NJSIAA Tournament

Thursday, March 7

Group Semifinal

Group III

At Brick Memorial High School

Moorestown 64, Wall 44

Sophomore Pat Lacey scored 13 of his team-high 15 points in the first half to lead Wall into the halftime locker room with a two-point lead, but the Quakers (26-5) blitzed the Crimson Knights (21-9) in the second half and advance to the state final for the first time since 1960.

Senior Nick Cartwright-Atkins led Moorestown with 23 points, 11 rebounds and five assists and senior Akhil Giri hit three of his five three-pointers in the second half on the way to 17 points off the bench.

Freshman Colin Ackerman backed up Lacey with 14 points and senior Trey Dombroski - the lone senior in Wall's regular rotation this season - capped his basketball career with four points and seven rebounds. Moorestown limited Wall leading scorer Quinn Calabrese to five points for the game.

Wall used a 14-2 run to go up 22-16 in the second quarter and took a 26-24 lead into the half before Moorestown stormed into the lead and outscored the Crimson Knights, 24-8, in the third quarter and 40-18 in the second half.

Moorestown will take on Ramapo in the Group III championship game at Rutgers on Sunday.

 

Saturday, March 9

Non-Public B Championship

At RWJ Barnabas Health Arena, Toms River

Ranney vs. Roselle Catholic, 7 p.m.

 

Sunday, March 10

Group IV Championship

At Louis Brown Athletic Center, Rutgers University

Freehold Township vs. Newark East Side, 12 p.m.

 

Road to the Finals

Wednesday, March 6

Sectional Final

South Jersey Non-Public B

At Jackson Liberty

(2) Ranney 54, (1) Wildwood Catholic 50 (OT)

With their team on the brink of elimination, senior Scottie Lewis and freshman Elijah Perkins delivered down the stretch and the Panthers (28-3) survived an overtime thriller against the Crusaders (27-2) to win their second straight South Jersey Non-Public B championship.

Lewis hit the game-tying free throws with 22.5 seconds left and blocked a shot on the next Wildwood Catholic possession. Senior Ahmadu Sarnor pulled up for a clean look at the free throw line but his potential game-winner missed long.

Lewis finished with 17 points, 13 rebounds and four blocks but fouled out with 3:18 to go in overtime. With Lewis out, Perkins stepped up and scored the go-ahead basket off a feed from junior Phillip Wheeler with 2:07 left in overtime to make it 52-50, Ranney.

Perkins then missed the front end of a 1-and-1, but made up for it by making one of two with 35.3 seconds left on Ranney's next trip. Junior Jacob Hopping was briefly open for a potential game-tying three on Wildwood Catholic's last possession but Wheeler blocked the shot and Ranney retained possession with eight seconds left.

Sarnor hit the second of two free throws to seal the game and finished with 10 points. Senior Bryan Antoine scored 15 points, including 13 in the second half and overtime.

Hopping led Wildwood Catholic with 14 points, while junior Taj Thweatt and sophomore DeSean Lopez each added 11 and senior Jahlil White put up 10.

Ranney will meet Roselle Catholic Saturday in the Non-Public B final, a rematch of last year's classic won by Roselle Catholic, 63-61. Ranney defeated Roselle Catholic during the regular season, 63-49.

 

Group Semifinal

Group IV

At Egg Harbor Twp. High School

Freehold Twp. 44, Cherokee 42

Senior Seth Meisner led a balanced scoring effort with 10 points and the Patriots (24-4) edged the Chiefs (22-9) to advance to the Group IV championship game for the first time in program history.

Freehold Township clinched the game with a 7-0 fourth quarter run that turned a 36-34 deficit with under three minutes to go into a 41-36 advantage with just under a minute left.

Senior Zach Barilka added nine points and seniors Greg Billups and Matt Santangelo each added eight for Freehold Township.

The Patriots will play in Sunday's Group IV final at Rutgers against Newark East Side, with the start time still to be determined.

 

Group II

At Perth Amboy High School

Haddonfield 53, Manasquan 43

Freshman Ben Roy scored 11 points but the Warriors (29-4) could not get their offense going in a loss to the defending Group II champion Bulldawgs (30-1).

Haddonfield limited junior Alex Galvan to eight points and senior Brad McCabe to six, with Galvan battling foul trouble throughout.

Sophomore Casey Mulligan pitched in eight points off the bench for Manasquan.

Manasquan also kept Haddonfield's top scorers well below their season averages, with Dan Fleming scoring just seven and Mike DiPersia pouring in nine. Senior Aiden Blake burned Manasquan for 16 points and senior Drew Gavranich added 10 in the win.

Haddonfield will defend its Group II title against West Side Newark in Sunday's Group II final at Rutgers.

 

Tuesday, March 5

Sectional Finals

Central Jersey Group III

(1) Wall 53, (6) Burlington Twp. 47 - Full Story

Junior Quinn Calabrese scored 27 points and led a fourth-quarter surge that propelled the Crimson Knights (21-8) past the Falcons (22-8) for their first sectional championship since 1973.

Wall took a 26-19 to halftime only to watch Burlington Township rally for a 37-34 lead early in the fourth quarter. Calabrese then ignited a 16-3 run that swung the game back in Wall's favor and left the Crimson Knights ahead, 48-40, with under two minutes to play.

Calabrese scored nine points in the fourth quarter, which was more than any other Wall player scored for the game. Sophomore Pat Lacey poured in eight points and senior Trey Dombrowski cleaned up with six points and 13 rebounds for the newly-crowned champs.

Wall's next stop during its historic season will be Brick Memorial High School, where the Crimson Knights will take on South Jersey champion Moorestown Thursday in the Group III semifinal at 7 p.m.

 

Central Jersey Group II

(1) Manasquan 78, (3) Lincoln 42

Senior Brad McCabe led four Manaqsuan players in double-figure scoring with 23 points and added four assists and three steals as the Warriors (29-3) overwhelmed the Lions (20-9) to win their second sectional championship in four years.

Junior Alex Galvan added 16 points and nine rebounds while freshman Ben Roy chipped in 13 points and three assists. Junior Kieran Flanagan also filled up the stat sheet with 11 points, six rebounds and five assists for Manasquan.

Manasquan stormed out to a 15-2 lead and led 22-6 after Roy capped a nine-point first quarter with a three-pointer to end it. The Warriors led by as many as 24 in the first half and built the lead as high as 42 points for the game.

Manasquan will continue its quest for the program's first trip to the Tournament of Champions Wednesday in a high-profile showdown at Perth Amboy High School. The Warriors will meet defending Group II champion Haddonfield (29-1) in a battle between 29-win teams, set to tip off at 7 p.m.

 

Monday, March 4

Sectional Final

Central Jersey Group IV

(3) Freehold Twp. 57, (1) Trenton 56

Senior Greg Billups scored 16 points, grabbed six rebounds, dished out six assists and picked off four steals before fouling out and the Patriots held on to beat the Tornadoes and win the first sectional championship in program history.

Billups led a 10-0 run that turned a 53-47 deficit into a 57-53 lead for Freehold Township. The 6-5 senior hit a three-pointer, two foul shots, assisted the other two field goals in the run and came up with two steals.

Billups fouled out with his team up by two and the Patriots held on to a 57-56 lead after the ensuing trip to the foul line.

Freehold Township turned the ball over twice in the final 1:21 after Billups fouled out but its defense also forced two turnovers and stopped Trenton on its final possession.

Senior Cristian Corcione scored 10 points, including the three-pointer that put the Patriots in the lead for good. Seniors Seth Meisner, Zach Barilka and Matt Santangelo added nine points apiece, with Barilka also grabbing seven rebounds and Santangelo providing his scoring off the bench.

Freehold Township had lost six sectional championship games since 1996, including three straight from 2015 to 2017, before breaking through on Monday night. The Patriots will attempt to advance to their first Group IV final when they take on Cherokee in the Group IV semifinals on Wednesday night in Egg Harbor.

 

Sectional Semifinals

South Jersey Non-Public B

(2) Ranney 76, (3) Rutgers Prep 62

Senior Bryan Antoine scored nine of his 16 points in a dominant first quarter by Ranney and the Panthers blew past the Argonauts and into the sectional final round for the second straight season.

Antoine's fast start highlighted another strong first quarter for Ranney, which grabbed a 24-7 lead on Rutgers Prep after one quarter. The Panthers made a similar first-quarter impact on Saturday against Trenton Catholic, which fell into a 26-9 hole when Ranney shot 7-for-10 from three-point range in the first eight minutes.

Junior Phillip Wheeler scored a team-high 18 points on Monday and senior Scottie Lewis added 17 for Ranney, which plays the winner of Tuesday's game between top-seeded Wildwood Catholic and No. 4 Immaculata.

 

 

 

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