From Derek Cordon and Michelle Friedman
Win or Lose – we still bring you the basketball news
Holliston Youth Basketball was back this past week spreading some holiday cheer with more wins than losses, a few undefeated teams still in the mix and a thrilling third-quarter come back. A few teams will be playing in a Holiday Tournament next week, but all teams will enjoy a well-deserved holiday break from regular season MetroWest play and start back up again on January 2nd.
Girls’ 8th Grade
The Holliston 8th grade girls showed that hard work at practice and a full team effort pays dividends as they ran their record to 2-0 with a 29-20 hard fought win over a Dedham team that battled hard. Balanced scoring and tough defense were the keys to victory. The team was led by four first year players! Claire Fitzgerald and Natalie Sipsma played stifling defense and scored their first career points. Lyla Feldman was great on both ends of the court and certainly won the “coach’s award” for doing everything she has been shown at practice. The game was put away when Julia Galipeau converted a huge basket off a beautiful pass from Keira Lucas to beat the press. Her post basket celebratory dance ignited the crowd. Grace Whitten was an absolute beast, impacting virtually every play on both ends of the court. The girls have a break this weekend, but are back it on January 2nd with a home game at Adams Middle School.
Girls’ 7th Grade – Red
The Holliston 7th grade girls (Red) took on the Knights of Bellingham this past Sunday. Bellingham quickly jumped out to an early lead on the shorthanded Panthers. The girls tried to claw their way back into the game, however Bellingham held Holliston at bay to a 41-14 victory. Aaria Parajapati led the team with 6 points and 3 rebounds. Callie Dietz chipped in 2 additional points to go along with some excellent interior passing. The girls look to get back to their winning ways in the Holiday Jamfest tournament over break.
Girls’ 7th Grade – White
The Holliston 7th grade girls (White) lost 33-14 to Natick. Campbell Harris led the Holliston squad with 7 points and a handful of rebounds. Adriana Bulmer got her first bucket of the season and made the defensive play of the game. She raced from half court to deny a Natick breakaway and thwarted a layup attempt with a monster block that mirrored the spiking of a volleyball. Holliston will make a trip to Ashland for their next game after the holiday break.
Girls’ 6th Grade
The Holliston 6th grade girls celebrated a big win this week with a 46-10 upset over Winchester. Holilston’s guards were scoring machines. Lucy Mancuso led the team with her masterful layups racking up 16 points while Mia Faletra knocked down 12 points. Both Mia and Lucy, along with Lauryn Mulvany, scored from scrappy steals capitalizing on their athleticism and defensive prowess. Lauryn led the team securing 9 rebounds.The girls were on fire to say the least! They played the game at a high tempo dominating on both ends of the court. Their confidence in themselves and with one another was well-seen and they are pumped to continue their momentum after the holiday break.
Girls’ 5th Grade
The Holliston 5th grade girls hosted Medfield who proved to be a worthy opponent. With multiple players who outsized all of the Holliston players, Medfield pulled off the 20-14 win. That said, there were plenty of Panther highlights as the girls showed tremendous heart and vigor. Lucy Downin gave it her all as she dove on the ground for several loose balls, Emma Arsenault battled under the boards against her taller opponents, and Caroline Coughlin kept the fast break offense on the move. As a team, the girls learned the value of being aggressive leaving them better prepared for future opponents. Next up, the girls will travel to Milford in January for another great matchup.
Girls’ 4th Grade
The Holliston 4th grade girls traveled to Milton to take on the 2-0 Wildcats. The entire Holliston team came out ready to play and won 26-13. Addy McAdams helped lead the charge scoring 2 points to go along with 8 steals and 8 rebounds. Ella Bennett led the team in scoring once again with 10 points. Danika Do Rosario played a stellar game and racked up 6 points. Mia Malvey thrilled the fans with her lock down defense that resulted in 2 steals and 6 rebounds from the point guard position. Reese Leverone scored 2 additional points after turning 10 years old this week. Holliston, 2-1, will be looking to continue their winning ways at a tournament over the Holiday break.
Boys’ 8th Grade – Red
The 8th grade boys team did not play this week. They will be ready to get back to it after the holiday break.
Boys’ 8th Grade – White
The Holliston 8th grade boys (White) had a tough time against Parkway with a 45-27 loss. While the boys struggled in the first quarter, the rest of the game was very competitive basketball with stellar defense and multiple three pointers drained by Matty Gimblett. Jay Patel also was able to see his first minutes of the season retuning from injury. The team will try and rack up their first win on January 2nd at Dover Sherborn.
Boys’ 7th Grade
The Holliston 7th grade boys improved to 3-0 in league play and 6-0 overall with a comeback win 37-30 on Sunday in Brookline. Holliston was trailing by 7 points midway through the 3rd quarter, then went on a 20-4 run implementing a full court press defense with Luke McHugh leading the offense with three 3-point shots. Luke finished the game as the top scorer with 11 and led the team in assists with 5. Ethan Suhajda scored 10, Jack McDonald added 8 points, and Ben Dufault scored 6 for the Panthers.
Boys’ 6th Grade
The Holliston 6th grade boys dominated right from the opening tip in a convincing win over Northboro, 36-21. Every player for the Panthers chipped in for the squad for a complete team win. Tops off the bench were forward Grayden Vaughn, who along with a key bucket also chipped in with three rebounds and a steal. Colin Doherty contributed big time point guard play, running an efficient offense against stout half court pressure from Northboro. Max Colletti and Brady Hastings provided valuable minutes with Coletti providing good ball movement at the forward spot, and Hastings being a beast on the boards. Jack Whitten provided a tremendous spark on the defensive end with a one-man full-court press in the first half that earned him a team-leading four steals, all in the first half. The boys look to continue their winning streak with their next game after the holiday break.
Boys’ 5th Grade – Red
The Holliston 5th Grade (Red) boys team traveled to Dover Sherborn this weekend. For the second consecutive week, we started fast and never looked back. It was a good team effort both offensively and defensively. The offense continued to develop with contributions by everyone. Point guards Sam Israel and Ben Furey did a great job seeing the floor and setting up plays. Andrew Ferguson and Colton McGrath both had their best games offensively, with each contributing their season high in points. Fergie was also a monster on the boards. Sam Peters, who unfortunately has been sidelined with injury all season, was a supportive force on the bench, encouraging his teammates to a 38-13 victory. The boys are going to enjoy their hard earned holiday break, and look forward to hosting undefeated Westwood on January 2nd.
Boys’ 5th Grade – White
The Holliston 5th grade boys (White) welcomed Parkway to the Adams Middle School Gym for the third game of the season. It was a defensive battle from the get go, with Holliston holding on to an early lead heading into halftime. Marcus Burian exploded on offense with 10 points, mostly coming in the critical 3rd quarter where the boys were trying to hold on to the lead after a furious counter-offensive from Parkway. Andy Heller contributed two key rebounds in the same quarter, Quinn McErlean added 12 points and 7 rebounds, while Jack Firmani added two key free throws, making both. Unfortunately, it wasn’t enough as Parkway went on to win 37-24. The team should be proud for hanging in there and continuing to battle to the very end. Holliston will next head to Dedham on Jan 2 after a holiday break.
Boys’ 4th Grade
The Holliston 4th grade boys were a little short-handed this past week and dropped its home opener to Medfield 26-17. Despite missing two key players, Holliston played a great game and unfortunately the balls were not dropping for the boys this week. Nathan Eppinger scored 9 points in the loss. John Gebski was a force under the net grabbing 8 rebounds and chipping in 2 points. Gavin Bausch stepped up providing a ton of energy and intense defense to go along with 5 rebounds and 2 points. The boys get another chance against Medfield when they return to action on Jan 2nd.