Senators settle for 9th seed

Sports writer
Tuesday, February 27, 2018

ORANGE — The Mahar boys basketball team had eyes on earning a home playoff game, while head coach Chad Softic expressed that he felt the team could earn as high as a sixth seed.

Unfortunately, the Senators earned neither. They earned the ninth seed and will travel to face Frontier Regional High School tonight at 7 p.m. in the first round of the Western Massachusetts Division 3 Tournament.

“We deserved what we got,” said Softic. “We had opportunities to improve our seeding so it’s tough to complain.”

The Red Hawks finished the season with a 13-7 record, led largely by Carsten Carey, a tall senior who netted 281 points this season. Softic acknowledged Frontier’s coaching abilities and Carey’s length as the core of stopping the Red Hawks. That, and getting off to a good start.

“Frontier is a really well-coached and disciplined team and we’ve got our hands full,” said Softic. “Their matchup zones have given us fits this year, as has Carey’s length defensively. That being said, if we come out and play well, I like our chances.”

The teams have met twice this season. Frontier won both matches, beating Mahar 47-34 on Jan. 3 and then again on Feb. 1, 44-42.

The Senators mustered only three points in the first quarter in January, while in the matchup on Feb. 1 Mahar finished the game without a basket in the final six minutes of play.

Softic is not concerned about the previous two matchups.

“No, there’s no concern at all that they’ve beaten us twice,” said Softic. “We know how those outcomes could have been different and obviously there’s extra emphasis on those areas of the game where we struggled.”

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