New Providence Co-Athletes of the Week: Alex Hocken and Kevin Maluso

May 23, 2014 at 12:11 AM

NEW PROVIDENCE, NJ - In the history of the Pioneers' boys' tennis program, there has never been a duo that has come even close to the success that first- and second-singles players Alex Hocken and Kevin Maluso have had this championship season.

Based on their success of being three-time straight Group 1 champions, The Alternative Press has named senior co-captains Alex Hocken and Kevin Maluso co-Athletes of the Week.

Both players are four-year varsity lettermen and have been key contributors throughout those seasons, leading the Pioneers to an unprecedented four sectional titles as well as three group championships to add to their decorated careers.

Sign Up for E-News

“It’s amazing to know all of the hard work that you put in pays off,” said Maluso.  “It’s a great feeling to win and I couldn’t have asked to spend it with a better group of guys.”

“It’s been really special to be able to accomplish these achievements as a team the past few years,” said Hocken. “To watch this team grow and improve over the course of the season makes it even more special.”

The road to the group championship would have been impossible without the success on the court by the dynamic tandem, but the influence the two of them had off the court on their teammates is profound.

“He’s very enthusiastic and he’s an outstanding leader,” said head coach John Delioacono, referring to Maluso.  “He also leads vocally, whereas Alex is the number one player, and he leads by action.”

It’s really a great synergy between the two seniors this year.”

After both Maluso and Hocken dominated their matches through the sectional rounds by defeating Glen Ridge and Dayton handily, they both knew they would have to come up clutch when it mattered most.

Hocken and Maluso made quick work of their group semifinal match against Shore, winning 6-0, 6-0 and 6-1, 6-1, respectively, to set the tone for New Providence, who went on to sweep the Central sectional champion, 5-0.

However, nobody came up more clutch than Maluso in the finals when he was needed most. After Hocken dropped an extremely competitive match to Pitman’s star singles player and the second doubles team for the Pioneers dropped their contest, New Providence’s 2-0 lead was quickly evaporated, which put the championship in the hands of Maluso.

After winning the first set easily, 6-0, he was unable to clinch the title, dropping the second set in a tiebreaker.  However, Maluso dug deep and was able to overpower his opponent, beating David Shirley in the third set, 6-1.

“You can never ask to be put in a situation like that,” said Maluso. “When fate falls in your hands like that you just have to focus and play one point at a time. I’m so thankful for winning this match and this team really deserves it.”

“Kevin really came up big for us when we needed him most,” said Hocken. “I’m glad he was in that position and I knew he would come through for us.”

With the victory, the pair’s illustrious careers will be extended one more week. They will head back to Mercer County Park on Tuesday to take on Haddonfield in the Tournament of Champions. 

TAP Into Another Town's News:

TAP Into Another Town's News:

Sign Up for E-News

New Providence

Tears Are Good, They Let The Sadness Out

January 16, 2017

Jackie Kennedy and Coretta Scott King were our nation’s role models for mourning in the 1960’s and in the decades since. They were praised for their strength and stoicism, their courage and grace, and rightly so. They were great role models for our nation at a time of great unrest and anxiety, but I would say they were not the role models we needed when it came to grieving our ...

Thank You Westfield!

January 14, 2017

Almost five years ago Imagine, A Center for Coping with Loss, opened its doors in Westfield, thanks to the vision and generosity of Dr. Gerald Glasser and the leadership of Keith Hertell, our first board chair, and all the other founding board members.  We opened our doors on the  third floor of the First United Methodist Church and started our program.

Since then we have served over ...

Upcoming Events


Fri, January 20, 8:00 AM

Berkeley Heights YMCA, Berkeley Heights

New Class- Strike a Balance

Health & Wellness


Fri, January 20, 8:00 AM

Providence! Integrated Health and Fitness, New Providence

Xtend Barre

Health & Wellness


Fri, January 20, 9:30 AM

Providence! Integrated Health and Fitness, New Providence

Vinyasa Flow with Lauren

Health & Wellness


Fri, January 20, 10:30 AM

Providence! Integrated Health and Fitness, New Providence

Pilates Reformer Class with Kathy

Health & Wellness


Fri, January 20, 12:00 PM

Summit YMCA, Summit

Duplicate Bridge at the Y

Arts & Entertainment


Fri, January 20, 12:00 PM

Summit YMCA, Summit

Duplicate Bridge at the Y

Arts & Entertainment

Free Public Wi-Fi in Union County Parks and Facilities

January 19, 2017

The Watchung Stables is one of six new sites in Union County Parks that offer free public Wi-Fi access. There are now a total of 11 county parks and facilities that offer free Wi-Fi.

“We are committed to ensuring that our recreation facilities are up to date and welcoming to a broad range of activities.” said Chairman Bruce Bergen. “Whether it is surfing the ...

Valentines Day!

Do you have any Valentines on your list? Share the LOVE with a Basking Ridge Golf and Swim Membership or a Gift Certificate! Call Bari Markowitz, Membership & Marketing Director at 908-766-8200 Ext 2!

Summer Camp Open House at The Connection Set for Jan. 22

Choosing a camp is an important decision for families to make, but it doesn’t need to be a difficult one. To help make the decision easier, The Connection is offering a Summer Camp Open House on Sunday, January 22 from 1:30-3:30pm to introduce their exciting changes for summer 2017. Stop by and let the kids experience the “Camp Sampler” including camp activities, free swim ...

Lance, Pascrell Bill Will Keep ‘Blue Lines’ in Towns

NEW JERSEY --- U.S. Reps. Leonard Lance (NJ-07) and Bill Pascrell (NJ-09) today took up the cause of many New Jersey municipalities and law enforcement groups by proposing the Blue Line Use Exception (BLUE) Act (H.R. 566).  Legislation that will permit ‘blue lines’ to be displayed on roadways. 

“One hundred thirty five police officers died in the line of duty in ...

Salute to Service Wrestling Match: New Providence Wrestling Hosts Scotch Plains-Fanwood Wednesday, Jan. 18

New Providence High School Wrestling and their opponent, Scotch Plains Fanwood Raiders will honor America's finest in their "Salute to Service" at 6 p.m. in the Main Gym at New Providence High School on Wednesday, Jan. 18.

The teams will be honoring all individuals in the military, police and fire departments, and EMTs who make sacrifices every day on our behalf and for ...

New Providence Historical Society presents 'History Talks' Sponsored by Wells Fargo

NEW PROVIDENCE, NJ - “History Talks” is a new series of speakers in 2017 presented  by the New Providence Historical Society covering topics relating to New Providence, Union County and New Jersey.

On February 16, 2017, Edward Eckert will give a presentation on the History of Nokia Bell Labs, sponsored by Wells Fargo. For decades, the legendary research center has given birth ...

It’s Go Time.

This one goes out to all the juniors out there. 

I can feel you squirming in your seats, “Who me?” Yes, you!  The time has come to turn that college dial up a notch.  “But I still have so much time left!”  But you really don’t.  Ideally in a year from now you’ll be sifting through acceptance letters and weighing college options ...

Man vs. Waze

A lot of strange cars are traveling through my quiet neighborhood these days.  They are not driven by my neighbors.  Some mornings I even have trouble getting out of my driveway.  


Ever since bridge repair closed a major thoroughfare near my house, the traffic on my sleepy street has increased dramatically.  And it is not by accident that commuters have figured out ...

Union County Clerk Recognized for Tech Achievement

January 14, 2017

UNION COUNTY, NJ -- Union County Clerk Joanne Rajoppi was nationally recognized for her leadership in the use of electronic recording technology.

Rajoppi was presented with the national 2016 eRecording All-Star Trailblazer Award, a competitive recognition sponsored by the global business solutions company Corporation Service Company. The Trailblazer award recognizes a recording office that has ...

Ciattarelli Announces Successful Throat Cancer Surgery, Scales Back Gubernatorial Campaign Temporarily

January 15, 2017

TRENTON, NJ - State Assemblyman Jack Ciattarelli, R-16th, a candidate for the Republican nomination for governor, announced yesterday that he had undergone successful surgery for throat cancer in November, and will be curtailing his campaign schedule temporarily.

Gearing up for a primary campaign against several other Republicans who want to run for New Jersey, Ciattarelli, a Hillsborough ...