By Chris Paul
The Londonderry High School Girls’ Basketball team has started the Division I winter season with a strong win, sandwiched between two losses and the young team hopes to string together more victories during the new year.
The Lancer Ladies came up short in their home opener against the Exeter Blue Hawks, in a 61-56 game, but then bounced back with a strong 63-30 victory over the Nashua South Purple Panthers on the road.
The Londonderry squad’s year ended with a 58-34 loss, on the road, against the Portsmouth Clippers on Tuesday, Dec. 20, but the new year brings new hope for the Lancers under the leadership of second-year head coach, Jon Doherty.
Over the holiday break, the Londonderry High Squad hosted a short tournament to keep the team’s skills sharp during vacation.
Seven New England high school teams traveled to town for the first Londonderry Winter Classic and the Lancers had wins in two of their three games despite losing starters Jordon Furlong and Kathryn Sloper to illnesses.
In the Lancers first game of the tourney, on Tuesday, Dec. 27, they took on a squad from Falmouth, Maine, winning by 10-points.
Londonderry led in every quarter, starting with a 17-11 lead after one, and a 36-20 lead by the half.
The Lancers opened up a 51-34 heading into the final period where they took their foot off the pedal in the fourth for a 62-52 win.
On Wednesday, Dec. 28 LHS played another Maine team and notched another victory.
Londonderry took on the Hall-Dale Bulldogs and led each quarter, finishing with a 74-51 result.
In the final game of the home tourney, Londonderry suffered its first defeat, falling 50-35 to the Amherst Hurricanes of Massachusetts.
During the tournament, Doherty was happy with how the younger kids on the team stepped up. “Sammie Sullivan, Brooke Eacrett, and Molly Knight all played great roles and started all three games as freshmen.” He added, “Reagan Anderson and Shannon Ball were fantastic, as Shannon had an MVP week. Anderson continues to amaze me with her ability to dictate possessions based on pure determination. Mia Giampa finally hit a groove this week and shot the ball extremely well. Taila Iorio was solid off the bench for us.”
The first week of the new-year had the Lady Lancers traveling to Bishop Guertin on Tuesday, Jan. 3 to play the always-tough Cardinals. Following that game, LHS will take a long road trip to Keene High School for a game against the Blackbird on Friday night, Dec. 6. Both of those teams have won their first two games of the season.