Boys basketball: News and notes from around North Jersey
Becton (6-2) has been North Jersey’s most improved boys basketball team after going 4-22 last season. Justin Roseboro, a muscular junior F, has been the driving force for the Wildcats, coach Danny Balaban said. Roseboro had career highs of 32 points and 26 rebounds in Thursday 69-61 victory over Wood-Ridge.
Dwight-Englewood (9-0) owns the best record of any team in The Record boys basketball Top 25. Longtime coach Bob Rudolph, in his first season leading the Bulldogs, credits a defense that has allowed just 39.2 points per game. Junior G Tony DeBellis and senior Fs Alex Brodsky and Isaiah Pean have led the defense.
Fort Lee (5-4) has won five of its last six games, and coach James Puliatte calls junior F/C Bill Veras the “catalyst.” Veras was injured in the preseason and, after missing the first three games, has averaged eight points and nine rebounds. “His energy has just sparked the whole team,” Puliatte said.
Park Ridge (2-5) picked up its first two wins, over Waldwick and Palisades Park, behind improved team defense and the shooting of senior F Tommy Morgan. He has scored in double figures in all five games he’s played. He’s scored 50 of his 65 points in the second half, coach Adam Kaplan said, featuring 10 in the fourth quarter in last Tuesday’s 41-36 win over Waldwick.
Passaic Valley (3-4) is “starting to play much better,” coach Jim Holsworth said, and won both of its games last week, against Big North Independence rivals Wayne Valley and West Milford. Senior G Tito Ramirez had 36 points, eight rebounds and four assists against West Milford, while seniors Nick Melograno and Shaun Benford combined for 36 points against Wayne Valley.
Queen of Peace’s promising freshman C, Cliff Omuruyi, suffered a fractured tibia during the Jingle Bell Jubilee and is out for the season, coach Branan Burde said. Omuruyi was averaging 15 points, 12 rebounds and six blocks.
Ridgewood (6-2) stretched its winning streak to five with a 49-40 victory Friday over Northern Highlands. Junior G Tommy Carver has led the Maroons’ surge, coach Mike Troy said, averaging 15 points last week and sinking 11 consecutive free throws against the Highlanders.
Tap-ins: Junior G John Whaley’s 12 three-pointers in Wood-Ridge’s 89-74 win last Tuesday over North Arlington broke the school single-game record of 11 shared by Bobby Calineri (2005), David Hughes (2006) and Gary Whritenour (2013), coach Ed Rendzio said. … River Dell (4-3) has received strong starts from senior C Matt Monaghan, averaging 13 points and 11 rebounds, and senior G Nick Sirico, averaging 11 points and three assists. … Leonia (4-5) has won three of its last four games, with junior F John Weber averaging 14 points and eight rebounds during that stretch and senior G Andy Marquardt 10 points and providing “great leadership,” coach Steven Herget said. … Westwood will play Leonia on Saturday at 1 p.m. at Immaculate Heart Academy in Washington Township as part of its fourth annual Cardinals vs. Cancer Alumni Day, with proceeds benefiting a freshman with cancer, said coach John Santulli. … Wayne Valley has rescheduled Marion P. Thomas Charter at home on Thursday, coach Joe Leicht said, after the Newark school did not show up for its holiday tournament game against the Indians.