Lower Cape May Regional High School's Vance Matthews looks to make a pass after dribbling down the court at Atlantic City High School on Thursday.

Stefanie Campolo, For The Press

Scott Holden's first varsity basketball coaching job came at a new school in Fort Lauderdale, Fla., a few years ago.

Holden had a team of freshmen and sophomores that went 2-20 in his first season, but he said it was a fun challenge as a coach.

Holden has a similar challenge this season, his third year in charge of the Lower Cape May Regional High School boys basketball team.

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"I'm actually really looking forward to it," Holden said.

The Caper Tigers made the South Jersey playoffs last year, but all eight players who were in their rotation for a first-round loss to Woodrow Wilson were seniors.

This year's team is so young that Holden extended tryouts an extra week from the usual 2-3 days.

"We have a large group of seniors that came out that have played basketball at some time or another in their high school careers but didn't play last year as juniors," Holden said.

"I just said it was going to be a clean slate between the coaching staff and the players, and all I wanted to see was intensity and getting after it and just all the basic things. They needed to get back into the swing of things. … You can't really do those things in a two- or three-day tryout."

Holden said his preseason practices have been about getting "back to basics."

"It was about dribbling, passing, defending," he said. "I have a feeling that'll be a very common theme for the next month and a half."

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Dec. 14: at Absegami, 6 p.m.

Dec. 18: vs. Oakcrest, 7 p.m.

Dec. 20: vs. Middle Township, 7 p.m.

Dec. 22: vs. Cape May Tech at Wildwoods Convention Center, 11 a.m.

Dec. 28: vs. Wilmington (Del.) Christian at Wildwoods Convention Center, 8:30 p.m.

Dec. 29: vs. TBD at Wildwoods Convention Center, time TBA Jan. 4: at Bridgeton, 6 p.m.

Jan. 8: at Hammonton, 5:30 p.m.

Jan. 11: at Ocean City, 6 p.m.

Jan. 15: vs. St. Augustine Prep, 7 p.m.

Jan. 17: vs. Mainland Regional, 7 p.m.

Jan. 19: at Wildwood Catholic, 2 p.m.

Jan. 23: vs. Vineland, 7 p.m.

Jan. 25: at Oakcrest, 6 p.m.

Jan. 26: at Haddon Heights, 4 p.m.

Jan. 29: at Middle Township, 7 p.m.

Feb. 1: vs. Bridgeton, 7 p.m.

Feb. 5: vs. Hammonton, 7 p.m.

Feb. 8: vs. Ocean City, 7 p.m.

Feb. 12: at St. Augustine Prep, 6 p.m.

Feb. 21: vs. Wildwood, 7 p.m.


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