BY RAY FLORIANI
Kearny 32, Snyder 10
Kearny, NJ - Last Thursday, it was a JV game at Kearny. I had both teams once before. Kearny handled Memorial relatively easy on a Saturday morning. Snyder faced Lincoln and was routed in the process.
Kearny is clearly the much better team. Both coaches during pregame decide on a running clock to make the game and score more competitive. We, as officials, have no argument. Kearny is a pressing team. They press a few possessions before taking it off and falling back to a halfcourt defense. On the offensive end, they are not exactly clicking. Snyder is much improved since two weeks ago, and is able to execute a basic halfcourt offense. They get to the line, hit a few field goals, and at the half, are looking at a 11-7 deficit. One half done and the Snyder girls exit the floor with a decidedly upbeat attitude.
The second half sees Kearny get into their offensive rhythm and pull away. On Snyder’s behalf, their offense went on a cold spell, and when that often happens, players have a tendency to give less of an effort than required on the defensive end. In the final analysis, the running clock has made this a lot more competitive than a stopped clock game would. Kearny is a 32-10 winner.
Postgame, Snyder varsity coach Tom Ferreira treats the girls to pizza. He even invites my officiating partner and I to join. Tom introduces us to the team that is enjoying their treat in a better mindset. Tom tells them he often runs into me at college locales as Fordham, Madison Square Garden, and Saint Peter’s. The girls are cordial and enjoying the moment, especially pizza. The fact they competed for a half and showed improvement in doing so was the key. And unlike that game against Lincoln, this time out they genuinely enjoyed playing, which is significant in itself.