Tag Archives: Joslyn King

Westford holds off Billerica 53-49 to advance to Division One North finals

Westford coach Russ Coward celebrates win over Billerica

Westford coach Russ Coward celebrates win over Billerica

Meghan Kibblehouse hit two clutch free throws

Meghan Kibblehouse hit two clutch free throws

Catherine Sennott had a steal and made a free throw late in the game

Catherine Sennott had a steal and made a free throw late in the game

(Haverhill) Two free throws by Meghan Kibblehouse and a steal by Catherine Sennott, all in the last twenty-eight seconds, enabled Westford Academy to hold off Billerica, 53-49, in the North Division 1 semifinals at Whittier Tech on Thursday night.

The Grey Ghosts (20-4) will face Central Catholic at the Tsongas Center on Saturday (6PM) for the D1 North title.

Westford has now won fourteen straight games.  Last loss?  To Billerica, at Billerica, on January 17th (57-53).

Billerica (#2 seed) started slowly (8-0) and fell behind by thirteen (27-14) to the #3 seed in the second quarter.  The Indians (20-3) came all the way back in the third quarter to get the lead (37-36) before falling back by nine (48-39) with 4:48 remaining in the game.  Once again Billerica rallied back with a run of eight to close to one (48-47) with 1:45 left and later, 50-49, with twenty-eight seconds left.

BHS coach Chris Doneski opted to foul right away and that gave Meghan Kibblehouse a chance to get her first two points of the game………and she did.

Billerica had twenty-five seconds to do something about their three-point deficit.  However, when Brittany Lomanno tried to get the ball to teammate Shannon Hayes, Catherine Sennott (15 points) jumped the passing lane and stole the ball.

Catherine was immediately fouled, made the first free throw giving WA a 4-point lead and enough room to withstand three Billerica shots in their last possession.

Sam Hyslip (21 points) looks for a shot inside

Sam Hyslip (21 points) looks for a shot inside

Junior Sam Hyslip (21 points) led all scorers and was very strong around the basket. She also made 7-of-9 free throws and had the layup in the last quarter that put the Ghosts in front, 50-47, with 1:08 left.

Junior Shannon Hayes (13 points) was key in the 10-point run the Indians put together in the third quarter to take their only lead (37-36) with a minute left in that quarter.  Shannon scored the first six points in the run and teammate Brittany Lomanno (11 points) picked up the other four with a layup and two free throws.

In the rally back from the 48-39 deficit in the 4th quarter, it was Danielle Nickerson (10 points) getting six of the eight unanswered points Billerica collected.  Joslyn King converted a rebound for the other two points.

Joslyn King gets Billerica within one point

Joslyn King gets Billerica within one point

Joslyn would later make two season-on-the-line free throws with twenty-five seconds left before Meghan Kibblehouse and Catherine Sennott starred in the next two possessions to get WA to the finals.

Despite the tight defense, both teams handled the ball very well.  I had them both for only eight turnovers each.

Hannah Hackley (11 points) was fouled in the first quarter attempting a 3-point shot and made all three free throws.

Westford was able to get inside for easier shots.  However, the athleticism of Billerica allowed them to make some tough outside shots.

Both teams brought active student sections.

Shannon Hayes (13 points) flies to the rim

Shannon Hayes (13 points) flies to the rim

Coach Bob Romeo of Masconomet (lost to Billerica earlier in the tournament) took this one in.  Also saw Coley Viselli of Pentucket on hand after leading the Sachems past Ipswich last night in the Division 3 North semifinals.

Westford Academy boxscore

Billerica boxscore

(All of the pictures above and below enlarge considerably if you click on them.)

Brittany Lomanno (11 points)

Brittany Lomanno (11 points)

battle underneath

battle underneath

Billerica starters

Billerica starters

Sam Hyslip (21 points)

Sam Hyslip (21 points)

Hannah Hackley (11 points)

Hannah Hackley (11 points)

Joslyn King looks to the rim

Joslyn King looks to the rim

Bailey Mongillo gets set to block

Bailey Mongillo gets set to block

Kayla Leverone gets fouled by Hannah Hackley

Kayla Leverone gets fouled by Hannah Hackley

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Billerica ousts Masconomet 64-42 in Division 1 North quarterfinals

Joslyn King (14 points) scores from in close

Joslyn King (14 points) scores from in close

Nicole Femino (17 points) gets down the lane

Nicole Femino (17 points) gets down the lane

(Billerica)  Billerica won their thirteenth straight home game as they defeated Masconomet, 64-42, in Division 1 North quarterfinals action on Saturday afternoon.

The #2 seed Indians (20-2) move on to the semifinals on Wednesday (7PM) at Woburn HS against the Lexington/Westford winner.

The Chieftains (16-6) struggled to score after a nice (14-12) first quarter.  Billerica’s half-court defense caused few turnovers but it did limit where Masco could shoot from (mostly outside) and also limited second shots.

The outcome of this game was still in doubt with two minutes left in the third quarter with Billerica holding a, 40-33, lead.  5 ½ minutes of playing time later, stretching into the final quarter, the outcome mystery had been solved.

Shannon Hayes (12 points)

Shannon Hayes (12 points)

The Indians rolled up a remarkable sixteen straight unanswered points during those 5 ½ minutes and #7 seed Masco was down and out, 56-33, with 4 ½ minutes to play.

Caroline Gillis started the big run of points with a three and later on Lexie Mattar stuck a jump shot.  The rest of it was free throws and what free throw shooting the packed house at BHS saw.  The Indians missed their first attempt (Danielle Nickerson) but never missed again in the fifteen attempts covering the rest of the game.

The Indians had eleven free throws in the sixteen-point outburst that decided this game.

The Indians had four players in double figures.  Joslyn King (14 points) paced Billerica.  The 6-1 senior also had plenty to do with preventing Masco from gaining easy access to close-in shots.

Danielle Nickerson (13), Shannon Hayes (12), and Kayla Leverone (10) were the other Indians in double figures.

Junior Nicole Femino (17 points) led the Masco scorers.  Nicole had twelve of those points in the first half.  Claudia Marsh closed out her Masco basketball career with eleven points getting nine of them in the first half.

Claudia Marsh (11 points)

Claudia Marsh (11 points)

The Chieftains had a great start zipping ahead, 8-2, as Claudia tallied a layup and converted a rebound.  She had another layup later in the quarter and Masco led, 14-12, when it was over.

The visitors from the Cape Ann League fell behind in the second quarter but a three by Nicole Femino had Masco one possession away (25-24) with two minutes until the half.

Billerica answered with two layups by speedy Shannon Hayes and a three by Kayla Leverone.  Meghan Collins hit a free throw to stop the bleeding before halftime but the Indians started the second half with two more baskets (Danielle Nickerson and Joslyn King) and led by eleven (36-25).

The reality of the end of the season sets in for Masconomet

The reality of the end of the season sets in for Masconomet

On this day, Masco just could not get the stops needed to give them space to catch up.  And then when they were hit with the sixteen point run their season was over.

I had seen both teams lose to Division 3 Pentucket.  What the Sachems were able to do was to disrupt both teams into costly turnovers.

In the Billerica/Masconomet game, the solid defense of the Indians and their amazing free throw shooting carried the day.

Masconomet made six-of-seventeen free throws.

Continuing with free throws, I saw Billerica lose at Andover last season to Nicole Boudreau’s team by a point in a game where the Indians missed four free throws in the last 1 ½ minutes of that game.  And today they made 15 straight!  Go figure.

The Billerica gymnasium was just the right size for the crowd that showed up.  BHS Athletic Director Dave Lezenski did a wonderful job of monitoring the behavior of the Indians student section.  Several students were informed that their comments should only be directed at the home team.

Billerica Boxscore

Masconomet Boxscore

(All of the pictures above and below will enlarge considerably if you click on them.)

Joslyn King shoots from outside

Joslyn King shoots from outside

Danielle Nickerson (13 points)

Danielle Nickerson (13 points)

Meghan Collins defends Brittany Lomanno

Meghan Collins defends Brittany Lomanno

Abi Rose

Abi Rose

Hannah Kiernan drives right

Hannah Kiernan drives right

Kayla Leverone (10 points) dribbles

Kayla Leverone (10 points) dribbles

tight Masco defense

tight Masco defense

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Strong shooting and a strong finish get Pentucket past Billerica 59-39 in girls basketball

Kelsi McNamara (15 points) fires a three

Kelsi McNamara (15 points) fires a three

McKenna Kilian (13 points) pullup jump shot

McKenna Kilian (13 points) pullup jump shot

(West Newbury)  Pentucket hit eight 3’s and scored the game’s last eleven points as they defeated Billerica, 59-39, in a nonleague contest on Wednesday night.

A little over a year ago Billerica, at their place, had a strong second half and routed the Sachems, 63-43.

But this time around undefeated Pentucket (6-0) made shots from long range (eight over the first three quarters) and shut out the Indians (4-1) over the last 4:25 of the game.  That combo did in the Division One opponent from the Merrimack Valley League.

Pentucket took the lead for good midway through the first quarter (7-6) on a three by Kelsi McNamara (15 points).  That lead would get to nine (17-8) before the Indians ran seven straight into the second quarter.  Brittany Lomanno (10 points) had Billerica’s only three as the Indians moved to within two (17-15) 1 ½ minutes into the second quarter.

Pentucket would get that lead up to eight (29-21) as Coley Viselli (9 points) ended the half with a three and two free throws.

Shannon Hayes (eight points in third quarter)

Shannon Hayes (eight points in third quarter)

Kelsi McNamara dropped three 3’s in the first 2 ½ minutes of the second half to offset a strong third quarter by junior Shannon Hayes (eight points in the quarter).  Pentucket led, 46-35, after three quarters.

The final quarter started out harmlessly enough – full court drive by Kayla Leverone, two free throws by Alex Moore, and two free throws by Danielle Nickerson.  48-39 with 4:25 left.

The rest of the way?  All Pentucket.  McKenna Kilian (13 points) sparked the Sachems.  The speedy sophomore started things with a block of Brittany Lomanno’s layup attempt.  Later she added a couple of full-speed, stop-on-a-dime jumpers, two free throws, and a last-second toss off the backboard.

Alex Moore (8 points) from the corner

Alex Moore (8 points) from the corner

Pentucket had four three’s in the first quarter, one in the second, and three in the third.  Normal starter Alex Moore (8 points) came off the bench late in the first quarter and promptly drained two 3’s in thirty seconds.

Billerica coach Chris Doneski surprised me plenty by going to a zone defense after Pentucket had four 3’s in the first quarter.  But it actually worked in the second quarter.  The third quarter?  Not so much!  Blame Kelsi McNamara.  The sophomore found three openings around the top of the key and connected on all of them.

Back to the man-to-man went the Indians.  Playing that defense and facing full-court pressure all game long may have been the culprits in the Indians disastrous last 4 ½ minutes.

Tess Nogueira (12 points) looks to go under and up

Tess Nogueira (12 points) looks to go under and up

Tess Nogueira (12 points) had the best game I’ve seen her play.  She faced a taller defender (Joslyn King – 6’1”) and was able to score points and get Joslyn (6 points) into foul trouble.  Two memorable Tess moments were a flip-back as she went under the basket and a full-court drive in the last two minutes.  On that drive I’m certain she was planning on giving the ball up but no one from Billerica stepped up to stop the senior and she kept on going.

It is hard not to be impressed with Division Three Pentucket being able to defeat a quality D1 opponent.  Billerica was 17-4 last season.  I saw them lose to D1 undefeated state champ Andover (with Nicole Boudreau) by a point at Andover.  The Indians missed four free throws in the last 1 ½ minutes in that tough loss.

Brittany Lomanno (10 points) looks to get open

Brittany Lomanno (10 points) looks to get open

The pace of this game was certainly to the Sachems liking.  They forced the ball away from Billerica’s primary ball-handlers much of the game and made passing difficult.  Credit the Indians for being able to handle the pressure in the backcourt.  The struggle was in the front court.  Billerica had twenty-one turnovers (by my unofficial count) and missed a ton of rushed shots.

You win by twenty you probably will overlook your own team’s eighteen turnovers.  Billerica’s athleticism forced that many and showed well in the one-on-one matchups when the pace was to their liking.  However, Pentucket was able to speed things up most of the night and get enough openings to dominate from long range.

Billerica will next be hosting a very tough North Andover team at home on Friday night.

Pentucket will be hosting Cape Ann League opponent Newburyport also on Friday night.

ESPN Boston was in the house.  So was Masco’s Bob Romeo.

The state championship banner has now found a spot on the gymnasium wall.

Pentucket boxscore

Billerica boxscore

(All of the pictures above and below enlarge considerably if you click on them.)

McKenna Kilian along the sideline

McKenna Kilian along the sideline

opening tip

opening tip

McKenna Kilian in the lane

McKenna Kilian in the lane

Kayla Leverone (3), Tess Nogueira (32), Danielle Nickerson (22)

Kayla Leverone (3), Tess Nogueira (32), Danielle Nickerson (22)

Coley Viselli (9 points) sets for a three

Coley Viselli (9 points) sets for a three

Joslyn King

Joslyn King

Kelsi McNamara

Kelsi McNamara

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Andover stays undefeated….barely with 53-52 win over Billerica in girls basketball

Nicole Boudreau (23 points) also blocked shots in the Andover win.

Billerica was hurt by missed free throws (four) in the last 1 1/2 minutes of this close game.

(Andover) The undefeated (13-0) Andover Golden Warriors got their first taste of a close game this season and hung on to defeat the Billerica Indians, 53-52, in front of a good crowd at AHS on Thursday night.

Andover, led by Nicole Boudreau (23 points), put their points up in bunches nailing ten long ones.  Nicole connected on six triples.

The resiliency of the Indians (11-2) was impressive.  The Warriors hit them with a 14-3 run in the second period and they trailed, 26-15.  In the fourth period it was a 13-2 run that had them trailing, 53-46. But they rallied back both times.

While Andover relied heavily on an outside game, the Indians did their damage inside.  Of their eighteen baskets, sixteen were from in close.

Down 26-15, just 2 ½ minutes into the second quarter, it appeared that Billerica was on its way to losing badly.  (Andover had won its first twelve games by an average of twenty-two points.)  But the Indians followed with a 23-9 segment and had a 38-35 lead with three minutes left in the third quarter.  Three old-fashioned 3’s by Joslyn King (14 points), Danielle Nickerson (9 points), and Kayla Leverone (10 points) were highlights in the Billerica comeback.

Early in the final quarter, a well-executed inbounds play turned up Billerica’s only successful triple (Kayla Leverone) and the visitors had their biggest lead (44-40) of the game and had their fans sensing the upset.

Angelice Gonzales – scored the winning basket after stealing an inbounds pass

But this is two-time D1 defending state champs Andover were talking about.  Big crowds.  Big games.  Been there…done it.  That’s why the 13-2 response they put together wasn’t surprising.  The long ones played a part (two by Ally Fazio & one by Nicole Boudreau), as did two free throws (Nicole).  But the biggest basket of the game, in fact, the actual game winner, was a “pick-two” by junior Angelica Gonzales (6 points) with four minutes left that put the Warriors ahead, 53-46.

The last four minutes of the game were all Billerica and you’re about to find out how close they came to actually winning this one.

First of all, the last two points Billerica scored were on a putback by Joslyn King at the buzzer.  Andover wasn’t exactly trying to stop her from getting two points because they had a 3-point lead.  Their worry was the game-tying attempt by Brittany Lomanno (8 points) just before that.

That last-second Joslyn basket would have truly meant something if the Indians had not missed four of eight free throws in the last 1 ½ minutes.  Shannon Hughes, Danielle Nickerson, and Kayla Leverone each had crucial misses.  Danielle’s was the toughest because she actually made hers but stepped over the line too quickly to go after a possible miss.

Joslyn King (6-1?) did a great job of discouraging Andover inside attempts, although the Warriors seemed very content to fire from downtown.

Nicole Boudreau had several blocks and a few others that looked like blocks but turned out to be fouls.

Ally Fazio – two big triples in the final quarter

Ally Fazio (6 points) took three quarters to hone in from the outside.  She had a number of air balls but never stopped shooting.  The two she made in the final quarter were huge.

Andover threw heavy defensive pressure at Billerica especially in the backcourt.  I thought that the Indians did a pretty good job breaking it and going on for layup attempts.

The only loss Billerica had prior to tonight was against Pentucket.  The Sachems are swarming full-court defenders with a love of the long shot.

There is an Andover/Billerica rematch on February 14th at Billerica.  That should be a good take!

It is common knowledge that Nicole will be playing for Boston College next season.  What I also learned about her was that she carries a 4.0 GPA and is the defending junior champion at Andover Country Club.

Andover box score

Billerica box score

(The pictures above and below will enlarge significantly if you click on them.)

Nicole Boudreau blocks Danielle Nickerson

tight defense?

Danielle Nickerson

Nicole Boudreau double-teamed

Joslyn King (14 points)

Jackie Alois layup

Brittany Lomanno

Nicole Boudreau triple as BHS coach Chris Doneski watches

Kayla Leverone and Devon Caveney

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Filed under Andover, Billerica