The Aces raced to a 16-9 first quarter lead and never looked back in a 63-41 state playoff victory over District 11 runner-up Northampton. LM did damage inside and out, with James Simples ‘20 and Demetrius Lilley ‘22 busting the K-Kids zone with an effective high-low attack and the Aces drilling eight threes.
With the game tied 6-6 early in the first, Andrew Coyne ‘23 and Sam Brown ‘23 nailed consecutive threes and Simples finished a driving layup to ignite the Aces offense. LM extended the lead to double digits in the second, and capped the half on a buzzer-beating pull-up jumper from Eli Rothman ‘20.
The Aces kept things rolling in the third quarter, surging to a 19-point advantage before a flurry by Northampton narrowed the gap to 13. But LM kept its composure, and quieted the Northampton crowd with another three by Gribbin and a Lilley finish off a beautiful alley-oop feed by Jaylen Shippen ‘22. The Aces led by 20 for much of the fourth, before both teams emptied the bench late.
It was a complete team win in a hostile District 11 gym and represented a bit of history. The victory was LM’s 20th of the season, marking the program’s fourth consecutive 20-win campaign — the longest such streak in Coach Gregg Downer’s career and the first time since 1944 that the Aces have won 20 or more in four straight years. After the win, the Aces enjoyed a team meal and a coach bus ride back home to Lower Merion. Up next for the Aces is a Round of 16 matchup on Wednesday with District 3 champions Wilson. Time and location TBD. Let’s Go Aces!!