December 6, 2017

Foderingham Stressing Up-Tempo Approach In Taking Helm of PDS Boys’ Basketball

DIGGING IN: Princeton Day School boys’ basketball player David “Diggy” Coit dribbles up the court in a game last season. Junior captain and star guard Coit started the 2017-18 season with a bang last weekend at the Solebury School (Pa.) tournament. He scored 34 points in a 90-71 loss to Pennington last Friday in the opening round of the tourney and then tallied 18 points in a 76-59 win over the George School (Pa) on Saturday in a consolation contest. The Panthers, now 1-1, host the George School on December 8 in a rematch of the consolation game. (Photo by Frank Wojciechowski)

By Bill Alden

Kerry Foderingham has been preaching a positive message in taking the helm of the Princeton Day School boys’ basketball team.

“The things I have been emphasizing a lot with them is confidence and not being afraid to make mistakes,” said Foderingham, the successor to Tim Williams, the PDS athletics director who guided the Panthers to one Prep B title in his four seasons at the helm.

“I think that is huge for kids, playing free and looking to be aggressive at all times. We will definitely be up tempo.”

Last weekend PDS displayed that aggressiveness, opening regular season play by competing in the Solebury School (Pa.) tournament, falling 90-71 to Pennington in the opening round of the tourney on Friday before defeating the George School (Pa.) 76-59 in the consolation game on Saturday.

In Foderingham’s view, the Panthers showed potential and character in the loss to Pennington.

“I thought overall we did a good job scoring the ball; defensively we had a hard time getting stops inside and rebounds,” said Foderingham, who has coached at the college level at Fairleigh Dickinson University and The College of New Jersey in addition to previous stints at Franklin High and Somerville High.

“We played real hard. We did a good job not hanging our heads; we got down toward the end but I thought they kept fighting the whole time.”

A day later, that fighting spirit paid dividends in the win over George.

“We grew, we are growing every day,” said Foderingham. “I saw a lot of growth defensively. Our communicating, rotations, and help defense was a lot better on the second day. I thought guys were less hesitant. We have a lot of younger guys who are playing minutes. I thought in the second game those guys got more comfortable and way more aggressive and that was the difference.”

Junior captain and star guard David “Diggy” Coit will be a difference maker for the Panthers this winter.

“He is awesome offensively,” said Foderingham of Coit, who scored 34 points in the opener and then tallied 18 points against George. “He leads us vocally a lot. He has a great attitude and he is very talented player.”

Another big talent for PDS is sophomore standout Jaylin Champion, who tallied 13 points in the loss to Pennington and then chipped in eight against George.

“Jaylin is very skilled player, his athleticism is amazing,” said Foderingham.

“It allows him to do a lot of special things on the court. I think he had nine rebounds in the first game so he can rebound at a high level. He also can score the ball.”

Freshman Freddie Young showed that he can play at a high level, pouring in 23 points in the win over George.

“Freddie is one of our younger guys that we have a lot of expectations for, he is stepping up,” said Foderingham. “I think he really took a big step with his level of aggression from the first game to the second game. We challenged him to maintain that and he wants that. He is a competitor. He is a talented player; I think he will have a great four year career.”

Foderingham is confident that plenty of guys will be stepping up for the Panthers this winter.

“Our bench has been awesome. In the last game we had 13 guys score. I think that is always cool,” said Foderingham.

“We have a lot of guys contributing in different ways, which is great. We had a senior leader in Nick Darenkov who can rebound inside. We have Luke Franzoni who just committed to Xavier for baseball. He is tough kid. We have a lot of kids who bring those intangibles; everyone is equally important to the team.”

In Foderingham’s view, that blend of intangibles and toughness should serve the Panthers well this winter.

“We don’t want to look too far ahead; we want to get better every day and keep putting the time in with the little things,” said Foderingham, whose team is next in action when it hosts the George School on December 8 in a rematch of the consolation clash form last weekend.

“We can score, so we need to take advantage of any opportunities that we get offensively and keep putting pressure on the defensive end.”