ROCHESTER — Neither Spaulding’s nor Londonderry High School’s offenses lit up the the court inside the Rochester Community Center during Wednesday night’s boys’ basketball game.
The difference was that Spaulding had at least a spark of offense, while scoring ineptitude plagued the Lancers all night.
Spaulding broke a sluggish start by ending the first half with a 14-0 run, going on to to score 21 straight points in a 41-25 Division I victory.
Londonderry went more than 10 minutes without scoring before Brian Gould’s hoop in the third quarter.
“We stayed with the plan and I thought the execution was pretty good, especially in the first half,” Spaulding coach Tim Cronin said. “The key was obviously defense and rebounding the basketball. Rebounding has killed us in our losses, giving up second and third shots, and that didn’t happen today. I thought our defense played outstanding today.”
It was a much-needed win for Spaulding (3-2), which was coming off losses to Winnacunnet and Manchester Central, and has to visit undefeated defending Division I champion Exeter on Friday. Logan Gabdois and Jared Gooley each scored 11 points for Spaulding, while Ryan Bernier added 10.
“Offensively we played pretty well at times, but defensively we stepped it up tonight,” Gadbois said. “The defense hasn’t been good all year, but tonight we showed that we could do it. It was a pretty good defensive effort by everybody.”
The teams combined to shoot 5-for-25 from the floor in a first quarter that left Spaulding with an 8-4 lead. Londonderry (2-3) closed to within 11-9 following Wil Reyes’ hoop early in the second quarter, but that was the last basket the Lancers scored for what seemed like an eternity to Londonderry coach Nate Stanton.
Bernier began the run with a hoop, followed by layups from Andrew Trogler and Gadbois. A turnover led to a 3-pointer by Gadbois, and Gooley concluded the first half with a baseline jumper to give Spaulding a 25-9 halftime lead.
“We just learned that once they go into a zone, we just had to run the play right and flash to the ball and make layups,” Gadbois said.
“We just had to keep our energy up on the offense and defensive part of the floor, because our defense turns into offense,” Gooley said. “When we get overplayed, we try to overcome that with back doors and flashing.”
Dante McKenney found Kevin Casey to extend Spaulding’s lead to 32-9 before Gould’s hoop broke Spaulding’s 21-0 run as Spaulding led 34-16 entering the fourth.
Cole Keegan finished with 10 points to lead Londonderry
“I’m very frustrated. I say this after every game, we’re still trying to find our identity and what we’re all about,” Stanton said. “We weren’t executing, we weren’t dribbling with our heads up and we weren’t ready to score. We were just careless with the ball and we overpenetrated.”