Boys Basketball – 2021 Season Preview: Toms River South
Since the graduation of Tymere Berry – one of Ocean County’s better players and all-around athletes of the past decade – Toms River South has dipped toward the basement in the Class A South division and will be looking to inject some energy into the program under new coach Vinnie Arminio. Even through its recent struggles, Toms River South is always a pretty reliable bet to play rival and A South dynasty Toms River North tough at least once and now that the Mariners are likely to come back to the pack this year, the Indians are hoping to make some noise in a more open division with their new coach.
The tough part for Toms River South will be doing all that with new players. Jalen Folsom, Nick Luongo and Phil Fried were the team’s most productive players a year ago, so it will take a big effort from a new group to make the Indians a contender. Senior forward John Huber is the senior most likely to emerge as a top scorer, particularly in the front court. Classmate Neil Kwincinski, meanwhile, has experience in the back court and will team with senior John Gallo and junior Gavin Migliori in the three-guard attack.
Central Regional transfer Wyatt Sternberg gives Toms River South some size in the lineup at 6-foot-4, as well as another junior for Arminio to build around beyond this season. Guard Colin Raimann is another piece to the junior core, while Mike Citta, Gerry Ferrigno and Domenic Catz are three more seniors hoping to get a chance to close out their high-school careers with something resembling a complete season.
Head Coach: Vinnie Arminio, first season
2019-20 Record: 5-21 (4-10, sixth in Class A South)
2020 Postseason Performance: Did not reach Shore Conference Tournament; lost in NJSIAA South Jersey Group III first round (Moorestown)
Disclaimer: Projected lineups listed in the 2021 Shore Sports Network Preview are not necessarily directly from coaches. Some are, while others are projections from Shore Sports Network staff. In either case, the projected lineup is fluid and could change leading up to the start of the season and beyond. Check back for periodic updates to every team's projected starting lineup on shoresportsnetwork.com.
Gavin Migliori, Jr., 6-0, Guard
Neil Kwincinski, Sr., 5-10, Guard (R)
John Gallo, Sr., 6-5, Forward (R)
John Huber, Sr., 6-3, Forward (RS)
Wyatt Sternberg, Jr., 6-4, Forward (Transfer from Central)
Jalen Folsom, 6-0, Guard
Nick Luongo, 6-1, Guard
Phil Fried, 6-2, Forward
Nickerson Jean-Louis, 6-0, Guard
Steve Beaton, 6-3, Guard
Off the Bench
Mike Citta, Sr., 5-9, Guard (R)
Colin Raimann, Jr., 6-0, Guard
Gerry Ferrigno, Sr., 6-0, Forward
Dominick Catz, Sr., 5-10, Guard
RS – Returning Starter
R – Returning Varsity Player
Player to Watch: John Huber
With three reliable offensive players, including an all-division guard in Jalen Folsom, and some role players graduating, Toms River South will need what experience it does have to step up. Huber was a steady presence in the starting lineup as a junior and he will look to be a leader, as well as a producer for a team trying to change its image in a pod with a very local flavor (more on that shortly).
Big Shoes to Fill: Nick Kwincinski
Folsom’s graduation leaves a sizable void left by a player who can score one-on-one and while most coaches aren’t going to require players to manufacture their own offense if it is not part of their game, Toms River South will need some guards to help drive the offense. With some big minutes on his resume from a year ago, Kwincinski will be one of the primary candidates to deliver at guard.
Impact Newcomer: Colin Raimann
As a varsity newcomer, Raimann will have to play his way into the starting lineup but he’ll have a good chance to do so playing for a new coach who will be looking for any spark to ignite his team, particularly if it is a player who can help beyond this season and score in this upcoming one.
X-Factor: Toms River Parity?
With Donovan Catholic part of the six-team pod that houses Toms River South, Toms River East and Toms River North, all four Toms River schools will be scheduled to face one another two times each. Those games always have some extra intensity and with Toms River North graduating its top players from a Shore Conference Tournament finalist and Toms River East losing its top three players from a winning team, there are some questions regarding how good each team will be heading into the season. Those conditions could create an opportunity for Toms River South to make a move up the Toms River pecking order in what is likely to be a volatile 2021 season.
Jan. 26 vs. Donovan Catholic, 6:30 p.m.
Jan. 28 at Donovan Catholic, 6:30 p.m.
Feb. 1 at Toms River North, 6:30 p.m.
Feb. 3 vs. Toms River North, 6:30 p.m.
Feb. 5 at Brick, 6:30 p.m.
Feb. 9 at Toms River East, 6:30 p.m.
Feb. 11 vs. Toms River East, 6:30 p.m.
Feb. 15 at Southern, 6:30 p.m.
Feb. 17 vs. Southern, 6:30 p.m.
Feb. 20 at Brick Memorial, 1 p.m.
Feb. 23 vs. Lacey, 6:30 p.m.
Feb. 25 at Lacey, 6:30 p.m.