SPOTSWOOD, NJ - The Spotswood High School junior varsity girls basketball team concluded its second successful season under the helm of head coach, Vincent Vizzi. Last season was the first full campaign for Vizzi as the girls junior varsity coach. Previously, the educator had coached the Memorial Middle School girls basketball team for three seasons. A former substitute in the Spotswood School District, Vizzi is now a full-time physical education teacher at Memorial. Vizzi’s roots in Spotswood are strong, graduating from Spotswood High School himself and playing on the boys varsity basketball team for the Chargers.
During the 2015-16 season, the girls held a stellar 14-3 overall record and made it all the way to the semi-finals of the Greater Middlesex Conference Junior Varsity Tournament before falling to Monroe. This season, the girls were knocked out of the tournament in the quarterfinals, losing to Sayreville High School’s junior varsity team. They won their first and second round match ups in convincing fashion, defeating Perth Amboy, 50-35, and Monroe, 51-37. The team’s performance for the 2016-17 season was again on the winning side with an overall record of 16-5.
“This team was a really good defensive team, whether playing man or zone these girls put our opponents under constant pressure,” Vizzi said about the girls’ performance on the court this season. “Our best offense was our defense all season long.”
The 2016-17 Spotswood High School junior varsity girls basketball team consisted of nine members including freshmen Jackie Gialanella, Megan Devlin and Jessica Addesso as well as sophomores, Samantha Gural, Melanie Miller, Angelina Perez, Alexa Reilly, Brielle McCoy and Amber Meagher.
The team was extremely well-balanced offensively with all nine players contributing on the score sheet. However, the three top point-getters for the season were Addesso, Meagher and Devlin.
For varsity or junior varsity teams to be successful there needs to be balance on the scoring end and on the defense. For the Chargers, there was indeed both this year.
“Defensively we really worked extremely hard and forced a lot of steals that led to easy baskets,” Vizzi said. “Some of our defensive standouts were Perez, McCoy and Reilly.”
When asked about some season highlights for the Chargers, the head coach had a few memorable ones.
“Throughout the season the girls made plenty of highlights,” Vizzi recalled. “A few that I won’t forget were competing against Old Bridge on a snowy Saturday morning and winning 34-22. Another highlight would be beating our rivals South River 46-30. Finally the way we played and dominated against Monroe in the second round of the JV county tournament would be the biggest highlight of the season.”
“I enjoyed watching the girls progress from start to finish,” Vizzi continued. “They honestly got better every day and really pushed one another competitively in practice. We had great leadership and positivity all season long and because of that it made coaching this team an amazing experience.”