Lindner leads Germantown Academy

Posted: February 18, 2013

IF ANYONE wants to resurrect the old "M*A*S*H" TV series, Nick Lindner is ready to star.

Well, as long as any future injuries would be fake.

During his just-completed senior basketball season at Germantown Academy, the 5-10, 155-pound guard dislocated a finger in practice and then, in games, suffered a sprained wrist along with two sprained ankles (left one each time) and a concussion. How does he feel now?

"Never better!" he gushed. "It was awesome!"

It was the winning, Saturday night at Malvern Prep, of GA's first championship in the Pennsylvania Schools Independent Tournament.

The Patriots topped Kiski Prep, which is so far west it's almost in Ohio, 53-47, as Lindner contributed 11 points (final career total: 1,234), six assists, and made sure his squad kept its feet on the pedal.

"We wanted to control the pace. Keep it up-tempo," Lindner said. "That's our style anyway, but Kiski had some big guys, so we really wanted to get out on the break."

Did someone say break? At least Lindner's injuries involved none of those, though the concussion, suffered Feb. 3 in a nonleague game with Mercersburg, certainly made him feel as if his head was broken.

"It happened on a fastbreak, maybe five feet past halfcourt," Lindner said. "A kid stepped in front of me and his shoulder hit me right in the head. I don't remember anything after that and," he laughed, "I don't want to look at the tape.

"I got nauseous right away, so we knew it was a concussion. I missed 3 days of school and when I drove in the fourth day, I had to call my dad to come get me because I didn't think I should drive home. I couldn't remember where I'd parked my car. We had to look around the lot.

"Because concussions are such a serious thing now, I had to go through the whole 'return to play' process. I was showing no symptoms when I woke up [Feb. 8]. For the first 48 hours after that, you can't even run up the steps. Then you start with jogging very slowly for 30 minutes on a treadmill and it goes from there."

GA, the Inter-Ac League champion at 10-0, enjoyed a bye in the Indy tourney's first round. Lindner was still idle for Wednesday's quarterfinal win over Abington Friends, then returned to action for Friday's semifinal success over Haverford School.

"It felt good to be back out there," he said. "Winning this title is better than the Inter-Ac because it's the first for our school and it means we ended the season on a great note."

Forward Greg Dotson added 20 points and 10 rebounds and finished the GA portion of his career with 1,013 points; he played earlier at Abington. Center Julian Moore (Penn State) added nine points and 10 boards and, like Dotson, blocked three shots.

As coach Jim Fenerty noted, the 23-6 Patriots suffered four of their losses when Lindner was out with the injuries/concussion.

"This is a young guy who was blessed throughout most of his career with good health, being injury- free," Fenerty said. "This year, he displayed a remarkable attitude as he simply refused to let these injuries stop him from driving his team to an unblemished Inter-Ac title and now a State title. Fran O'Hanlon is getting a quality player and even better young man."

O'Hanlon, the Philly native, is Lafayette's coach.

"I'll just be a facilitator," said Lindner, a Doylestown resident. "They like to play up-tempo, so it'll be my job to be smart and fast with the ball. They have a lot of scorers. They don't need me for that."

By the way, GA's fans stormed the court after Saturday's win. Was Lindner concerned?

"Ah, I was just going with the flow," he said, laughing. "I was pretty excited. I might have knocked out some people."

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