SOUTH PLAINFIELD, NJ - The South Plainfield High School boys and girls basketball teams each played in the first round of their four-team Greater Middlesex Conference Pod Tournaments on Wednesday.
The Lady Tigers defeated South River in the early game, 41-32, in the Flaherty Family Pod. South Plainfield (5-9) trailed by two points, 14-12, at halftime. Each team scored 11 in the third quarter, but it was in the fourth when the visitors took over with an 18-7 frame.
“I think what we saw in the fourth quarter was a group of girls that have put the work in day in and day out, trying to improve each day,” South Plainfield coach Geoffrey Corisdeo said. “Regardless of wins or losses, they just want to learn and get better. We’ve had some close, tough games, but they keep working.
“In the fourth, all five players stepped up and made plays. It was a great team effort.”
Sara McNelly made two 3-pointers in the game and finished with 14 points and eight rebounds. Deleaney Born, a sharpshooter, made three triples and scored 11 points. She also tallied seven rebounds, three assists, and a steal.
Lindsay Oller added eight points, 11 rebounds, and two assists, and Brianna Harris and Sydney Loiacono chipped in with five points apiece. Harris also had six rebounds, three assists, and a steal.
South River’s (7-5) Tiffany Fischer recorded a double-double with 17 points and 11 rebounds.
The Rams had won two in a row against South Plainfield (2020 and 2017) while South Plainfield won the two before that in 2015 and 2014.
Friday, South Plainfield will play Metuchen in the Pod final in the season finale. Metuchen beat the Lady Tigers in late January, 50-32.
“Metuchen is a well coached team and the players play hard every single possession,” Corisdeo said. “They’ve got multiple girls that can get to the basket and knock down shots.”
As for the boys, the Tigers fell to North Brunswick on the road, 66-55, in the Dave Wohl/Bo Henning Pod.With the loss, South Plainfield will take on Dunellen for a third time this year. South Plainfield has already defeated the Destroyers twice.
South Plainfield led North Brunswick by 10 in the game and scored the first seven points in the contest.
Moshood Adebule scored 15 points and Josh Liberato netted 13 points. Destiny Nwankwo also poured in nine points, Josh Bradley finished with six, Mitchell Dudak and Brandon Dean each tallied five, and Jayden Grimes has two.
The Flaherty Family Pod is named after Artie, Tom, Bobby, Shawn, and Therese Flaherty from Metuchen, who all combined for over 5,300 points in high school. Artie’s sons, Danny and Artie Jr., were each 1,000-point scorers for the Bulldogs.
The Dave Wohl/Bo Henning Pod consists of ties to East Brunswick. Wohl was a three-sport athlete for the Bears and NBA Draft pick and coach while Henning tallied 999 wins as the head coach of the Bears’ boys team. His two sons, Bobby and Jason, also played for East Brunswick.
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