Manasquan wins Buc Holiday Classic

Manasquan wins Buc Holiday Classic


Manasquan wins Buc Holiday Classic



There was no stopping Jimmy Walsh.

The Manasquan senior forward scored 23 points and grabbed 24 rebounds, leading the second-seeded Big Blue Warriors past No. 1 Roselle, 72-45, in the Buc Holiday Classic championship game at Red Bank Regional on Sunday.

Walsh, who shared tournament Most Valuable Player honors with Manasquan senior guard J.R. Hobbie, buried 10 of 15 shots from the field and added five blocks, four assists and one steal.

“Sharing the award is great,” the 6-foot-6 Walsh said. “Sharing it with a guy who scored 49 points (Hobbie tossed in 49 against Middletown North in the semifinals Friday) is great. A 49-point performance is legendary. I consider myself the leader of the team.”

Hobbie put home 20 points Sunday. Hobbie, who has scored 982 career points, added eight rebounds and six assists.

“Jim carried the team,” Hobbie said. “He got us going. He stepped up and stuck it to them. When I had 49 points, he had 22 rebounds. Scoring 49 points is great, but you see 22 rebounds and say, ‘How does that kid get 22 rebounds?”

“It’s very nice that Jim and J.R. shared the award,” Manasquan coach Andrew Bilodeau said. “They both did a great job. They took what the defense gave them. They both rebounded the ball very well.”

Walsh scored seven first-quarter points as Manasquan (5-1) took a 16-10 lead. Walsh keyed a 9-0 run that staked Manasquan to a 16-7 lead, igniting the surge with a trey from the top of the circle and capping the streak with a layup on a fast break. The spree snapped a 7-7 tie and put Manasquan ahead to stay.

“They put a lot of pressure on J.R. and Jimmy got two baskets,” Bilodeau said. “That loosened them up a little bit.”

“This was the first time J.R. and I clicked on offense,” Walsh said. “I felt good early. I took it as it came. I liked my matchup a lot.”

Walsh netted eight second-quarter points as Manasquan went ahead, 29-17. At times, he helped his team bring the ball up the court.

“I have no problem helping our guards bring the ball up,” he said. “In rebounding, I have a mind set where I feel if I don’t get it (the ball) they will get it. I take a lot of pride in my rebounding. Being aggressive in scoring is great, but scoring is just one part of the game.”

Hobbie, whose team’s lead mushroomed to as many as 30 fourth-quarter points, said the Rams (4-2) of Union County were determined to shut him down.

“At the opening tap, I saw their guy run right up to me,” Hobbie said. “Jimmy got easy layups and hit a few jumpers. That got us going.”

Manasquan junior guard Tommy Toole contributed 16 points on six of 10 from the field, including two of four from downtown, and added six rebounds, two steals and two rebounds.

“This tournament gave us a lot of confidence,” Walsh said. “It’s full steam ahead.”


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