Lady Lancer Hoopsters Bounce Broncos in Season-Opener

It’s rare for an athletic team to begin its season with a smooth, error-free performance in its first official game. And the two-time defending Division I champion Londonderry High girls’ basketball squad’s effort in its defeat of the Alvirne High Lady Broncos of Hudson at LHS last Friday night wasn’t a work of art.

But what the Lady Lancers did accomplish in their 51-32 drubbing of the visiting Alvirne crew was an unexpectedly lopsided victory in which varsity coach Nick Theos was able to get all of his players involved en route to a pleasing win.

The hosts won every quarter handily except for the fourth, during which play had devolved into what is commonly referred to as “garbage time” in the world of hoop.

The defending champions held leads of 13-7 after one quarter, 27-12 at halftime, and 45-18 rolling into the fourth period. The locals received 16 points and 10 rebounds from versatile senior Kate Balcom, 16 points from junior guard/forward Kelsey Coffey, and 11 points and eight assists from hard-nosed and aggressive senior guard Jackie Luckhardt. But Londonderry received points from a total of seven players and got the glittering chance to have everyone in uniform feel like they contributed to the season-opening win.

“It doesn’t always happen that way, that you get everybody into a first game of the season,” said Theos. “And I expected this to be a tight game here tonight, but it didn’t work out that way.”

The coach and his charges left the court knowing full well that the Lady Broncos had had a truly abysmal shooting night in the contest, and Theos made it plain that his squad’s biggest shortcoming in the win was its overall defensive effort.

“We allowed them too many good looks,” he said.

But be that as it may, the opponent still needs to hit the shots when it gets those looks, and Alvirne was unable to do so in much of the game.

Along with being able to get every one of his players onto the court in the game, Theos pointed to the poised play of freshman center Ashley Evans – younger sister of former LHS hoop standout Casey Evans – in her first high school game as being a huge positive for his team.

“She didn’t look at all overwhelmed by being on the big stage, and she looked like she belonged out there,” he said.

After seeing the Lady Broncos net the first two points of the night, the Lady Lancers reeled off a 9-0 run and never lost their lead the rest of the way.

Up by 15 points at halftime, the hosts’ lead grew to as many as 27 points (45-18) in quarter number three.

The girls will play host to the highly-touted  Bedford High Lady Bulldogs this Friday, Dec. 12, followed by a game at the Trinity High School Pioneers on Monday, Dec. 21.

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