie Bowser (6). Solid movement on offense created scoring opportunities for all. Tristan Synder, Charlie Bowser and Quinn McErlean were beasts on the boards each collecting more than 8 rebounds. Marcus Burian, Jack Firmani and Sam Israel each had three steals and multiple assists. 

Great team effort and resilience after starting slow. 

7th Grade Boys (White)

2/17 & 2/18

With about half the team enjoying warm weather or snow, the Holliston 7th Grade boys (white) had two games this past weekend.  On Saturday, the Panthers defeated Belmont, 46-11; a victory led by stand-out games from Achyut Pingali (9 rebounds, 8 points) and Cameron Baker (12 points, 2 rebounds).  On Sunday, Holliston lost its second game of the season, a lively, and scrappy 26-38 loss.  Playing against a much (much) larger-sized team, the coaches shared their appreciation after the game for the intensity, heart, and all-around great play.  For James, Achyut, Ben, and Zach for the incredible defensive and offensive battle inside against kids twice your size; Colton, Jake, and Cam for the incredible intensity, focus, ball handling and shot taking.  Colton hit two three pointers on the way to 10 points and 7 rebounds.  Great job this weekend.

8th Grade Boys (Red)

The 9-2 eighth grade boys (red) had their final home game of their middle school careers on Sunday against TVL rival Millis. The boys came out focused and intense. They fared well, ending up on top at the end with a 71-39 win and four players in double-digits.  Connor McDonough was hot from the 3 point line, finishing with 4 three pointers (14 points).  Grayden Vaughn dropped 11 points with a smart overall game at both ends of the floor.  Anthony Faletra landed with a double-double (16 points, 12 rebounds).  Nick Flannery produced another solid all-around game with 25 points, 8 rebounds, and 8 steals.  Nate Howell played a tough, aggressive game while he faced a challenging opponent under the hoop (7 rebounds). Nayan Alluri (3 points) and Jack Whitten (2 points)  applied feisty pressure on defense in the first half to help open up the lead and rounded out the hardworking roster on this early vacation week game! There were many grandparents in attendance for the game for the boys final home game, which added to the atmosphere of this exciting chapter coming to an end. The boys have one final regular season game next week over in Medfield before heading into the playoffs.

8th Grade Boys (White)

On Sunday morning, the Holliston Boys 8 th Grade White team travelled to Mass Premier to play Mansfield. The game was well-played and close the entire way before Mansfield made a couple  of late three-pointers to win the game 48-41. Colin Doherty led the way for Holliston with 20 points. Brady Hastings added 7 points and had numerous steals on Holliston’s full-court press.  Will Dietrich had a strong game with 6 points while Aden Khoury chipped in two points and played a great floor-game. Alex Cataldo continued to rebound exceptionally well finishing with 3 points and 11 rebounds. Holliston wraps up the regular season on Sunday afternoon at Dover-Sherborn.

Scott McAdams

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