Hagopian shoots his way into Suffolk history

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Hagopian shoots his way into Suffolk history

Courtesy of Suffolk Athletics

Courtesy of Suffolk Athletics

Courtesy of Suffolk Athletics

Courtesy of Suffolk Athletics

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After a long, illustrious career as a Suffolk Ram, senior Mike Hagopian will be leaving the team standing alone as the single most prolific shooter from beyond the arc in the school’s history.

But the guard from Watertown was looking to leave more than just a legacy during game day.

“If I could leave one impression here at Suffolk, I want to be remembered as someone who never quit,” said Hagopian in a recent interview with The Suffolk Journal.

Junior forward Steve DiPrizio believes he has accomplished that through his selflessness as a leader and teammate, as well as commenting on his outstanding work ethic.

“He loves to celebrate the success of his teammates,” said DiPrizio in a recent interview with The Journal. “He’s a guy who stays in the gym late and gets in early to get shots up and work on his game.”

Sophomore guard Brendan Mulson,in a recent interview with The Journal, added to what DiPrizio had said, noting Hagopian’s ability to mentor young players.

“[Hagopian] is a really good guy off the court,” said Mulson. “Since day one, him and all the seniors took me in under their wing. I’ve gotten really close with [Hagopian] and the bond that basketball brings won’t be broken for a lifetime. I consider him one of my best friends.”

“He didn’t miss a game in all four years of playing, and each game gave his teammates all he had to help put us in a position to win,” said DiPrizio.

As a captain, DiPrizio added it is the selflessness of Hagopian that speaks the most to him as an individual both on, and off, the court.

Though he has etched himself into Suffolk lore through his collegiate impact, Hagopian started his days of domination far before ever touching the wooden floors of the Regan Gymnasium.

Hagopian began as a second grader playing biddy basketball. Always ahead of the competition, he was ordered not to steal the ball away from opponents and not to press on defense. On top of that, he was one of the rare kids who could dribble with his off-hand.

“My dad would tell that it would separate me from the rest, if I can dribble and make layups with my left,” said Hagopian.

Hagopian was also a baseball and football player for seven years, before deciding to focus on basketball.

Entering high school at Watertown High with a stature of 5 foot, 3 inches and weighing 100 pounds, Hagopian would make the varsity squad as a freshman despite being smaller than most.

After starting for two years as a junior and senior, Hagopian made enough of an impact to attract the attention of then Rams head coach Adam Nelson, much like many other DIII programs.

“I had over 15 other schools recruiting me,” remembered Hagopian. “Ultimately, I did my research on Suffolk’s business school and saw how good it was. I loved the location in Boston and I saw it as a place where I could impact greatly. I saw the previous records and thought I could help turn that around.”

After four years, Hagopian has netted 233 three-point field goals, good for six more than anyone else in Ram history. On top of that, the four-year starter totaled more than 1,000 career points. Most of all, he was a reliable teammate.

“For however many minutes he’s on the court he will give you all he has got from the tip until the last buzzer,” said DiPrizio. “He’s a guy we knew we could rely on when we needed someone to knock down a shot, a guy we knew could help get us a stop on defense when we needed it the most.”

Mulson later added Hagopian’s ability to remain composed during crucial stretches of a game will be forever a lasting impression on him.

“[Hagopian] is always calm and never gets too big for the moment, he stays calm when the going gets tough.

Hagopian is looking to continue to play after college, as he has been in contact with teams overseas in hopes to expand on his basketball career.

Nonetheless, Hagopian realizes his days as a Ram are over, but hopes he can leave an impression that everyone within the basketball program will remember fondly.

“I hope that all that I have accomplished, all the work I put in inspires those that come after me. Gave this team everything I had for four years. I hope I am able to leave a legacy behind, and to always be remembered within the school. People will outscore me, I’m sure someone will break the three-point record at some point as well, but no one can take away what I endured through this program. It’s truly been a pleasure,” said Hagopian.

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