NORWELL – After playing together since fifth grade, the seniors on the Hudson High School girls basketball team took to the court one last time.
After making it to the Elite 8, the Hudson Hawks, who were seeded No. 7 in the MIAA Division 3 tournament, fell to the No. 2 seed Norwell High School on Friday night 53-39.
“It meant so much [to get to this point with this team],” said senior Kaitlyn Puim. “We’ve been so close for so long. To be able to do it with this group, it means the world to me to be able to be with these people every day.”
Head Coach Marty Murphy said Norwell is a “real good team” that is well coached and had players who could score from the outside. In the first quarter alone, Norwell captain and senior Chloe Richardson sank four three-pointers and scored a total of 22 points during the game.
As for the Hawks, senior Madison Kiley led the scoring with 13 points with junior Audrey Lenox behind her adding 11. Freshman Kristina Bruce added seven points, junior Sam Collette scored six and junior Leila Mullahy added two, rounding out the scoring for Hudson.
“Once they got up, they locked everything down. They got that lead, and we just couldn’t chip into it. They played great,” Murphy said.
He continued, “I thought my kids played hard. But that’s a really good team. There’s no shame in losing to a good team, especially when your kids fight to the end.”
That’s why Norwell is the second seed, he added.
“They outplayed us today, and they’re a really good team. I wish them all the luck moving forward,” Murphy said.
The five seniors – Puim, Kiley, Katie O’Malley, Gracie Giorgio and Taylor Bruce – have played on the same team since they were on the fifth grade travel team. The seniors said that playing on the travel team was fun, and it helped them learn the basics of basketball. Plus, playing together for so long has helped the team develop chemistry.
“I’m so close with these girls. They’re literally like my family,” Kiley added.
Giorgio said the sport made them best friends.
“It’s so surreal that it’s over,” she said.
Murphy said the team was made up of a great group of kids.
“They’ve given me everything they could give me for two years. I’m so proud of them,” Murphy said.
This time of year is tough, Murphy said, because when a team loses a game, their season comes to an end.
“Everyone knows that, but it doesn’t affect you until it’s really done,” Murphy said.