Aces open playoffs with big win

Back to News List | Posted on Feb 18th, 2006

A good win in front of a big home crowd is always a positive way to start the playoffs. The Aces made it happen on Friday night, with a 75-45 thumping of Bishop Shanahan. Now 1-0 in the postseason, the team is gearing up for a 2nd round match-up on Wednesday night with long-time District 1 rival Coatesville. Ten years ago, the Aces' path to the '96 state title included a key victory against the Red Raiders, who were led by future NBA star Richard Hamilton. The current Maroon and White squad looks to honor the legacy - with a win, the team would clinch a 2nd consecutive state playoff berth. Gametime is 7:30 PM, part of another boys/girls "Maroon Madness" double-header. The girls, who play at 6 PM, won their first-round match-up against Henderson and will also play host to Coatesville.

Once again, we are encouraging all fans to arrive early and wear maroon. Aces Nation t-shirts will be available at the concession stand. The game will again be webcast live here.

Game Recap:

The Aces raced to a 21-12 first quarter lead and held Bishop Shanahan to one point in the second frame en route to a 75-45 victory. The one-point quarter was the lowest total for any opposing team since we laid a goose-egg on Marple Newtown in early January. Aggressive perimeter defense kept Shanahan's high scoring point guard Mike Aiken in check - Aiken finished with 13 for the game, no other Shanahan player reached double figures.

Garrett Williamson led the Aces with 20 points, 10 rebounds and five blocks. Ryan Brooks finished with 17 points, 8 boards and four assists, and punctuated the team's first-half rally with a thunderous, two-handed jam off a rebound that brought the crowd of 1500 to its feet. LM received outstanding contributions from the bench, including nine points each from Pete Lucas (two 3-pointers) and Jon Gray and eight from Greg Robbins (2-2 from beyond the arc). Ernest Moore and Arian Thompson played the familiar roles of defensive stoppers and chipped in with four points and two points, respectively. Adam Ellison (3 points, 3 rebounds) and Eric Barefield (2 points, 3 assists) rounded out the scoring.

All in all, another solid defensive effort and a good win against a dangerous first-round opponent. The webcast of Friday's game, hosted by LMHS '05 Landon Sears, is available online via the District homepage at www.lmsd.org. Click on "LM Hoops Playoff Webcast" to listen. The game is also airing through Wednesday on LMSDtv Channel 6 at 5:30 PM and 8:30 PM each night.

Alumni Spotlight:

Congratulations to LMHS '05 Dan Capkin who scored a career high 18 points, including 8 in overtime in leading Gettysburg College to a 77-71 win against Dickinson last weekend. With the win, the Bullets clinched 3rd seed in the Centennial League playoffs and finished with a 16-9 regular season record. Dan hit 2 threes and went 8-9 from the free throw line. Gettysburg has won 11 of 13 and plays next Saturday at Ursinus College (Collegeville) in a semifinal playoff match-up against Johns Hopkins. Gametime is 3 PM. CALLING ALL ALUMNI: We would like to host a brief alumni reception and honor line at Wednesday's game. To all former Aces players who are planning to attend, please email me if you will be there. Thanks!

Fan of the Week:

Though he shies away from the limelight, this week's honoree deserves major props for his years of contributions as a coach, fan and friend and for his positive impact on so many kids in our area through his role as director of the Narberth Summer League. Dan Kazanicka, aka "Kaz," is a familiar face in the stands at Aces games, and every year -- no matter how implausible -- we are well aware of his belief in and goal for the team: Hershey. Attitude is everything and hopefully, this year's team can take a page from Kaz's book.

Website:

We are proud to announce the upcoming launch of a Lower Merion Basketball website. Aceshoops.com is in the final design stages and it should be an awesome online home for Aces Nation. Features include news and highlights, video and pictures, a guestbook for fans, a comprehensive history section and areas dedicated to Alumni, the Dawg Pound and our boosters. The site should be up and running early next week. We'll keep you posted. In the meantime, we are seeking sponsors for the site. If you would like to purchase a banner ad or sponsor a specific content area or feature, please let me know. We anticipate that the site will be a popular destination for students, families, fans, alumni and high school basketball lovers.

Thanks for your continued support - we hope to see you in the stands on Wednesday!