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Red Hawks hold off determined Mohawk

Greenfield's Connor Eckstrom (3) slices down the lane between Hopkins defenders Brett Morrison (21) and Joe Yusko (32) during first-quarter action of the host Hawks' 58-56 win over the visiting Green Wave in Hampshire League boys' basketball action in Hadley.
Recorder/J. Anthony Roberts

Greenfield's Connor Eckstrom (3) slices down the lane between Hopkins defenders Brett Morrison (21) and Joe Yusko (32) during first-quarter action of the host Hawks' 58-56 win over the visiting Green Wave in Hampshire League boys' basketball action in Hadley. Recorder/J. Anthony Roberts

Frontier Regional School took Mohawk Trail Regional High School’s best shot, but eventually pulled away for the win.

The Red Hawks coughed up a seven-point halftime lead before the midpoint of the third quarter, then slowly pulled back ahead and made their free throws late to earn a 65-57 win over the Warriors in a Hampshire League boys’ basketball contest Monday night in Buckland.

Frontier (4-8, 3-6) held a seven-point halftime lead, but Mohawk tied it with an early 9-2 run and took a brief lead before Frontier held a tenuous one-point advantage (43-42) entering the final frame.

“They led by one (54-53) and were able to make their free throws,” said Warriors head coach Fred Redeker of the visitors, who made 9 of 13 from the line in the final period. “We missed a few easy shots and free throws and we had a few bad turnovers.

“(Frontier) rebounded and hit shots when they needed to,” added Redeker.

Ben Ruddock poured in a game-high 23 points, including a pair of 3-pointers, to lead the Red Hawks. Tim Hoar tossed in 18, while Niko Ames pitched in with 10.

Javier Morales paced the Mohawk offense with 16 points, Mark Buck added 14 and Jay Fortier threw in a dozen.

Both teams return to the court Friday night. Frontier hosts independent foe Wahconah Regional High School at 7, while Mohawk hosts Smith Academy at 7:30.

Hopkins 58, Greenfield 56 — Hopkins Academy is starting to make a serious run at a postseason berth, and the Golden Hawks took another big step in that direction Monday night at the expense of their head coach’s alma mater.

Hopkins picked up its sixth win under rookie head coach Angelo Thomas as it upended Greenfield High School, 58-56, in Hampshire League boys’ basketball action Monday night at Reed Gymnasium in Hadley.

The Golden Hawks (6-4, 3-4 HL) took a five-point halftime lead and kept the Green Wave at arm’s length through out the final 16 minutes, never allowing their opponent to take a lead.

Spencer Butterfield powered the victory for Hopkins, draining five trifectas en route to a team-high 20 points. Zach Kelley dumped in 13 points and Brett Morrison chipped in 10 for the Hawks. Joe Yusko had 8.

Robin Marchese did his best to keep Greenfield (7-6, 6-3) in the game by nailing five treys and finishing with a game-high 22 points. Parker Hickey hit for 15 points and Connor Eckstrom contributed 7.

“We came back twice from 10-point deficits but never got the lead and never tied it,” said Wave head coach Scott Thayer, regarding the second half. “Give them full credit, they played very well, they moved the ball well and they shot the ball well.”

Greenfield travels to Pioneer Valley Regional School on Thursday night at 7:30.

Smith Academy 72, Athol 48 — Keith Natale poured in a game-high 25 points, including a trio of 3-pointers, to lead Smith Academy to a 72-48 Hampshire League win over Athol High School in boys’ basketball play Monday at Webb Gymnasium in Hatfield.

David Longstreeth dropped in 15 points and Austin Rogers added 9 for the Falcons, who held a 32-19 lead at intermission.

Athol was led by Jerry Parker with 12. Alex Page, who sank a pair of treys, and Alex Page each chipped in with 10 points and Andrew Poor contributed 7 points.

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