Boys continue to build toward future
Northampton's Coy Stampone knew it would take time.
The first-year head coach hasn't been totally surprised with his team's season despite their 2-17 record beginning this week. The Konkrete Kids lost two leading seniors from last year's team, and then began with a number of first-year varsity players.
They also didn't have the services of senior center Derek Kulp until just after Christmas as the 6-foot-7 post player recovered from an ACL injury.
"I knew this would be a challenge," stressed Stampone. "It's been a tough year for us. In most of our games, we haven't played four quarters. We played games in which we have played two good quarters.
"That happened in a recent game against Whitehall in which we played two good quarters, but we scored only two points in the fourth quarter."
"There have been games in which we have played well, and other in which we haven't."
With a new system and players in place, the Kids began the year with a schedule that wasn't favorable for their status.
"There is no doubt that the Lehigh Valley Conference is very competitive and an extremely difficult conference," Stampone stated. "We started the year with a rough schedule and it didn't get any easier for us.
"It was the timing of the games. When we felt we could get something going, we ran into some buzzsaws. "
In spite of a reeling varsity team, Stampone has been impressed with his junior varsity team, and expects to reap the fruits of their labor next season.
"Our JVs have had a pretty good year," Stampone said. "Recently, they beat Whitehall, Central Catholic , and Freedom, and they also played Parkland well. They were part of a freshman team that won 17 games last year, and they have been very competitive.
"These guys have provided us with a positive look for the future."
Kulp and fellow senior Kyle George have paced the Kids' offense throughout the season. Along with the effective two-man game, the Kids also have been scattering their scoring.
However, it will take an heightened offensive effort to elevate their status.
"When you look at our final scores, you can see that we haven't been scoring enough points," Stampone said. "Our defense hasn't been that bad, but when you don't score enough points, your defense suffers.
"We have to find a way to score more points if we are elevate the program."
Another way Stampone believes his club can strengthen itself to have his junior class mature over the summer to help the Kids became a LVC contender next winter.
"We do have a good junior class that has grown over time," Stampone said. "We didn't really have enough time to work together. Over the summer, we need to dedicate ourselves, and this group has a good attitude.
"We'll look forward to next season."