Boys Basketball – VOTE: Week 5 OC Sports Medicine Player of the Week
For the remainder of the 2022-23 season, Shore Sports Network will recognize the top boys basketball players in the Shore Conference each week. We will recognize the top player in each of the eight Shore Conference divisions, as well as two wild cards for 10 contestants per week.
This week's group is nominated for their performances during the week of Jan. 23 through Jan. 29. Read about this week's nominees and vote for the one that strikes you as the best pick for overall Player of the Week.
Vote in the poll at the end of the post once per hour until the poll closes on Thursday at 10 p.m.
Ocean County Sports Medicine Week 5 Players of the Week
Class A North Player of the Week
Will Bradley, CBA
Last week was a big one for the Colts, as they tried to wrap up the Class A North championship while also stating their case as a top 10 team in the Shore Conference. Bradley and Co. reminded the rest of the Shore of their potential, beating Marlboro in a must-have A North game, then taking out Point Pleasant Boro Saturday in a showdown of teams vying for a seed in the top eight of the Shore Conference Tournament. Bradley was steady in both games, scoring 18 in the win over Marlboro, the pouring in 10 in a balanced Colts win over Point Boro.
Class A North Honorable Mention: Jayden Holmes-Cotter, Freehold Twp; Malachi Harris, Freehold Twp.; Steven Scimone, Marlboro; Alex Frank, Marlboro; D.J. Orloff, Howell
Class A Central Player of the Week
Colin Haluska, Matawan
Haluska hit his biggest shot in his highest-scoring game when Matawan needed it the most. The Huskies lone senior starter hit a contested three-pointer at the fourth-quarter buzzer to send Thursday’s game against Long Branch into overtime, paving the way for a Huskies win and a 29-point effort from Haluska. Two days earlier, Haluska posted 11 points and eight rebounds in a Matawan win over Holmdel that completed a regular-season sweep of the Hornets.
Class A Central Honorable Mention: Jack O’Leary, Raritan; Jayden Elijah, Matawan; Kyle Verriest, St. John Vianney; Chauncey Brown, Matawan; Connor Howard, St. John Vianney
Class A South Player of the Week
Josh Michigan, Brick Memorial
The Mustangs got back into the Class A South race last week with three wins, including a pair against divisional rivals Southern and Toms River South. Michigan authored big nights in all three, scoring 21 in a revenge win over Southern on the road, then 23 in a win over Toms River South. In the other game, Michigan scored 33 of Brick Memorial’s 53 points in a 12-point win over Manchester.
Class A South Honorable Mention: Respect Tyleek, Jackson Memorial; Micah Ford, Toms River North; Owen Baker, Toms River North; Mehki Cherry, Jackson Memorial; Sherrod Nelson, Toms River North; Dylan Russell, Toms River East; Caden Schubiger, Southern
Class B North Player of the Week
Will Nugent, Middletown South
Middletown South keeps winning and a main reason is because different players continue to step up. With senior standout Pat Brown hobbled by an ankle injury last week, Nugent raised his game, averaging a double-double (11.3 points and 11.3 rebounds) in three Middletown South wins over Middletown North, Red Bank and St. John Vianney. His 14 points and 13 rebounds helped the Eagles escape Middletown North with a win while Brown was sidelined, then he scored 16 and eight in the win over Red Bank.
Class B North Honorable Mention: Luke Schorr, Rumson-Fair Haven; Will Surdez, Colts Neck; Dylan Csik, Middletown South; Nick Rigby, Rumson-Fair Haven; Matt Sliva, Middletown South; Tyler Burnham, Red Bank Catholic; Ryan Prior, Red Bank Catholic; Luke Mikolajczyk, Rumson-Fair Haven
Class B Central Player of the Week
Mike Ford, Keyport
Ford picked a great day to have his best day, racking up a career-high 24 points in Keyport’s 67-59 win over Point Beach that set the Red Raiders up to clinch a share of the Class B Central title this week. He scored 16 of Keyport’s 26 points in the first half to keep the Red Raiders afloat after they fell behind by 16 points in the first quarter. He also added nine rebounds, four assists and six steal in that game and later put up 17 points and eight assists in a win over Henry Hudson.
Class B Central Honorable Mention: Davon Foster, Asbury Park; Max Judson, Keyport; Tarrek Mimes, Keyport; Kevin Burns, Point Beach; Jack Fitzpatrick, Henry Hudson; Jacob Edgecomb, Point Beach; Jax Ross, Henry Hudson; Shaborn Goodman, Asbury Park; Mike Alonso, Keansburg
Class B South Player of the Week
Chris Venturoso, Lacey
In order to have a chance to win a share of the Class B South championship this week, Lacey needed a clean sweep last week and the Lions delivered. Venturoso came up big in all three games for the Lions, with the four-year starter averaging better than 19 points and six rebounds in the three victories. His biggest performance of the three was a 27-point effort in an overtime win over Manchester, which Venturoso followed up with a team-high 14 points and a 47-44 win at Central that handed the Golden Eagles their first division loss and evened up the race at the top of the standings.
Class B South Honorable Mention: Troy Buxton, Lacey; Ryan Fitzgerald, Lacey; Dylan Hall, Lacey; Jamari Smith, Barnegat; Brandon Farber, Brick; Evan Weiner, Manchester; Jaymire Watts, Manchester; Miles Chevalier, Central; Jaycen Santucci, Central
Class C North Player of the Week
Darius Adams, Manasquan
Adams is finding his touch in recent weeks and his three performances last week reveal a sophomore star who is locked in heading into February. The 2022 First-Team All-Shore guard filled up the stat sheet with 16 points, eight rebounds and six assists in a 59-47 win over Point Boro, then went off for 28 points in a rout of Neptune – outscoring the entire Scarlet Fliers team, 28-19. Adams then closed out the week with 24 points in a win over Trenton Catholic at Rancocas Valley High School.
Class C North Honorable Mention: Jahlil Bethea, Ranney; Matt Eisenberg, Wall; Shane Ryan, Point Boro; Gio Panzini, St. Rose; Stephen Mellet, Point Boro; Isaac Hester, Ranney
Class C South Player of the Week
Ta’haj Wiggins, Monmouth
Monmouth entered this week with its goal of winning the Class B South championship still on the table and the performance Wiggins turned in last week helped the Falcons make it that far. Wiggins averaged 21.3 points in three Falcons games last week, including 18 points and 14 rebounds Saturday in Monmouth’s 54-30 rout of Shore.
Class C South Honorable Mention: Liam Gajewski, Shore; Pete Farlekas, Donovan Catholic; Ron Richardson, Ocean; Zayier Dean, Ocean; Derrick Marsh, Lakewood; Brian Farrell, Donovan Catholic; Jayson King, Jackson Liberty
Jahlil Bethea, Ranney
With Isaac Hester already in the fold, Bethea became eligible on Jan. 14 to give Ranney what might be the Shore’s most explosive duo. Last week, Bethea hit the 20-point mark in all three of Ranney’s games last week, leading the Panthers to wins over Wall and McNair Academy to move them within one win of Shore Conference Tournament qualification. Bethea also put up 21 points and eight rebounds in a loss to No. 2 St. Rose.
Matt Eisenberg, Wall
Eisenberg’s memorable week started with a high-scoring effort in a blowout loss to Ranney, then ended with an even higher-scoring game in what ended up being a milestone win for the Wall program and its head coach. After scoring 22 points earlier in the week in a loss to Ranney, Eisenberg poured in 24 on Saturday to lead Wall to a 64-63, double-overtime win over Ocean that secured Crimson Knights coach Bob Klatt his 300th career win.