Press Releases

Boys Basketball: Huge 2nd Half Run Ignites Union Catholic Victory Over Snyder

The Union Catholic boys basketball team defeated Snyder for its first win of the season in its home opener on Friday night in Scotch Plains. Credits: Jim Lambert

SCOTCH PLAINS, NJ -- A key defensive adjustment fueled a huge second half run that sparked the Union Catholic boys basketball team to its first victory of the season when the Vikings defeated Snyder 77-66 in its home opener on Friday night in Scotch Plains.  

Union Catholic, now 1-2 on the season, trailed Snyder 47-41 with 4:25 left in the third quarter when the Vikings called a timeout. After the timeout, UC came out in a 2-3 zone and promptly went on a 15-0 run to close out the quarter and take a 56-47 lead into the final period.

In that game-changing run, Ibn Lynn, a 6-5 senior guard, scored six points on aggressive moves to the basket, Justin Archer had four points on two put-backs, and Jaheim Tanksley, who played a sensational all-round game, drained a three-pointer following a steal.

Sign Up for E-News

UC kept Snyder scoreless for 5:14 spanning the end of the third and beginning of the fourth quarter, and the Vikings never let Snyder get closer than seven points the rest of the game.

With UC leading 63-56, Tanksley, a junior guard who finished with a career and game-high 24 points, buried one of his three 3-pointers from deep in the corner to put the Vikings ahead 66-56 with 3:38 left in the game. Archer followed with a layup off a steal and then Gio Phillip scored on a layup to increase the lead to 70-56 with 2:50 left in the game.

Another big key to the second half surge for the Vikings was the inside play of Archer and Lynn, who pounded the glass to limit Snyder's second chance opportunities, which Snyder capitalized on in the first half.

Archer, a 6-6 junior forward, played a strong all-round game with 17 points, 10 rebounds, and four blocks. Lynn finished with 16 points and five rebounds, and Rob Miller scored 12 points and had four assists.

UC, which lost by three points to both Rutgers Prep and Chatham to open the season, got off to a strong start with a 10-4 spurt to open the game. Tanksley, using his lightning quick first step and superior dribbling skills, scored seven points, Lynn had five, and Archer four when UC took a 17-13 lead after the first quarter.

After Snyder took a 29-27 lead on a three by Rockquan Richburg with 1:36 left in the second quarter, UC responded with a 7-0 run to take a 34-29 lead. Archer scored on a layup, Rob Miller drilled a three, and Tanksley converted in transition in that run.

Snyder scored the final five points of the second quarter, including a long three at the buzzer by Corey Manning-Floyd to tie the game at 34-34 at the half.

"Once we changed up our defense and started to be more aggressive on the boards we took over the game,'' said Tanksley. "That was the key to the game. And we started playing together as team more in the second half and everyone got involved and made plays. After losing our first two games we knew we needed to get this one at home, and we did what we had to do. It was a complete team effort.'' is Scotch Plains-Fanwood’s only free daily paper. Sign up for our daily eNews and follow us on Facebook and twitter @SPF_TAP. Download the free TAPinto App for iPhone or Android.

Editor's Note: Union Catholic High School is an advertiser of For information about advertising, contact



TAP Into Another Town's News:

You May Also Be Interested In

Sign Up for E-News

Scotch Plains/Fanwood

Sex Toys, Gay Jokes, Nepotism, Frat-Boy Pranks; Mountainside P.D. Out of Control Says Lawsuit

May 19, 2018

MOUNTAINSIDE, NJ – In a 46-page complaint packed with allegations of harassment involving sex toys, official misconduct, nepotism, hazing, double-dipping and other egregious behavior, five Mountainside police officers and a female employee are suing the borough in state Superior Court.

The complaint, filed by officers Jeffrey Stinner, Christopher Feighner, Richard Latargia, Thomas ...

Penguin Exhibit Opens at Turtle Back Zoo

May 8, 2018

WEST ORANGE, NJ — African penguins have officially joined the giraffes, lions and hyenas in the African Adventure at the Turtle Back Zoo, bringing all of the zoo’s animals from the largest continent into the same area.

Local dignitaries joined Essex County Executive Joseph DiVincenzo, Jr. in opening the new Shores of Africa Penguin Exhibit on Friday afternoon.

"Our penguins ...

Capitalist or Communist?

Karl Marx may have been the pioneer, but many other Jews were also involved in the struggle for communism, particularly in the early days of the Russian revolution. Personally, I don’t think that we have any apologies to make for this phenomenon. Having suffered unbearably under successive oppressive regimes, many of those political activists genuinely thought communism would be better ...

The Facts About Vaping

May 13, 2018

Dear Editor:

The recent public discussion about vaping and “Juuling” that occurred at our high school really opened the eyes of a lot of parents who may have been clueless about what their kids are doing to themselves. There is a lot of conflicting and confusing information available online, on YouTube and social media about the so-called benefits of vaping vs. smoking ...

Ask Maria: When Should We Step in to Rescue Our Children?

May 8, 2018

Dear Maria: 

My husband and I have been very child-focused most of our lives. We have always put our children first. Many times we have stepped in and rescued and we think it's starting to cause issues. Do you think this parenting style is damaging and what are the consequences of our behavior as they mature? How do we stop it?

Thanks so much!


As parents, we all have ...

Janessa Mendoza Honored as Union Catholic's Scholar Athlete of the Year by the NJSIAA

May 21, 2018

EDISON, NJ -- Janessa Mendoza, who served as a co-captain on the girls basketball team and is the Student Council President at Union Catholic, was honored by the NJSIAA as Union Catholic's Scholar Athlete of the Year at a special banquet at the Pines Manor on Sunday.    

Mendoza, who lives in Edison and will attend Georgetown University, played guard on the ...