Londonderry on the mark
MANCHESTER — Here's one thing we learned about the Londonderry High School boys' basketball team Friday night: The Lancers can shoot.
Londonderry made 10 3-pointers during its 74-52 triumph over Manchester Memorial in the Division I opener for each team.
"They shot the ball very, very well," Memorial coach Jack Quirk said. "If they shoot the ball like that all year they're going to win a ton of games."
The Lancers made seven 3-pointers in the first half and led 39-24 at the break. It was a 5-5 game when Londonderry began a 19-2 run that included four 3-pointers.
Londonderry freshman Jake Coleman tossed in a game-high 16 points, which included four 3-pointers. The Lancers received 13 points from junior Cody Ball and 11 from both Drew Coveney and Joe Kwiatowski.
Coveney made 27 3-pointers as a sophomore, but did not play as a junior because of a knee injury.
"We have some good shooters, I just don't want to rely so much on the (3-point shot) like we did," said first-year Londonderry coach Nate Stanton. "We need to develop our inside-out game. Our biggest thing is defense and full-court pressure, and the kids are buying in."
It was the first varsity victory for Stanton, who spent the last two seasons as an assistant coach at Salem High School. Stanton also played for Salem.
Junior forward Kabongo Ngalakulondi led Memorial with 14 points. Center Josh Simpson finished with 13 and was the only other Crusader who scored in double figures.
Memorial cut its deficit to 11 points (48-37) with 1:45 left in the third, but never got any closer. The Crusaders played much of the game without sophomore Brandon Scott, a starter who suffered an ankle injury early in the third quarter and did not return.
"I think he's going to be out for awhile," Quirk said. "We just ran out of gas. We weren't ready to play at that pace."
Memorial will be off until it faces Trinity of Manchester in the first round of the Queen City Invitational holiday tournament.
"We have a young team and these kids haven't played together much." Quirk said. "These kids go in opposite directions. High school ball is on the back-burner.
"I don't think we'll play up to our capability until halfway through the season. Hopefully we can get a few wins between now and then."