Today I am going to tell you a story. Today I am going to tell you why high school basketball is special. Today I am going to show it’s not always how you do it sometimes. But rather who you do it with, that makes the journey so much more special. A group of young men are showing everyone you don’t have to join them to beat them. That’s why Marlboro High School Boys basketball team is trying to go BIG THIS YEAR. They are trying to be an example for all. They are proving representing your town and playing with friends can be a beautiful winning CHIPS type of thing.
Flash back to 2017, Marlboro led by 3 seniors who had played together since third grade and a few under class-men who also played mid Monmouth basketball together, pulls off a stunner and beats Ranney with NBA draft pick Scottie Lewis and Top 20 player in the country Bryan Antoine in the shore conference semifinals. They would go on to lose in the finals to a Mater Dei team led by 4 D1 players from several different NJ counties across the state.
Fast forward to 2021, MARLBORO now led by 5 seniors who are best friends (including twin brothers)and have played together since third grade, who by the way from third to eight grade NEVER lost a mid Monmouth basketball game, is the favorite to win the Shore Conference title and are the number 1 seed in the Prestigious WOBM Tournament . This all comes after a crushing loss in CJ group 4 finals as Sophomores and another loss to Manasquan in Shore Conference finals last year. But now the local boys who made good and who made the decision to stay together are poised to do something very special! The Marlboro boys basketball team is trying to show the world what friendship and playing for your home town can really be like…. SPECIAL😀
This is a group of kids that can talk to each other honestly and know how to get the best out of each other. Literally growing up together does that. At this point they all know their roles. It has been ingrained in them. They can put egos aside and genuinely be happy for each other and have the attitude of let’s just win. 4 of the 5 even played aau together, all in hopes of further perfecting their roles and cohesiveness. This is a group comfortable in there skin. They each bring a winning attitude and each bring a different gift to the table.
Jack Seidler – He will break 1k this year, if not for covid would have been Marlboro all time leading scorer. He was First team all shore.
Jon Spatola- gifted athlete. First team all shore. Will average 20 this year. If his man scores, he takes it personally
Jay Ratner- He is the teams glue guy and Leading rebounder. He doesn’t care if he scores, he wants to cover other teams best player and makes sure he doesn’t score.
Zack Molod – He is a streaky scorer. The blot of lighting all good teams need. He Always provides the spark when needed. He love to take and make the big shot.
Vin Spatola – The best teammate you could ask for. Fills the stat sheet and sacrifice his body for a win. He is the player you love seeing in the fox hole with you.
A couple of these kids had the opportunity to go to private school but made the decision stick together and try to finish what they started almost 10 years ago. A couple of them will go on to play college ball, but they can’t imagine any season being bigger than this one. Maybe this is the year they get over that final hump. I know all schools and communities care and celebrate championships but when the whole team grows up together in the same zip code it just means more to everyone. It’s Marlboro’s team, it’s the towns team, there classmates team. The alumni’s team. This is not outsiders and hired guns brought in to win the battle and take over the town. This is Marlboro’s own born and breed, developed nursed by the community, educated by the town. Parents and friends sticking together to make MAGICAL MUSIC TOGETHER.