When 6-foot-10 Manny Suarez transferred into Marist High School from Cliffside Park last winter, there weren’t many who appreciated his talents outside of the Royal Knights’ coaching staff.
However, it didn’t take long for college recruiters to recognize his talents and that was proven last week when Suarez announced that he had given a verbal commitment to play at Fordham University next fall.
Suarez, who averaged 18 points and 14 rebounds per game for the Royal Knights after becoming eligible to play in January, said that he received inspiration from a family member in making the decision.
“It was actually my aunt’s favorite school,” Suarez said. “She’s the one who told me about it. It was important for me to go to a good academic school and that’s what Fordham is. I liked the school, the campus, the coaching staff, everything. It was my main goal to play Division I basketball and it feels tremendous to get that chance.”
Suarez will join a Fordham program that has a strong local flavor, as former St. Anthony standouts Chris Gaston and Alberto Estwick are members of the Fordham program. Fordham head coach Tom Pecora has always recruited well in Hudson County, so he didn’t pass up the chance to get someone like Suarez.
“I actually played with Chris Gaston over the summer,” Suarez said. “Fordham has a tremendous program and I’m looking forward to playing there.”…
Talk about your comebacks. The North Bergen football team trailed New Rochelle of New York, 20-0, to begin the fourth quarter last weekend, but thanks to the passing arm of standout junior quarterback Dominick Trautz, whose legend continues to soar by completing 17-of-28 passes for 307 yards, the Bruins managed to score three fourth quarter touchdowns and escape with a 21-20 victory.
New Rochelle had entered the weekend with a 6-0 record, so that was a humongous victory for the Bruins.
The Bruins got the win when running back Brandonlee Diaz scored on a 1-yard run late in the game.
The victory was vital for the Bruins, who continue their quest of earning a first-round home game in the upcoming NJSIAA state playoffs….
Other standout performances last week on the gridiron include Devell Jones of Lincoln, who had 155 yards rushing and two touchdowns in the Lions’ 22-20 win over St. Anthony; Nawell Rojas (17 carries, 174 yards, two TDS) and Rafael Colindres (12 carries, 158 yards, three TDS) in Union City’s 47-24 win over Ferris and Damian Corredor (22 carries, 212 yards, 4 TDs) and Dante Cieri (12 carries, 155 yards, 1 TD) in Weehawken’s 40-20 victory over Wallington that clinched a North Jersey Section 2, Group I playoff berth for the Indians…
Here’s the latest in the NJSIAA power point standings:
North 1, Group V: North Bergen (5-2, 96 points, fourth) and Union City (5-2, 93 points, sixth) have both clinched berths in the upcoming playoffs. The two locals are now playing to see whether or not they will get a home game in the first round. The Bruins have a tough game this weekend with St. Peter’s Prep, so that won’t help their chances.
North 2, Group I: Hoboken (6-1, 104 points, first) has clinched the top seed in the bracket, regardless of what happens this weekend against Jefferson. Weehawken (5-2, 72 points, fourth) is in line to secure a home game in the first round with a win this weekend against Emerson Borough. Secaucus (3-4, 48 points, ninth) can sneak into the playoffs in the eighth slot with a win over Lyndhurst this weekend.
North 2, Group II: Lincoln (6-1, 98 points, fifth) is definitely in, but could secure a home game in the first round with a victory over undefeated Pascack Valley and a loss by 6-1 Lenape Valley. Regardless of what happens, the Lions are in.
Non-Public, Group 1: St. Anthony (5-2, 74 points, third) is definitely in and faces Nazareth of New York this weekend to secure a first-round home game. Hudson Catholic (3-4, 52 points, fifth) needs a win over Immaculate Conception of Montclair this weekend to clinch a berth.
Non-Public, Group 2: Marist (4-3, 64 points, tied for third) is in and can seal a home game in the first round with a win this weekend over Morristown Beard.
Non-Public, Group 4: St. Peter’s Prep (6-1, 102 points, fifth) could use a win over North Bergen to help its chances of getting a first-round home game, but the closest competitor, Paramus Catholic, has a game in hand over the Marauders, so it might be tough.
The playoff picture will be a lot clearer after this weekend’s action…
St. Peter’s Prep advanced to the Hudson County Soccer Tournament finals to face Kearny this weekend. The two teams battled to two scoreless draws in the regular season, the last coming last Tuesday night, so something has to give this time…
Hudson Reporter H.S. Football Top Five: 1. St. Peter’s Prep (6-1). 2. Union City (5-2). 3. North Bergen (5-2). 4. Hoboken (6-1). 5. Lincoln (6-1)…
Hudson Reporter H.S. Soccer Top Five: 1. St. Peter’s Prep (14-1-3). 2. Union City (10-5-3). 3. Memorial (10-7-1). 4. North Bergen (7-10-1). 5. Hudson Catholic (7-4-1)…--Jim Hague
Jim Hague can be reached at OGSMAR@aol.com.