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High Schools: Hopkinton boys go from cold to red hot in win over Sanborn

  • Hopkinton's Gabe Nichols lays up a shot in the game against Sanborn on Thursday, December 19, 2013 at Hopkinton High School. <br/><br/>(ANDREA MORALES / Monitor staff)

    Hopkinton's Gabe Nichols lays up a shot in the game against Sanborn on Thursday, December 19, 2013 at Hopkinton High School.

    (ANDREA MORALES / Monitor staff)

  • Hopkinton's Wes Rose looks to make a shot past Sanborn defense in the game between the schools at Hopkinton High School on December 19, 2013. <br/><br/>(ANDREA MORALES / Monitor staff)

    Hopkinton's Wes Rose looks to make a shot past Sanborn defense in the game between the schools at Hopkinton High School on December 19, 2013.

    (ANDREA MORALES / Monitor staff)

  • Hopkinton's Gabe Nichols lays up a shot in the game against Sanborn on Thursday, December 19, 2013 at Hopkinton High School. <br/><br/>(ANDREA MORALES / Monitor staff)
  • Hopkinton's Wes Rose looks to make a shot past Sanborn defense in the game between the schools at Hopkinton High School on December 19, 2013. <br/><br/>(ANDREA MORALES / Monitor staff)

The Hopkinton boys’ basketball team quickly wiped away two-plus quarters of frustration and started shooting lights out last night, giving the Hawks a second straight win to start the season, 76-42 at home over Sanborn (0-2).

Hopkinton struggled with its shooting in the first half and only had a one-point lead with five minutes to go in the third quarter, but got going in a major way, hitting shots from all over the court.

“Our shooting came alive,” Hopkinton Coach Dave Chase said. “It enabled us to turn a one-point lead into a 15-, 16-, 17-point lead.”

After going 10-for-33 as a team in the first half and having trouble with Sanborn’s zone defense, Hopkinton turned it around in the second half. Leading 22-16 at halftime and having that lead trimmed to 22-21 midway through the third quarter, Hopkinton quickly broke out to go up 47-35 heading into the fourth. The momentum continued for the home team in the final quarter, with Hopkinton outscoring the Indians 29-7. In the second half, the Hawks shot 57 percent (20-for-35) on field goals, 83 percent from the free throw line, and 75 percent (9-for-12) from 3-point land.

Senior guard Liam McNicholas was a key player in the Hawks’ shooting blitz and summed up the ups and downs for the entire team. McNicholas managed only four points in the first half but had 23 in the second, including a whopping seven 3-pointers. He finished with a well-rounded stat line of 27 points, eight assists, five steals and five rebounds.

The Hawks got scoring from nine different players, and the hot shooting started to be contagious during the team’s second-half run. McNicholas, along with fellow guard Wes Rose, played a big part in the latter part of the third quarter, and it produced a snowball effect for the whole squad.

“We were having a hard time getting balls inside to our bigs,” Chase said. “As soon as the guards started to go, our bigs controlled the boards, and it led to a lot of turnovers for Sanborn and easy baskets for us.”

Sanborn committed 30 turnovers in total for the game, many of which allowed Hopkinton to build a bigger lead late.

Senior center Gabe Nichols was one of the few Hawks players to have his offense going in the first half. He had 12 points in the first two quarters and finished with a total of 20 points, along with three boards and three assists. Rose added eight points, including two key 3-point field goals in the pivotal third quarter.

The Jekyll-and-Hyde nature of Hopkinton’s performance shows a team looking to find its way through the early part of the season and achieve some consistency.

“It’s only week two, and the rhythm’s not there yet,” Chase said. “We’re using 13 guys, and it’s hard for players to get comfortable and shoot their way out of their woes.”

In last night’s case, McNicholas found his scoring touch, which got the rest of the team going. The Hawks will hope to have that rhythm going forward for the duration of their upcoming games.

BOYS’ BASKETBALL

Concord 54, Timberlane 38

The Crimson Tide used balanced scoring to open its season with a win on the road. Garrett Jewell led Concord with 13 points, Jacob Szulc added 10 and Seimou Smith finished with nine.

After taking a 28-18 halftime lead and maintaining control into the fourth quarter, Tide Coach John Finnegan was able to go deep into his bench in the fourth quarter. That little bit of extra rest for the starters may prove helpful when Concord takes on a tough Trinity team tonight at home.

“I’m happy with the win,” Finnegan said. “And I think if the kids play within themselves and up to their ability, I don’t see why we can’t give Trinity a game.”

GIRLS’ BASKETBALL

Bishop Brady 62, Raymond 26

The Green Giants (4-0) beat Raymond (1-3) for the second time this season. Bishop Brady pulled ahead 19-4 after the first quarter and led by double digits for the remainder of the contest.

Junior guard Sarah Thomas had a stellar game with 32 points. Riley Bennett added 10 points, while Riselly Deoleo finished with five points, five rebounds, eight assists and five steals.

bow 51, Fall Mountain 48

Bow (3-1) picked up an impressive road win over a Fall Mountain team (3-1) that had won its first three games of the season by double digits. The Falcons outscored the Wildcats 18-4 in the third quarter and managed to hold on to the lead in a tight final quarter.

Junior forward Sam Lulka recorded a double-double of 14 points and 12 rebounds, along with three steals, while senior Kirsten Bresson (15 points, six rebounds, three steals, two assists) had a solid game for the Falcons, who shot 36 percent on the night.

Conant 55, Kearsarge 46

The Cougars (2-3) lost on the road to Conant (2-0) in a tight contest. Kearsarge led 25-24 at the half before the Orioles pulled ahead 42-36 heading into the fourth quarter. The key stat in the game came at the free throw line, as Conant made 24 of 38 foul shots and Kearsarge only made three of 10 attempts.

Anna Cahill had another solid game with 16 points, while Morgan Johnson added eight. Lexi Bryk and Syd Bryk scored six points each.

GIRLS’ ALPINE SKIING

Pembroke eighth

The Spartans finished in eighth place with 300 points in a giant slalom race held at Crotched Mountain.

Lyla Boyajian led Pembroke with a two-run combined time of 1:48.66, good for 25th place. Also scoring for the Spartans were Hannah Cunningham (34th, 1:56.21), Shannon Drouse (42nd, 2:09.41) and Larissa Amour (43rd, 2:11.57). Sarah Hubbard finished in 51st place (2:43.46).

BOYS’ ALPINE SKIING

Pembroke eighth

Pembroke took eighth place in a giant slalom race at Crotched with 302 points.

Edward Miner led the Spartans with a two-run combined time of 1:36.31 to earn 19th place overall. Andrew Goulet (28th, 1:41.04), John Hollis (50th, 2:01.38) and Cole Sporcic (51st, 2:01.76) made up the rest of the points scorers for Pembroke. Killian Drouse came in 58th in 2:25.15.

Related

High school stars of the day

Wednesday, January 8, 2014

Liam McNicholas, Hopkinton boys’ basketball, 27 points, 8 assists, 5 steals, 5 rebounds in 76-42 win over Sanborn Gabe Nichols, Hopkinton boys’ basketball, 20 points, 3 rebounds, 3 assists in 76-42 win over Sanborn Sarah Thomas, Bishop Brady girls’ basketball, 32 points in 62-26 win over Raymond Sam Lulka, Bow girls’ basketball, 14 points, 12 rebounds, 3 steals in 51-48 … 0

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