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Goffstown to resume its up-tempo style this year

Last year, head coach Justin Gorham’s up-tempo strategy earned his team a 13-5 record and a playoff berth, but the Grizzlies fell to John Stark in the first round on a buzzer beater.

With a deeper squad, a few position changes and some new, first-year talent coming into the program, Gorham said this year’s squad has the potential to knock off every team on its schedule.

“Because of the way we play, if we shoot well, I think we can beat anyone,” he said. “The whole thing is predicated on if we shoot well.”

But he hopes to add different variables to the equation. While the Grizzlies will continue their quick-shot style of offense, Gorham said they have the ability to slow down and use the clock when necessary.

Goffstown returns four varsity players from last year’s team. They are upperclassment-heavy with two freshmen and one sophomore.

The team’s seniors are Jake Mount, Nate Hoffman, Rob White and Alecks Holme.

Mount is one of those facing a position change. He was an effective point guard last year, but Gorham has him slated as a shooting guard is his fourth year with the program.

Hoffman and White will also take scoring roles. Hoffman, who is 6-foot-3, brings size and scoring, while White is one of several players who improved their shooting since last year.

“He played a little bit last year and did fairly well,” Gorham said. “He’s become a better shooter this year, so that was kind of the goal. We spent the offseason making and creating better shooters for the system to work.”

Filling the void left at point guard with Mount’s position change is junior Tom Rielh, who was a shooting guard last year.

The Grizzlies’ lone sophomore is Marcus Haynes. He split time on the freshmen and junior varsity teams last year, but Gorham said he could have a big year with the varsity team’s high-powered offense.

“He’s not really big, but he’s a great shooter and he’s really smart,” said Gorham. “He’s one of those smart basketball players who figures things out. He knows what to do, and once he gets bigger, he’s going to be extremely dangerous for us.”

Goffstown will also call on two freshmen – Tim Comeau and Mike Bailey.

“Comeau – he played football – is going to bring some size and some toughness,” Gorham said. “Bailey, hopefully he’ll have an impact as a shooter.”

Because they’ve begun a new schedule cycle, Goffstown’s opponents will be unfamiliar.

The Grizzlies will see Pembroke, ranked No. 1 in Division II, Lebanon, Portsmouth, St. Thomas and Pelham as part of their new schedule.

“Our schedule this year is vastly different than it has been for the past couple years,” Gorham said. “We’re playing a whole bunch of teams that we’ve never played before, and we’re not playing John Stark, who has been our rival.”

Gorham’s high-scoring Grizzlies have led the state in scoring the past two years. Two years ago, they tallied 84 points per game, but the stat slipped slightly last year.

“Last year, we were 78,” Gorham said. “We’re hoping to better the 78 from last year.”

Goffstown opens the season Friday, Dec. 14 at home against Windham.

“This year, I have guys that have been in the program, have been involved, and we only have really one kid that’s never played before,” Gorham said. “Everybody else knows the system, knows how to play.”

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