GLEN RIDGE, NJ – Coming off last year’s 11-13 final record, head coach Sean Fitzpatrick knows his Glen Ridge High School girls’ varsity basketball team could improve upon that success this season.
“We could top that this year, provided health and that we come together as a team as the year progresses,” said the coach, noting his goal for this year’s team is to finish above a .500 while also hosting a home playoff game.
The Ridger head coach said the team is led by handful of players, starting with captains Gabby Kinzler, Meghan Marhan, Leslie Jaiyesimi and Juliann Lisovicz. In addition, Fitzpatrick said Galen Lew is another senior who is a starter and leader.
Along with these players, Fitzpatrick said the Ridgers feature a few newcomers.
“We are also expecting big things from sophomores Claire McMahon and Jenny Lisovicz,” he said. “They got varsity time last year and they are the future cornerstones of the program.”
Overall, the GRHS coach talked about the team’s biggest strengths.
“We have a lot of depth, are very athletic and our players are extremely unselfish,” he said.
Looking ahead at the schedule, Fitzpatrick took a moment to talk about some of the teams his squad will face.
“West Essex right now is the team to beat in our conference,” he said. “Verona is also very tough. Verona beat us twice last year, but we were very competitive against them. Those should be good games this year. Golda Och is also much improved. We are getting used to playing some new teams in our conference, so those games should be interesting as well.”
In his third year at the helm, Fitzpatrick receives help this season from assistant coaches Mike Sammon and Rachael Hogan.
Ridgers snap skid to move to 5-3
The GRHS girls’ basketball team defeated West Side, 53-37, Saturday, Jan. 7, to snap a two-game losing streak and improve to a 5-3 record. Claire McMahon scored 14 points and grabbed seven rebounds and Leslie Jaiyesimi had 10 points, 13 rebounds and four steals to lead the Ridgers in this Super Essex Conference-Independence Division game.
Juliann Lisovicz also had nine points, six rebounds and three assists; Meghan Marhan had nine points and four rebounds; Lindsay Jaiyesimi had four points and five rebounds; Gabby Kinzler scored four points; and Galen Lew added three points, five rebounds and six assists.
In earlier action, McMahon had nine points and 11 rebounds and Lew also had nine points with three steals and two assists, but the Ridgers lost to Cedar Grove, 41-37, Jan. 3, at GRHS in a SEC non-division game. Juliann Lisovicz had eight points; Kinzler had five points and five rebounds; Jenny Lisovicz had four points, four rebounds and three assists; and Leslie Jaiyesimi had two points with six rebounds.
McMahon had 12 points and Leslie Jaiyesimi had six points in the 47-25 loss to West Essex on Jan. 5 in North Caldwell in a SEC-Independence Division game. Lew and Juliann Lisovicz each had three points and Jenny Lisovicz added a free throw.
The Ridgers will host Technology on Jan. 12 and Science Park on Jan. 17, both at 4 p.m.
Joe Ragozzino contributed to this article.