2018-11-30 / Community

New coach preparing experienced Rams for 2018-19 season

By Pat McDonald Sports Editor


Kennebunk’s Max Murray puts up a shot during a scrimmage against Waynflete at Old Orchard Beach High School last Saturday. (Pat McDonald photo) Kennebunk’s Max Murray puts up a shot during a scrimmage against Waynflete at Old Orchard Beach High School last Saturday. (Pat McDonald photo) KENNEBUNK — Dave Leal is only two weeks into his new role as Kennebunk High’s boys basketball coach, but he has been impressed with what he has seen so far.

“I got to meet most of the kids this summer and I’m seeing a lot of really good things from a lot of good players. We’re much deeper than I thought we were going to be,” said Leal, who is taking over for Barrett Belanger.

Leal, a former high school coach in Massachusetts and Berwick Academy, takes over a team that returns plenty of talent.

Leading the way for the Rams will be seniors Cam Lovejoy, Zack Sullivan and Tripp Bush as well as juniors Max Murray and Kyle Pasieniuk.

“I walked into a real nice situation here. We’ve got a lot of players with a lot of experience,” Leal said. “The best part is my experienced players are really helping out some of my younger players.”

Leal took some time off from coaching to watch his sons play high school and college hoops, but he is excited to return to the bench.

“I have probably coached at this level between JV and varsity for about 12 years. I’m a basketball fanatic. My kids are all out of college and then (this) opportunity came,” Leal said when he was hired in June.

The new coach is excited to be back coaching basketball in Maine.

“To me, I think Maine basketball is kind of like Indiana basketball … it’s the real deal,” said Leal.

Kennebunk basketball fans can expect to see an exciting brand of basketball, according to Leal.

“I want to play a real high tempo (style) and really push the ball down the court,” said Leal.

Leal got to see his new team in live action last Saturday when the Rams played two scrimmages at the Old Orchard Beach Thanksgiving Tournament.

“It’s early and it’s good to give everyone a bunch of opportunities,” said Leal.

Kennebunk will open the regular season on Friday, Dec. 7 when they make the trip to Biddeford to face the rival Tigers.

Season opener

When: 7 p.m. Friday, Dec. 7
Where: Biddeford High School

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