Sunday, March 30, 2014

Coveney Overcomes Injuries, Will Play at UNE

The story of Londonderry High senior Drew Coveney is one of perseverance. Very few kids have overcome more injuries in order to reach their goal of playing college basketball. Coveney has had four surgeries in his four years of high school. Did he give up? Absolutely not.

Instead Coveney led the Lancers to a 15-5 record (their best season in years), he made Division I Second Team All-State and now has made his college decision. The 6-foot sharp shooting combo-guard will attend the University of New England where he plans to play basketball.

"I had a four hour nose reconstruction the summer of my freshman year" Coveney told the NH Notebook. "I initially tore my meniscus the summer of my sophomore year while practicing with the Granite State Raiders who asked me to join them after playing against them in AAU States for Bishop Elite. The 2nd meniscus tear occurred the 3rd game into my junior year of high school ball. This year I dislocated my shoulder during the BG game and just recently had surgery to repair damaged ligaments to prevent future dislocations."

Coveney deserves a ton of credit for overcoming all of these injuries. He persevered, all along working on his game and pursuing his dream of one day playing college basketball.

"I was able to overcome these setbacks because of the support of the people around me" explained Coveney. "Coach Gustavson and Coach Campo from LHS. Also Sudi Lett and Terry Mann from Bishop Elite would not let me quit. Michelle Hart-Miller and Meghan Powers of the training staff at LHS were also instrumental in my comebacks. Of course none of this would have been possible without Rob Scaccia of Scaccia Physical Therapy. I worked with him and his brother Jerry Scaccia of Complete Athlete both times to rehab my knee. Countless hours either in PT, the weight room, or in the gym got my knee back into shape."

UNE is a Division III program that competes in the Commonwealth Coast Conference (CCC).

"Recruiting for me really picked up after playing in the North Andover Fall Ball league run by Rick Gorman that Londonderry was fortunate enough to be invited to play in" said Coveney. "I had 4 schools express interest in me (St. Joe's, Norwich, Colby Sawyer and UNE). My family and I felt that UNE was the best academic fit for my career aspirations of becoming a Physical Therapist. Their facilities are top notch and they have a 6 year graduate program that I will be striving towards. I did an overnight at UNE and felt very comfortable that I would fit in with the other players on the team. It was difficult decision as I really liked the program at St. Joe's."

Coveney's versatility will serve him well at UNE, as he can play the 1 or the 2. Coveney can stretch the floor with his outside shot, can distribute the basketball and also thrives in a transition style game, either leading the break or finishing at the end of it.

"Coach Silva has told me that he sees me playing the 1 over time but I need to also prepare to play some 2" Coveney noted. "I've seen the team play multiple times and really like the offense and defensive sets they run."

Coveney becomes the fourth recruit from NH that Coach Silva has brought in in the last 2 years. Forwards Doug Gemmell, Tom Nason and Sam Thomas were all freshmen on the team this past winter.

"I haven't actually had a conversation or met with any of them, but I know of them from AAU or NHIAA" said Coveney. "My overnight was spent with other players on the team. The team is in a rebuilding stage that I look forward to being a part of."

In addition to his smooth jump shot, amazing resilience and strong work ethic, Coveney will also bring a winning mentality to UNE. With him leading the way, Londonderry had its best team in years this past winter, winning 15 games and making the D-I quarterfinals.

"We played solid team basketball on both ends of the floor" Coveney concluded. "Coach Stanton stressed a focus on defense as the way we would win games. Offensively we were very difficult to defend as any one of the 5 people on the floor could either take you to the rim off the dribble or hit outside jumpers. We had 7 different leading scorers during the course of the season."

Four surgeries weren't enough to keep Coveney down. To the opposing teams in the CCC, watch out.

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