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March 3, 2013

Simpson, Evans power Londonderry into semis

LONDONDERRY, N.H. — Londonderry had a difficult time maintaining possession for much of yesterday’s matinee with visiting Nashua North but the Lancers still put up the kind of points most teams only dream of.

Earning a fourth consecutive trip to the Division I final four, the fourth-seeded Lancers ran past fifth-seeded North for a 73-55 quarterfinal victory.

The win provides the Lancers (17-5) a chance to atone for a 46-point, regular-season blowout loss to top-seeded Bishop Guertin. They’ll meet in Wednesday’s 7:30 p.m. semifinal at Southern New Hampshire University.

In order to advance to a third straight title game, however, Londonderry will need to cut down on the 22 turnovers they committed against the Titans (14-5). The Lancers still broke the 70-point mark for the 11th time this season. Yesterday, also was their eighth straight game with at least 62 points.

“That’s how good it can be,” Londonderry coach John Fagula said of his squad’s offense.

In a good-news-bad-news second quarter, Londonderry opened a 12-point advantage despite converting just four of its 15 field-goal attempts and five of its 12 tries from the line while piling up seven turnovers.

“We just worked hard the whole game,” Aliza Simpson said. “We never let them have a stretch where they had a good run.”

For her part, Simpson had a good, game-long run, finishing with 30 points, nine rebounds, six assists and five steals. The junior guard scored 11 in the pivotal third quarter, helping the Lancers open an early 13-point advantage they maintained the remainder of the period.

“She had a pretty good feeling she would beat whoever was guarding her one on one,” said Fagula, who won 11 state titles at the old Nashua High. “She did a good job of getting into the paint.”

Casey Evans did her share of the Lancers’ scoring with 20 points, including 10 in the final quarter.

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