Tag: Concord Christian

Three-Peat! Concord Christian wins third-straight title

By Nathaniel Ford

DURHAM – The Concord Christian Kingsmen defeated the Pembroke Spartans 65-53 in the Division II Girls Championship at UNH.

The school of just 106 students won the Division IV title in 2022, the Division III title in 2023, and has now taken home the Division II title as well.

Lilli Carlisle, a junior for the Kingsmen, had a historic game. She finished with 29 points and 12 rebounds, both of which were game highs. She broke the individual scoring record in a Division II girls final, breaking the prior mark of 27 points set by Lebanon’s Jane Daigle in 1982. 

Concord Christian started off hot, jumping to an early 8-2 run behind 6 points from Carlisle. It looked like the Kingsmen could run away early, but Pembroke did not roll over. 

Kaitlin Arenella made a huge three to bring the game to three points. After some back-and-forth play, Pembroke ended the quarter on a 6-0 run. Behind a coast-to-coast layup from freshman Anne Phillips, the Spartans entered the second quarter leading 13-12.

The second quarter was a battle as well. Pembroke opened the quarter on a 7-2 run, which was driven by Arenella, who knocked down a deep three and got a finish inside. This extended the Spartan lead to six. 

The Kingsmen did not roll over, and they responded quickly with a huge run of their own. Sophomore Emma Smith powered this. She connected from beyond the arc and had an and-one finish inside. 

They quickly overcame the 6-point deficit, and in the blink of an eye, the Kingsmen were back in the lead. This game was shaping up to be a battle, and going into the second half, Concord Christian led 29-26.

Pembroke shot 0/7 from the free-throw line in the first half, which was a big contribution to their 3 point deficit entering the second half. 

Carlisle and Smith were carrying the Kingsmen offensively, scoring 27 of their 29 first half points. The team was dominated on the glass, out-rebounding Pembroke 21-12. 

The third quarter was nothing short of unbelievable. The game was absolutely blown open in favor of the Kingsmen. They opened on a quick 9-0 run to extend the lead to 12 points, and they never looked back.

Everyone on the team was contributing. Kayden Rioux knocked down a three, Taylor Rioux got a layup in transition, Kate Smith had a pair of baskets, and Emma Smith and Lilli Carlisle piled on points of their own.

They dominated the quarter and started to run away with it. Capitalizing on 7 turnovers from the Spartans, they won the period by 15 points and entered the fourth quarter with a 51-33 lead.  

Pembroke needed a historic comeback, and it was not in the cards today. They did not roll over, but the deficit was too large, with the Kingsmen leading by as many as 22 points in the final frame.

They made big three pointers late and got the lead to single digits, but Concord Christian stayed composed and knocked down free throws when they needed them. They closed out the game with a 65-53 victory. 

Fast break points and baskets in the paint were two of the biggest turning points in their win. They outscored Pembroke 18-4 in transition, and scored a whopping 48 points in the paint, as well as 14 second chance points. 

Another huge reason for their victory was the defense played on Pembroke’s Annelise Dexter, the leading scorer in the division. She averaged 24.9 points a game in the regular season, and she was held to just 4 points tonight. 

Concord Christian was led by two players, Emma Smith and Lilli Carlile, combining for 52 points. Smith had an extremely efficient 23 points on 9/13 shooting, and she added 9 rebounds as well. 

Carlile had 29 points, 12 rebounds, 5 assists, and 2 steals, putting together one of the most impressive individual performances in a Division II final. 

Pembroke was led by a trio of double digit scorers. Kaitlin Arenella led the way with 14 points and connected on 4 three pointers. Anne Phillips and Kate Stephens both added 12 points of their own. 

While they came up short in the championship, Pembroke had a stellar season this year. They went 15-3 on the season, finishing as the third seed and upsetting Laconia to make it to the title game, which was their first appearance since the 1995 season.

Winning the title caps off the Kingsmen’s dominant 17-1 regular season. Their roster of only eight girls is looking to move up to Division I next season. With only one senior on the squad, another championship may be on the horizon in 2025.

More to come! Refresh this page for the latest.

Check out the full photo gallery by Jeff Criss of Perfect Photos

Check out the full photo gallery by Jill Stevens…

CCA tops John Stark, headed back to title game

Top-seeded Concord Christian Academy is headed back to the state championship game for the third-straight season as the Kingsmen defeated No. 4 John Stark, 68-50, in semifinal action of the NHIAA Division II Girls Basketball State Tournament on Wednesday night at Salem High School.

CCA will take on No. 3 Pembroke in the title game on Sunday at UNH. The game time is still to be determined.

Emma Smith poured in 21 first-half points to propel the Kingsmen to a commanding 17-point halftime lead, 43-26.

For the game, Smith led all scorers with 27 points, while Lilli Carlile added 19 for CCA. The Generals were led by 11 points from Avery Geaumont.

Last season, Concord Christian won the D-III title and the season before the D-IV crown. The Kingsmen will be looking for their third-straight championship on Sunday, this. time in Division II.

Check out the full photo gallery by Betsy Hansen…

Holy Family survives versus Concord Christian

Fifth-seeded Holy Family poured in 28 points in the 4th quarter to erase a 3-point deficit and earn a 67-61 win over #12 Concord Christian on Monday night in first round action of the NHIAA Division IV Boys Basketball State Tournament in Manchester.

The Griffins advance to the quarterfinals where they will take on #4 Farmington on Thursday.

Holy Family took a 6-point lead to the break, 33-27, but the Kingsmen outscored the Griffins 19-6 in the 3rd to take a 3-point lead to the final quarter.

Leading the way for Holy Family was four double-digit scorers: Gabe Lacasse (19), Jeremiah Guererro (15), Patrick Gillis (13) and Enzo Yonkeu (10). CCA was paced by a game-high 21 points from Isaac Bowers, while TJ Charbono (13), Jaden Young (12) and Isaac Kirby (10) all netted double figures as well.

Check out photos of the action by Todd Grzywacz of Stonewall Photography…

Quick start leads Concord Christian over Milford

Concord Christian wasted no time getting the ball rolling at Milford on Friday night as the Kingsmen opened the game on a 19-4 run and rolled to a 50-32 victory.

The Kingsmen were led by a game-high 23 points from Emma Smith, while Lili Carlile added 14. Pacing the Spartans was Ellianna Nassy with 10 points.

With the win, CCA remains perfect and pushed its record to 13-0 on the season. Milford falls to 7-8.

Check out the full photo gallery by Betsy Hansen…

6 Unbeatens Remain

By: KJ Cardinal & Jayda Davis

It’s crunch time in NHIAA basketball with state tournament play looming right around the corner. While some teams are vying to just make the playoffs or perhaps secure a coveted home game, there are six well-oiled machines around the Granite State that are still in search of perfection.

Let’s take a look at the six remaining unbeatens…

Division I Boys: Bedford

Bedford’s Luke Soden leads the Bulldogs with 26.5 PPG. [📸 Todd Grzywacz]

Frank Moreno’s Bulldogs have their sights set on back-to-back state titles and with a perfect 14-0 mark, it’s hard not to think they’ll get there. Bedford’s high-octane offense is averaging a scorching 81.1 points per game and winning by nearly 24 points per contest.

Luke Soden has been nothing short of amazing this season, pouring in 26.5 PPG, while Brady O’Connell (15.5 PPG) and Austin Kasyjanski (13.7 PPG) are the mainstays for the Bulldog fire power.

Bedford has only played in three games this season that were decided by single digits, with a three-point win over Manchester Memorial being the biggest test thus far for the Bulldogs. However, that may all change tonight as Bedford heads to Derry to take on 13-1 Pinkerton in a rematch of last year’s championship game. You can watch that game live here (PPV).

Division I Girls: Bedford & Pinkerton

Pinkerton’s Elizabeth Lavoie leads the Astros with 20.0 PPG. [📸 Jill Stevens]

In what could be a preview of the 2024 title game, it’s a battle of the unbeatens tonight in Bedford when the Bulldogs (14-0) host Pinkerton (14-0). You can watch that game live here (FREE).

These two squads have been absolutely steam-rolling the rest of the division. Bedford is winning by an average margin of 42.9 PPG. The Bulldogs six-point victory, 56-50, at Portsmouth back on Jan. 23 is their only win this season coming by less than 30 points. Let that sink in for a second.

Pinkerton is also winning by a 31.6-point clip with their closest game being a 17-point victory at Dover on Jan. 26. Lani Buskey’s Astros are led by the top scorer in the division Elizabeth Lavoie (20.0 PPG) and two other double-digit scorers: Sydney Gerossie (15.5) and Brooke Benz (10.2).

Bedford’s Lana McCarthy leads the Bulldogs with 13.9 PPG. [📸 Cindy Lavigne]

Kevin Gibbs’ Bulldogs boast the most dominant player in the state with Lana McCarthy. The McDonald’s All-American Game nominee is averaging 13.9 PPG in often limited minutes due to Bedford’s 40+ point victories. The Purdue commit is paired with Kate Allard (13.4 PPG) to form an extremely tough duo.

Division IV Boys: Profile
The 16-0 little town of Bethlehem Profile Patriots could be the most fun team to watch in the state. This group of perennial north-country underdogs is not only the divisions top dog this season, but one of the top teams in the state, regardless of division. Period.

Profile’s Josh Robie leads the Patriots with 26.4 PPG. [📸 KJ Cardinal]

We’ve witnessed first-hand the Patriots defeat opponents from all four Divisions and Mitchell Roy’s squad would most definitely compete with any foe put in front of them. The biggest reasons for this: seniors Josh Robie and Alex Leslie.

While his shot may look unorthodox, Robie (26.4 PPG) is an absolute sniper from deep and his improved mid-range game and playmaking abilities are the driving force behind Profile’s perfect start. Leslie (19.8 PPG) is one of the most athletic bigs in the division and his ability to get downhill and finish on opponents can be deadly at times.

Seemingly always in the way for Profile has been Woodsville and Littleton. The Patriots have knocked off Woodsville once this season and twice defeated the Crusaders, including a five-point win, 62-57, on Jan. 31. Profile heads to Woodsville tonight in the final big regular-season test remaining for the Patriots.

Division II Girls: Concord Christian

CCA’s Emma Smith leads the Kingsmen with 19.2 PPG. [📸 KJ Cardinal]

When we said “well-oiled machines”, the first team that comes to mind is Concord Christian. After winning the Division IV crown two years ago and the D-III title last season, the 12-0 Kingsmen seem poised to earn the D-II championship this March.

Rebecca Carlile’s squad simply wears teams down. There isn’t a more conditioned team in the state and CCA’s uptempo style, defensive prowess and the ability to take care of the rock is a brand of basketball that is impressive to watch.

Leading the way for the Kingsmen is Emma Smith (19.2 PPG) and Lilli Carlile (18.6). CCA has already taken care of business twice this season versus the 2nd and 3rd ranked teams with wins over Laconia and Pembroke. The Kingsmen head to Laconia on Feb. 15 for the biggest remaining challenge on the regular-season slate.

Division IV Girls: Littleton

Littleton’s Addison Hadlock is averaging 10.1 PPG for the Crusaders.[📸 KJ Cardinal]

If defense wins championships, then we could certainly see Littleton cutting down the nets at Colby-Sawyer College on March 2nd.

The Crusaders are holding teams to a minuscule 30.7 PPG and winning by an average margin of 27.3 PPG. Only three teams have been able to reach the 40-point plateau versus Littleton all season long.

Dale Prior’s balanced offense is led by a trio of double-digit scorers: Lauryn Corrigan (10.8 PPG), Addison Pilgrim (10.2) and Addison Hadlock (10.1).

The last tough test for the Crusaders this regular season will come tonight as Littleton hosts 15-1 Groveton. The Crusaders escaped Groveton with a narrow five-point win, 39-34, in a defensive battle back on Jan. 5.

Concord Christian tops Pembroke in D-II showdown

The two remaining undefeated teams in Division II locked horns on Tuesday night and Concord Christian defeated visiting Pembroke, 65-55.

The Kingsmen came out strong as they led by seven after the 1st quarter, but the Spartans fought back in the second to cut the lead to two at the half, 31-29.

The two squads played even in the 3rd quarter until CCA closed things out in the 4th, winning the final stanza by 8 points.

Emma Smith poured in a game-high 27 points to lead the Kingsmen, while Lilli Carlile added 22. Pembroke was paced by 25 points from Annelise Dexter and 15 from Kaitlin Arnella.

With the win, CCA improves to a perfect 10-0 on the season, while the Spartans fall to 10-1.

Check out photos of the action by John Scott Sherburne…

Derryfield dominates, moves to 9-0

By Nathaniel Ford

MANCHESTER – Derryfield defended their home court in a blowout victory, defeating Concord Christian 68-49 on Thursday night.

The Cougars proved once again why they are one of the top teams in Division IV, remaining one of three teams, along with Profile and Littleton, still undefeated.

A big reason for their overwhelming success tonight was how they controlled the tempo of the game and played at their own pace.

“We’ve been working all season on being patient offensively, and we’re patient, good things usually happen for us,” said Derryfield coach Ed Meade.

Good things did happen early for them, jumping right out on the Kingsmen early in the first with a 6-2 run under two minutes into the contest. 

They played great team basketball in the quarter, with four of five starters scoring, highlighted by 8 points from Alex Drake. Despite this, the Kingsmen kept the game within reach, and behind 6 points from Jaden Young, they trailed 21-13 to end the quarter. 

Derryfield blew the game open in the second quarter, mainly due to a 10-0 run in the middle of it. Billy Gardner gave great minutes off the bench and scored 5 of the points in that stretch. 

Three-point shooting was big for the Cougars, who found open looks in their offense and knocked down five of them. This helped extend their lead to 20 points, and despite a buzzer-beater three from Concord Christian’s Logan Duffy, Derryfield led 41-24 to end the quarter.

Derryfield has a lot of experience on their team, with an all-senior starting lineup and more coming off the bench. This strong class is what’s propelling them to such a strong season.

“Luckily for me, all of these guys have been with me for three years. I’m very familiar with them, and they’re very familiar with each other,” said Meade. 

This is a hard-working group led by Jack Krasnof. He recently scored his 1,000th point for the Cougars, a tremendous milestone that highlights the dedication this group has. 

“They’ve been great in practice. They’ve always practiced really hard, but this year especially, my seniors have really set the pace on getting that intensity level up,” said Meade. 

This 17-point Derryfield lead going into the second half was far too large for the Kingsmen to overcome. It was a back-and-forth game for most of the second half, largely due to the Cougars getting in foul trouble in both quarters.

“We were up 20 for a lot of the game, and we were still fouling, so that’s another thing we want to work on,” said Meade.

Concord Christian was in the bonus for most of the second half, which resulted in plenty of opportunities from the free throw line. They did not shoot a high percentage, but the sheer volume was enough to keep the Derryfield lead from extending further. 

Regardless, the lead stayed right around 20 points for the whole second half and never got closer than 17 points. When the final buzzer sounded, it was a resounding 68-49 victory for the Cougars. 

Derryfield was led by 21 points from Jack Krasnof. Alex Drake (15) and Zach Martin (13) both added double figures as well.

Concord Christian was led by a balanced scoring attack highlighted by 16 points from Isaac Bowers, 12 from Logan Duffy, and 8 from Jaden Young.

The Cougars move to an impressive 9-0 on the season, and they have a big test coming their way next week.

“They just like to play basketball. They don’t look at it as a pressure situation, and they’re all really looking forward to PCA next Tuesday. That’s the way they’ve always been,” said Meade. 

Portsmouth Christian is one of the top teams in Division IV this season with a 7-1 record of their own. They are led offensively by a duo of Cai Summers (15.8 PPG) and Connor Hickey (14.6 PPG)

The Kingsmen fall to 3-6 on the season, and they look to bounce back in a home matchup next week against Pittsfield.

Concord Christian rallies late to defeat Bishop Guertin in OT

Trailing by seven points entering the fourth quarter, Division II Concord Christian rallied to force overtime on the road and defeat D-I Bishop Guertin, 57-51, on Tuesday night in Nashua.

CCA’s Emma Smith was the key to the late surge by the Kingsmen as she netted 10 points in the 4th quarter and seven in the extra frame and led all scorers with a game-high 20 points. Kate Smith and Lilli Carlile added 13 points apiece, while Kayden Rioux chipped in with 10 for CCA. The Cardinals were paced by 17 points from Thalia Drapeau.

With the win, the Kingsmen remain perfect on the season (6-0) and sit tied atop the D-II standings with Oyster River. The Cardinals fall to 1-4 in defeat.

Check out the full gallery of the action by Betsy Hansen…

The Bash: Day 2 recap

That’s a wrap on day two of the 44th Annual Mike Lee Holiday Basketball Bash. Photo galleries from all games played at Farmington High School can be seen right here. You can also download high resolution images for free here.

Below is final scores from all 10 games along with the high scorers in each…

GIRLS: Sanborn 56, Portsmouth Christian 48
Sanborn: Emma Gillis 23
PCA: Ava Buchanan 24, Jaela Stockbower 11

BOYS: Sanborn 76, Nute 30
Sanborn: Chase Frizzell 14, Brandon Sarette 11
Nute: Collin Hathorn 12, Picard 10

BOYS: Derryfield 43, Kennett 33
Derryfield: Jack Krasnof 14, Alex Comire 11, Alex Drake 10
Kennett: Tavon Porter 11, Daven Bailey 14

BOYS: Windham 68, Noble 54
Windham: Caden Bouchard 16, Jack Begley 10,
Noble: Jamier Rose 21, Bryce Guitard 18

GIRLS: Franklin 60, Noble 40
Franklin: Lily Cornell 21, Kourtney Kaplan 18
Noble: Aubrey Brennan 20, Taylor Gnirk 16

BOYS: Portsmouth Christian 61, Franklin 38
PCA: Cai Summers 20, Connor Hickey 18
Franklin: Zeke McCoy 28

GIRLS: Profile 56, Coe-Brown 50
Profile: Morgan Presby 13, Mya Brown 22
CBNA: Emma Lapierre 15, Hannah Meehan 14

BOYS: Profile 71, Raymond 42
Profile: Josh Robie 35, Alex Leslie 15
Raymond: Dre Duffaut 10

GIRLS: Farmington 57, Raymond 35
FHS: Zoey Johnson 15, Shaylee DiPrizio 13, Jaelyn Prosper 10
Raymond: Sophie Huynh 15

BOYS: Farmington 78, Concord Christian 56
FHS: Demery Hadges 27, Shawn Murphy 16, Dylan Zappala 11, Aiden Place 10
CCA: Jaden Young 20

The Bash: Day 1 recap

Opening day of the 44th Annual Mike Lee Holiday Basketball Bash is in the books. Day one featured a whopping 12 games. Photo galleries from all games played at Farmington High School can be seen right here. You can also download high resolution images for free here.

Below is final scores from all 12 games along with the high scorers in each…

BOYS: Raymond 68, Franklin 26
Raymond: Dre Duffaut 22, Aidan York 15
Franklin: Jack Van Polen 6

BOYS: Concord Christian 61, Nute 37
CCA: TJ Charbono 13, Logan Duffy 12
NUTE: Scott Milliken 11

BOYS: Windham 80, Sanborn 57
Windham: Jack Begley 18, Caden Bouchard 16, Jack Murphy 12, Tyler Jordan 10
Sanborn: Chase Frizzell 20, Dylan Rego 19

GIRLS: Franklin 53, Raymond 26
Franklin: Kourtney Kaplan 33
Raymond: Mollee Messenger 9

GIRLS: Profile 47, Sanborn 40
Profile: Mya Brown 15, Kyah Knight 10
Sanborn: Emma Gillis 7

BOYS: Profile 65, Derryfield 56
Profile: Josh Robie 34, Alex Leslie 13
Derryfield: Jack Krasnof 23, Billy Gardner 14, Alex Drake 12

GIRLS: Coe-Brown 60, Portsmouth Christian 42
CBNA: Jennifer Noni 15, Hannah Meehan 11
PCA: Ava Buchanan 25

BOYS: Coe-Brown 67, Belmont 56
CBNA: Connor Bagnell 21, Quinn Salter 16, Jack Matson 13, Matt Flanagan 13
Belmont: Keegan Martinez 20, Michael Collette 12, Anakin Underhill 10

GIRLS: Kennett 48, Belmont 22
Kennet: Kaley Goodhart 18, Sam Sidoti 16
Belmont: Darci Stone 12

BOYS: Kennett 54, Portsmouth Christian 46
Kennett: Tavon Porter 19, Daven Bailey 13, Allen Noung 11
PCA: Wade Michaud 17, Cai Summers 15

GIRLS: Farmington 65, Noble 30
FHS: Zoey Johnson 22, Madi Ricker 16, Ryleigh Hogan 11
Noble: Taylor Gnirk 16

BOYS: Noble 88, Farmington 70
Noble: Bryce Guitard 28, Jamier Rose 26, Brady Tucci 12
FHS: Aiden Place 17, Shawn Murphy 15, Demery Hadges 13