Last night Freehold Twp defeated RBC; some will call it a upset. RBC is a team of the future with some of the best young talent in the state. There sophomore class is stacked. There freshman class had two starters this year in Katie Rice and Rose Claverly. Harley Moore one day also will start at RBC, she will be one of the best scorers in the conference.
RBC for some reason attracts a different type kid than other schools. Caitlin Carroll had to fight for her life last year with a heart condition. She over- came this and worked hard all summer and fall to make it back this season. BUT SHE SUFFERED A BAD ANKLE INJURY just before the season started. Maureen Coakley has a had a super year, yet is still under the radar and rarely given love outside the RBC family. Despite all this both love their coach and RBC. Both are not angry about the bad luck or lack of recognition. Both are going to be excellent college players one day. Why are RBC kids different? Maybe it’s Joe Montano that breeds this love of school and unselfishness. Maybe this why RBC is different than any other school. While others use words like family and love of school; at RBC they practice it daily. Last night the Shore Conference said goodbye to another member of Red Bank Catholic’s family… Alex Barazotti!
When Alex Barazotti was a freshman, she was on my list of top incoming freshman in the shore…. Yes of course I spelled her name wrong! But instead of making a major impact, she spent most of her freshman year watching not playing. But rather than complain she got in the gym and worked on two area’s of her game. She became a ball handler rather than just a shooter. Then she changed body..she became a lean mean machine. Her Sophomore year she started on a RBC team that did the impossible…They went undefeated and won the SCT.
Last night surrounded by a group of babies her team lost a heart breaker to a very experienced Freehold Twp team. But that was not the story, the real story after the game had nothing to do with winning and losing. It was about how Joe Montano again proved nobody gets it like he does. It was senior night at RBC and he spoke about his senior Alex Barazotti and all she has meant to the RBC family….TEARS! Because there are some kids you never want to say goodbye too… Alex Barazott’s only come around every once in a blue moon.
I received a text last from a coach and she said “Tiny I just left the RBC game and they lost, but Alex Barazotti played SO HARD” Well she really didn’t need to tell me that because Alex “the American Beauty” Barazotti always plays hard. Alex texted me last night after the game to tell she had lost. ” we lost tonight, we played so hard tonight, but I EXPECT TO BRING IN THE STATES” My response “no doubt, this why I love you” Alex gets it and always has.
I remember telling Alex she needed to become a better ball handler after her freshman year. So she got in the gym and was determined to improve. She came to summer camp with the little kids and did ball handling drills(zero ego). She worked on her own and lived in the gym. When Alex sets her mind to something nothing can stop her. She is somebody who understands that talk is cheap and actions speak louder than words. She has taught all the babies the last 2 years what hard work and being a Casey means. It’s she that has taken the heat from Coach Montano, when things have gone wrong. It’s she who has never rolled a eye or showed her displeasure with her young Casey teammates. Alex Barazotti has been a rock for the young Casey’s and Joe Montano the past two years.
You see RBC is all about family. You wear that uniform and you are part of something forever. RBC more than any of team is about being a teammate, you know putting the team before yourself. Alex does all that and more. She is the ultimate role model for her brother and sisters. Nobody could ask for a better big sister. Her teammates love her because she fair, kind and has a good heart….AB has showed everyone how to be a GOOD on and OFF THE COURT. She will never play another Shore basketball, but she will not be forgotten. The American Beauty will now take her 4.5 GPA…(yes you are reading that right!) to Loyola of the Patriot league one of the best academic conferences in all of America. You see Alex has been a role model in the classroom as well.
No kid has ever worked so hard to make herself a better teammate, a friend(just ask Grace Stant) or student. Alex has never tried to be more important or bigger than anyone. She has always just wanted to be part of something positive and bigger than herself… Like family, friends and teammates. She has and always will be respectful to all those around her both peers and adults…she understands that giving love …means getting love.
So Joe Montano and RBC will move on to the states and try to extend a great career for a great kid. Who knows when it will all end, but one thing is clear…Joe Montano, RBC and Alex Barazotti are FAMILY FOREVER and basketball is just a small reason why. She is not leaving empty handed, she already has a SCT ring… THE AMERICAN BEAUTY has left the Shore Conference but not her SPIRIT AND COMMITMENT TO JOE MONTANO AND HER RBC FAMILY!