Sports

Westfield Coach, Scotch Plains Player for Seton Hall Bring Their All to the Big East

March 14, 2014 at 8:33 AM

NEW YORK, NY — It was classic Big East in the new Big East Thursday. Major reconfiguration for the league in 2014 didn't prevent a matchup of two of the original squads from having a throwback affair in the quarterfinal finals of this year's Big East tournament at Madison Square Garden. Top-seated Villanova, the number three ranked team in the country, lost 64-63, on a buzzer beater to the 8th seeded Seton Hall.

"That was a great college basketball game," said Villanova coach Jay Wright. “Great atmosphere. The Garden was rocking."

The Pirates are considered the best college team in New Jersey, coached by Westfield resident Kevin Willard. The game winner was made by Scotch Plains native Sterling Gibbs. Gibbs’ last-second heroics places him right there with Syracuse's Gerry McNamara and UConn's Kemba Walker who will long be remembered for their end of game theatrics.

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“It was big time,” said the sophomore Gibbs, who finished with 10 points and six assists. “You beat the number three team in the country, it's always a good feeling.”

The crowd in the Garden was feeling it as well. The game featured nine ties and eight lead changes, so it’s no wonder that the contest would be decided with the ball in the air as the final buzzer sounded. Villanova's Darrun Hillard made a jump shot with seven seconds left to put Nova up 63-62.

After a time out, Seton Hall got the ball back with 3.5 seconds left. Gibbs received the inbounds pass and began his move with the ball. With the defense leaving him no option but to shoot. Sterling did just that—drilling the ball from near the top of the key.  

“It ended up being a bit of a scramble,” said Gibbs. “In the end, it was supposed to be in my hands, and I was supposed to create a shot for my teammates or myself, and I just stepped back and hit the jumper.”

As soon as the shot fell, Sterling instinctively jumped on the top of the scorers table and the celebration began for Seton Hall players and fans, while the once boisterous Villanova fans walked out silently.

Next up for Seton Hall is a Friday night semi-final match up against Providence. And with two more wins, amazingly, an automatic bid to the NCAA tournament. For a team that had a 6-12 league record the only one not seemingly surprised by these recent developments is Coach Willard.

“I think we had six one-point losses,” said Willard. “I just think it's the character of these guys. They showed up every night. And they've played extremely hard.  So for these guys to get some success for all the effort and hard work they put in, as a coach,  that's what you're most happy about.”

Mike Cohen is a sports writer for Education Update and the founder and director of Throwback Sports, a Westfield-based individual and small group sports program for children. Reach him at throwbacksports@verizon.net

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SOMA

Maplewood Police Blotter - Four Thefts Reported, Two at Wawa

January 19, 2017

January 11 - Theft; At approximately 2:30 p.m., a female customer had her wallet stolen from the QuickChek after leaving it on the counter.

January 11 - Theft; At approximately 4:45 p.m. a female shoplifted a purse from a store on Maplewood Ave.

January 13 - Theft; At approximately 10:00 p.m., an employee of Wawa had their cell phone that was left on the counter ...

South Orange Police Blotter - Home Burglary and Attempted Burglary on Same Day Reported

South Orange Police Blotter as of January 14

Burglary - A Duffield Dr. resident reported that sometime between 8:45 a.m. and 11 a.m., Wednesday, Jan. 11, actor(s) unknown entered her residence and removed several items, including silver candle stick holders. The Detective Bureau is investigating the incident.

Attempted Burglary - A Harding Dr. resident reported that sometime ...

Community Coalition on Race MLK Observance Event Reminds SOMA Residents to Stand Together and Speak Out

January 19, 2017

The following is from the South Orange/Maplewood Community Coalition on Race

On Monday, January 16, the South Orange/Maplewood Community Coalition on Race hosted the 16th Annual Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Observance at Columbia High School in Maplewood for the first time. Hundreds of people of all ages filled the auditorium to honor Dr. King through music, a sharing of interfaith readings and ...

South Orange Public Library Activities - Jan. 19 to Jan. 25

Children's Room

 

Friday, Jan. 20

 

10 am -Seton Stories

 

Monday, Jan.  23

 

3:30 pm - Minecraft -ages 7+

 

Tuesday, Jan. 24

 

11 am - Toddler Storytime

12 Noon - Homeschooling Social

 

Wednesday, Jan. 25

 

10 am - Babies Storytime

Adult ...

Temporary Ice Rink Installed in South Orange's Meadowland Park

The following is from the South Orange Department of Recreation and Cultural Affairs

South Orange Village has installed a temporary ice rink in Meadowland Park for the winter months inside the tennis court area adjacent to the Baird.

The rink is open to South Orange residents with a current Recreation Department Membership I.D. and their guests. The guest fee is $5 per person per day.

Upcoming Events

Thu, January 19, 10:30 AM

Walsh Gallery at Seton Hall University, South Orange

Learning to Fly

Arts & Entertainment

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Thu, January 19, 12:00 PM

Convene Midtown East, New York

ACG New York Women of Leadership Summit

Business & Finance Food & Drink

Fri, January 20, 10:30 AM

Walsh Gallery at Seton Hall University, South Orange

Learning to Fly

Arts & Entertainment

Women's March on Washington: Why, and Why Now

January 11, 2017

As Donald Trump’s inauguration draws near, a number of groups are planning various events and rallies – perhaps most notably, the Women’s March on Washington. I have read a number of opinion pieces and spoken to many people about the March, and several questions and criticisms seem to consistently arise. I would like to address two of the major themes.

(Q) The election is ...

Planning for Maplewood Village's Growth

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Two significant related ...

Should You Wait Until Spring to Buy?

Should You Wait until Spring to Buy?

People love to talk about the Spring market, but should you wait until Spring to buy a home? For South Orange and Maplewood, the Spring market usually starts in late February. Here are the pros and cons.

Pros to Waiting:

Better selection. There are usually a greater number of homes available for sale in the Spring as opposed to other times ...

Joe Coletta, Lou Venezia and John Lee Franchise TAPinto Bloomfield

January 19, 2017

NEW PROVIDENCE, NJ, - TAPinto.net is pleased to announce the launch of TAPinto Bloomfield, under the leadership of franchisees Joe Coletta, Lou Venezia and John Lee. The site covers original local news in Bloomfield, NJ in Essex County. 

Joe Coletta is a Fire Captain in Bloomfield and has strong family ties to the community. He enjoys coaching or cheering on his three ...

Scotch Plains JCC Deemed Safe After Bomb Threat

January 18, 2017

SCOTCH PLAINS, NJ — The Jewish Community Center of Central New Jersey was closed for a short time after preschool began there Wednesday morning due to a bomb threat. A bomb squad swept the building for explosives and no bomb was found, according to Lt. Jeff Briel of the Scotch Plains Police Department.

“This is another in a series of bomb threats to JCCs up and down the ...

Just Pups of East Hanover Caught Smuggling Dogs into Store

EAST HANOVER, NJ- Just Pups located on Route 10 in East Hanover was recently caught illegally importing their dogs from Texas without the required medical paperwork on each puppy.

On the night of January 2, the East Hanover Police Department responded to a tip called into the New Jersey Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals that Just Pups owner, Vincent LoSacco, was smuggling ...

Congressman Donald M. Payne, Jr. to Boycott President-Elect Trump’s Inauguration

January 19, 2017

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Congressman Donald M. Payne, Jr. (NJ-10) issued the following statement today (Jan. 17) announcing his decision to boycott President-elect Donald Trump’s inauguration:

“I have the deepest respect for the office of the presidency, something that cannot be said for President-elect Trump. His actions and statements have consistently been below ...

South Mountain YMCA Camps Host ‘Beach’ Parties on Jan. 21; Other Fun-Filled Reunions on Jan. 28

South Mountain YMCA Camps Host Jan. 21 ‘Beach’ Parties; other fun-filled reunions showcasing summer 2017 opportunities to be held Jan. 28

Take a break from the short days and frigid temperatures of winter and head to a beach party! On Jan. 21, the South Mountain YMCA camps are hosting free summer-themed celebrations so campers can reconnect and introduce other friends to the ...

SOMA Dems to Hold First Meeting on Jan. 18 at Ricalton's Village Tavern

SOMA Dems, a newly formed South Orange/Maplewood-based group focused on grassroots activism on behalf of important issues and electing progressive political candidates, will hold its initial organizing meeting on Wednesday, Jan. 18 at 7:30 p.m. The meeting will be held at Ricalton’s Village Tavern, 19 Valley Street in South Orange.

The purpose of the meeting will be to both ...