Toms River North girls basketball team (Kevin Williams, Townsquare Media NJ)

The Pine Belt Arena provides the home court for the Toms River North basketball teams and as the saying goes “there’s no place like home.”

Last night the Mariners boys and girls teams coasted to wins in the Shore Conference Tournament at the arena and it sent them to the quarterfinals this weekend which will be played on their home court.

Jaden Rhoden & Travis Holland scored 14 points each to lead a balanced attack as the 5th seeded North boys routed CBA 74-50 and advanced to the quarterfinals for the fourth time in the last five years.  The Mariners will next face #4 Rumson, a 15-point winner over Central on Sunday at 4:15.

SI Swimsuit Editor MJ Day who grew up in Ocean County and now lives in Montclair (Kevin Williams, Townsquare Media NJ)

The other boy’s quarterfinal matchups find top-seed and defending champion Mater Dei Prep playing Manasquan, #2 seed Ranney facing Middletown North and 3rd seed Freehold Township opposing Marlboro, who routed Lakewood Thursday night.

On the girls side it’s pretty much the usual suspects with Manasquan, Red Bank Catholic, St. John Vianney, Rumson, St. Rose, Neptune and Middletown South all advancing to tomorrow’s quarterfinals at the Pine Belt Arena.  TR North joined the party with a dominating 47-26 win over Red Bank with Jenna Paul’s 16 points leading the Lady Mariners.  They face RBC tomorrow at 2:30.

The semifinals are also at the PBA on Monday and Tuesday night…for complete details visit

As it usually does my Sports Illustrated arrived in the mailbox Thursday and on the cover is the incredibly beautiful Kate Upton.  Yes it’s the annual swimsuit issue which draws cheers from many and jeers from a whole bunch of people as well.

Of course it has nothing to do with sports but it comes during a time when we’re usually fed up with winter and need something to brighten the day.  Take it for what it is and if you are opposed simply don’t open it.  By the way MJ Day who is the SI Swimsuit Editor grew up in Ocean County and now lives in Montclair.