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Sullivan on fire as Golden Hawks trim Mahar, 59-53

Katie Sullivan poured in a game-high 23 points to help Hopkins Academy to a 59-53 victory over Mahar Regional School in a Franklin County League North Division girls’ basketball game Tuesday night at Reed Gymnasium in Hadley.

It was the Senators (7-9 overall, 1-3 FCL North) who got off to a great start, taking a 16-8 lead after one quarter. The Golden Hawks (7-4, 2-1 North) bounced back in the second quarter and rallied to take a 24-23 halftime lead before using a 19-point third quarter to extend the lead to six.

Mackenzie Sullvian added 17 points, including a trio of 3-balls, for Hopkins.

Cassie Verheyen was Mahar’s top scorer, netting 14 points and pulling down a dozen rebounds for a double-double. Natashia Patria and Ally Parker each added 11 points.

“It was a four-point game with three minutes to go but (Hopkins) made their free throws coming down the stretch,” said Senators head coach Larry Fisher of the Golden Hawks, who finished 10-for-14 from the line.

Mahar hosts Frontier Regional School Tuesday night at 7.

Athol 55, Easthampton 30 — One night after suffering only its second loss of the season, Athol High School was looking to bounce back on the road against a tough Easthampton High School team.

The Red Raiders answered the challenge behind a dominant defensive performance in which they held the Eagles to just 14 first-half points en route to a 55-30 Franklin County League girls’ basketball victory Tuesday night in Easthampton.

Athol (11-2 overall, 3-0 North) was playing 24 hours after suffering a 68-56 loss to South Hadley High School, and coach Dan Bevis said he was looking for his players to bounce back. It started with defense, and after allowing just five points in the first quarter, the Red Raiders gave up nine points in the second quarter. At one point in the second quarter, Bevis called a time out to remind the girls to continue playing defense, and the team responded with a 10-0 run to end the first half.

“I thought we did a good job of bouncing back,” Bevis said. “We had a little heart to heart after last night’s loss and the girls came out and answered the call tonight.”

Molly Cleveland led the Red Raiders with 16 points, and Tanner Favreau finished with 10. Kiki Guerin and Julia Salmond each dumped in 7 points, and Julia Carey added 6.

Courtney Nelson paced Easthampton with 9 points.

Athol travels to Monson High School Monday at 7.

Smith Academy 42, Turners Falls 38 — The Turners Falls High School girls’ basketball team is young but coach Ted Wilcox can see improvement. On Tuesday, the Indians showed even more progress in a tight loss.

The Indians went into the fourth quarter tied with Smith Academy, but Katie Yagodzinski hit two of her five 3-pointers to spark the Falcons to a 42-38 victory in a FCL South girls’ basketball game in Hatfield.

The Indians started two eighth-graders, one freshman and two juniors against the Falcons, and while the youthfulness may have caught up to the Indians in the end, Wilcox was pleased with the performance his team, devoid of any seniors, put forth.

“Absolutely, I’m happy,” Wilcox said.

Yagodzinski was the star of the night with half of the Falcons’ points. The senior guard hit five 3-pointers en route to her game-high 21 points, and had six of Smith Academy’s 10 fourth-quarter points to help break the tie. Ashley Higgins added 10 points and Jen Adamites chipped in 7.

The Indians got a big effort from their two forwards and center. Freshman center Michelle Leh recorded her second double-double of the season with 12 points and a team-high 15 rebounds. Forwards Amber Caouette and Haleigh Bassett also had strong games in the paint. Caouette finished with 4 points and 11 rebounds, while Bassett netted 3 points and pulled down 12 boards.

“Our three, four and fives really worked tonight,” Wilcox said. “Bassett played fantastic defense against Ashley Higgins. They are working their tails off. If I could vote for an All-star team, I would put Michelle Leh on it. She’s playing that well right now.”

Maddy Chymzinski finished with 9 points for the Indians.

Pioneer 50, Greenfield 15 — Natalie Hale scored 19 points Tuesday to lead Pioneer to a 50-15 FCL South win over Greenfield High School at Nichols Gymnasium in Greenfield.

Gabby Carpenter finished with 7 points in the win, while Alyssa Llewelyn, Brianna Jobst and Caroline Merkle finished with 6.

Erika Glabach led Greenfield with 7 points.

Boys’ games

Pioneer 57, Everett 49 (OT) — Pioneer Valley Regional School outscored Mt. Everett Regional High School, 12-4, in overtime to earn a 57-49 independent boys’ basketball win on Tuesday night in Sheffield.

Brad Hastings piled it on from the outside for the Panthers (6-6 overall), as he drained six 3-pointers en route to a game-high 21 points — 6 of them coming in the extra session.

Lennon Robichaud continued his consistent offensive output by netting 19 points, while Jake Hale grabbed a team-high 13 rebounds to go along with 4 points, and Josh Willis added 6 points and 12 boards.

Sage Angell paced the Eagles with 15 points, and Wilson added 13.

“In the first and third quarters, it was really good, tight, defense by both teams,” said Panthers head coach Dave Hastings. “I thought the officiating was outstanding.”

Pioneer hosts Mahar in a Hampshire League contest Thursday night at 7:30.

Athol 75, St. Joseph’s 72 — After putting up 47 first-half points, the Athol boys’ basketball team’s offense went ice cold in the second half and narrowly survived to earn a 75-72 independent victory over St. Joseph’s Central High School Tuesday night at Mallet Gymnasium in Athol.

The Red Raiders led 47-38 at halftime and increased the lead to 11 points after three quarters. St. Joseph’s outscored Athol, 22-14, in the fourth quarter on the hot outside shooting of Devon Johnson, who drained six 3-pointers (including to help him finish with 21 points. Athol, meanwhile, began missing layups and nearly allowed the Crusaders to come back.

Zach Dodge had a nice night for the Red Raiders (2-10) with 21 points. Jerry Parker added 16. Alex Page netted 9 points, Eric Aikey had 7 points and 15 reobunds, and Brad Bousquet and Andrew Poor each added 7 points.

Athol travels to Mohawk Trail Regional High School on Thursday.

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