Milton’s Caroline Ducharme, a senior at Noble & Greenough who is ESPN’s No. 5-rated player in the Class of 2021 and will play at the University of Connecticut next year, was named a McDonald’s All-American on Tuesday.
“Being a McDonald’s All-American has always been one of my goals, so I was really excited and humbled to be chosen,” Ducharme told the Globe. “So many amazing players have played in this game, so it really means a lot to be a part of this legacy.”
McDonald’s announced more than 700 girls’ and boys’ nominees Thursday, then it trimmed that number to 48 five days later, and Ducharme made the cut. The game will not take place for the second consecutive year because of the COVID-19 pandemic, but the honor remains the same.
Ducharme, who is the first McDonald’s All-American in Nobles history, is one of 24 players on the girls’ roster and the only one from New England. Nobles coach Alex Gallagher is extremely proud of how well she’s represented the program.
He said it’s been one of the great privileges of his coaching career to witness the incredible amount of work, passion, and commitment Ducharme has devoted to the game of basketball, Nobles, her family, and her teammates.
“She’s a phenomenal player, but she’s a much more phenomenal person,” Gallagher said. “She went out and earned everything she’s achieved, and I’m deeply grateful to the McDonald’s All-American selection committee for recognizing her greatness both on and off the court.”
Ducharme, a 5-foot-10-inch guard with a sweet stroke, is averaging 29.2 points per game for the 9-0 Bulldogs in games that have technically counted as scrimmages. She unofficially eclipsed 2,000 career points in a win over Lawrence Academy on Saturday.
Ducharme has approached this as a regular season as much as possible and has continued to garner both local and national attention along the way.
“This season has been hard since there are a lot of restrictions for who we can play and how many times we can play and practice,” Ducharme said. “I’m just happy to get to play with my team for one more year as much as we can, no matter who it is.”
West Bridgewater 54, Westport 31 — Trailing by a point after a tentative first quarter, host West Bridgewater (12-1) turned up the pressure and never looked back from a 15-5 second-quarter run to capture the Mayflower Athletic Conference title over Westport (5-3).
Despite having just eight available players on the roster, first-year coach Tim Doherty wanted to speed the game up so WB switched from a halfcourt press to a fullcourt pressure with support on the weak side for the rest of the game.
“We were having a hard time defending the pick-and-roll in the first quarter,” Doherty said. “We settled down on defense and started to focus on the ball and cut into passing lanes.”
The result was eight forced turnovers in the second quarter alone, flipping momentum to the home team’s side.
Eighth-grader Sophia Florio scored a team-high 23 points, handed out 5 assists, and made 4 steals.
“She’s a special player who’s beyond her years,” Doherty said. “She reads things before they happen and grinds defensively.”
Sophomore Dorothea McGrath added 14 points and eight rebounds while senior captain Sarah Corey (7 points, 9 rebounds) also got into the mix.
Doherty, the junior varsity coach a year ago, was tabbed as the replacement for 39-year coach Steve Barrett, who opted to step away at least for this season.
“I’m proud of this season and what they did. They surpassed all expectations,” Doherty said.
Westport 70, West Bridgewater 52 — Behind a balanced attack and an effective fullcourt defense, the Wildcats (10-2, 8-2 MAC) surged past visiting West Bridgewater for their second consecutive Mayflower Athletic Conference championship.
The two teams had split their regular-season matchups, with WB taking the rematch, 69-58. Westport coach Scot Boudria spent four hours watching film on Sunday before relaying his observations to his team Monday.
“We concentrated on what we did poorly, and the second time we played them, we did a lot of things poorly. We walked out of that meeting saying to ourselves we need to play better or they are going to beat us,” Boudria said.
Westport opened with a 12-0 run, frustrating West Bridgewater with its fullcourt pressure to force turnovers or 10-second violations.
Domanick Vitorino (13 points), Aidan Rock (12 points), Max Powers (11 points), and Hunter Brodeur (10 points) paced the attack.
Boudria call the performance his team’s “best game by far this season.”
The Wildcats earned a spot in the final with a 64-47 semifinal win over South Shore Christian Academy.
“We took each game like ‘you’re lucky to be here and this can be taken away as quickly as you got it, so appreciate every single second that you’re there,’” said the coach.
“We try to make it normal and we try to make it fun. You can either look at this as ‘oh well’ or you can look at this as a great opportunity to play some basketball, and they did.”
City League tournament
The Boston City League basketball tournament tips off Wednesday, with four first-round games, all with 5:45 p.m. starts.
In the boys’ tourney, Charlestown is at Burke, and Brighton hosts TechBoston. In Friday’s semifinals, the Charlestown/Burke winner play at Latin Academy, while the TechBoston/Brighton winner travels to New Mission. The championship game is Saturday at 4.
In the girls’ tourney, Latin Academy hosts Madison Park, and TechBoston is at New Mission. In Friday’s semis, the TechBoston/New Mission travels to Fenway, and the Madison Park/Latin Academy winner is at O’Bryant. The final is Saturday at 1.
Cape & Islands hockey
The first round of the Cape & Islands girls’ hockey tournament was canceled because of a positive COVID-19 test within the Martha’s Vineyard program, according to a report in the Cape Cod Times. And because MV played both Nantucket and Dennis-Yarmouth on Saturday and Sunday, the seasons for those two programs are over as well because of close contact. The girls’ tournament will continue, with Barnstable playing at Sandwich on Thursday, and the Cape Cod Furies (hosted by Nauset) playing at Falmouth on Friday. The finals are Saturday.
The following Cape teams have had their seasons come to a halt this week because of COVID-related issues: Martha’s Vineyard boys’ and girls’ hockey, Nauset boys’ hockey, Sandwich boys’ hockey and girls’ basketball, Nantucket and Dennis-Yarmouth girls’ hockey, and Mashpee/Monomoy boys’ hockey.
Falmouth will host Barnstable boys’ hockey Wednesday night at Tony Kent Arena for the Atlantic Division title.
Andrew Lin and Steven Sousa contributed to this report. To report scores, call 617-929-2860/3235 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Trevor Hass can be reached at email@example.com.