Hoosac Valley's Emily Rosse nearing 1,000-point mark
CHESHIRE -- Emily Rosse is clearly one for stats.
The Hoosac Valley junior can rattle off how many points she scored in each of her first two seasons on the girls basketball team, the most she's scored in a game and many more.
There's one stat that has been constantly changing this season: how many points she needs to reach 1,000.
She hasn't lost track all season and has been gaining on the milestone in chunks at a time of late, scoring 67 points in the last three games to pull within 56.
"Just dominate in the paint as much as I can and make every foul shot," she said of her approach lately. "My intensity is just up a lot more than it was at the beginning of the season because it's tournament, and I just want to play harder."
If she reaches 1,000 isn't the question any more. It hasn't been since the end of her freshman year. The question is when. And that's become dependent on wins.
Unless she gets all 56 in the Western Massachusetts Division III championship on Saturday -- which would be a career high -- the Hurricanes will have to secure a spot in the state tournament.
"Rosse's an amazing player," senior Jenn Gale said. "I couldn't be more happy to see that she's coming to 1,000. Obviously, she's going to get it. I'm so proud of her."
The scoring pace isn't anything new for Rosse. She caught many people by surprise her freshman year and scored 340 points, highlighted by a 42-point night against Mount Everett. That still stands as her career high.
As the county got wise to her talents in the paint last year, the points kept coming. She scored 288 last year to have 628 in her career.
There's been no stopping her this year, either. She had 271 through 20 regular season games and has 49 in two postseason contests, for a total of 316. That number would undoubtedly be higher if the Hurricanes weren't scoring twice as many points as their opponents -- or close to it. Their slimmest margin of victory is 15 points.
The high team scoring has kept her minutes down, one reason for only two 20-point games during the regular season, a number she's matched in a pair of postseason games.
What has increased this season is her scoring average, which is now 14 points a game compared to 11 last year.
"I just feel it's expected now to play as best as I can than it was freshman year, when I was just a shock to everyone," she admitted.
The way she's scoring now compared to her freshman year has changed. She was at the front of Hoosac's pressure defense in her first season, which gave her a lot of easy baskets off turnovers. That's how she scored many of her 42 points in Sheffield.
"I've never seen a better performance from a freshman -- ever," Wojcik said at the time. "It's one of the top-five performances I've ever seen."
Now she's at the back of the press, just like she was last year, and the points haven't stopped. She's still scoring in transition, which impresses Wojcik as much as the amount of room she covers defensively, but she's also developed other aspects of her game to be more effective in half-court sets.
Rosse seems to have perfected the turnaround jump shot from inside 10 feet, making several Tuesday in the semifinal against Granby. She's also refined her outside shooting touch, making herself a weapon from 3-point range. She's always showed an ability to shoot from the outside, but her time playing AAU has helped that ability grow. She's made only 12 on the season, but she also hasn't been asked to make too many, which is something Wojcik won't hesitate to do if her needs one.
"The three has really developed over the summer and this year," Wojcik said. "It makes it very difficult to defend her."
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