School Hoops: Athol boys post first win

  • Athol’s Colby Mason (12) takes a jumper over Mohawk defender Jackson Hicks (20) during first-half action of the visiting Raiders’ 51-34 Hampshire League North boys’ basketball win Tuesday night in Buckland. RECORDER STAFF/DAN LITTLE

  • Above, Athol’s Mark Ferrari (11) and Mohawk’s Michael Gabaree (33) grapple on the floor for a loose ball Tuesday during the visiting Raiders’ 51-34 Hampshire League North boys’ basketball win in Buckland. Below, Athol’s Justin Blake (5) goes in for a first-half layup. RECORDER STAFF photos/DAN LITTLE

  • Athol’s Bryce King (2) squeezes past Mohawk defender Kamron Hoff (30) Tuesday during the visiting Raiders’ 51-34 Hampshire League North boys’ basketball win in Buckland. RECORDER STAFF/DAN LITTLE

  • Athol’s Justin Blake (5) brings the ball up the court Tuesday during his visiting Raiders’ 51-34 Hampshire League North boys’ basketball win over Mohawk Tuesday night in Buckland. RECORDER STAFF/DAN LITTLE

  • Athol’s Maysin Tarbell (21) takes a shot in the first half against Mohawk on Tuesday, Jan. 9, 2018 in Buckland. RECORDER STAFF/DAN LITTLE

  • Athol’s Justin Blake (5) goes in for a layup in the first half against Mohawk on Tuesday, Jan. 9, 2018 in Buckland. RECORDER STAFF/DAN LITTLE

  • Mohawk head coach Jeff Herd gives directions during the Warriors’ home game against Athol Tuesday, Jan. 9, 2018 in Buckland. RECORDER STAFF/DAN LITTLE

Recorder Staff
Tuesday, January 09, 2018

Maysin Tarbell and Mark Ferrari scored 10 points apiece, and visiting Athol High School got into the win column for the first time this season with a 51-34 victory over Mohawk Trail Regional High School in a Hampshire League North boys’ basketball game Tuesday night in Buckland.

Athol (1-6, 1-1) stormed out to a 21-4 lead after one quarter, and that proved to be the final margin. Mohawk (0-8, 0-2) trailed 46-19 entering the fourth, but Warriors head coach Jeff Herd said he was proud of the team’s late fight as the hosts held a 15-5 fourth-quarter edge.

“The kids, I’ll tell you, the record doesn’t show it but the improvement is there,” Herd lauded. “The energy was outstanding and the kids played very well. We’d rather lose by 17 than 50, so we’re headed in the right direction.”

Evan Saisa tallied 7 points for the Red Raiders, while Brymere Edwards, Colby Mason and Angel Rivera had 6 each in a balanced scoring effort for the visitors.

Luke Viens was the top scorer for Mohawk, finishing with 9 points. Kaleb Fitzgerald added 7 points, while Will Guyette and Jackson Hicks tossed in 4 each.

Mohawk heads to Smith Academy Friday night while Athol hosts Frontier Regional School.

Frontier 50, Greenfield 35 — Frontier Regional School used a strong defensive performance Tuesday night to shut down Greenfield High School’s offense during a 50-35 Red Hawks’ victory at Goodnow Gymnasium in South Deerfield.

Both teams struggled on offense early on as Frontier took a 6-4 lead into the second quarter but the Hawks began to pick it up, while holding the Green Wave offense at bay. Frontier led 19-12 at halftime and outscored the Wave in each of the final two quarters to pull away. Frontier coach Ben Barshefsky credited his defense for playing well and holding Greenfield’s long-range shooters in check.

“I thought we did a pretty decent job defending the perimeter,” he began. “We still need to improve on shutting down the driving lines. We let a lot of guys drive with their dominant hand tonight. Still, overall, I thought our defensive effort was solid.”

Carsten Carey had another strong game, leading Frontier with 14 points, 10 rebounds and seven blocked shots. Kalen Evans tossed in 11 points, Ben Litskoski netted 8 points, and Owen Morse tossed in 5.

Hunter Campbell led the Green Wave (2-6) with 13 points. Owen Phelps netted 7 points, and Nate Haselton chipped in 6.

Pioneer 78, Turners 60 — Pioneer Valley Regional School scored 30 points in the fourth quarter to pull away from pesky Turners Falls High School Tuesday night en route to a 78-60 win in HL South Division action at Messer Gymnasium in Northfield.

The game remained close for the first three quarters. The teams went into the half tied at 33-33, and Pioneer led 48-43 heading into the fourth.

“I thought they just took the fight to us in the first half,” Pioneer coach Scott Thayer said. “They were more aggressive and we were back on our heels. At halftime, we dug in and started to grind it out.”

Thayer said his team’s energy and effort levels were much better in the second half and it allowed his team to begin to pull away.

Pioneer (5-2) once again got scoring from several places. In the Panthers’ last game against Belchertown High School, the team had four players in double-figure scoring. Against Turners, Pioneer had five.

“That’s the thing I think we are capable of,” Thayer said. “When we share the ball we are tough to stop.”

Karl Wheeler scored a season-high 17 points to pace the offense, while Mike Menard finished with 14 points and seven rebounds. Brendan Emond notched 14 points, Garrett Cote had 13 points and seven assists, Troy Emond had 10 points, and Jordan Loughman had 8 points and 10 rebounds.

Chase Novak scored 18 points for Turners Falls (3-6) but Pioneer’s defense held him without a point in the second half. Jovanni Williams finished with 13 points, and Jimmy Vaughn had 10 points.

Southwick 39, Mahar 34 — Mahar Regional School struggled shooting from the floor and Southwick-Tolland Regional High School used a big fourth quarter to score a 39-34 victory in an independent boys’ game Tuesday night in Southwick.

For the second time in three games the Senators (6-2) struggled offensively and finished with just 34 points, as they did in a 47-34 loss to Frontier a week ago.

Despite the pour offensive night, Mahar took a 16-15 lead into halftime and continued to hold a one-point (22-21) lead after three quarters. Southwick nearly doubled its output from the first three quarters in the final eight minutes, outscoring Mahar 18-12 to earn the victory.

Southwick did not have a player in double figure scoring, as Billy Strain led the way with 8 points. Hunter Iglesias added 7 points.

Sam Paul paced Mahar with 13 points. Matt Jenks added 10, and Deven Patch collected 7.

FC Tech 48, PV Christian 47 — Joel Farrick went 2-for-2 from the free-throw line with 3.9 seconds left and Franklin County Technical School defeated Pioneer Valley Christian Academy, 48-47, in a Tri-County League North Division game Tuesday night in Springfield.

Noah Connor (23 points) scored on a drive to the hoop with under 10 seconds to play to put Pioneer Christian up 47-46, but Franklin Tech (5-4) sent the ball up the floor to Farrick, who drove to the hoop and was fouled. Farrick had gone 1-for-2 from the line twice in the final minute to help pull Franklin Tech into a 46-45 lead, but his last two attempts were both true, giving the visitors the lead. Pioneer Christian missed a half-court shot at the buzzer.

Farrick paced Franklin Tech with 17 points. Jared Bergmann netted 12 points, Max Charest added 7 points, and Garrett Cole chipped in 6 points.

Girls’ games

Mahar 37, Belchertown 36 — Tori Tenney hauled in 20 rebounds, none bigger than her final board Tuesday night.

The Mahar Regional School forward grabbed a missed free throw with 1.9 seconds remaining, and the visiting Senators were able to run out the clock and secure a wild 37-36 victory over Belchertown High School in an independent girls’ basketball game.

With the game tied 35-35 with 18 seconds remaining, Mahar’s Hannah Paul was fouled and hit both free throws to put the visitors on top, 37-35.

Belchertown’s Emma LeBlanc looked to tie the game and force overtime, as she was fouled with 1.8 seconds to play. LeBlanc hit the first free throw but missed the second, and Tenney nabbed the board to seal the deal.

“It’s a nice win,” Mahar head coach Larry Fisher said. “Maybe this will be something we can work off and it’ll have a snowball effect.”

Paul was 6-for-6 from the free-throw stripe in the fourth quarter, finishing with 11 points. The Senators got to the line 14 times in the fourth quarter, and their aggressiveness helped them erase a double-digit deficit with just four minutes remaining in regulation.

“Our defensive pressure was big as well,” Fisher said. “We created some turnovers out of our press and we were able to turn them into points on the other end.”

Jazmyn Vautour led Mahar (5-5) with a game-high 15 points, while Tenney added 5 points to go with her 20 rebounds. The Senators trailed 13-10 at halftime and 24-18 entering the fourth, but they outscored the Orioles by a 19-12 margin in the final stanza.

Turners Falls 48, Southwick 27 — Maddy Chmyzinski hit four 3-pointers and scored a season-high 20 points, and host Turners Falls built a double-digit halftime lead en route to a comfortable 48-27 win over Southwick Tuesday night in a Franklin County League South girls’ basketball game in Turners Falls.

The Powertown (5-2, 3-1) led 26-12 at halftime and built the lead up to 43-20 after three quarters. It was the second straight win for Turners after a two-game losing streak.

“It was good to see the offense,” Turners Falls head coach Ted Wilcox said. “Maddy is shooting her 3s a lot better. It was nice to see that come around.”

Abby Loynd joined Chmyzinski in double figures with 10 points, including a pair of 3-pointers. Chloe Ellis tossed in 8 points in the victory, and Wilcox said her defensive effort was solid as well. He also pointed to Hailey Bogusz as a key contributor down low.

Emily Martin led Southwick (2-4, 0-3) with 12 points.