Deep Lancer Hardball Crew Aiming to Have a Strong Campaign

There are unquestionably reasons for longtime Londonderry High School varsity baseball coach Brent Demas and fans of his Lancers to slide into the forthcoming 2016-17 season with real optimism and excitement.

After posting a .500 record of 10-10 with a ninth place Division I finish at the close of an up-and-down campaign last spring, coach Demas’ 2016-17 crew returns a handful of battle-tested starters and four other ball players with varsity experience, and the Lancers have also added a slew of newcomers who you can bet will be waiting anxiously for their opportunities to contribute to the Londonderry cause.

One of the biggest and most pleasing factors from coach Demas’ standpoint – a Vermont native who understands perfectly well how hard it is to comfortably complete a high school baseball season in the Northeastern United States – is the fact that the Lancers boast no less than 10 players who can pitch.

“We have a deep roster this year. Most of this group has worked exceedingly hard with (head LHS athletic trainer) Michelle Hart-Miller and it’s already showing,” said Demas. “We have a good amount of live arms on the pitching staff and a balanced defensive/offensive game. As long as everyone on the roster understands and executes their roles to the best of their ability, then I feel we will be in the conversation. It’s a fun group of guys, and the coaches feel that will translate to a positive atmosphere and, in turn, to success on the field.”

Londonderry’s returning starters include seniors Jonny Meskell (catcher), Xander LaPLante (left fielder), and Nick Salcito (pitcher/shortstop), and juniors Ricky Perry (second base) and the wildly-versatile Nate Sullivan (shortstop/pitcher/outfielder).

The other varsity returnees include senior Jackson Leavitt (third base/pitcher) and juniors Anthony Ferraro (pitcher/first base), Anthony Pirolli (pitcher/first base), and Andrew Ross (outfield/pitcher).

The squad’s junior-heavy crew of newcomers includes 11th graders Jake Bolduc (OF/2B), Kyle Dickson (OF), Shane McNamara (3B/1B/P), Travis Peabody (P), Dylan Walsh (OF/P), Matt Minton (OF), and Ethan Sullivan (2B). Sophomores Reece Manor (middle-infielder/P) and Jack Dingman (C/OF) are expected to swing between the LHS varsity and junior varsity teams.

When looking at the 2016-17 makeup of Division I, coach Demas is pretty definitive regarding which teams he feels will vie for top places in the standings.

“Exeter and Bedford will be the top teams in Division 1,” he said. “Exeter has the arms and just added the reigning D-2 player of the year, who moved into the district this off-season. Bedford lost Connor Lee, which is tough, but they are also loaded up offensively.”

The Lancers officially get their season rolling on Monday, April 10, at home against the rival Pinkerton Academy Astros.