LANGHORNE – Neshaminy senior Danny Bodine might have been late to the party but, man oh man, he’s arrived on Old Lincoln Highway, now.
After playing limited minutes on varsity last season, his first high school campaign on the hardwood, Bodine will start for the Skins at center this season.
“He’s a key part to our team this year – scoring the ball, rebounding the ball and coming off pick-and-rolls, playing defense, protecting the lane – he’s really good at that,” said 6-4 senior guard Chris Arcidiacono, who led the team with 21.4 points-per-game last season.
In the offseason, Bodine got bigger, faster, and stronger while working to improve his skillset. He could be a game-changer this season for Neshaminy.
“It’s not often you find a 6-8 player in high school basketball,” stated Arcidiacono. “He’s going to protect the paint, block shots, clean up our misses and get us some easy buckets on the offensive end.”
Last season, the Skins finished 9-13, 4-8 in the Suburban One National League (SONL), in third place behind division winner Abington and Pennsbury. After earning a berth in the District 1 Class 6A tournament, the team’s first trip to the postseason in six years, Neshaminy was promptly shown the door by Del-Val League rival Penn Wood.
In the playoff, the Skins did everything they could in their attempt to pull off an upset over the Patriots. Thanks to Arcidiacono, who registered 26 of his team’s 51 points, they nearly did.
It was a good season, said Arcidiacono, playing under first-year head coach Mark Tingle.
“We had a new coach, a new system and we were all pretty much starting or playing our first time on varsity and we managed working our way into the playoffs, playing well against both Council Rock teams, tough games with Abington and competing with Pennsbury, Bensalem and Truman.”
Neshaminy returns to the court with eight – count ‘em – eight seniors in the lineup. Between the veteran lineup and Tingle returning for his second year at the helm, the Skins have hit the ground running this time around.
“All those seniors already know what I want. Play-wise, we know what we have so it’s a lot quicker,” explained Tingle.
“There’s a lot less people that we have to work with, making sure they know the plays.
“The players know what to expect from me – they all played varsity last year.
“This year, we had a full offseason so everything is just kind of flowing a lot nicer.”
With Bodine in the starting lineup, Tingle had to re-work the playbook – at least a little bit – in order to get the big guy the ball down low in the paint.
“Danny being a ‘big’ is real nice,” said Tingle. “We have a lot more stuff where we can get post touches and kick out to Chris (Arcidiacono), (Anthony) Papeo and Charles (Dominick), for shots.
“Last year, we didn’t do as much with our post guys,” explained Tingle. “They just came on and with Danny having a full offseason and being so tall, he demands a lot of double teams in the post, which means we can kick out.”
In addition to Dominick and Papeo, who can also play the point, the wing men for the Skins this season include 5-10 senior guard Pat Campbell, 6-1 senior guard Greg DeLuca and 5-10 junior guard Logan Williamson.
The goal this season, says Arcidiacono, is to make it to the state playoffs. The last time that happened was 2011, during Arcidiacono’s older brother Ryan’s junior campaign on the hardwood. The Skins went 22-7 that season, falling in the PIAA Round of 16 matchup, ironically, to Penn Wood.
“We have a pretty talented team and we have a lot of experience,” stated Arcidiacono. “We have eight seniors so we should be able to make playoffs and do well.”
“We want to get a top seed in the league. We have a good enough team to compete with every team.”
Arcidiacono spent his summer playing for the Philly Pride on the AAU Under Armour circuit. Papeo, who averaged 7.4 PPG, 1.3 rebounds and 1.5 assists per game last season at Neshaminy, played summer hoops for the PA Playaz while Dominick competed at East Coast Power in King of Prussia.
For his efforts, Arcidiacono has received Division 1 college offers from Eastern Kentucky, Quinnipiac, Rider and Mount Saint Mary’s. Meanwhile, Bodine is getting serious looks from TCNJ, Gwynedd Mercy, Muhlenburg, Dickinson and Gettysburg. GMercyU, along with Bryn Athyn, is also interested in Papeo.
The Skins tipped off their season Friday night, Dec. 8 at home with a 72-40 triumph over Pioneer Athletic Conference (PAC) rival Upper Merion. Chris Arcidiacono led the scoring effort for Neshaminy with 34 points.
The season continues Dec. 14 at home vs. SOL Continental Conference rival William Tennent then comes a road matchup with Bicentennial Athletic League (BAL) rival Holy Ghost Prep Sat., Dec. 16. The Skins begin league play Dec. 21 at home vs. Bensalem.
NOTES: Ryan Arcidiacono, who owns the all-time scoring record at Neshaminy with 1,500 points as well as the Skins’ single-season scoring record (592 points/2010-2011), is the all-time leading scorer at Villanova with 1,604 points. Named MVP in the Wildcats’ 2016 run to the NCAA National Championship, the Class of 2012 Neshaminy alumnus currently plays for the Windy City Bulls, of the NBA G League.
Neshaminy Boys Varsity Basketball Schedule (2017-18)
Day Date Opponent Place Time
Friday Dec. 8 Upper Merion NHS 7:00
Thursday Dec. 14 Tennent NHS 7:00
Saturday Dec. 16 @Holy Ghost Holy Ghost 7:00
Tuesday Dec. 19 @Pennridge Pennridge 7:00
Thursday Dec. 21 Bensalem NHS 7:00
Wednesday Dec. 27 Church Farm WC Rustin (Xmas Tourney) 6:00
Thursday Dec.28 WC Rustin WC Rustin (Xmas Tourney) 7:30
Wednesday Jan. 3 @Abington Abington 7:00
Thursday Jan. 4 Pennsbury NHS 7:00
Saturday Jan. 6 Academy Park NHS 1:30
Tuesday Jan. 9 CR North NHS 7:00
Thursday Jan. 11 @Truman Truman 7:00
Saturday Jan. 13 @Plymouth Whitemarsh PW (SOL Challenge) 7:00
Monday Jan. 15 Abington NHS 7:00
Tuesday Jan. 16 CR South NHS 7:00
Sunday Jan. 21 @Lower Merion Lower Merion (Kobe Classic) 1:00
Tuesday Jan. 23 @Bensalem Bensalem 7:00
Tuesday Jan. 30 @Pennsbury Pennsbury 7:00
Friday Feb. 2 @CR North CR North 5:00
Tuesday Feb. 6 Truman NHS 7:00
Thursday Feb. 8 @CR South CR South 7:00
Saturday Feb. 10 Avon Grove NHS 12:30
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