High school basketball: Trinity boys hit 14 threes, win fifth straight

Jan. 27—GOFFSTOWN — If you put unbeaten Bedford High School to the side, there may not be an NHIAA Division I boys basketball team playing any better than Trinity.

The Pioneers (8-3) lost two of their first three outings and three of their first six, but stretched their winning streak to five games by beating Goffstown 78-56 on the road Friday night.

Trinity's slow start to the season shouldn't have come as a huge surprise since the Pioneers were adjusting to a new head coach. Ray Farmer, who played at Nashua North and Daniel Webster College, is in his first season guiding the program

"I think we're finally understanding the concepts of where we need to be and the level of play that I want and the level of urgency and intensity that I want to play with," Farmer said. "My culture is we don't take a play off. Give me everything you have. You should be able to give me everything you have for five minutes strong and then you're coming out.

"We talk about filling holes and each game we try to fill a hole. So each game I think we've worked on something. At the beginning of the season we had a hard time scoring more than six points in the first quarter. It was slow start after slow start. So that's one thing we've counteracted."

Scoring early wasn't a problem on Friday night as Trinity raced to a 20-1 lead late in the opening quarter. The Pioneers made five 3-pointers in the first quarter and a season-high 14 3-pointers in the game.

The 3-point shooting may have been contagious, since eight of the first nine field goals in the second quarter came from behind the arc (four by each team).

"If they're available I like to take them, but I don't want us to live and die by the three," Farmer said. "I want us to be a downhill team. What we're really working on is giving up a good shot for a great one. I don't mind it (attempting a 3-pointer) if they're wide open. We can make them at a high clip if they're good looks."

Trinity received a game-high 20 points from Shawn O'Neil, 18 from Kevin Doherty, 16 from DeVohn Ellis and 10 from Evan Dunker. Doherty and O'Neil each made four 3-pointers in the win. Dunker connected on three. Seven Trinity players made at least one 3-point field goal.

Goffstown (5-5) fought back and was within nine midway through the second quarter, but Trinity went on an 8-0 run and wasn't threatened after that. The Pioneers led 34-20 at halftime and 51-38 entering the fourth.

"Credit to them," Goffstown coach Ryan Cowette said. "They shot the ball well. O'Neil can shoot it. Doherty can shoot it. They got comfortable early."

"I felt like if we could have gotten one more stop (after pulling within nine) and added a little bit more momentum we could have gotten closer, but they rebounded the ball well and it led to second-chance points."

Goffstown received 14 points from Xander McBournie and 12 from Noah Durham. McBournie made four 3-pointers.

Trinity's point total is the most it has scored in a game this season, and the Pioneers have allowed an average of 48 points per contest during their five-game winning streak. The team's previous high for 3-pointers in a game was 11 in a 74-48 victory over Spaulding.

"It's just been a trajectory," Farmer said. "We've just been building because we got a late start and I'm also throwing a lot at them. And the 3-pointers are great. I just don't like to rely on them."