CEDAR GROVE, NJ – Though the Cedar Grove has faced some tough games this season, Matt McManus has delivered consistently both at the plate and in the field making him TAP into Verona/Cedar Grove’s Panther Athlete of the Week.

With his .538 batting average, McManus leads the Panthers this season in both hits and runs scored.  “It feels great to be nominated and to be recognized as Athlete of the Week,” McManus said.  “It’s a true honor.”

The senior shortstop is confident in his team and feels they have what it takes to be successful this season.  He notes their most recent win against Rutherford as proof of what they can do.

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 “We just faced a strong team in Rutherford.  They were 3-1 and we came out and beat them,” he noted.  “It was a really good baseball game and a good win for the team.”

With a new coach coming on board in Randy Nelson, one might think there was an adjustment period but McManus said the team adjusted to Nelson’s coaching style very easily.  “I like our new coach.  He knows the game,” McManus stated.

Offensively the Panthers have been delivering all season and McManus has led the pack. 

“Our strength is definitely our offense.  We have a lot of guys who are hitting.  We’ve been hitting the ball well all year,” he explained.  “I think we will be successful this season.  We have good players and a solid team.  It should be a good year overall.”

Looking ahead, McManus is first focused on the Greater Newark Tournament (GNT) and then sets his eyes on a state run.  “We definitely want to do well in the GNT and I think we can make a run in the playoffs if we keep hitting,” he said.  “As for me personally, I want to continue to hit well and help my team win some baseball games.”   

Editor's Note: The "Athlete of the Week" is a weekly reoccurring feature story that highlights an individual student-athlete's success. The Cedar Grove High School Athlete of the Week is selected with the assistance of the school's athletic director and coaching staff.