SUCCESSFUL COACH — Former VVS and Siena College basketball standout Scott Knapp led the Schenectady Legends out of the Independent Basketball Association to a 13-0 record in his first season as the team’s head coach. (Photo submitted) (Photo submitted)
Former star player Knapp coaches team to perfect mark
SCHENECTADY —Scott Knapp, the son of former Vernon-Verona-Sherrill head basketball coach Al Knapp, is sure doing a great job of following in his father’s footsteps.
The younger Knapp went undefeated in his first season of coaching the Schenectady Legends basketball club in the Independent Basketball Association.
The former Siena College standout and 2001 graduate led the Legends to a 13-0 overall record.
Knapp graduated from Siena as the school’s all-time leader in three-point field goals with 203, and free-throw percentage at 89 percent. He was also a former Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference Rookie of the Year, and is also the 12th on the Saints’ all-time scoring list with 1,381 points.
Knapp is a pharmaceutical salesman for dermatology products by day, and a part-time head basketball coach by night.
“It’s hard to tell where I go from here. Part of me would like to continue coaching as it comes very naturally to me having watched my father for so many years but I must make sure I am able to complete my work and family requirements first,” he said. “In any case if I do coach again next year or sometime in the future it would be really hard to top what we accomplished this season.”
His roster was loaded with players from the Capital District.
Schenectady County Community College product Lloyd Johnson, a 6-foot guard, was the Legends’ leading scorer this past season, and scored an IBA championship-series record 61 points in the title game, a 154-137 win over the Kenosha Ballers in the high-scoring league. Johnson averaged about 30 points per game, while E.J. Gallup, who played at University of Albany and Coastal Carolina, added more than 20 points per contest.
“The real key to our season was the great group of guys I was able to assemble,” Knapp said.
“I selected each player based on a number of factors. I didn’t go out and get the twelve best scorers. I really looked for guys who first and foremost are good people, knew how to play the game and could fill and accept a role we needed. Luckily the capital district is loaded with talented players so I was able to find everyone we needed living within 25 minutes of each other,” he added.
“If I return I would expect to have a number of the same guys,” Knapp continued. “Hopefully the success we had will help some of the guys land jobs overseas making more money but most are comfortable with their regular jobs and are just looking to continue playing as long as they can on a team like the Schenectady Legends.”
Knapp is the son of Al Knapp, the all-time Section III leader in wins over a coaching career with 539 wins between coaching at Brookfield and VVS. The elder Knapp retired from coaching in 2011 with a career record of 539-205 after 34 years of coaching. He captured 15 Tri-Valley League titles at VVS, and a Section III Class B title in 1999.
His teams only had two losing seasons in 34 years.
The younger Knapp said that his father was at his first game.
“My father actually was at the first game of the season down in Binghamton so I am very glad he got to see me coach. We won that game by a lot so I didn’t really have to do a whole lot, but I know he was happy to see me coaching so that made me feel good,” he said. “He did provide some input during the season. One day I got a letter from him with some out of bounds plays drawn up so that was helpful as well.”
The younger Knapp lives just north of Albany in Latham with his wife Jennifer and have a six-year-old son Alexander and a four-year-old daughter Samantha.