The one, two and four seeds won in both the girls’ and boys’ Somerset County Tournament quarterfinals Tuesday night, but both Franklin squads – seeded fifth – beat higher seeded opponents to move on to Thursday’s semifinals.
In a doubleheader at Hillsborough – which was the fourth seed in both brackets, the Warrior boys won 68-59, while the girls won 54-50 in overtime.
Meanwhile, the 6th-seede Ridge boys knocked off third-seed Immaculata, 66-61 in Somerville.
Below are the recaps, followed by semifinal matchups for Thursday night, to be played at higher seeds:
BOYS’ SOMERSET COUNTY TOURNAMENT
#1 Rutgers Prep 76, #8 Bound Brook 66: The Crusaders were down double-digits at the half, and trailed by 20 at the end of three quarters before closing to within ten by the final buzzer. But Rutgers Prep (18-7) was too much for Bound Brook (19-4), with two players cracking the 20-point mark. Cameron Piggee – who’s missed several games due to injury – scored 21 points, while Jadin Collins added 20. Myles Parker added a dozen.
#5 Franklin 68, #4 Hillsborough 59: The Warriors started strong, jumping out to a 22-12 lead after one quarter, and led by eight at the half. Despite a push by the home Raiders (17-7) to close to within 45-36 at the end of three periods, Franklin (16-9) held on for the win. They got 23 from Cam Brown and 21 from Cameron Snowden, with Jake Noviello adding ten. Hillsborough had four players in doubel figures, led by Trevor Moncrease with 15 and 14 from Zion Harrison.
#6 Ridge 66, #3 Immaculata 61: Immaculata led 21-17 after one,found themselves down one at the half, but came back in the third to take a 51-46 lead at the end of three. But Ridge won the final quarter, doubling up the Spartans 20-10. The Red Devils (19-4) got 19 from Kevin Castronovo, and 14 from Nikola Borovicanin, while ‘Lata (18-5) got 13 each from Sean Givens and Jerrel Alston in defeat.
#2 Gill St. Bernard’s 58, #7 Watchung Hills 49: Gill led virtually wire-to-wire in this one, even thoughh the game got a little too close for comfort , as the Knights (17-6) only held a 39-33 lead heading into the fourth quarter. Mario Castro-Sanchez led Gill with 23 points, while Nick Losada added 19. The Warriors fell to 12-11 with the loss.
GIRLS’ SOMERSET COUNTY TOURNAMENT
#1 Rutgers Prep 82, #8 Ridge 33: The Argonauts (18-4) continue to dominate Somerset County opponents, and as they usually do, did so right out of the gate, jumping out to a 29-6 lead after one quarter; they were up 54-20 at the half. Mikayla Blakes scored 22 to lead the Argos, with Katie Ledden adding 15 points, seven rebounds, three blocks and two steals. Gigi Battle continued her stellar freshman season with another 16 points and five boards. The Red Devils dropped to 13-10 with the loss.
#5 Franklin 54, #4 Hillsborough 50 (OT): The Lady Warriors (12-11) needed overtime to get back over the .500 mark on the season, and advance to the semifinals. Precious Wheeler led the way with 18 points, while Iyanna Cotten scored 15. Amy Rachilla scored 17 to lead Hillsborough (14-10) in defeat.
#3 Watchung Hills 57, #6 Mount St. Mary 41: The Lady Warriors looked in control most of the way, leading 14-8 after one and 24-17 at the half, and continued to build the lead from there. Megan Groff led Watchung Hills (17-5) with 17, while Giana Lobozzo scored 12 for Mount (15-10).
#2 Gill St. Bernard’s 75, #7 Pingry 24: The Knights (16-6) ran right past the Big Blue (15-10), leading 20-10 after the first eight minutes, and 49-20 at the break. Gill was led by Brooke Baisley with 22 points in a game where nine players got in the scoring column. Conversely, their defense held Pingry to just three players in the scoring column, led by Taylor Francis with 15.
Here are the matchups for the semifinals:
#5 Franklin (12-11) at #1 Rutgers Prep (18-4), 5 pm (on CJSR)
#3 Watchung Hills (17-5) at #2 Gill St. Bernard’s (16-6), 5 pm
#5 Franklin (16-9) at #1 Rutgers Prep (17-7), 7 pm (on CJSR)
#6 Ridge (19-4) at #2 Gill St. Bernard’s (17-6), 7 pm
Central Jersey Sports Radio will broadcast both games at Rutgers Prep in Somerset on Thursday night, while reporter Chris Tsakonas will be covering the game at Gill St. Bernard’s in Gladstone.