Boys Basketball – VOTE: Orthopaedic Institute Week 4 Player of the Week
Each week over the course of the high school basketball season, Shore Sports Network recognizes the top performers in each division of Shore Conference boys basketball and gives the readers a chance to weigh in.
Read about the eight candidates - six divisional players of the week and two wild cards - from last week and pick the one you think has the best case as the overall Player of the Week, with the winner taking home a Surf Taco gift card. Vote once per hour in the poll at the bottom of the post until voting ends on Wednesday at 10 p.m.
Class A North Player of the Week
Alex Ratner, Marlboro
While his team had to scratch and claw to go 2-1 this past week, Ratner had a milestone moment in the midst of three more strong individual performances. He scored 21 points in a win over Howell and 27 to cap the week with a win over Rumson-Fair Haven, but it was his 36 points – including one basket in particular – in a loss to CBA that made the week special. With a three-pointer in the third quarter, Ratner joined the 1,000-point club and nearly carried Marlboro to a come-from-behind win over the Colts.
Class A North Honorable Mention: Bobby Pirie, Middletown South; Colin Farrell, CBA; Allen Rahanoff, Freehold Boro; James Anderson, Middletown South; Zach Orrico, Freehold Twp.; Jayce Schapiro, Freehold Twp.
Class A Central Player of the Week
Derek Chan, Holmdel
Holmdel is still alive in its pursuit of a Class A Central championship heading into the week and in order to set up what is essentially a do-or-die game vs. Manasquan on Thursday, the Hornets had to beat two tough opponents last week. They did just that, defeating both Red Bank Catholic and St. Rose, with Chan leading the scoring effort in both. Chan scored 20 points to pace Holmdel to a win over the previously-ranked Caseys, then poured in 18 in the win over St. Rose.
Class A Central Honorable Mention: Geoff Schroeder, Rumson-Fair Haven; Ben Roy, Manasquan; John Beattie, St. Rose; C.J. Ruoff, Red Bank Catholic; Cyril Arvanitis, Red Bank Catholic; John Smith, Shore; Hunter Reid, Rumson-Fair Haven; Jack Carroll, Rumson-Fair Haven
Class A South Player of the Week
I-Meer Johnson, Central
Central has its second representative of 2020’s Player of the Week series, with Johnson following teammate Eugene Brown and doing so with comparable production. Johnson led Central by scoring 17 of their 38 points in a loss to Toms River East, then turned in a career-best 35 points and 18 rebounds to lead a come-from-behind win over Brick Memorial to cap the week.
Class A South Honorable Mention: Najae Hallenbeck, Toms River North; Nick Luongo, Toms River South; Ty Williams, Brick; Joaquin Ragland, Brick; Ben Ridgway, Southern; Jalen Folsom, Toms River South
Class B North Player of the Week
Azmere Wilson, Neptune
Statistically speaking, Wilson had a fine week but it is his developing reputation as a go-to player in crunch-time that lands him among this week’s candidates. Earlier in the season, Wilson hit a pair of game-winning free throws with less than one second left to beat Rumson-Fair Haven and this past week, he converted a rare four-point play in the final seconds to help Neptune stun Matawan, 45-42. He led the Scarlet Fliers with 13 points in the win and also contributed nine points to a balanced scoring effort in a win over Colts Neck earlier in the week.
Class B North Honorable Mention: Quinn Calabrese, Wall; Alex Leiba, St. John Vianney; Nate Williams, St. John Vianney; Nick Ferrogine, Red Bank; Cole Kelly, Ocean; Corey Miller, Ocean
Class B Central Player of the Week
Nick Troccoli, Ranney
In Ranney’s biggest win of the year, its biggest scoring contribution came from one of its less-heralded starters who also happens to be one of its returning players. Troccoli, a reserve on Ranney’s Tournament of Champions winner a year ago, went off for 23 points last Monday in a crucial home win over Mater Dei, which included six three-pointers from the junior guard.
Class B Central Honorable Mention: Elijah Perkins, Ranney; Jake Clark, Point Beach; Eryck Brown, Asbury Park; Chris Venturoso, Point Beach; D.J. Thomson, Keyport; Mike Mohr, Henry Hudson
Class B South Player of the Week
Troy Buxton, Lacey
Speaking of rousing performances from the three-point line, Buxton led a three-point barrage by Lacey in the Lions’ come-from-behind win over Toms River South. Lacey hit 16 threes in the game, 11 of which came during the second half. Buxton his six of them and finished with a career-high 26 points, which followed up a team-high 14 in a loss to Manchester a day earlier.
Class B South Honorable Mention: Sam Young, Point Boro; Samir Padilla, Lakewood; Brendan Revello, Barnegat; Jaxon Baker, Barnegat; Respect Tyleek, Lakewood; D’Maari Brown, Manchester; Jordan Dupont, Manchester; Neithan Ramos, Donovan Catholic
Geoff Schroeder, Rumson-Fair Haven
Rumson has scored plenty of points and had plenty of point-scorers on its deep roster and Schroeder always manages to find himself in the mix. Last week, he scored 29 points to go with six steals in a rout of Long Branch, put up 17 points and five assists in a win over Monmouth and tallied 16 in Saturday’s loss at Marlboro.
Colin Farrell, CBA
This season has been nothing if not streaky for CBA, which opened with four losses, followed by wins in four out of five, then with three straight losses to drop to 4-8. The Colts have since responded with four straight wins and Farrell has led the team in scoring in each game. During the past week, the junior guard scored 14 points in a win over Freehold Boro, put up 22 in a huge win at Marlboro and netted 21 to earn MVP honors against Piscataway at the Aliyah Outscores Diabetes Showcase at Marist.