On Saturday I’ll have a wrap-up of all the stuff from this week up on the site with notes on a host of players, what we learned and a new Top 10 on the boys and girls sides, so definitely check back for that. I’m actually going to try to post it later tonight for those night owls who may be checking for it.
In addition to all of that stuff, here are a few more extras from this week’s action on the boys and girls sides:
- I’m curious to see how Red Bank Catholic will fare against St. John Vianney on Saturday after the Caseys won their holiday tournament up in North Jersey. Can they carry that momentum into their Class A Central schedule? By the way, top to bottom, Class A Central might be the most competitive division in the Shore in the sense that there are no bad teams. Matawan has improved a lot under Tom Stead after a four-win season and makes every game in that division a tough one.
- Point Boro’s fans drew the rare “no banners or flags” warning at the WOBM Classic final. The “Panther Pit” was waving a flag while Brick Memorial’s Kyle Cherrick was shooting free throws and was warned to put it away. You don’t see that every day.
- The argument for No. 1 is an interesting one because if you were seeding the Shore Conference Tournament right now, you would have to give it to Freehold because the Colonials have the most quality wins in my opinion. However, Monmouth is loaded and has been everything it was billed to be thus far this season and hasn’t had the chance to play teams of the caliber that Freehold has faced. Monmouth faces Neptune on Tuesday and will play Freehold twice this season, so the Falcons will certainly get their chance to emphasize that they are the Shore’s No. 1 team.
- Freehold has the dribble penetrators and array of shooters to bust zones this season. The Colonials are going to see a lot of zone because most teams can hang with them in man-to-man, but the ability of Andrew Gerbehy, Lance McKenzie, Brandon Brown and others to get penetration against zones and get kickouts to one another and to shooter Will Howarth makes them tough to defend. Everyone on the floor for them at any given time is a scoring threat.
- I ran into Red Bank Regional’s all-time leading scorer and former Shore great Mark Donnelly at the Holiday Jubilee over last weekend. Mark now lives in Manasquan with his family and was there with two of his children checking out the games. He starred on the Bucs team that won the 1993 Group III title and then went on to help Davidson reach the NCAA Tournament.
- St. John Vianney is really playing on another level right now. They beat a good St. Rose team handily to win their tournament up at Marist. With superfrosh Michaela Mabrey added to the mix, this team is deeper than any in the Shore right now. The Lancers face nemesis Red Bank Catholic on Saturday, and if they hang another lop-sided score on a good team, they will really start to separate themselves, with only Colts Neck and Neptune and possibly Rumson-Fair Haven in their league.
- Speaking of the Bulldogs, that was a gutsy effort against Southern in the WOBM Classic final. The sign of a good team is one that can still pull out a win against a quality opponent even without playing their best game. When you can get consistent stops on defense, you always have a chance. Also, Rumson’s Kate Miller is one of the Shore’s toughest players. She fell awkwardly and stretched out/possibly dislocated one of her fingers in a painful fashion, yet sucked it up and did not say a word to return on her way to earning tournament MVP honors.
- Good to see a strong start by Manalapan, which has tied its win total from the last two seasons combined and won the inaugural Winter Wave Tournament at Long Branch. Now we’ll see how the Braves do against the always-competitive field in Class A North.
That’s all for now and be sure to check the site tomorrow for a wrap-up of the tournaments and a look ahead.