Jackson Memorial has had on of the most consistent, successful programs in Ocean County. Every year they are one of the best teams in the county. Rachel Goodale has now established herself as a top flight coach. There have been great moments in recent years. Like finally winning the A South title for the first time in years. Getting a win over a top Monmouth County team in Rumson Fair haven. Last year Kristina Donza now at D1 Navy, proved she was one of the best players in the Shore Conference. While Bianca Giordano led the Shore in assist and now is at D2 East Stroudsburg University. Both were part of the BIG 3 that won a lot games and returned Jackson Memorial to Elite status among the Ocean crowd.
Last year Jackson Memorial lost to Marlboro in the Shore Tournament. It was a great game from stop to finish. Marlboro struggle and was right for the taking but Jackson could not get over the hump. This year they hope to change that narrative. While playing in the SCT Top 8 may be a stretch. Playing and winning the 2nd 8 bracket is a very realistic goal. This year Coach Goodale used her two non POD games to PLAY THE TWO BEST TEAMS IN OCEAN in Manchester and Donovan. A bold move when you consider the youth of her team and no pre season workouts. If JACKSON can navigate through their POD which should not be a problem. That should put them in the SCT 2nd 8 and a chance to play for a SCT CHIP. Which would be a nice way to end the career of all everything senior Rachel Capua. It would be the first SCT TITLE in the Schools history. A lovely thought if your a Jackson fan.
Jackson returns a ALL OCEAN GUARD. They pick up a transfer who immediately becomes the 2nd best player in the Shore on paper. They have a returning sophomore who started as a freshman. After these three, this is an inexperienced roster. They have lots of untested size and talent. Like most Ocean teams it’s a mix of two sport athletes. Meaning hustle and defense will be the order of the day. Jackson Memorial will not be a deep team on paper this year. Look for 7 players to play in the most competitive games. This will be the first year in recent times that Jackson may not be ranked in the Shore to start the season. But If Jackson can have a few kids step up, they could surprise everyone.
RACHEL CAPUA will leave Jackson Memorial as one of the schools all time leading scorers. She also is one of the best defenders in on the roster. The former 1st Team All Freshman player will attend D2 East Stroudsburg. She will be asked to do even more this season, that any other year. Her ability to get to the foul line will have great value this year. It will slow the games down at times when needed for the the younger players. She can score at all three levels. She is an excellent rebounder in traffic despite her size. Her number last year were stunning, 512 points..131 rebounds and 112 steals. Jackson will need a ALL SHORE type season from her if they are going anywhere.
LEXI LINTON is a major pickup for Jackson. The D1 Kent University signee, right out the gate becomes the best combo guard in Ocean County. But it’s the other stuff she brings to the table that will make her so vaulable. Her experience playing high level AAU will rub off on the entire roster. She also has played against elite competition. That too will rub off on the entire roster. Her competitive nature will be a must needed shot in the arm. Lexi is a two way player who fills an entire box score. She and CAPUA will form the best backcourt in OCEAN COUNTY. She fills almost every void left behind by last years seniors… scoring.. defense.. rebounding and a competitive nature. She may be the key to the entire season.
ZOIE MAFFEI has all the potential in the world. Everything points to playing at some level of college one day. She has shown flashes of this potential for years now. The talented 5’10” versatile Maffei can handle the ball, shoot and rebound. She was one of the best freshman in Ocean County last season. She had multiple double digit rebounding games last year, like the 12 with Rumson. She has shown flashes of her offensive game as she had 13 points vs Rancocas Valley in the state tournament. She clearly has the ability to one day to be one of the best players in Ocean County. As Zoie gains confidence and develops competitive nature, she will begin to shine. Once she does this the sky’s the limit and JACKSON HOPES THAT HAPPENS THIS YEAR.
AMBER WILLIAMS has been battling injuries the past few years. During this time as early as a freshman she had shown flashes. She opened last season with a double/double against BRICK. This year the forward with size and strength could be the biggest surprise to Coach Goodale’s rotation. A break out season would be just what the doctor ordered for Jackson. Amber Williams just may be the piece that Jackson Memorial needs so badly to get over the hump.
CHLOE MESSER will play a bigger role this year for Jackson. She will need to gain experience on the fly. Last year she saw spot mins. Those minutes will be valuable going into this season. Now the question is will the blood and guts combo guard step up. Because if she does it will give Jackson a nice piece to their rotation. If she can knock down threes that would be a major boost to Jackson Memorials chances…
KAMILE MAKSELYTE is the most interesting player on the roster. Why? Because last year year the 6’0” forward showed major flashes vs Top competition she had 4 points and 5 rebounds vs RFH. This year if she builds on her freshman year. She could be a game changer for Jackson Memorial.
Jackson many thought would be in full rebuilding mode. That may still be all true but Lexi Linton makes that job a lot easier. Coach Goodale will need to settle on a starting five. She has three, the question is who are the other two. The addition of Lexi Linton is a true game changer, things are really looking up since her arrival. While there is very little returning scoring. There is great hope due to the returning players excitement. Jackson will need to be a defensive team first. They margin of error vs Top Team will not be large. They will leave the bulk of the scoring to there seniors Lexi Linton and Rachel CAPUA with everyone else chipping in… don’t be surprised to see Jackson Memorial be a major surprise in the SHORE!!