NEW HOPE-SOLEBURY 56, CHRISTOPHER DOCK 45
Because of their father and grandfather, New Hope-Solebury seniors Matt and Leo Massimino have been faithful followers of the Villanova men's basketball program.
Rollie Massimino was a longtime head coach on the Main Line. And the boys' father, R.C., was a reserve guard for the Wildcats' 1985 national championship squad.
"To be connected to the team's history is something special," Leo Massimino said. "We take pride in it. People bring it up to us a lot."
Saturday afternoon at Villanova's Pavilion, with the Massimino brothers combining for 25 points, the second-seeded Lions topped fourth-seeded Christopher Dock, 56-45, for their first PIAA District 1 Class AA title since 2001.
Matt Massimino, a 5-foot-11, 155-pound point guard, shot 11 for 14 from the line en route to 14 points. Leo Massimino, a 6-foot, 160-pound forward, produced 11 points and seven rebounds.
Matt, Leo and sister Grace, who also plays hoops at New Hope-Solebury, are triplets. The family lives on a 12-acre spread in New Hope.
"I've seen video of 'Nova's 1985 team," Matt Massimino said. "Even though I wasn't around then, I kind of feel like I was part of it. We go to a lot of Villanova games now."
For the Lions, who won only seven games over the last three seasons, this has been a breakthrough campaign.
"We really struggled," said Matt Massimino, who is headed to Fordham as a preferred walk-on. "It was awful. No athlete should experience that for three years."
New Hope-Solebury (15-9) earned District 1's lone berth in the Class AA state tournament. It will take on William Sayre, District 12's fourth-place qualifier, Saturday at a neutral site and time to be determined.
Ahead of Dock (16-9) by 35-34 in the middle of the fourth quarter, the Lions took control with an 8-0 spurt that began with Jack Dougherty's layup and was capped by Spencer Tinkel's putback.
Dougherty (two three-pointers) chipped in 14 points and three assists, and Tinkel recorded 14 boards (four on offense) and 12 points. Overall, New Hope-Solebury went 23 for 31 from the line.
Sophomore point guard Jared Armstrong paced the Pioneers, who were hurt by 14 turnovers, with 22 points. Azariah Parmer collected 13 boards and nine points.
Christopher Dock 8 9 8 20-45
New Hope-Solebury 3 15 11 27-56
CD: Jared Armstrong 22, Landon Leinbach 2, Seth Strickland 1, Azariah Parmer 9, Sean Hinson 4, Brennan Aldley 2, Tarrell Willis 5.
NHS: Matt Massimino 14, Patrick Brennan 2, Spencer Tinkel 12, Jack Dougherty 14, Leo Massimino 11, Justin Cebrick 3.