RANDOLPH, NJ- It is a bit of a surprise that a high school girls basketball team that has run up a record of 20-2 on the season would only have two seniors on their roster. But that is the case for the Randolph Lady Rams, as they honored their two seniors before recording that win number 20 on the year.
“Ellie Sciancalepore and Alyssa Alfieri have meant the world to me; and are my first “Four Year” players which is very special,” said head coach Pete Torres. “They have elevated this program to where it is today with not only their abilities, but more importantly with their overall Character.”
the two seniors were the obvious choices to serve as team captains this season, a role they both relish and thrive in.
“Their leadership is unquestioned and unmatched - every team would be lucky to have leaders like Ellie and Alyssa,” said Torres. “They don’t care about Stats, all they care about is winning. They have always done what is best for the team, they are unselfish players, and they treat everyone with respect.”
Before the game, the two were introduced with their parents and recognized by the crowd. Torres also took a moment to announce the names of the Par Hills seniors and wished them well.
When the game started, the Lady Rams flexed their muscles right from the start, running out to an 11-0 lead by using a full court press defense to force turnovers and smother their opponent.
Their lead grew to 19-4 in the first minute of the second quarter, before ballooning to 36-8 at halftime.
“Before the game, I was very excited and anxious for the game itself to start,” said Alfieri. “During the game, all I could think about was playing my hardest and pushing the ball up court. After the game, I was sad that it was my last regular season game on our home court, but I was overcome with emotions of joy about the win.”
Alfieri led the charge throughout the game, ultimately putting up 13 points, while dishing out 4 assists and grabbing 3 steals.
Randolph eased up the pressure a bit in the second half, but by then Par Hills had already run out of gas, and the Lady Rams cruised to a win by the score of 58-11.
With the regular season now complete, and the post season play in the mix already, a whole new set of intensity and emotions will be present for the seniors and their underclassman teammates in the next few games.
“I would tell my ‘non-senior’ teammates that this part of the season is the toughest,” said Sciancalepore. “Tournament time is the most rewarding, yet also the hardest part of any HS sports season. This is the time when all the hard work pays off, but you have to go make it happen. You can’t be afraid to step up to the plate in order to reach your goals as a team.”
With the Morris County Semifinals on tap for the Rams this Friday Sept 21, and the state playoffs about to begin, it is ‘one and done’ season for the seniors from here on out.
“I would tell the underclassmen athletes at RHS to not take any game for granted, you never know when it'll be your last and you may never get the same opportunity,” said Alfieri. “Push yourself each and every game, and If you know you did your best, you will have no regrets and that is the ultimate goal.”
For the Par Hills game, Sciancalepore collected four points, six rebounds, and three blocks. Sarah Bona had 13 points, and Caitlyn Olive grabbed seven rebounds. Also, filling out the stat sheet were Ariana Krone with none points, and Yesenia Martinez with seven rebounds.
Torres was asked what he will tell the two when their career does reach its last game.
“I will tell them to enjoy their college years because they will go fast,” said Torres. “Work hard, be true to yourself, and be ready to “jump” over any obstacles that life throws your way.”
Torres then added, “Lastly, I want them to know that they will always be Lady Rams, and they have a Family here in Randolph with our Girls Basketball Program and more importantly with my Family (Kristin, Chase and I).”