High schools: Barr scores 32 to lead John Stark boys’ basketball to key win

  • Hopkinton’s Ellie Owen (25) goes up for a shot as Conant’s Elizabeth Gonyea (23) defends. Ben Conant / Monadnock Ledger-Transcript

  • Hopkinton’s Brooke Carlson looks to pass against Conant. Ben Conant / Monadnock Ledger-Transcript

  • Hopkinton's Kally Murdough (5) tries to split Conant’s Silas Bernier and Teagan Kirby. Ben Conant / Monadnock Ledger-Transcript

  • Hopkinton’s Katie Meserve (32) pulls down a rebound. Ben Conant / Monadnock Ledger-Transcript

Monitor staff
Published: 1/17/2020 10:39:26 PM
Modified: 1/17/2020 10:38:30 PM

Christian Barr started slow on Friday night, but once the John Stark senior got going, there was no stopping him.

Barr scored 21 of his 34 points in the second quarter to lead the Generals to an important 63-52 home win against Laconia.

“Christian was off early, and he was getting a little frustrated, but when he finds his rhythm he can go off. He’s done that quite a bit for us this year and he certainly did it tonight,” John Stark coach Mike Smith said. “He’s worked hard on his game. He’s on his footwork, he’s worked on his shooting. He’s been a really consistent scorer for us, and when he’s shooting well and we’re playing well defensively, I think we’re pretty good.”

Laconia (2-3) jumped out to an 8-2 lead to start the game, but the Generals (2-4) responded with a 33-8 run that was fueled by defense and gave them a 35-16 halftime lead.

“There have been times this year where we’ve come out and pressured tams and they have cooked us, two or three passes and a layup, and we had to get out of it,” Smith said. “So we’ve been working on that in practice and we did a much better job with it tonight in the second half.”

On the other end, Barr, a 6-foot-4 wing, was scoring from everywhere.

“Inside, outside, you name it,” Smith said. “He did a nice job on the perimeter, and he plays well out there, but he also scored on the post, he crashed the offensive boards and got a lot of points that way. When he’s attacking all field like that, he’s better, and we’re better as a team and we become less one-dimensional.”

That proved to be true on Friday night as the Generals had two other players reach double figures in addition to Barr. Big man Kayden Easter finished with 14 points and 12 rebounds and guard Jayden Sheppard had 12 points and went 4-for-4 from the free throw line in the fourth quarter.

“Kayden has had an abdominal injury he’s been battling, he barely practiced last night, so I was really proud of the effort he gave tonight. “And Jayden took over in the end when things got a little hectic, so he really stepped up and had a big game for us.”

Laconia did battle back in the second half, cutting the lead to 48-39 going into the fourth quarter, but the Generals hung on for a win they needed.

“This was huge. You don’t like to say there are big games this early in the season, but then again our next three games are at Pelham (5-1), at Hanover (5-0) and ConVal (5-0), and those are three of the top five teams in our division,” Smith said. “I think we’ll fight in each of those games, but if we had lost tonight and continued to play poorly, we could have been 1-8 real quick. And I think the boys were aware of that, so for them to respond to Laconia’s early punch and then come back under some pressure, I was pleased with that. And it was all them. We didn’t make any adjustment. They just played ball.”

Boys’ Basketball

Bow 71, Stevens 38

Key players: Bow – Nick Kiah (14 points), Steve Guerrette (7 points), Matt Cardarelli (7 points)

Highlights: The Falcons jumped out to a 19-3 lead after the first quarter, pushed it to 38-10 by halftime and they never trailed thanks to a balanced effort with 13 players finding the scoring column.

Coach’s quote: “We had a good team win tonight. The starters were excellent on defense. Our bench contributed offensively and defensively, which will be important in upcoming games.” – Bow’s Frank Moreno

Records: Bow 5-1; Stevens0-5

Lebanon 48, Bishop Brady 36

Key players: Bishop Brady – Tommy Fraser (14 points), Ismael Rivera (10 points)

Highlights: The Giants fell on the road to one of Division II’s best programs.

Records: Lebanon 4-1; Brady 0-6

Sanborn 57, Merrimack Valley 47

Key players: MV – Caleb Heath (15 points), Griff Wheeler (14 points)

Highlights: The Pride made it back-to-back losses after falling short on the road against the Indians.

Records: Sanborn 4-2; MV2-4

Pittsfield 62, Concord Christian Academy 42

Key players: Pittsfield – Devin Bedell (15 points, 6 assist, 7 steals), Tyler Prentice (12 points), Chandler Norris (11 points); Concord Christian – Austin Spurr (13 points), Aiden Duffy (9 points)

Highlights: Pittsfield led 39-15 at halftime, holding the Kingsmen to three points in the second quarter. The Panthers cruised in the second half, using multiple rotations and getting points from 10 of 12 players.

Coach’s quote: “We got after it in the first half and did well in transition. We’ll continue to work on things and prepare for our road game at Farmington on Tuesday.” – Pittsfield’s Jay Darrah

Records: Pittsfield 7-2; Concord Christian 2-7

Girls’ Basketball

Concord 47, Windham 38

Key players: Concord – Ava Woodman (14 points), Elizabeth Blinn (9 points), Elli Cox (9 points), Jordyn Lengle (9 points); Windham – Sarah Dempsey (14 points)

Highlights: The Crimson Tide opened up the game in the second quarter after a slow start to take a 21-16 halftime lead. The Jaguars cut Concord’s lead to three points with three minutes left in the game, but the Tide got some easy baskets and made free throws down the stretch to bounce back from Tuesday’s 28-point loss.

Coach’s quote: “This was an interesting situation for us. I did not know going into the game if we would have Ava or Elizabeth. Both of them decided they were able to go and gave us a spark. The key tonight was our balanced scoring attack, our changing of defenses and every single player on the roster fulfilling a role to allow us to be successful. Whether it was to come in and play big minutes, or spell a player a few minutes, every single player made this win happen. The composure we played with, the togetherness and the defensive pride are all things we need to build on.” – Concord’s Tim LaTorra

Records: Concord 5-2; Windham 2-5

Pelham 45, Pembroke 34

Key players: Pembroke – Jade Pescinski (10 points), Cierra Hill (7 points, 2 steals), Lindsay St. Jacques (7 points, 2 steals)

Highlights: -Played the best 1st quarter of basketball this season- came out with intensity and a will to win-Consistently broke Pelham’s press -Cierra Hill worked hard the entire game and never let up

Coach's quote: “I couldn’t have been more proud of how the girls played in the first quarter and for the majority of the first half. Unfortunately, we didn’t match the intensity that Pelham brought in the second half. Our emphasis all season has been we have to play all four quarters of basketball and that just wasn’t the case tonight. Pelham came out of the half with fire and turned up the pressure forcing us to make mistakes, allowing them to earn the W.” – Pembroke’s Caitlin Powers

Records: Pelham 6-3; Pembroke 3-5

Laconia 51, John Stark 39

Key players: John Stark – Chelsea Woodsum (16 points, 8 rebounds), Brady Johnson (12 points); Laconia – Bella Daly (16 points), Megan Gaspa (12 points)

Highlights: Turnovers and poor shooting were too much for John Stark to overcome. The Generals shot just 6-for-36 inside the paint and turned the ball over 20 times.

Coach’s quote: “We have a lot of areas in which we need to improve. Luckily we aren’t even halfway through the season. We’ll be back in the gym real early tomorrow morning working on getting better.” – Stark’s Bruce Johnson

Records: Laconia 5-4; John Stark 6-2

Conant 51, Hopkinton 28

Key players: Hopkinton – Katie Meserve (11 points), Kally Murdough (6 points); Conant – Emma Tenters (12 points), Brynn Rautola (13 points)

Highlights: Hopkinton kept things close in the first half and trailed by just one at halftime, 19-18. But the Hawks got sloppy with the ball in the third quarter, which led to fast break points for Conant. Hopkinton also shot just 1-for-10 in the third, and by the time the quarter was done the Orioles had a 38-21 lead.

Coach's quote: “We had a really good first half and I was happy that the kids played hard until the end. We just made too many mistakes in the third quarter, and Conant is the number one team in our division for a reason.” – Hopkinton’s Pat Roye

Records: Hopkinton 7-3; Conant 9-0

Girls’ Basketball

Pittsfield 33, Concord Christian 18

Key players: Pittsfield – Haylee Gilleney (12 points, 5 rebounds), Cora Lemay (9 points, 8 rebounds); Concord Christian – Caroline Clark (12 points)

Highlights: Lemay who scored eight of her nine points in the first half to jumpstart the Panthers to a 17-10 halftime lead and Gilleney scored 10 of her 12 in the second half to help Pittsfield secure its first win of the season.

Coach’s quote: “Our energy on defense and patience on offense were key for us tonight. We were able to control the tempo of the game and the girls did a great job to get the win.” – Pittsfield’s Heidi Hall

Records: Pittsfield 1-10; Concord Christian 1-8

Boys’ Alpine skiing

Bow, Pembroke Academy

Key players: Bow – Patrick Wachsmuth (2nd GS, 2nd slalom), Eli Gadbois (4th GS, 8th slalom), Jonathon Cook (10th GS, 7th slalom), Connor Wachsmuth (3rd GS), Aden Lipsy (5th slalom); Pembroke– Jackson Frazier (4th GS, 7th slalom), Ben Sporcic (21st GS, 23rd slalom), Owen Thomas (26th GS, 35th slalom), Harrison Army (27th GS, 32nd slalom)

Highlights: Bow was the top team in both the slalom and giant slalom events at Mount Cranmore. The Falcons finished with 382 points in the slalom and they were followed by Kennet (375), Gorham (361), Kingswood (348), Pembroke (344) and Moultonborough. In the GS race, Bow had 385 points and Kennett (376) was once again second. They were followed by Kingswood (361), Gorham (346) Pembroke (340) and Moultonborough (316).

Girls’ Alpine Skiing

Bow, Pembroke Academy

Key players: Bow – Megan Lavigne (12th GS, 7th slalom), Sarah Lavigne (18th GS, 13th slalom), Meredith Ryan (20th GS, 18th slalom), Madeline Soucy (20th slalom), Carolyn Johnson (22nd GS; Pembroke– Jessica Boyajian (13th GS, 11th slalom), Elizabeth Duchesne (27th GS, 27th slalom), Hannah Brown (38th GS, 30th slalom), Emma Parsons (35th slalom), Lauren Simmons (35th GS)

Highlights: Kennett took first in both the giant slalom and slalom events at Mount Cranmore. The Eagles had 394 points in the GS, and Bow was second with 358, one point ahead of Kingswood. Pembroke was fourth with 342. Kennett also ran away with the slalom with 394 points. Kingswood was second with 366 followed by Bow (356) and Pembroke (337). Merrimack Valley’s Violet Webb competed as a one-person team and took 17th in the GS and ninth in the slalom. Gorham and Moultonborough also competed, but each school only had three competitors.

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