Div. IV Boys' Basketball: Lisbon, Derryfield reach title game
By MARK LABORE New Hampshire Union Leader
PLYMOUTH - Chad Knighton's foul line jumper with 9.4 seconds left to play completed Lisbon's stunning rally from a 19-point first half deficit and the No. 6 Panthers shocked second-seeded Newmarket, 48-47, in Division IV boys' basketball semifinal action at Plymouth State's Foley Gym Tuesday.
In the second game, fourth-ranked Derryfield of Manchester, playing with a decided height advantage, received a game-high 21 points from 6-foot, 6-inch Roger Larrivee and surprised top-seeded Littleton, 54-33.
The Lisbon and Derryfield victories set up a rematch of the 2011 championship game between the division rivals here Saturday afternoon at 1 p.m.
Lisbon 48, Newmarket 47: Knighton's play throughout the second half was the spark that the Panthers were missing in the first half. Lisbon tallied just one field goal through the initial 14 minutes of the game and trailed 26-7 with 2:42 left before halftime.
But Knighton, who scored 21 of his game-high 28 points in the second half, keyed the surge which sent the Panthers to the division championship game.
"Chad is the Player of the Year in Division IV in my opinion," said Lisbon coach Sam Natti. "He's carried us all year and he hit the shots we needed tonight. There's not a lot of coaching there, he's a hell of a player."
Mike Heath first tied the game for Lisbon at 29-29 with 2:39 left in the third quarter, completing a 22-3 Panthers spurt which brought the Lisbon fans to their feet.
Later, Justin Quinn knotted the score at 36-36 with a baseline drive.
Knighton, who made six three-point field goals, tied the contest at 39-39 with a long shot. His jumper from the key, his 13th point of the fourth quarter, won the contest.
"I told the kids that if we had a chance in the fourth quarter, we had a chance to win," said Natti. "These kids have a lot of pride."
Lisbon scored the final nine points of the second quarter and the first six of the third.
The Mules' full-court pressure created havoc with Lisbon's offense throughout the first half, creating a number of turnovers and left the Panthers' perimeter game in disarray. Josh Eisfeller and Christian Hawkins handled the bulk of Newmarket's scoring.
Working the paint with precision, the 6-foot, 6-inch Eisfeller dropped in nine first-half points while Hawkins lofted a trio of three-pointers to tally 13.
Hawkins attempted to right the Newmarket ship in the second half and finished the game with 26 points. Eisfeller scored 15. He also led all rebounders in the game with 13.
Derek Roberts finished with nine points for Lisbon and Quinn scored seven.
Derryfield 54, Littleton 33: Roger Larrivee anchored a Cougars defense that prevented the Crusaders from scoring in the paint. Uncharacteristically, Littleton was limited to single-digit point production in the second, third and fourth quarters.
"We play a different kind of defense from most teams," said Derryfield coach Rob Bradley. "We're not a huge pressure defense that forces turnovers. We don't chase. We keep position, and if a player gets beat, we have someone to help."
Lisbon 48, Newmarket 47
Lisbon: Justin Quinn 2-2-7; Chad Knighton 9-4-28; Mike Heath 2-0-4; Derek Roberts 3-2-9; Cooper Bryer 0-0-0. Totals 16-8-48
Three-pointers: Quinn, Knighton 6, Roberts
Newmarket: Sam Leahy 1-0-2; Christian Hawkins 9-4-26; Josh Eisfeller 7-1-15; Jacob Valinski 1-2-4; Sam Morin 0-0-0. Totals 18-7-47