Tag: Watchung Hills

Big shuffle in Week 5 Bellamy & Son Paving Girls’ Basketball Top Ten, though Rutgers Prep remains at the top

Only one team in this week’s Bellamy & Son Girls’ Basketball Rankings was in the same place a week ago. Other than Rutgers Prep, everyone shuffled into a new position, thanks to a couple of upsets.

Most notable was Monroe, previously unranked, knocking off No. 2 St. Thomas Aquinas by 12 on Thursday night, a little more than a month after losing to them in the season opener by 38. It was a convincing win, too; the Falcons led virtually wire-to-wire.

Not to be outdone, unranked Watchung Hills beat No. 3 Gill St. Bernard’s, while Franklin beat Watchung Hills and now just has two losses; to Gill and No. 1 Rutgers Prep, which has now held the No. 1 spot every week of the Central Jersey Sports Radio/Bellamy & Son Paving Top Ten, since its inception in CJSR’s inaugural season last year, a total of 13 weeks.

Many other teams also shuffled around with a mix of wins and losses. Below are the full Week 5 Bellamy & Son rankings:

Top three remain the same in Bellamy & Son Paving Boys’ Basketball Top Ten

Going a combined 8-0 in the week gone by, St. Thomas Aquinas, Rutgers Prep and Gill St. Bernard’s remained Nos. 1, 2, and 3 in the Week 5 Bellamy & Son Paving Boys’ Basketball Top Ten, while the middle of the pack danced around a bit.

The rankings include three of the six remaining undefeated boys’ teams in New Jersey, No. 1 Aquinas at 14-0, No.2 Rutgers Prep at 11-0, and No. 7 Bound Brook at 10-0, which owns the state’s longest active winning streak, now at 24 games. The Crusaders’ last loss came on March 9, 2020, a 73-55 loss at Burlington City in the Central Jersey Group 1 title game.

The big upset of the week was then-No. 8 Monroe beating previously fourth-ranked St. Joseph-Metuchen on a buzzer-beater, to split the season series. In addition, Franklin joined the Bellamy & Son Paving Top Ten this week, after a nearly buzzer-beating road win at Watchung Hills, which stayed in at No. 9.

Following are the full Week 5 rankings:

INSTANT REPLAY: Franklin 44, No. 9 Watchung Hills 41

A three-pointer by Franklin junior Jake Novielli from the deep right corner gave Franklin a three-point lead, and a miss at the other end by Watchung Hills, helped give the visiting Warriors a 44-41 win over the home Warriors, in a Skyland Conference Delaware Division game on Tuesday, January 18, 2022.

Click below to listen to Mike Pavlichko and Dom Savino call all the action from Watchung Hills High School:

Novielli’s trey with :12 left helps Franklin to signature win over No. 9 Watchung Hills in dramatic fashion

With too many ties and lead changes to count, Franklin and 9th-ranked Watchung Hills waged an epic battle Tuesday night. Neither team led by more than six points at any point of the game, and even that came early when Franklin got out to an 8-2 lead.

It was a low-scoring affair, but the kind of slugfest that could only truly be enjoyed by someone without a horse in that race. Otherwise, it was an Alka-Seltzer type of night.

In the second-half, big three-balls swung momentum like the biggest of pendulums. There was Brian Zhang of Watchung Hills, the junior who scored all of his 11 points after the break, with three triples. Junior Jake Novielli had two treys, until Franklin got the ball with under 40-seconds to play, tied up at 41 all.

Running some time down, Novielli found himself open in the right coffin corner, and buried his third triple of the half, second of the final quarter. Franklin 44, Hills 51.

Then, Zhang found himself with a chance to send it to OT with just a few seconds left from the left corner. But his shot was off, and the rebound not far enough to give Watchung another chance at a three-ball. Ball game over.

Click below to listen to the final sequence, as heard on Central Jersey Sports Radio:

The win snapped a five-game win streak for Watchung Hills (8-2), but will have them fired up when they take on first-place and No. 3 Gill St. Bernard’s Thursday night. For Franklin, the win was a major resume builder come seeding time for the Somerset County Tournament, putting them at 3-2 in league play, 5-4 overall.

Click below for postgame reaction on the air with Central Jersey Sports Radio’s Mike Pavlichko and Dom Savino:

Franklin junior guard Jake Noviello, who had the game-winning three-pointer
Franklin head coach Tony Mento

No. 9 Watchung Hills carries winning streak into Skyland battle with Franklin

It’s been a brilliant two weeks of basketball for Watchung Hills. 5 games, 5 wins, all by double digits.

Most recently, the Warriors were road warriors, claiming victories at Hunterdon Central, Hillsborough, and Jefferson.

Now, No. 9 Watchung Hills (8-1) returns home looking to extend its perfect 3-0 Skyland Delaware Division record against Franklin (4-4) on Tuesday at 6 p.m. The game will be broadcast on Central Jersey Sports Radio. Click here to listen to the broadcast with Mike Pavlichko and Dom Savino calling all the action; pregame coverage starts at 5:45.

Note: Today’s game was moved from its original 5:30 start to a 6 pm tip-off, it was announced late Tuesday morning.

The Warriors are led by guard Elijah Lewis, who’s averaging 23.8 points-per-game – tops in Somerset County – and 7.6 rebounds-per-game. The senior went off for 25 points and eight rebounds last time out, in Saturday’s 58-44 win over Jefferson.

Click below to hear Central Jersey Sports Radio’s Dom Savino talk with Watchung Hills head coach Justin Salton to preview the Warriors’ meeting with Franklin:

St. Thomas Aquinas leads Top 5 shakeup, moves into top spot in Bellamy & Son Paving Boys’ Basketball Top Ten

After winning a highly-anticipated matchup over No. 1 Colonia last Tuesday 64-52, St. Thomas Aquinas moves up two spots to take the top position in the Week 4 Bellamy & Son Paving Boys’ Basketball rankings.

Aquinas is one of just eight undefeated teams remaining in the state, three of which are in the Bellamy Top Ten, including Rutgers Prep (8-0), which holds at No. 2.

Gill St. Bernard’s – despite playing only two games so far this year against Skyland Conference competition – had a 3-1 week, beating Franklin and Hunterdon Central in its first two league games of the year by a combined 84 points, and is ranked third, up two spots. St. Joseph of Metuchen (6-2) holds in fourth. Colonia (6-2) fell to fifth.

The bottom five teams stayed the same, with none of them having lost in the past week.

In fact, the entire Bellamy Top Ten only suffered two losses last week: Colonia to then-No. 3 St. Thomas Aquinas, and Gill St. Bernards to Simeon Career (IL), 70-61.

Below are the full Week 4 rankings:

Two new teams join the Bellamy & Son Paving Boys’ Basketball Top Ten, but Colonia remains No. 1 ahead of clash with unbeaten Aquinas

The last time Colonia played St. Thomas Aquinas, they came out on top, with a win in the 2021 Karl Towns/Jay Williams pod final, the de facto GMC Tournament Championship.

Only the Patriots have dropped a game since, though it was an out-of-area loss to Lenape on Saturday in the Coaches vs. Cancer Classic at Montgomery.

But a 2-0 week otherwise witgh wins over North Brunswick and Woodbridge was enough to keep Colonia atop the Week 3 Bellamy & Son Paving Boys’ Basketball Rankings.

Can they hold on to the ranking? That will be determined Tuesday night at 6:30, when the Patriots host St. Thomas Aquinas in their first matchup of the season; they’ll face off again in Edison on February 3.

Teams two through six stayed the same: Rutgers Prep, St. Thomas Aquinas, St. Joseph of Metuchen, Gill St. Bernard’s and Bound Brook.

Jumping in at No. 7 is JP Stevens, which is 4-1, and beat Monroe back on Thursday. That knocks the Falcons down to No. 8, and their win over Watchung Hills drops the Warriors two places to ninth.

Debuting at the ten-spot is Ridge. The Red Devils are 5-2 following a 3-0 week this week.

Below are the full week 3 rankings:

Little movement in Bellamy & Son Paving Boys’ Top Ten as six schools sit out Christmas break

Whether due to contact tracing, positive tests, or opponents cancelling for the same reasons, a half dozen boys’ basketball teams – more than half the ranked schools – didn’t play over the Christmas break, leaving very little movement in the Week 2 Bellamy & Son Paving Boys’ Basketball Top Ten.

Colonia remains Number One, despite not playing at all, and the same could be said for Rutgers Prep, which held in second.

The Patriots resume play Tuesday at North Brunswick, in a game that will be broadcast on Central Jersey Sports Radio.

The Argonauts don’t resume until Thursday, when they host North Hunterdon.

St. Thomas Aquinas, on the other hand, went 3-0 at the Boardwalk Classic down in Atlantic City, beating St. Joseph by the Sea (NY), Shawnee and Archbishop Carroll (PA).

The only movement saw Monroe and Montgomery flip-flop; the Falcons went 2-0 with wins over Woodbridge and Immaculata in their own holiday tournament, while the Cougars were idle. The two will play each other Tuesday at Montgomery.

Gill St. Bernards, Bound Brook, and East Brunswick also did not play in the past week.

Below are the full Week 2 rankings:

Colonia holds top spot in Week Two Bellamy & Son Paving Boys’ Basketball Top Ten

Off to a 2-0 start, the Colonia Patriots have held on to their No. 1 ranking in the Bellamy & Son Paving Week 1 Boys’ Basketball Top Ten.

The only movement in the Top Five this week was a flip-flop of No. 4 St. Thomas Aquinas, taking over the No. 3 spot from St. Joseph-Metuchen after beating the Falcons head-to-head.

Click below for an audio top ten with Mike Pavlichko, complete with notes on each team:

Colonia starts season atop the Bellamy & Son Paving Boys’ Basketball Preseason Rankings

The winners of the Greater Middlesex Conference’s top postseason pod – the Colonia Patriots – will start the 2021-22 high school basketball season as No. 1 in the Bellamy & Son Paving Boys’ Basketball Top Ten.

With an 11-4 mark a year ago, they avenged their only GMC loss of the 2021 COVID-abbreviated campaign with a win over St. Thomas Aquinas in the finals of the Towns/Williams Pod, on the Trojans’ home floor.

Rutgers Prep is the top Somerset County team, and checks in at No. 2.

Click below for a full audio top ten, with notes and commentary on each team: