A few years ago, Dylan LaNoue was hardly on anyone’s radar.
He didn’t play on varsity as a freshman and was rarely used as a sophomore. Even last year, when LaNoue averaged 11.6 points per game on a bad Boiling Springs team, he hardly looked like an up-and-coming talent.
But LaNoue has put the Mid-Penn Conference on notice in his senior year. Long with an excellent first step, he’s led the Bubblers back into the postseason race and is averaging 18.5 points per game, one of the best marks in the Mid-Penn.
There is no secret to LaNoue’s success. He is one of those athletes that has simply willed himself, made himself into the scoring force that he is today. Athletic but not a superior athlete, he has instead spent countless hours in the gym and the YMCA working on anything he can.
“He’s worked very hard to make himself a player, and he’s done a very good job doing that,” longtime Bubblers coach Pat Dieter said two weeks ago after the win over Big Spring. “He’s reaping the rewards the way he plays now.”
LaNoue showcased a bit of everything in that Big Spring win — he can slice through traffic, doesn’t take too many forced shots, can play above the rim and has one of the league’s better jumpers this season.
And that’s a far cry from where he was even a year ago. LaNoue said he has worked a lot on his jumper, spending time at the gym with recent Carlisle grad Deshawn Millington, who was an expert at creating space with jab steps and step backs, even if his jump shot wasn’t as crisp as his ability to spin and finish at the rim.
“He’s an amazing player and he’s helped me out a lot,” LaNoue said.
LaNoue has a more fluid jumper than his teacher, and can create enough separation now in one step to either side before he unleashes from the 12- to 15-foot range.
With LaNoue taking a noticeable leap, the Bubblers are averaging nearly 10 points per game more than a year ago, up to 54.3 this season.
And it’s not just LaNoue. Shooter Carson Myers is averaging 12.3 a game and has 25 3-pointers. He dropped 22 on six treys last week in the win over Shippensburg. Grayson Hacker is a menace inside, with 11.4 points per game. He also has 10 treys and is a double-double threat most nights. And there’s also guard Zach VonStein with 7.1 ppg, rounding out the Bubblers’ big four.
Bubbletown, just 2-20 last year, is 10-5 and sits comfortably at No. 3 in the latest District 3 Class 4A power rankings, behind only Lancaster Catholic and Berks Catholic.
But Tuesday’s loss at division-leading Greencastle-Antrim snapped a five-game win streak for the Bubblers, and they’re now effectively out of the Colonial race.
Boiling Springs closes the season with winnable games against James Buchanan, Northern, Waynesboro and West Perry, plus solid late-season challenges against Middletown, Trinity and potential postseason foe Littlestown (No. 6 in Class 4A).
Upcoming games to watch
Big focus this week isn’t on a particular division race. Instead, Saturday at Trinity is the place to be for any basketball lover. The Shamrocks are hosting the Scholastic Play By Play Classic once again, one of the area’s better days of basketball all season.
Trinity (11-4, 5-4 Capital) gets the penultimate game of the night, hosting Conestoga at 5:15. Right before that is Carlisle vs. Coatesville at 3:30. The Thundering Herd (8-8, 6-4 Commonwealth) are in playoff mode now, fighting for one of the 12 spots in the District 3 Class 6A field.
The rest of the field that day: Milton Hershey-John Bartram at noon, CD East-Danville at 1:45 and Reading-State College at 7.
Other matchups to check out the next two weeks: Lower Dauphin at Cedar Cliff (Friday); Shippensburg at Cumberland Valley (Saturday); State College at Carlisle, Greencastle-Antrim at Shippensburg, Boiling Springs at Waynesboro (Tuesday); Carlisle at Cumberland Valley, Trinity at Milton Hershey (Feb. 2).
Leaders and notes
Top scorers: Carter Van Scyoc (Shippensburg), 283 points, 18.9 ppg; Ryan McGill (Northern), 280, 18.7; Dylan LaNoue (Boiling Springs), 277, 18.5; Gerald Jarmon III (Cedar Cliff), 262, 15.4; Jake Perry (Camp Hill), 256, 15.1.
Most points in a game: Ryan McGill, 36 vs. Milton Hershey; Carter Van Scyoc, 34 vs. Muhlenberg; Braden Fries (East Pennsboro), 32 vs. Milton Hershey; Ki Barnes (Carlisle), 31 vs. South Western; Angel DeJesus (Red Land), 31 vs. Spring Grove.
Top 3-point shooters: Peyton Bechtold (Big Spring) and Christopher Hartley (Northern), 32; Ryan McGill, 29; Jake Perry, Angel DeJesus and Matt Long (Trinity), 27.
District 3 power rankings: No. 6 Cedar Cliff, No. 12 Carlisle and No. 13 Cumberland Valley in Class 6A; No. 8 Shippensburg, No. 17 Big Spring in Class 5A; No. 3 Boiling Springs in Class 4A; No. 5 Trinity, No. 6 Camp Hill in Class 3A.