Hopkinton High School boys basketball senior guard Wesley Erickson gets the Hillers going. He's like the human Power Bar. Concentrated energy.
Monday night at neutral site Newton South, Erickson guarded Oliver Ames star Nick Bruha, who with pressure-makes-diamonds cool scored 29 points.
Erickson made Bruha earn each step. Just before Bruha fouled out, Wesley hit a three that put an end to the back-and-forth runs Hopkinton and Ames, which is the public high school in Easton, had traded. Next time down the floor, Erickson's co-captain Will Relle scored to punctuate the sentence.
Why did Bruha foul out? Barret Hanlon. Hanlon was the reason for a lot of things. He had the look that every coach wants to see in every player's eyes. He had 31 points, 14 on foul shots, 17 on relentlessness.
Hanlon's determination was echoed by the Hiller team and coach Tom Keane.
Stoughton, whom Hopkinton played last Thursday, was burned by Doucette. Ames, with its share of big players, keyed on him.
That gave Jason Dlugolecki (13), Tim Moberg, the Clint-Eastwood-quiet Relle, and the backcourt, spelled by Tim and Jeff Dufficy, room to move.
Oliver Ames proved tougher than Stoughton. You can bet the winner of Tuesday's (tonight's) other boys-bracket semifinal will be even tougher. They'll have come farther. They'll have more to lose, more to win, a more important thing to decide.
Whether it's King Philip or Falmouth is TBD. To be determined.
On Saturday March 12 at UMass Boston (time will be posted here when available) The Hopkinton High School boys basketball team will face the winner of tonight's (March 8) Falmouth-King Philip game at Bridgewater-Raynham High School. The winner will be the champion of Division 2 South.
Tonight, March 8 (Tuesday), at 7:45 p.m., the Hopkinton High School girls basketball team will face Bishop Feehan High School, a high school in Attleboro, in a Division 2 South semifnal game at Massasoit Community College (directions here) in Brockton. (There is also a Massasoit campus in Canton. The game is in Brockton.)