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Coach: Brendan LoBrutto (2nd year)
Last year’s record: 17-5, Section Nine, Class C champions (Lost to Tuckahoe in first round of state playoffs)
Returning starters: 4
Justin Cooper, PG, 6-3, Jr. – Cooper has been impressive so far this season moving from shooting guard to point guard. He’s assumed a great leadership role in the wake of the graduation of former point man Marquis VanDeWater.
Rob Lamont, PF, 6-5, Sr. – Big-time player who has a nose for the ball. Averaged almost 20 points and just under 10 rebounds a game last year. Loves to mix it up down low and utilize his toughness. On occasion he can step outside and take the perimeter shot to complement his inside game. Only senior on the team.
Zach Lydon, F-C, 6-9, Jr. – Lydon isn’t your typical inside player. He’s been able to step outside and shoot from a decent range, and is a terrific passer. Pine Plains is looking for the big guy to step up down low.
Tyler Lydon, SG, 6-7, Soph. – Another of the Bombers’ gym rats, and it pays off because Lydon is a solid shooter from the arc. It truly opens the inside for Pine Plains and creates matchup problems for opponents. The youngster already has a few Division I schools sniffing around, according to LoBrutto.
Names to learn
Adam Miller, C, 6-6, Soph. – Miller is a wide-body who comes in at around 230 pounds, so there’s your answer as to why the 6-6 Miller is playing center over 6-9 Zach Lydon. Miller is a transfer from Red Hook.
Bryant Rosato, G, 5-11, Sr. – Rosato, a captain on the football team, brings good senior leadership to the Bombers. Smart player, good work ethic.
Jan. 3, at Rhinebeck – The MHAL league opener against a traditional rival.
Jan. 10, vs. Spackenkill; Feb. 7, at Spackenkill – LoBrutto especially likes matching wits with one of the deans of Hudson Valley coaches, Terry Feeley.
Jan. 21, vs. Red Hook, at Bard College – The two MHAL opponents will square off in the Coaches vs. Cancer Classic and, as LoBrutto said, it will give the Bombers a good look at where they are as they head into the latter part of the season.
13 Rob Lamont (C) Sr. 6' 5" F
2 Bryant Rosato Sr. 5' 11" G
3 Charlie Nicolich Sr. 5' 11" G
10 Justin Cooper (C) Jr. 6' 3" PG
22 Zachary Lydon (C) Jr. 6' 9" F
24 Clayton Michaels Jr. 6' 4" F
21 Drew Evans Jr. 6' 3" F
4 Rob Galm Jr. 6' 0" G
12 Nolan Harpp Jr. 6' 0" G
33 Adam Miller So. 6' 6" C
14 Tyler Lydon So. 6' 7" SG
Pine Plains looking to repeat
Coming off a 17-5 season and a sectional championship, Pine Plains was the surprise of Section 9 last year. Well, sort of.
“You know, you have all your clichés and what not, but it wasn’t a surprise to us,” LoBrutto said. “Everyone in our small town kind of knew what was coming up. We had the talent but we needed to know if they were going to mesh and take it to the next level.”
Pine Plains is a small school at the Class C level, so it’s almost shocking for opponents to see the Bombers come into the gym and go 6-7, 6-6, 6-9 across the frontline – and to have a 6-3 point guard.
“I don’t know what’s in the water but I’ll take it,” LoBrutto said with a laugh. “What’s unique about these guys at the high school level is yeah, we’re big, but they can run and get up and down the court. The loss to Tuckahoe was like a track meet and that really woke us up. We won’t be a walk-the-ball-up-the-court team. I think that’s exciting.”
Still, that size...
“Obviously just our size should, on paper, create some problems for teams,” the second-year coach said. “Definitely our rebounding. I think what I’m most impressed with is, although they’re young they have a tremendous amount of basketball IQ. We’re excited. We need to stay motivated. Learning from our experiences last year will definitely help. This is an extremely coachable group of guys. They want to improve.”