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Fast start propels Knights past Sachems

Four Kingswood boys score in double figures in opener

TIM CAMPBELL hauls in a rebound during opening night action against Laconia on Dec. 20. Kathy Sutherland. (click for larger version)
December 27, 2010
WOLFEBORO — Now the focus is Newfound.

Heading into the new season, Kingswood boys' basketball coach Dan Chick said his team would be focused on only one thing, the next game.

With the season opener against Laconia out of the way, the Knights are now free to focus on Newfound and the first round of the Lakes Region Holiday Tournament.

The Knights were clearly focused in the opening quarter of the season's first game, as they roared out to a 22-9 lead and never looked back, besting the Sachems 67-53.

"In the first quarter, everything worked for us, especially offensively," Chick said. "And we did some good things defensively too."

The Knights netted the game's first six points, as Joe Irvine, Kohl Meyers and Dave Hersey put in hoops to stake the Knights to a 6-0 lead.

After the Sachems got their first hoop, Meyers and Irvine each hit another basket to stretch the lead to 10-2, with Irvine finishing off a great pass from Tim Campbell for his hoop.

Laconia drained another bucket, but Meyers finished off a Hersey steal and the Knights hit three more field goals in a row, with Irvine converting a rebound and hoop, Zack McKenzie draining a three-pointer and Meyers hitting a hoop to make it 19-4. Irvine hit from the foul line for a 20-4 lead before Laconia got on the board again.

After a Campbell hoop, the Sachems hit a three-pointer to close out the first quarter scoring with the Knights on top 22-9.

Dave Velez converted a Tom Melnik steal into two points to open the second quarter and then hit two free throws to up the lead to 26-9. Laconia finally got on the board more than three minutes into the half, hitting a pair of free throws, but Hersey came back and sunk a hoop to push the lead back to 17 at 28-11.

A Laconia three-pointer got the Sachems a bit closer, but McKenzie made a great move along the baseline for two more points. After a pair of Sachem free throws, Meyers finished off a great pass from Adam Fritchy to make it 32-16. Laconia closed the gap with four free throws, but Meyers hit a three-pointer at the buzzer, closing the half with the Knights holding a 35-20 lead.

Laconia scored the first hoop of the second half, but Irvine hit a free throw to keep Kingswood's lead at 14. After a Sachem three-pointer, McKenzie finished off a great pass from Hersey for two points. Campbell hit a pair of free throws and McKenzie hit another hoop to push the lead to 42-25. After another Laconia basket, Meyers and Irvine executed a gorgeous give-and-go and Meyers finished it off with a lay-up for a 44-27 lead.

The Sachems scored the next four points, but Meyers finished off a Fritchy steal to keep the rally to a minimum. After another hoop from the visitors, Fritchy drained a three-pointer for a 49-33 lead. The Sachems hit another hoop, but Meyers answered right back. Laconia hit from beyond the arc and McKenzie answered with a pair from the charity stripe, closing out the third quarter with Kingswood up 53-38.

Velez sank a hoop to open the fourth quarter, but Laconia answered with a three-pointer. However, Hersey hit a free throw and Fritchy executed a give-and-go with Meyers and put the ball in the hoop for two more and a 58-41 Kingswood lead.

Laconia got another hoop, but Hersey hit a three-pointer and a conventional field goal to stretch the lead to 20. However, Laconia battled back with seven points in a row to make it 63-50.

Irvine hit a hoop and a free throw for a 66-50 lead and the Sachems answered with a three-pointer. Melnik netted a free throw for the final point of the night.

"We made a lot of things happen offensively," Chick said "We ran the floor well, hit some shots."

He also noted that the Knights knew Laconia would come back, but it was a matter of not letting them get to close.

"They put up some quick numbers, but we came back with quick numbers of our own," the veteran coach said. "Every run they had, we had one of our own."

Chick pointed out that the Knights really shared the ball well, which was proven out in the fact that four players scored in double figures.

"We were looking for each other and making the extra pass," the Knight mentor said. "That is something that made us successful last year and we need to do it again this year."

Meyers led the way with 19 points, all in the third quarter, while McKenzie and Irvine each had 11 and Hersey chipped in with 10. Hersey also had 10 rebounds, while Campbell hauled in nine and Irvine had eight.

The Knights return to regular season action on Tuesday, Jan. 4, when they head to Plymouth for a 6:30 p.m. game.

Martin Lord Osman
Varney Smith
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