WEST ORANGE, NJ – The Seton Hall Prep basketball team is one of the hottest teams in New Jersey. The Pirates currently are riding an eight-game winning streak. Three of those victories were against state-ranked teams as their record has improved to 15-6 on the season. They had three victories last week.
On Tuesday, they hosted Newark East Side and won 49-45 coming from behind. Trailing 36-33 entering the fourth quarter, they outscored East Side 16-9 led by Mario Bollo, who scored five points, Ashton Miller scored four points and Mike Curran scored three points. Bollo finished with 11 points and five rebounds, Curran finished with 11 points and two steals, while Geordan Walker scored 11 points with nine rebounds and Miller finished with 9 points.
On Thursday, Feb. 7, they traveled to Marist High School in Bayonne to play St. Peter’s Prep of Jersey City in the 15th Dan Finn Classic. Seton Hall Prep won 49-40, led by Most Valuable Player of the game Ashton Miller, who scored 20 points with eight rebounds, six assists, and two steals. Walker scored eight points with seven rebounds; Bollo scored seven points with three assists, and Giye Jenkins scored seven points with three assists.
After the game Miller commented, “We played better as a team tonight. The team got me going early in the game and it gave me a lot of confidence as the game moved along.” Head Coach Kevin Williams added, “We played really good defense especially down the stretch when we played our zone defense. Ashton’s scoring was there but he really played great defense.”
On Saturday, Feb. 9, in the first round of the 73rd Essex County Tournament as the fourth seed they hosted No. 13 seed Barringer and defeated them 75-58. Miller led the scoring with 22 points, five assists, and three steals while Walker scored 13 points with six rebounds and five assists; Curran scored 13 points with three steals, and Jenkins scored 11 points with six rebounds. When asked about the way the team is playing as of late, Williams said, “We are peaking at the right time of the year. We wanted to be playing well in February. We are trending in the right direction.” When asked about Miller’s play, Williams said, “He is a senior and one of our leaders. That is what seniors do and step up and show the younger guys what it takes to win.” When asked about not being mentioned with the top teams in Essex County, Miller said, “It helps us being the underdog and being under the radar. The players are playing hard as a team because we have nothing to lose.” When asked about the winning streak, Walker said, “during this streak we have really come together, jelled as a team and found a chemistry.”
Seton Hall will host No. 5 seed American History on Saturday, Feb. 16, at 1 p.m. at Frank J. Tracey Gymnasium in the quarterfinals.