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By Mike Flanagan
Hometown Weekly Sports Editor
The Walpole High School girls varsity basketball team hosted Foxboro on Thursday evening for a little late-season non-conference matchup.
The Warriors (17-2, 14-2) came to town with the Hockomock Davenport Division already secured, and will likely be the top seed in the Division II South playoffs. The Rebels (13-7, 8-5) entered looking to secure a resume-boosting win to help their seeding in the Division I South playoffs.
The teams went blow-for-blow throughout the opening quarter as Foxboro carried an 11-10 lead into the second. With Walpole trailing 13-12, the Rebels exploded with an 11-0 run, highlighted by 3-pointers from senior captain Ainsley Dundon (12 points) and senior captain Elisabeth Roche (seven points), as well a pair of buckets by senior captain Sydney Scales (team-high 15 points). The run gave Walpole a 24-13 lead and forced Foxboro to a timeout. Following the break, the Warriors responded with a 13-2 run to tie things at 26 as the game entered halftime deadlocked.
Foxboro quickly began to flex its muscle as one of the top teams in the state, seizing a 37-31 lead late in the third quarter. Walpole hung tough and fought back to within one at 37-36 following a layup-and-one by Dundon. Foxboro’s own 1000-point scorer and junior guard, Katelyn Mollica (26 points), put home a layup just before the buzzer as the Warriors took a 39-36 lead into the final quarter.
Another layup by Mollica extended the Foxboro lead to 41-36 before a pair of free throws by sophomore guard Natalie Griffin made it a one-score game at 41-38. Following a steal on the other end, Scales banked home a layup to pull Walpole to within one. The bucket also put Scales in the 1000-point club and forced the game to a timeout to honor her accomplishment.
Following the break, Foxboro went on a 9-0 run to extend their lead to 50-40. A 3-pointer by Dundon and a layup-and-one by Scales got Walpole back to within six at 56-50, but that would be the closest the Rebels would get. Mollica sunk a trio of late free throws and the Warriors prevailed by a 59-52 final.
Walpole now waits to find out where it will be seeded in the Division I South playoffs.
For funny and insightful sports analysis as well as video highlights of games, follow Mike Flanagan on his personal Twitter and Instagram @flano0.