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MHS Girls Hoops Finds Winning Feeling
It would have been pretty easy to quit. Down by 13 points at halftime of the season opener and coming off an 0-20 campaign last year, it would have been pretty easy for Trisha Cullen's Milford High girls' basketball team to say "here we go again" and go quietly against Norton. But the Scarlet Hawks had plenty of fight in them, and rallied for a 45-38 win, the program's first since the spring of 2012.
"To come back and win that first game was huge for us," said Cullen. "It was a big win, a big confidence boost, and a great way to start the season."
Midway through the season, Milford sits 3-7 overall and 2-6 in the Hockomock League. The Hawks began the week just two games behind Foxboro and Oliver Ames for second in the Davenport division. Even without a .500 record, a second-place finish in the division would be enough to earn a spot in the postseason. "If you look at where we are in the league, second place is within reach," said Cullen. "We have a number of talented girls who can step in and play big roles. The want and desire is there, which is huge."
Junior Gabby Asam has been a spark for Milford this season. She scored 19 points in the season-opening win over Norton and added a nine point, 14-rebound effort in the Scarlet Hawks' most recent win over Sharon. Sophomore Luzdali Osasio, junior Jillian Powers, and seniors Selena Jones and Jessica Pie have all added double-digit scoring efforts at various points this season. Osasio returns after tearing her ACL last season and has added strength in the backcourt. "Her intensity and hustle are great," said Cullen of Osasio. "Skill-wise, or guards are stronger this year and she is a big reason why."
Milford has not been without adversity. After earning the program's first-ever Hockomock League win by beating Canton, the squad rode the low tide of a six-game losing streak. MHS snapped the skid with the Sharon win, but Cullen feels the turnaround started in a 46-33 loss to King Phillip.
"We had a team talk before the KP game and decided we needed to start playing more as a team, play our game, hustle, and play better defense," she said. "We lost the game, but the score did not reflect how we played. I thought everyone played well."
The road ahead has been made more challenging as the team has been hit by injuries. Asam, Powers, and senior Kayla Barys have all missed time. Junior Clarissa Miyares has had to become a more consistent scorer, and has been scoring five or six points per game regularly. Contributions like that have allowed Cullen to keep expectations, and postseason hopes, very much alive.
"Being down three players and two starters hurts," she said. "But we still see ourselves as having a chance to get to the postseason. It may be a lot harder, but halfway through the year the goals we are talking about have not changed."




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