Columbia HS winter teams gear up for seasons

Photo by Joe Ragozzino.
Chuck Keegan is the new girls’ basketball coach at Columbia HS.

MAPLEWOOD, NJ – The Columbia High School basketball, wrestling, fencing and indoor track & field teams will begin their seasons next week (Dec. 14-15).

The boys’ basketball team, under fifth-year head coach Eugene Robinson, will host East Orange Campus HS in the season opener Dec. 14 at 7 p.m. EOCHS is guided by first-year head coach Gabriel Baltimore, who was Robinson’s longtime assistant coach at Irvington and Columbia.

The Cougars are looking to improve on last year’s 10-15 record.

The CHS girls’ basketball team,  under first-year head coach Chuck Keegan, will visit Immaculate Conception of Montclair in the season opener Dec. 14, looking to improve on last year’s 10-13 mark.

Keegan, a 1988 CHS graduate, was the assistant coach for Jazmine Wright for the past few seasons. Keegan also is an assistant CHS track & field coach in the spring, and was a former CHS head football coach.

This year marks the first time that a Wright won’t be a head coach for the CHS girls’ basketball team. Johanna Wright was a legendary head coach at CHS for 30 seasons, amassing 560 victories and the Group 4 state titles in 1998 and 2001. Jazmine Wright, a 1998 CHS graduate who was a star player for her mother, Johanna Wright, was the head coach for the past six seasons following Johanna’s retirement. Jazmine Wright had more than 2,000 points and 1,000 rebounds in her CHS career. Both Johanna and Jazmine are in the CHS Athletic Hall of Fame. Jazmine was inducted in 2007 and Johanna was enshrined two years later.

The wrestling team, which went 13-9 last season in head coach Mike Freedman’s first year, will take part in the Kearny tournament Dec. 15 to start the season.

The fencing teams will face Livingston and Millburn in the season opener Dec. 15 at Livingston. The girls’ team lost in the state tournament final last year to Bergen County Tech.

The indoor track & field teams will participate in the ECC Opener on Dec. 15 at the Ocean Breeze Track & Field Complex in Staten Island.


Boys basketball

Dec. 14, East Orange Campus, 7 p.m.

Dec. 20, Millburn, 7 p.m.

Dec 22, Snyder, 1 p.m.

Dec. 27-28, 30 at Neptune Classic

Jan. 4, West Side, 7 p.m.

Jan. 10, at Montclair, 7 p.m.

Jan. 12, at Glen Ridge, 1 p.m.

Jan. 15, Bloomfield, 7 p.m.

Jan. 17, at Orange, 7 p.m.

Jan. 19, at Westfield, 1 p.m.

Jan. 22, at East Orange Campus, 7 p.m.

Jan. 24, Barringer, 7 p.m.

Jan. 26, at Millburn, 1 p.m.

Jan. 28, at Barringer, 7 p.m.

Feb. 5, Montclair, 7 p.m.

Feb. 12, at Bloomfield, 7 p.m.

Feb. 14, Orange, 7 p.m.

Feb. 18, at Phillipsburg, tbd

Feb. 21, Chatham, 7 p.m.

Girls’ basketball

Dec. 14, at Immaculate Conception, 4 p.m.

Dec. 18, Millburn, 4 p.m.

Dec. 22, at West Morris, 11:30 a.m.

Dec. 27-28, at Pequannock tournament

Jan. 3, at Nutley, 4 p.m.

Jan. 5, at Ridge, 1 p.m.

Jan. 8, at Newark Collegiate Academy, 5 p.m.

Jan. 10, Montclair, 4 p.m.

Jan. 12, at Verona, 11:30 a.m.

Jan. 15, at Bloomfield, 4 p.m.

Jan. 17, Newark Academy, 4 p.m.

Jan. 19, Newark Tech, 1 p.m.

Jan. 22, Immaculate Conception, 4 p.m.

Jan. 24, at Millburn, 4 p.m.

Jan. 29, Newark Collegiate Academy, 4 p.m.

Jan. 31, West Essex, 4 p.m.

Feb. 5, at Montclair, 4 p.m.

Feb. 12, Bloomfield, 7 p.m.

Feb. 14, at Newark Academy, 4 p.m.


Dec. 15, at Kearny tournament, 9 a.m.

Dec. 19, Belleville, 7 p.m.

Dec. 21, at Millburn, 3 p.m.

Dec. 22, at West Orange, 7 a.m.

Dec. 27, at Warren Hills tournament, 7 a.m.

Jan. 3, East Side, 5 p.m.

Jan. 5, Orange, Passaic, Pequannock, 9 a.m.

Jan. 11, Bayonne, 7 p.m.

Jan. 12, Belleville tournament, 9 a.m.

Jan. 17-18, Essex County Tournament, at Richard J. Codey Arena, West Orange

Jan. 23, Glen Ridge, 5 p.m.

Jan. 25, at Barringer, 5 p.m.

Jan. 26, Bernards, Montclair, Union City, 9 a.m.

Jan. 30, at Randolph, 6 p.m.

Feb. 2, at Bloomfield, with Princeton, Verona, 9 a.m.

Feb. 6, Kearny, 7 p.m.

Feb. 8, Livingston, 7 p.m.

Feb. 9, at Madison, 9 a.m.


Dec. 15, at Livingston, with Millburn, Livingston, 7:30 a.m.

Dec. 17, Kent Place, Oratory Prep, 3:45 p.m.

Dec. 19, St. Benedict’s Prep (boys), 5 p.m.

Dec. 27, at Morris Knolls tournament, 9 a.m.

Jan. 8, at Montclair Kimberley Academy, 4 p.m.

Jan. 10, at West Essex, 6 p.m.

Jan. 12, Santelli tournament (girls), at Drew University, 9 a.m.

Jan. 13, Cetrulo tournament (boys), at Drew University, 9 a.m.

Jan. 15, Oak Knoll, St. Peter’s Prep, 5 p.m.

Jan. 24, at Governor Livingston, 5:30 p.m.

Jan. 27, Districts, at Montclair, 9 a.m.

Feb. 4, at Morristown, 6 p.m.