Boys look to make run
It’s the one element that has plagued Northampton’s boys’ basketball team this winter.
The Konkrete Kids have a new identity this season, as they have had a number of players step into the spotlight every game.
They recently captured the Salisbury Holiday Tournament for the third consecutive season, a springboard for them the previous two seasons. Last year, the Kids embarked on a 11-game winning streak from the tournament, and it helped them get to a district final for the first time in 45 years.
Northampton dropped a 61-50 decision to East Stroudsburg South Jan. 4 and then rebounded with a 66-35 rout of Pleasant Valley two days later. With the win, and recent wins over Dieruff and Catty, the Kids raised their overall mark to 8-5.
Against East Stroudsburg South, the Kids shot 37-percent from the field and made only 5-of-20 (25 percent) from the three-point line.
“We made the trip to East Stroudsburg South and played a solid first half,” said head coach Coy Stampone. “We got down in the third quarter and we ended up playing at their speed instead of how we wanted to play.
“(Jeremiah) Anderson is really good. When we helped, the other guys and found their shots. Give credit to their swarming defense for out poor shooting.”
The Kids came back with a complete effort against Pleasant Valley, as Spencer Cole led the way with 15 points, Zach Gula had 11, and Donte Rodriguez had 10. They shot 42-percent from the field and 36-percent from the three-point line.
Northampton also had 18 steals and seven deflections.
“We played with energy from the start and played well,” added Stampone. “We darted out to a 20-4 lead and then had a 39-12 lead at the half.
“We were getting some nice looks, but I really enjoyed the energy and confidence we played with. Gula, Cole, and Rodriguez are playing well for us right now.
“Hopefully, hustling is contagious. We had hustle and belief in our win. We need the same effort this week.”
Cole knows his team needs to tighten their game to be a constant in the second half.
“We are looking for consistency on the defensive end because we are a small team,” he said. “On offense, we are looking for consistency in making foul shots and getting to the basketball to get to the line or kick for open shots.”
The team is hoping recent wins over Dieruff and Catty can jump start the team.
“We feel that we can make a run and get some major wins under our belt,” said Gula. “We hope to replicate some of the success we had during a win streak last year.”