Foxboro Clinches Davenport Title with Tie at Canton

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Allie Peter (no. 22) and Jaqueline Merrigan (no. 30) take a draw. (Josh Perry/HockomockSports.com)

By Josh Perry, Managing Editor

CANTON, Mass. – In the end, clinching the title was in sort of anti-climactic. At the final whistle, both sets of coaches approached the officials about playing an overtime period to decide a winner, but with the rules as they stand, the game had to finish as a tie.

Canton and Foxboro perennially the top teams in the Davenport division, battled to a 9-9 draw in the rain and wind on Wednesday afternoon at WWII Veterans Memorial Field. Although it was hard to tell from the reaction of the visitors, the result was enough to clinch the league title for the Warriors (14-1-1, 9-1-1), who still have only one loss this season.

“We were really excited about playing Foxboro again. It seems like every time we play them it comes down to a game like this,” said Canton head coach Chris Murtagh, who was clearly the happier of the two coaches at the end of the game.

He added, “We won the Davenport the first year and they won it the second and we always find it comes down to Foxboro and us in the league. It was a tie, but you know we think we played well and maybe they’ll make changes in our league so that we won’t have ties anymore.”

Neither team was able to build more than a two goal lead at any point in the game. Foxboro junior Kate Notarangelo opened the scoring with the first of her three goals in the game. Canton responded with a pair of goals, including the first of senior Meg Lennon’s four scores (she also added and assist).

With Canton leading 3-2, sophomore Marybeth Sweeney got Foxboro level with 10:47 left in the half. Five minutes later Sweeney found Jaimee Lutz to make it 4-3 Warriors, but the Bulldogs tied the game just before halftime on a free position finish by Erin Proctor.

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One of the reasons that Canton (7-7-2, 7-3-1) stayed close in the first half was the play of goalie Isabelle Hegland, who recently came up from the JV squad. She stepped in and made several solid saves, including a trio of great stops with Canton trailing by a goal that allowed the Bulldogs to get back even.

“She has a great attitude about learning the game,” said Murtagh. “She’s going to make mistakes, but works hard on improving.”

The coach was less pleased by the team’s passing in the first half and he noticed a significant improvement after the break.

Murtagh remarked, “We had to work on some issues with our passing because Foxboro is the type of team that is going to pressure you all over the field. We find that, if we move the ball down the field with passes, we can match anybody.”

Following a yellow card to Jackie Merrigan early in the second half, Foxboro regained the lead on a free position goal by Notarangelo. After Canton tied it again at 5-5, Allie Peter and Ellen Decker hit for quick back-to-back goals to give the Warriors their first two-goal lead. Lennon got one back but them Decker found Peter to make it 8-6 with under nine minutes remaining.

Canton did not panic and continued to chip away. With Lennon running at the Foxboro defense, the Bulldogs posed a constant threat. Proctor’s second made it 8-7 and then Meg McKenna found Lennon to complete her hat trick and tie the game at 8-8. Notarangelo got her hat trick goal with 3:11 on the clock, but again Canton responded and again it was Lennon.

“Meghan Lennon has a lot of confidence and a great stick,” said Murtagh. “She’s an athlete that’s able to take aspects of her other sports (soccer and hockey) and bring it to lacrosse and it’s beautiful to watch. She beats people and she can shoot.”

Both teams had possession in the final minute but neither created a clear-cut scoring opportunity. 

Canton closes out the season with a non-league game against Norwood, while Foxboro travels to Sharon and Ursuline Academy.


Ames, Valenza Fend Off Canton for Bulldogs First Loss

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Canton’s Dexter Green and Foxboro’s Alex Pacitti. (Ryan Lanigan/HockomockSports.com)

By Ryan Lanigan, Editor-in-Chief

FOXBORO, Mass. – The Foxboro Warriors scored four first halftime goals and added one more in the third quarter before withstanding a late Canton rally, to hand the Bulldogs their first loss of the season, 5-4. 

Tyler Ames, Drew McGeary, and Alex Pacitti – all senior captains – scored in a six minute period in the first quarter to give Foxboro an early lead, with Canton’s offense struggling to find any rhythm. 

Senior Jackson Hurley made it 4-0 for the home team with a goal with 9:28 left in the second quarter. After an offensive lull by both teams, Canton found themselves with possession on the attack and called timeout with 27 seconds left in the first half.

Senior Kurt Leavitt took the ball from the whistle and patiently beat two defenders before scoring Canton’s first goal with 11 seconds left in the first half.

Ames added a fifth goal for Foxboro, his second, in the third quarter that ended up the game-winning goal due to a rapid Canton rally.

With 8:40 left in the game, sophomore Paul Swart scored with Canton up a man to make it 5-2. Then just over five minutes later, senior Pat Ward scored – again with the man advantage – to make it 5-3.

After Foxboro goalie Tyler Elfman stopped an initial shot, it was Ward on the door step with an open net that brought Canton within one at 5-4 with 1:40 left in the game. The Bulldogs again had possession in their attack with 27 seconds left, but unlike the end of the first half, they were unable to convert and were handed their first defeat of the season.

“We came out, we knew what we had to do, we had a good week of practice,” Ames said. “We came out hot and had a couple of early goals.”

Foxboro head coach Matt Noone had his team fired up from the start, something he felt had to do with the first time the two teams met.

“The boys were angry that we didn’t do well in the last game,” Noone said. “I think they brought it today. That’s a great that, that was an undefeated team. I think my defense rose to the occasion today.”

Canton coach Bill Bendell pointed to their sloppy start as one of the reasons they weren’t able to pull out another win.

“They’re tough to beat here on their home field,” said Bendell. “We started off sloppy, I thought they were the aggressive team in the beginning and they won every loose ball, but the good thing was – we’re a good team and we showed that and fought back and came up a little short.”

Big Time Battle
One of the best match ups of the game was Canton attack Pat Ward and Foxboro defender Luc Valenza, both tops at their position in the league. For the majority of the game, Valenza kept Ward in check, not allowing the dangerous scorer to get going.

“That kid Pat Ward is a stud,” Noone said. “That kid’s a phenomenal player, he wills his team to win. Last time we played him he had five goals. We wanted someone else to beat us.”

Ward finally did get going, scoring twice in the fourth quarter with under four minutes to go. On the final possession, the ball ended up with him but the clock expired before he could fire a final shot.

“Valenza’s tough, he’s a great player,” Bendell said. “We knew [Pat] was going to get his hands free that he’s going to get a goal. He just works his tail off. He didn’t have the game he wanted but he made some nice plays that kept us in it so that’s clutch.”

Woodhead, Attleboro End Taunton’s Winning Streak

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By Cameron Merritt, HockomockSports.com Contributor

TAUNTON, Mass. – The Attleboro High School Blue Bombardiers snapped the Kelley-Rex leaders Taunton Tigers eight-game win streak Wednesday afternoon, in was what mostly a pitchers duel between Taunton’s Matt Nunes and Attleboro’s Adam Woodhead.

Woodhead tossed a complete game for the Bombariders, giving up only four hits, two runs, two walks, and struck out seven. At the plate, he added two of his team’s runs off of his fourth home run of the season, driving in first baseman Keith Drucker in the sixth inning. Both of them would go one for three on the afternoon.

Attleboro only had one other hit in the game, a two RBI single by catcher Ryan Bowen in the third. Bowen would go one for three with a strikeout along with his hit. The other runs were scored by second baseman Brandon Tetu, center fielder Tommy Burns, and shortstop Pat Dunn, all of whom scored in the third.

PictureAttleboro’s Adam Woodhead

Nunes finished the game having given up only three hits, but also walked four and hit one batter, and gave up five runs, only four being earned as Burns advance to first off an error by Tigers second baseman Ryan Rollo. One of the top-rated pitchers going into the game, he also had seven strikeouts through his six full innings. He was replaced in relief by Jeffery Polakowski for the top of the seventh, and the Taunton closer would walk one batter and then strike out the next three.

Nunes, like Woodhead, was also a top contributor for his team at the plate. He would go a perfect three for three with both of his team’s runs. The only other Tiger hit came from the DH, Mike Bunker, who had an RBI double in the top of the seventh.

“Baseball is a funny game,” Attleboro coach Matt Bosh said to his team following the game, a reference to the fact that the Blue Bombardiers went from a 5-2 loss Monday against the previously winless King Philip Warriors to a 5-2 win over the top team in the Hockomock, with one of the league’s top rated pitchers on the mound. The Kelley-Rex Division is now once again up for grabs, as either Taunton, Attleboro, or Franklin could now come out victorious.

Attleboro play again Thursday, as they host the Dartmouth Indians of the Old Colony League, a rescheduled game that was originally scheduled to be played in Dartmouth on April 19. Attleboro’s game against Big Green on Saturday, originally a home game, will now take place in Dartmouth. Taunton will travel to Franklin Saturday for a crucial battle with the Panthers.


Hockomock Schedule & Scoreboard – 5/15/13

Evolution

Here are today’s Hockomock games.

Baseball
Attleboro, 5 @ Taunton, 2 – Final

Canton, 0 @ Foxboro, 1 – Final – Mike Pipher pitched a complete game, allowing just three hits for Foxboro. 

King Philip, 8 @ Franklin, 9 – FinalFreshman Nick Santucci had a walk off single for the winning hit.

North Attleboro, 2 @ Mansfield, 3 – Final – Craig Sarro’s hit in the bottom of the seventh won the game for Mansfield.

Stoughton, 10 @ Milford, 0 – Final - Freshman Jake Gibb got the win throwing a complete game shutout, scattering 5 hits with 2 strikeouts and 0 walks

Sharon, 3 @ Oliver Ames, 7 – Final

Softball

Taunton, 9 @ Attleboro, 0 – FinalJesse Aleixo struck out eight for her 12th win. Freshman Aimee Kistner hit her first career homerun and senior captains Alicia Pavadore (2 hits, 2 RBI) and Kate Morrissey (2-run triple) played well. 

Foxboro, 12 @ Canton, 0 – Final

King Philip, 9 @ Franklin, 1 – Final

Mansfield, 3 @ North Attleboro, 9 – FinalMeg Colleran struck out 14, earning her 500th career strikeout and Meghan Wynn and Marissa Gifford each had two hits and 2 RBIs.

Milford, 10 @ Stoughton, 0 – FinalShannon Smith tossed a no-hitter with 17 strikeouts and went 2-4 with a homerun and four RBIs. Jill Powers went 3-4 with a homerun and a triple and four RBIs and Sam Bonvino was 3-4 with two runs. 

Oliver Ames, 20 @ Sharon, 4 – Final – Freshman Jamie Gottwald was 3-4, scoring four runs and had two RBIs and fellow freshman Gabby Eldridge was 2-2 with a double, an RBI, and two runs scored. 

Boys Lacrosse
Canton, 4 @ Foxboro, 5 – Final
King Philip, 6 @ Franklin, 12 – Final
Mansfield, 7 @ North Attleboro, 9 – Final
Sharon, 6 @ Oliver Ames, 7 – Final

Girls Lacrosse
Foxboro, 9 @ Canton, 9 – Final
Franklin, 9 @ King Philip, 3 – Final
North Attleboro, 3 @ Mansfield, 17 – Final
Milford, 17 @ Bellingham, 12 – Final
Oliver Ames, 10 @ Sharon, 7 – Final

Boys Tennis
Attleboro @ Taunton – Makeup date TBA
Canton @ Foxboro – Postponed to 5/21
Franklin @ King Philip – Postponed to 5/16
North Attleboro @ Mansfield – Postponed to 5/23
Stoughton @ Milford – Postponed to TBA
Sharon, 5 @ Oliver Ames, 0 – Final

Girls Tennis
Taunton, 4 @ Attleboro, 1 – Final
Foxboro @ Canton - Postponed to 5/21
Franklin @ King Philip – Postponed to 5/17
Mansfield @ North Attleboro - Postponed to 5/23
Milford, 5 @ Stoughton, 0 – Final
Oliver Ames @ Sharon – Postponed to 5/22

Volleyball
Milford, 3 @ Wachusett Regional, 0 – Final
Taunton, 1 vs. Barnstable, 3 – Final

Hockomock Schedule & Scoreboard – 5/14/13

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Here at today’s Hockomock games.

Baseball
Canton, 14 vs. Dedham, 7 – Final
Franklin, 5 @ Catholic Memorial, 1 – Final

Softball
Canton, 1 @ Ursuline Academy, 9 – Final
King Philip, 0 @ Coyle & Cassidy, 1 – Final

Girls Lacrosse
Mansfield, 8 @ Medway, 12 – Final

Boys Tennis
King Philip, 5 @ Brockton, 0 – Final 
Milford, 2 @ Blackstone-Millville, 3 – Final

Girls Tennis
King Philip, 0 @ North Attleboro, 5 – Final
Milford, 5 vs. Blackstone-Millville, 0 – Final

Oliver Ames’ Mitchell Signs To Play at UMass Lowell

Evolution

By Ryan Lanigan, Editor-in-Chief

NORTH EASTON, Mass. – Oliver Ames senior guard Asia Mitchell signed her letter of intent to play basketball at UMass Lowell on Monday afternoon.

Mitchell was a four-year varsity player for the Tigers, including her freshman year when Oliver Ames won the Division II State Championship. In her senior season, she averaged 10 points a game, five assists, and four rebounds and was co-captain of a team that posted a 19-2 record.

“It’s an awesome school, the coaching staff is amazing and it’s a great educational experience as well,” Mitchell said of her decision to go to UMass Lowell.

There is a lot of familiarity at UMass Lowell, whose head coach is Sarah Behn, a Foxboro High legend who scored 2,562 career points as a Warrior. Assistant coach Erica Anderson was a four-time Hockomock League all star at Oliver Ames and scored over 1,500 career points.

And on top of that, Foxboro senior Ashley Snyder is also committed to play at UMass Lowell next season, something Mitchell thinks will be helpful.

PictureAsia Mitchell with her family.

“I know how she plays from just scouting her over the years and playing against her,” Mitchell  said of Snyder, “so it’ll be a comfortable environment to play with people I’m used to seeing.”

Oliver Ames head coach Elaine Clement-Holbrook – who joined the 600 win club this (off)season – has sent plenty of players off to college, including Laurent Battista (2010), HockomockSports.com’s inaugural player of the year Candace Steadman (2012), and now two seniors from this year, Caitlyn Abela and Mitchell.

“I think it lends itself as kind of a tradition that the kids pay and invest in terms of the amount of time and hard work,” Clement-Holbrook said. “The young kids behind that see that hard work and determination and focus on a goal that really helps to pay off.”

Mitchell was named to the 2012-2013 HockomockSports.com Second Team this year and was named an Enterprise All-Scholastic. 

“They’re an up-and-down type of team and that’s how we play here at Oliver Ames,” said Mitchell. “That’s how I’ve been playing, so that’s comfortable for me, playing a fast-paced style.”


Strong Pitching, Late Runs Give Oliver Ames Another ‘W’

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OA’s Mattea Sarnecki pitched a complete game shutout. (Ryan Lanigan/HockomockSports.com)

By Ryan Lanigan, Editor-in-Chief

NORTH EASTON, Mass. – Oliver Ames hasn’t had a hard time pushing runs across the plate for the majority of the season, but the Tigers found themselves with just a lone run heading into the bottom of the sixth.

Luckily, sophomore pitcher Mattea Sarnecki kept Stoughton hitters guessing and didn’t allow a run. 

Oliver Ames tacked on three more insurance runs in the bottom of the sixth – all with two-outs – to prevail 4-0 winners over rival Stoughton. 

“The bats were kind of slow to get going,” Oliver Ames head coach Lindsey Allison said. “It just shows with their backs against the wall with two outs, what they’re capable of.” 

Freshman Jamie Gottwald started the bottom of the sixth with a lead off single before Stoughton pitcher Emily Cramer recorded a strikeout. Gottwald advanced to second when Krystina Lincoln reached first on an error. Kayla Soucie ripped one to left field that sent Gottwald headed for the plate, but Stoughton left fielder Jordan Angelos’ throw beat her to the plate for the second out of the inning. Lincoln reached third and Soucie advanced to second on the throw.

Nicole Cosgrove beat out a throw for an infield single that scored Lincoln. Jenna Morley’s single into right field scored Soucie and Gillie D’Antonio – who was a courtesy runner for Cosgrove.

Oliver Ames scored their first run in the first inning when Arianna Scurti’s single into right field scored Erin Lynch, who led off with a triple.  

PictureStoughton’s Emily Cramer

Sarnecki ended the game in the top of the seventh with a called strike three, for a complete game, with four strikeouts and just three hits allowed.

“She throws a lot of junk and was able to keep them off balance and give them mostly grounders,” Allison added.

Cramer pitched the entire six innings for Stoughton, but the Black Knights weren’t able to get a run across the plate — something that has plagued Stoughton all season according to head coach Janet Sullivan.

“Emily Cramer has been pitching magnificently all season long and we just have not been giving the run support she needs,” Sullivan said. “Another perfect example today. She’s just been so strong, she has control of her pitchers, and she’s mixing them well. 

“The wins we have are due to her and we should have a few more because she has been pitching well enough to get us into these games.”

Oliver Ames improves to 11-5 overall and 11-3 in the Davenport Division. Stoughton falls to 4-10 in both the Davenport and overall.


Taunton Beats Mansfield to Extend Win Streak to Eight

Evolution

By Josh Perry, Managing Editor

TAUNTON, Mass. – The Hornets scored first in the top of the first, but it was still a missed opportunity. Mansfield put the first four hitters of the game on base, but only managed one run and allowed Taunton starter George Pelletier to settle into his start.

The senior lefty allowed only three more hits and one unearned run over the next four innings as the league-leading Tigers extended their win streak to eight games with a 7-2 victory over the Hornets on Monday afternoon. Pelletier finished with eight strikeouts in five innings and Jeff Pawlakowski and Matt Nunes pitched a perfect inning each to clinch the win.

Taunton head coach Jeff Sylvia noted Pelletier’s ability to get out of the first inning jam as an early turning point in the game.

“That was big and so was our response in the bottom of the inning to get the run,” said Sylvia. “George pitching out of a jam was big and then he settled down.

He explained what was different after the top of the first, “He started getting ahead and pitching to his counts instead of falling behind and pitching to someone else’s count.”

Joe Upham led off the game with an infield single that was thrown away by Pelletier allowing the Mansfield centerfielder to reach second. Mike Cunningham followed with an RBI single, but was thrown out trying to stretch it to a double. Adam Blake and Zach Courier then followed with base hits, but Pelletier retired the next two hitters to escape only down one run.

In the bottom of the first, the Tigers rallied with two outs to tie the game. They were helped by shaky Mansfield defense. Sam Moor reached on an error by Michael Boen (on a wicked hop that almost hit the shortstop in the face) and then scored on a base hit by Matt Maclean that was booted in the outfield. The inning ended on a great running grab by Upham on the warning track.

The Tigers took control in the bottom of the second, again with help from the Hornets. Matt Nunes led-off with a double to left center and promptly stole third. Ryan Rollo was walked by Mansfield starter Blake and was caught trying to steal second, but an error allowed him to reach second safely and allowed Nunes to come in from third.

After a strikeout, number nine hitter Ben Clark lined a triple to right that just eluded the slide of Courier. Clark then attempted to steal home causing Blake to balk and granting the Tigers the run that made it 4-1.

Clark would score again in the fourth on an RBI double by leadoff hitter Brad Alconada. Connor Ladino followed with his own double that plated Alconada and made it 6-1. The teams traded unearned runs in the fifth.

Sylvia admitted that his team focuses on utilizing its speed and aggressiveness to unsettle the opposition. He was pleased to see the continued contributions from up and down the lineup.

“Ben has been doing that all season,” said Sylvia. “He’s turning the lineup over great for us. If he can get on, he’s very fast and he’s a great base runner. Then Brad and the guys at the top of the order clean it up. Right now, we’re getting contributions from everyone. As a coach, it’s great and I hope it doesn’t stop.”

The win keeps the Tigers in pole position for the league title in their first season in the Hockomock. Taunton could win the league on Wednesday when it takes on Attleboro or Friday against Franklin.

Sylvia remarked, “We control our own destiny, which is good. We just need to take care of business.”

Sharon Rallies Against Canton to Clinch Playoff Berth

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By Yoni Monat, HockomockSports.com Contributor

SHARON, Mass. — Looking to clinch a playoff berth, the Sharon High baseball team found itself trailing in the fifth inning, 3-0, and without a hit against Canton on Monday.

However, the Eagles’ bats came alive in the fifth and sixth innings, and with junior southpaw Will Ginsberg submitting another effective pitching performance, Sharon came back and downed the Bulldogs, 5-3, at Eagle Ballpark.

“It was a great win,” said Sharon Head Coach Joel Peckham. “Will pitched well, and good defense and timely hitting really made the day. It certainly feels good to have the pressure of winning our 10th [game] over with.”

Senior captain Brad Kaufman said, “Will pitched a great game. Our clutch hitting finally came back after a little slump – good to get back on track. Clinching the tournament definitely lifted a big weight off our shoulders. It was definitely a very huge win.”

As in Sharon’s previous game, a 2-1 Eagle victory over Seekonk on Friday, neither team posted a run through four innings. Ginsberg and Canton starter Pat Vartanian both made it one-and-a-half times through the opposing batting order before surrendering a hit.

One defensive highlight for Sharon was senior captain and first baseman Nathan Pedersen’s stretch for a throw from senior shortstop Eric Lesser.

Pedersen did nearly a complete split to nip the Canton batter-runner by a half-step. Lesser said, “Nathan Pedersen with the play of the game with that snag at first base.”

In the fifth inning, the Bulldogs’ offense found its rhythm. Vartanian crushed an RBI double to get the visitors on the scoreboard. Two batters later, Frank Powers’ two-run single put Canton on top, 3-0.

In the bottom of the frame, Sharon junior Max Bauman delivered the Eagles’ first base hit of the afternoon, a one-out single. Bauman then swiped second and third bases.

“The way we hit at the end should’ve been the way we hit the whole game,” said senior shortstop Eric Lesser. “Once Max got that first hit, it really sparked us offensively. Finally, we used our speed. We used our power.”

Senior Kevin McLaughlin walked, and his pinch-runner, senior Matt Thomas, stole second base. With two away, Kaufman scored Bauman with an RBI single, advancing Thomas to third.

After Kaufman stole second, the Eagles had two runners in scoring position and one of the team’s hottest hitters at the dish.

Lesser, who knocked home the winning run in Sharon’s victory on Friday, looked to continue his stretch of clutch batting. With two strikes, Lesser lined a single into left field to plate Thomas and Kaufman, tying the ballgame.

“Two strikes, but Coach had confidence in me,” Lesser said. “Looked for a pitch out over the middle of the plate and got it. We had some speed on the basepaths; they were able to score. It was good – something we needed.”

Kaufman said that hitting in big spots, something in which the Eagles found little success during their four-game skid earlier this month, was crucial on Monday. “Clutch hitting had been huge all season for us, had kept us in every game, so it was good to see it come back again today.”

Sharon came back for more the next inning. Junior Frank Sullivan’s double pushed junior Colton Bader to third base with nobody out. Bauman then grounded a ball to third base.

The Canton fielder, in attempting to nail Bader at the plate, threw the ball wide of the plate and to the backstop. Bader and senior Adam DuBrow, who pinch-ran for Sullivan, scampered home to give the Eagles a 5-3 advantage.

Ginsberg greatly appreciated his mates’ backing offensively, and in the sixth and seventh innings, the lefthander returned to the form he showed earlier in the game.

“Nothing is better for a pitcher than run support. It takes all the pressure off and lets you get rid of any tension. When we hit, we can compete with anybody,” Ginsberg said.

Ginsberg was generally pleased with his complete-game outing, in which he allowed just three hits, struck out six, and walked two. “I think I pitched pretty well today. I had a little trouble locating my fastball, but when I needed to throw a good fastball, I did.”

“I thought Will did a great job today of staying with it,” Kaufman said. “One bad inning, but I thought he pitched great overall.”

Ginsberg says that he sees areas for improvement with his pitching. “I can still get better, which is the great part of baseball. No matter how good the outcome is, you can get better,” he said.

Sharon (10-7, 8-6) secured a Division II South playoff berth with the victory. Peckham said, “Clinching a spot in the tournament feels great and is certainly well deserved by our team.”

Kaufman says that making the postseason was one of the Eagles’ goals this season. As for the squad’s mission the rest of the way, he said, “Championship, no less.”

The Eagles look to improve their tournament seeding and complete a rare regular-season sweep over Oliver Ames when they travel to Easton on Wednesday. “Bring on OA,” Peckham said. Canton hosts Dedham on Tuesday.

As for areas to improve looking ahead to the matchup with the Tigers, Kaufman pointed to Sharon’s hitting in early innings.

“We’re starting off slowly,” he said, “and if we’re going to go far in the tournament, we’ve got to start picking it up early in game – not just waiting until we get down, waiting to come back.”

King Philip Surprises Attleboro For First Win of 2013

Evolution

By Cameron Merritt, HockomockSports.com Contributor

ATTLEBORO, Mass.- The previously winless King Philip Regional High School Warriors made hits when it mattered and were backed up by a strong showing from their starter, Eric Cote, to upset the Attleboro Blue Bombardiers 5-2 on Monday afternoon.

Cote held the Bombardier offense to only two runs and five hits, while striking out five and walking none. The southpaw tossed six full innings and gained his first win of the year, a win he had come close to the last time these two teams faced off, only to fall victim to a five run Attleboro rally in the top of the seventh.

But that would not be the case this time around as the Blue Bombardiers could not successfully string up a big comeback inning, as most of it’s offense was kept in check. Most notable of their performances at the plate, and on the base paths, was that of shortstop Pat Dunn, as the junior went two for three with a pair of singles, a run, and two stolen bases. Dunn was brought home in the fifth via a sacrifice fly to center by first baseman Keith Drucker, and the other Attleboro run of the game came earlier in the first, when center fielder Tommy Burns advanced home on a grounder to third by catcher Ryan Bowen, who would go on base via a throwing error by John Harvey.

King Philip tied and took the permanent lead over Attleboro in the third inning, and would add a rum each to their total in the fourth, fifth, and sixth. The best of their offensive pieces was first baseman Owen Galvin, who would go three for four with two singles, a double, a run, and an RBI. Another good performance came from second baseman Pat Harrington, two for three with two singles, two runs, a stolen base, and got on base in the first off of an error by first baseman Zack Larkin, who started the game in place of Drucker and played the top half before the senior captain, along with teammates Max Lancaster, Sean Curran, and Brandon Clark, all of whom entered the game in the bottom half of the inning after finishing their AP Physics tests.

Also adding to the cause for KP were first baseman Tyler Hopkins, two for three with two RBI’s, and right fielder Jon Rolfe, one for three with with a run, and got on base from a walk in the fourth and an error by second baseman Brandon Tetu in the fifth.

Taking the loss in this game was Attleboro junior Travis Tanguay, who through 5 1/3 innings gave up four runs, eight hits, and walked four while striking out two.

“It felt pretty rough losing this game today. I feel like we should of won, we did a good job getting in front early but we made some critical mistakes at points in the game and I felt we lacked [in some of our efforts],” said Tanguay. “We had some good hits throughout the game just not at the points in time we needed to. We just didn’t have our best stuff today, including myself.”

Tanguay was replaced in relief by Curran, who moved over from right. The senior would pitch the remainder of the game, giving up an unearned run and a hit while striking out two.

The Warriors would bring in Nick Malatesta to close out the Bombardiers for the bottom of the seventh, and that he did, as two players grounded out, one to him, the other to the shortstop Galvin, after Tanguay made it to first on a ball that went through his legs, and a grounder to the first baseman Hopkins would be taken to the base himself to end it.

The Bombardiers return to action on Wednesday when they travel to Taunton to take on the Kelley-Rex Division winners, while King Philip heads to rival Franklin to do battle with the Panthers.