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Hopkins Academy girls cruise into quarterfinals

  • Kate Sullivan of Hopkins Academy, left, drives to the basket against Sophia Hess of Pathfiner Tuesday at Hopkins.<br/>JERREY ROBERTS

    Kate Sullivan of Hopkins Academy, left, drives to the basket against Sophia Hess of Pathfiner Tuesday at Hopkins.
    JERREY ROBERTS Purchase photo reprints »

  • Nicole Morrison of Hopkins Academy, left, eyes a loose ball beside Samantha Ciejka of Pathfiner Tuesday at Hopkins.<br/>JERREY ROBERTS

    Nicole Morrison of Hopkins Academy, left, eyes a loose ball beside Samantha Ciejka of Pathfiner Tuesday at Hopkins.
    JERREY ROBERTS Purchase photo reprints »

  • Lacey Waskiewicz of Hopkins Academy, left, shoots against Smantha Ciejka of Pathfiner Tuesday at Hopkins.JERREY ROBERTS

    Lacey Waskiewicz of Hopkins Academy, left, shoots against Smantha Ciejka of Pathfiner Tuesday at Hopkins.JERREY ROBERTS Purchase photo reprints »

  • Kyra Michalak of Hopkins Academy, left, shoots against Sophia Hess of Pathfiner Tuesday at Hopkins.<br/>JERREY ROBERTS

    Kyra Michalak of Hopkins Academy, left, shoots against Sophia Hess of Pathfiner Tuesday at Hopkins.
    JERREY ROBERTS Purchase photo reprints »

  • Olivia Mathieu of Hopkins Academy drives to the basket against Pathfinder Tuesday at Hopkins.<br/>JERREY ROBERTS

    Olivia Mathieu of Hopkins Academy drives to the basket against Pathfinder Tuesday at Hopkins.
    JERREY ROBERTS Purchase photo reprints »

  • Mackenzie Sullivan of Hopkins Academy, left, shoots after getting past Marisa Riley of Pathfiner Tuesday at Hopkins.<br/>JERREY ROBERTS

    Mackenzie Sullivan of Hopkins Academy, left, shoots after getting past Marisa Riley of Pathfiner Tuesday at Hopkins.
    JERREY ROBERTS Purchase photo reprints »

  • Kate Sullivan of Hopkins Academy, left, drives to the basket against Sophia Hess of Pathfiner Tuesday at Hopkins.<br/>JERREY ROBERTS
  • Nicole Morrison of Hopkins Academy, left, eyes a loose ball beside Samantha Ciejka of Pathfiner Tuesday at Hopkins.<br/>JERREY ROBERTS
  • Lacey Waskiewicz of Hopkins Academy, left, shoots against Smantha Ciejka of Pathfiner Tuesday at Hopkins.JERREY ROBERTS
  • Kyra Michalak of Hopkins Academy, left, shoots against Sophia Hess of Pathfiner Tuesday at Hopkins.<br/>JERREY ROBERTS
  • Olivia Mathieu of Hopkins Academy drives to the basket against Pathfinder Tuesday at Hopkins.<br/>JERREY ROBERTS
  • Mackenzie Sullivan of Hopkins Academy, left, shoots after getting past Marisa Riley of Pathfiner Tuesday at Hopkins.<br/>JERREY ROBERTS

HADLEY — The Hopkins Academy girls basketball team opened its postseason with a 58-17 blowout win over Pathfinder Tuesday in the Western Massachusetts Division 3 Tournament first round.

“It was a nice win for us, especially since it’s our final home game,” Hopkins coach Fred Ciaglo said. “I thought we really passed the ball well. We’ve also been working on having active hands on defense. We had a lot of tips and steals. Our defense leads to our offense and I think we played great defense in the first half.”

The sixth-seeded Golden Hawks (13-8) will play at No. 3 Granby (17-3) at 7 p.m. on Friday. Granby won 55-28 at Hopkins on Jan. 2.

“The big one is on Friday now,” said Ciaglo. “We have got to get ready for Granby. The next couple days of practice are going to be very important because it’s going to be a tough game.”

The Golden Hawks defense was absolutely suffocating in the first half, holding Pathfinder to seven points. The No. 12 Pioneers (10-11) struggled to advance the ball past half court and when they did, they were unable to create offense due to the consistently disruptive defensive presence. Pathfinder was held scoreless in the second quarter until Sophia Hess nailed a 3-pointer with less than 20 seconds remaining.

On offense, Hopkins got out in transition for easy baskets and in the half court it used effective ball movement and pinpoint passing to score easy baskets inside.

When the Golden Hawks missed shots, they made effective use of their size advantage and attacked the offensive glass to create extra possessions, which they used to widen their lead and effectively put the game out of reach.

Hopkins was led by the trio of Olivia Mathieu (17 points) and twins Kate (18 points) and Mackenzie Sullivan (10 points). For Mathieu, a senior, this was her final start at home.

“It’s weird,” said Mathieu. “The fans and this community have been amazing. I think we have the best fan section and overall atmosphere of any school I’ve ever played at. It’s definitely going to be weird not having that at college next year and I’m going to miss it. In the end I’m glad to have played here at Hopkins.”

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