WagnerCollege photo-10-e1396449278227-150x150

A year ago Lisa Cermignano was recruiting Sam Sabino of RFH.  She knew that Sam Sabino  was being chased by a number of colleges. But she also knew she had a ace in the hole. Sam Sabino grandfather played basketball at Wagner College and she liked her chances. But  when Sam Sabino choose UNH, Wagner College moved on to another Sabino ….Sydney Sabino. Yesterday a lot of hard work and RELATIONSHIP building paid off for Lisa Cermignano…SYDNEY SABINO GAVE WAGNER COLLEGE A VERBAL COMMITMENT.

rp_primary2_aa-Lisa4 Last year Lisa Cermigano told me this after losing Sam Sabino “I love Sam, but I need Sydney”. Then this fall Lisa called me and said these words to me. “Tiny there are a lot of good players in the Shore but my#1 recruit is Sydney Sabino” Coach Cermigano is someone that knows  what she wants… and Sydney Sabino is what she wanted and last night she got her girl. Wagner College is also becoming a real player in the Shore.

unnamed-1Last year I was talking to a parent at the Hoop Group about her daughter. I told her the key to becoming a good player is to think long term. She then said something to me I will never forget. She said Sydney Sabino is here all the time and “its doesn’t seem to have helped her”. You see that really tells the entire of Sydney Sabino, she had to grind and fight every inch of the way to find success. It’s never been easy for Sydney Sabino and she had to live to fight another day… more than any player I have ever dealt with. The key is that is always fought for another day and did not give up.

unnamed-3 When Sydney Sabino was a freshman she played JV and sat the bench for Varsity at Rumson.  She was disappointed and learned a hard lesson..nothing at Rumson was ever going to be easy. She lit up JV opponents like a cheap cigar, but that’s Junior Varsity basketball and it doesn’t carry a whole lot of weight. Then as a sophomore she played Varsity and saw spot time. It seemed that Sidney Sabino would not get a chance to show that she could be a special player. But it did not stop her from working and living in the gym. Sid Sabino decided that she was going to control her future not anyone else…so she worked herself to the bone!

unnamed-4 Sydney Sabino, is rare because she is one of those kids who shows up EVERYDAY. Just because you show up everyday as in 6 days a week and workout for 2 hours doesn’t mean you will always be rewarded.  But Sydney Sabino has been doing this for 8 years folks and yesterday she received her reward…a  chance to play at the highest level of college basketball…DIVISION ONE.

unnamed-5 She joins a small fraternity of players across the country. This group of players all had different roads to the world of D1 basketball. Sydney Sabino’s road has not always been fun and certainly not easy. It’s been a story of disappointments both on and off the court. It was during her Sophomore year that Sandy hit and broke up her close knit family. The Sabino’s were not just a family without a home..Now her family was split up living with different family members and things seem like they were not getting better. But Sydney did one thing…she keep her dream alive and never gave up her dream of playing college basketball at the Division one level. Even Sandy could not take that away from her.

unnamed-6 The Sabino house was destroyed by Sandy..but  Sandy could not  destroy Syd’s Dreams

Sometimes people think they are hard workers and gym rats. They believe they are paying the price to live their dream. Sometime kids fall short of those dreams and sometimes it because  the price is WAY BIGGER THAN THEY UNDERSTAND. How hard must it have been for Sydney Sabino to show up in a park and work for two hours in 90 degree heat 5 days a week in the summer. How hard must it have been to be in the gym 7 days a week during the fall, knowing that there was no guarantees. But what Sydney Sabino did decided, was not going to be hard, was this..SHE WOULD BE IN CONTROL OF HER FUTURE, NOT ANYONE ELSE...folks this how you make dreams come true.

unnamed-2 A Division one assistant coach recruiting Sam Sabino made this statement after losing her big sister Sam…  “the younger sister is going to be better, that’s the one I want” While she didn’t get Sydney Sabino,one thing I know for sure, she had an appreciation for what Sydney Sabino does better perhaps better than anyone in the Shore…Shoot the rock, she is A PURE SHOOTER. This very same coach texted me this summer and said these words. ” Sabino is a game changer because you have to always know where she is”  But the most interesting thing I heard all summer came from an asst coach from  D2 Felican College. She said  “Do you realize if not for AAU I probably could get Sabino” 

unnamed-2 THE FAB FIVE…

While many knock AAU basketball it serves the biggest purpose of all for kids hoping to play in college. It’s give players a chance to show college coaches they have skills sets that maybe don’t always show in a high school setting. In the case of Sydney Sabino, AAU was heaven spent. AAU gave Sydney a place to shine, she saw fellow teammates Jane Mayfield, Nicole Morris and Sam Sabino live the dream of playing in college. It gave her hope and it gave her that all important support base. Sydney Sabino played on one the most talented high school teams in the state in Rumson Fair- Heaven. Even when you are playing well it doesn’t mean playing time is coming. There are only a number of minutes a coach has in a game. Sydney Sabino was caught up in the numbers game at RFH. But AAU gave Sydney a real chance to be shine…and unlike other kids in Sydney Sabino case…SHE WAS READY WHEN HER TIME CAME…


As a sophomore Coach Sourlis gave Sydney Sabino every chance to lock down the role of instant offense off the bench. He ran her out there almost every game early in the season, but Sabino shooting is was up and down, when RFH shorten the bench Sabino became a after thought.  But then last year Sydney Sabino played for Joe Whalen and let me say this NOBODY UNDERSTAND HOW TO USE SHOOTERS LIKE JOE WHALEN. Coach Whalen instilled totally confidence in Sydney and before the start of Sabino’s junior year he created a monster. The Shoreshots and Joe Whalen opened that door of opportunity and Sydney Sabino walked right in.

unnamed-1 This summer the MONSTER  Joe Whalen created, reaped horror on opponents  as she  made three point shots look like lay ups. Sabino rained down three’s on opponents heads and she did it with a swag and confidence, that made you just shake your head. She had finally found her comfort zone and there was no looking back. The triple B threat was now in full effect…Sydney is a high honor student...BRAINS...SHE IS BEAUTIFUL AND SHE WAS NOW OFFICIALLY A D1 BALLER….TRIPLE B’S ACROSS THE BOARD!


The Sabino are a very close family, they are personal friends of mine. Nothing makes me smile more than seeing the family together, they are a basketball family. There youngest daughter just could be the best rising 7th grader I know. The mom Tracey played at Monmouth and coached the girls when they coming up. Pat the dad is maybe the most supportive person in Sydney Sabino’s life. It was Pat who had to convince his daughter when things were not going well to hang in there. It was Pat Sabino that told her it was she that was in control of her basketball future. Thank god for Sydney she listened to him and chased her dreams.

unnamed-7 Now Sydney Sabino, will play her senior year. It will be the first year she had played in high school without her older sister Sam, now at UNH. Sam has served as a role model for her younger sister. She went thought some tough times along the way to UNH, but she showed Sam that work ethic and REAL DESIRE can help you overcome anything. Sydney and Sam are as close as two sisters can get. Now they just got a little closer…because now both are DIVISION ONE BALLERS…CONGRATULATIONS TO SID SABINO …SHE’S A SEAHAWK NOW!




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