In 4 weeks I will release this years ”GOLDEN DOZEN” it will list the 12 best freshman. Making the list this year will take some serious work. But if a kid makes the Golden Dozen there is a good chance that Division One basketball is in there future. Check the track record of past Golden Dozen list makers. There just might be a name on that list you don’t Recognize… HER NAME IS TESSA LIGGIO.
The name Liggio you may know. That’s because this year’s Freshman of The Year most likely will be CHRISTINA LIGGIO OF RBC. She is the older sister of 2026 Tessa Liggio. Tessa’s twin sister is the best shooter in the state of New Jersey regardless of grade Katie Liggio or K”3” as she is known, is simply the best I have ever seen shoot a basketball in my time. Tessa can get lost between her two sisters greatness at times. But make no mistake and coaches let me be very clear with what I am about to say…. SHE IS THE MOST IMPROVED POINT GUARD IN THE STATE OF NEW JERSEY… how improved you ask? She right now for my money has jumped to the GOAT spot for Point Guards in the 2026 class. You see, the video, the work habits and performance don’t lie.
We have never seen anyone in the gym as much as the Liggio girls. It’s like its their birth right for them. They are in the gym everyday. You see most people use those words as a punchline and exaggeration in most cases. But make no mistake TESSA LIGGIO is in the gym 7 days a week up to 5 hours a day sometimes. She shoots everyday for two hours. It’s why she has developed into the most dangerous shooter of any Point Guard I have seen since someone by the name of Dara Mabrey behind screens. Here ball handling skills are those that remind me of another point guard by the name of Sophia Sabino, who attended RBC, the same place Tessa will attend. Sophia Sabino was the most recruited pure point guard in the state of NJ before choosing Fordham U. Tessa Liggio and Sophia have a lot in common except for one thing…Coaches here is something for you to digest ..TESSA IS THE NEWER BETTER VERSION OF SOPHIA SABINO… Joe Montano is getting one of the most competitive, hardest working kids he has ever coached period. He is getting a future GOAT!
Tessa Liggio like lots of young kids is still Evolving as a player. Like when she is in the gym, I hold her accountable for everything. Not just for her actions but everyone’s. When anything in that gym goes wrong it’s her fault. She is developing that thick skin only the great point guards have. That confidence that allows her take the heat and blame for her teammates mistakes. The mental toughness that allows her coaches to send a message to the team though her. That wonderful leadership that all coaches crave from true point guards. Tessa Liggio is mastering all these traits better than everyone else these days.
I get concerned when in the winter months when mega talented kids focus becomes playing on weekends. I’ve seen the drill and the tears that show up years later. I know its a parental and AAU coaching thing. I get concerned when kids and parents don’t understand Situational drilling is everything this time of year for the best and most talented young players. I get concerned when kids throw one handed passes, don’t go off two feet. Don’t focus on there deep and spot shooting daily. See this all goes to the lack of understanding of how to develop a talented young player long term. It goes to a kids IMPROVEMENT CURVE. I pay attention to this like a hawk. I know which kids are more concerned with development and which ones are concerned with performing in a 8th grade so called elite league game. I know the kid who had 20 points and whose team won, who is most concerned with that. But did that kid get better is the question? or is the kid and parent living for that weekend hype that will mean nothing in 4 months or 4 years from now. Because game over hype is what decides the future… TESSA LIGGIO has game her hype will come later. I hope those folks guiding Tessa over the years will stay in there lane and let her grown into maybe the best point guard in New Jersey.
I told a college coach last week who watched the games in Holmdel, her program badly needs a Point Guard. I have a 2026 point guard who I think you should offer. She laughed and asked me how big was she? I said 5’7”. She said that she would need to watch her this summer. I said of course. we both then laughed. Then I got serious, very serious. I then told her ”she’ll be better than any point guard in your program by her junior year at RBC!” Do you know why? I said this and meant it? Because what has Joe Montano done better than every other coach over the years? Develop great point guards, nobody does it better. He squeezes there talent and makes them beg for mercy. He forces them to play with and without the ball. He forces them to be Distributors and scorers. Have you ever seen a RBC point guard who can’t defend? NEVER… why do I tell you all this? Because with Tessa’s work ethic and her fellow freshman joining her next year and with Molly Kelly still there to teach her the RBC way … all I have to say is this COACHES, get your popcorn ready… YOU GETTING READY TO SEE ONE OF THE BEST YOUNG PLAYERS YOU WILL SEE PLAY THE POINT in years …in Tessa Liggio💪🏀