attachment-Girls Basketball Intro

By Nick Lowe & Doug Brustman

As we get ready to enjoy the holiday season with our families, we also get ready to enjoy the 38th WOBM Christmas Classic next week in Toms River. We get to see a lot of familiar faces from last year’s tournament and a strong chance to see a repeat of last year's finals.  

There are some changes this year, instead of one bracket, there are two separate brackets this season due the reduction of games allowed this season.  In the Ray Cervino bracket, we see defending champions RBC as the #1 seed and last year’s runner up Manasquan is the # 2 seed. 

In the Kathy Snyder bracket you have the only non Shore Conference team Ewing, who is ranked in the top 20 in the state, as the #1 seed. Ewing was in the tournament last year, but had to withdraw due to Covid. Look for them to make a splash and show they can be a threat against some of the Shore Conference’s best teams.  Rumson-Fair Haven is the #2 seed in this bracket and ironically was supposed to face Ewing last season in the WOBM until Ewing withdrew. 

Ray Cervino Bracket Seeds

1- RBC

2- Manasqun

3- Toms River North

4- Donovan Catholic

5- Middletown South


7- Toms River South

8- Lacey

1st Round Matchups

#1 RBC vs #8 Lacey- I don't think many people will give Lacey a shot here, and with good reason.  The defending WOBM Christmas Classic Champs return 3 starters from last year's team in seniors Emma Carmen and Casey Prior, as well as sophomore Christina Liggio. Tessa Carmen made a big splash as a freshman last year and will be seeing a lot more playing time this season.  RBC also boasts a wealth of young freshman talent, led by the team's leading scorer to date Addy Nyemcheck.  Christina Liggio's twin freshmen sisters Katie and Tessa Liggio, have also made an impression in this young season, as has Sophie Smith, Daniela Maletsky, and Lola Giordano.  This team is deep and will wear down a young Lacey team led by Seniors Madison MacGillivray and Riley Mahan, Junior Brooke Schmidt, and sophomore Reece Paget.  Tough draw for Lacey here.  Prediction- RBC

Joe Montano always has RBC ready to play
Joe Montano always has RBC ready to play

#2 Manasquan vs #7 Toms River South-  A rematch in the finals is exactly what Manasquan is looking for this year.  Like RBC, there aren't many teams in this tournament who can go as deep on the bench as Manaquan can.  Manasquan is led by Junior Hope Masonius, who leads Squan in all statistical categories this young season.  Squan's starting 5 are as solid as they come, with seniors Katie Collins and Rylyn Orlando, junior McKenna Karlson,  and sophomore Olivia Shaughnessy.  Sophomore guards Shea Donnelly and Shannon Heine look to get lots of minutes off the bench, Freshman Jordan Hollowell and Ava Frith will see some minutes as well during the tournament.  Toms River South is led by four  battle tested seniors in Cara Cribbin, Emma Wagner,, Gabrielle Balter, and Ryanne Gethard.  Junior center Meaghan Weatherstone is leading the team in scoring and steals through 2 games.  Manasquan is just too deep for TRS to hang with.  Prediction- Manasquan

#3 Toms River North vs #6 Central.- Toms River North brings back two seniors from last year's squad in Julia Grodzicki and Arliana Torres.  Both saw significant minutes on a senior laden team, and look to lead a younger, less experienced TRN team.  Junior Megan Sias, one of the best post players in the tournament, has returned from a season ending injury last year and is rounding back into form.  Senior Darcy Gaboury and sophomore Jordyn Brown are going to be count ed on to fill the scoring gap.  Central is led by Riley Coltenback, a certified scorer who leads the Golden Eagles attack.  Seniors Kelsey and Katelyn DiMichele and Skye DiCillo will be counted on to provide leadership for Coach Torsiello's squad.  Junior Makenna Leszyzynski is leading the team in scoring so far this season.  This will be a tough task for Central, but an upset isn't out of the question. Prediction- TRN

#4 Donovan Catholic vs #5 Middletown South- As seeding goes, this is the most even matchup on the board for the 1st round.  Donovan has had a tough start to the season, but they are led by the dynamic senior Gabby Ross.  Donovan graduated a wealth of talent from last year's squad.  Seniors Marli Main and Abigail Piotrowski will be leaned on much more this year to support Ross.  Sophomore Brooke Bowbliss and Freshman Anais Friedman will be counted on by Coach Jansen to contribute as well.  Middletown South, under new coach Megan Cranwell, has also had a tough start to their season.  The Eagles are led by juniors Erin Mayerhoffer and Cassidy Brown and will rely on three talented sophomores in Amanda McGregor, Elizabeth Tardy, and Caitlin Whyte.  Both teams will be looking for a win in the first round before facing RBC in the 2nd round.  Prediction- Middletown South

Kathy Snyder Bracket Seeds

1- Ewing

2- Rumson-Fair Haven

3- Wall

4- Red Bank Regional

5- Manchester

6- Point Boro

7- Toms River East

8- Brick Memorial

#1 Ewing vs #8 Brick Memorial- Ewing, who is ranked 9th in the state, will look to make a statement in the WOBM this year after being forced out in the 2021 tournament due to Covid. The team is led by juniors Rhian Stokes, who is averaging 26 points a game, and Joi Johnson, who is averaging 22 points a game to start the season.  Brick Memorial’s roster looks very similar to the Mustangs soccer roster this season.  Senior Layla Marotta and junior Kayla Herzer lead the team early on this season, both averaging 8 points a game.  Prediction - Ewing

#2 Rumson-Fair Haven vs #7 Toms River East - Rumson is led by senior and 1,000 point scorer Julia Corsentino who is averaging just under 17 points a game to start this season.  She is one of the toughest competitors in the Shore and leaves it all on the court.  As a freshman last year, Sylvie Notine had a breakout tournament, showing everyone how dangerous she can shoot the ball. The Bulldogs are also led by juniors Ella Mason and Ranney transfer Raquel Guidetti. Look for Rumson to make a deep run in this year's tournament. Toms River East are led by senior Abigail Goodall and junior Yana Supak, both averaging 13 points a game this season. TRE always plays tough defense that keeps them in games against teams that may be better then them on paper. Prediction - Rumson-Fair Haven

#3 Wall vs #6 Point Boro - Wall started to get noticed last year in the Shore Conference after their performance in the WOBM going 2-1. They cracked the Top 10 last year and started this season ranked 7th. They are led by juniors Emily Tvrdik and Shayne Eldridge and provide Wall with a hard 1-2 attack on offense. Sophomore Marisa Amitie will look to improve from her freshman year to provide Wall with another option on offense. Point Boro is a very young team with five of their key players being sophomores. They have a lot of size that can cause problems for opposing teams on the defensive end and helps give them an edge on rebounding. Sophomore Gabby Mellet is averaging 14.5 rebounds a game while Katherine Henn is averaging 13 points and 5 rebounds a game. Sophomore Vanessa Haas has been proving a spark off the bench averaging 9.5 points and 9 rebounds a game. Prediction - Wall

#4 Red Bank Regional vs #5 Manchester - Red Bank Regional is a difficult team to prepare for with their “Big 3”. Senior Josie Munson has the ability to take it to the rim or pull up and hit a jump shot, she is averaging 16 points a game. Camryn Gardner is one of the hardest players to game plan for. Her size allows her to be a force inside the paint, but she also can handle point guard duties if needed. She has 29 rebounds and 13 blocks to start the season in three games.  Sophomore Caroline Polloway will look to use her height advantage and cause problems for defenders inside the paint. Manchester is led by one of the best players in the Shore and she is only a junior. Devyn Quigley is averaging just under 38 points a game early in this season. She also leads the team with 52 rebounds and 21 steals. She is showing she is a complete player this year. Prediction - Red Bank Regional

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