Manasquan hosted Holmdel in the NJSIAA Tournament, Semifinal Round, Central Jersey Group 2 which is a big game for both teams. They are evenly matched in my opinion when it comes to talent, experience and competitiveness. Another key was number two McKenna Karlson who is a junior made her return for Manasquan which was huge for them. Can Holmdel spoil home court for Manasquan or does Manasquan make a statement.
With McKenna Karlson coming back, she gives Manasquan a different look against other teams which allows them to mix and match. Manasquan set the tone early in this game getting momentum against Holmdel's defense. They were able to find open shots, get to the basket and get to the free throw line. Manasquan had really good ball movement to start off the game and played smart. Heading Into the second quarter it was 20-9 Manasquan with Holmdel struggling on both ends of the court early.
Holmdel's struggles continue in the second quarter as Manasquan continued to put pressure on their offense and force tough shots. The defense for Manasquan did a great job in this game but couldn't stop Allison Cannon who had some key buckets. Manasquan's offense continued the strong shooting and had a 31-15 lead at halftime. Holmdel needed to make adjustments on both sides of the court quickly in order to come back.
In the second half Holmdel's defense did a better job against Manasquan not giving up easy baskets. They were locked in, focused and put a lot more pressure. The offense was able to make a run, cut the deficit and giving them a chance to win. Holmdel's defense gave up 7 points while scoring 9 down 38-24 heading into the fourth quarter. This team got some momentum back but Manasquan was still confident.
Holmdel's offense started to heat up in the fourth quarter making into single digits. Manasquan did a fantastic job holding off the run but the defense struggled a little giving up 15 points. Give credit to Holmdel for staying in the game, trying to comeback and falling short losing by 10 49-39. Manasquan advances to the CJG2 finals with an exciting end with this matchup.
Top scorers for Manasquan Katie Collins 15 points, Hope Masonius 14 points and Rylyn Orlando 8 points.
Top scorers for Holmdel Allison Cannon 21 points and Alexandra Loucopoulos 13 points.
Photo Credit Mike Franco