Roselle Catholic, The Patrick School, Cranford, New Providence reach girls’ basketball UCT semifinals

CLARK – All top four seeds advanced to the semifinals of the 41st annual girls’ basketball Union County Tournament.

The top four seeds all reaching the final four, that doesn’t happen quite often in Union County.

There’s usually an upset or two along the way, with at least one if not two teams seeded below No. 4 among the final four that are left standing.

That will not be the case this year when the tournament continues Thursday, Feb. 25 with the semifinals at Rahway. It will be fourth-seeded Roselle Catholic facing top-seeded and defending champion The Patrick School of Elizabeth and third-seeded Cranford taking on second-seeded New Providence.

All four teams are situated in the Union County Conference’s Watchung Division, with Roselle Catholic and The Patrick School splitting their two division games and New Providence sweeping Cranford.

The Patrick School began the week of Feb. 15 in the lead by one game for the Watchung Division title. Roselle Catholic is the defending champion.

Roselle Catholic and Patrick School are the past two UCT champions, while Cranford was last in the final in 2012. Cranford won its only crown in 2006. Roselle Catholic has won five crowns and The Patrick School one.

New Providence won its only title back in 1990. The Pioneers – sparked by junior 1,000-point scorer Katie Kinum – have not reached the final under present head coach Cap Pazdera, who has led them to numerous division titles, holiday tournament crowns and to three Group 1 state tournament championships, including last year’s.

New Providence has reached the UCT semifinals for the second time under Pazdera and for the first time since 2011. In the 2011 tournament, New Providence won its first county tournament game in four years before being ousted by eventual finalist GL.

On Friday night at Johnson, fourth-seeded Roselle Catholic held off fifth-seeded Union 44-36 before top-seeded Patrick School topped eighth-seeded Westfield 60-54. Both were rematches of the last two finals.

RC ended up going 3-0 against Union this year and Patrick School is now 2-0 vs. Westfield, with one Watchung Division game between the two remaining.

At Rahway it was third-seeded Cranford downing sixth-seeded Summit 55-44 before second-seeded New Providence trimmed seventh-seeded Governor Livingston 43-23.

Summit was to host Cranford in a conference-crossover game Jan. 23, but the contest was snowed out. New Providence defeated GL 39-35 in a conference-crossover game held in Berkeley Heights back on Jan. 9.

After Roselle Catholic won the first quarter by a dominant 21-3 margin – including a 13-0 run after Union scored the game’s first basket – the Farmers hung in there and actually won the next three quarters.

Roselle Catholic junior guard Jennifer McClave netted eight of her team-high 17 points in the opening stanza, making three field goals and two-of-two free throw attempts. McClave also produced seven rebounds, one assist and one steal.

Union was sparked by the play of tall junior forward Nneka Moneme, who led all scorers with 19 points and who also grabbed – it seemed – almost as many rebounds.

NOTES: Roselle Catholic defeated The Patrick School 47-44 at home in the second game for RC and the third for TPS back on Dec. 22. The Patrick School then downed Roselle Catholic 45-34 on Feb. 3.

New Providence defeated Cranford 51-46 at home on Opening Night, Dec. 19. The Pioneers then halted the Cougars again, this time by the score of 64-57 on Feb. 6 in Cranford.

 

41st ANNUAL

GIRLS’ BASKETBALL

UNION COUNTY

TOURNAMENT

SEEDS:

1-The Patrick School

2-New Providence

3-Cranford

4-Roselle Catholic

5-Union

6-Summit

7-Gov. Livingston

8-Westfield

9-St. Mary’s, Elizabeth

10-Scotch Plains

11-Johnson

12-Rahway

13-Oak Knoll

14-Dayton

15-Union Catholic

16-Elizabeth

17-Linden

18-Kent Place

19-Hillside

20-Plainfield

PRELIMINARY ROUND:

Friday, Feb. 12

Dayton 59. Hillside 46

Oak Knoll 37, Plainfield 24

Saturday, Feb. 13

Elizabeth 74, Linden 50

Union Catholic 46, Kent Place 27

FIRST ROUND:

Tuesday, Feb. 16

Westfield 56, St. Mary’s 41

Patrick School 74, Elizabeth 39

Union 41, Rahway 40

Roselle Catholic 56, Oak Knoll 33

Gov. Livingston 54, Scotch Plains 37

New Providence 43, Union Catholic 32

Summit 57, Johnson 42

Cranford 59, Dayton 34

QUARTERFINALS:

Friday, Feb. 19

At Johnson

Roselle Catholic 44, Union 36

Patrick School 60, Westfield 54

At Rahway

Cranford 55, Summit 44

New Providence 43, Gov. Livingston 23

SEMIFINALS:

Thursday, Feb. 25

At Rahway

6 p.m. and 7:30 p.m.

4-Roselle Catholic vs. 1-Patrick School

3-Cranford vs. 2-New Providence

FINALS:

Sunday, Feb. 28

at Kean University

Junior varsity: 2 p.m.

Varsity: 4 p.m.

 

 

FRANK J. CICARELL UCT

GIRLS’ BASKETBALL CHAMPIONS:

2015 – Patrick School – first time

2014 – Roselle Catholic

2013 – Gov. Livingston

2012 – Gov. Livingston – first time

2011 – Roselle Catholic

2010 – Roselle Catholic

2009 – Roselle Catholic

2008 – Westfield – first time

2007 – Scotch Plains

2006 – Cranford – first time

2005 – Scotch Plains

2004 – Scotch Plains – first time

2003 – Roselle Catholic – first time

2002 – Roselle – first time

2001 – Union Catholic

2000 – Union – first time

1999 – Summit – first time

1998 – Union Catholic

1997 – Elizabeth

1996 – Elizabeth

1995 – Elizabeth – first time

1994 – Linden

1993 – Linden

1992 – Union Catholic

1991 – Linden – first time

1990 – New Providence – first time

1989 – Union Catholic

1988 – Union Catholic

1987 – Union Catholic

1986 – Union Catholic

1985 – Hillside – first time

1984 – Plainfield

1983 – Plainfield

1982 – Plainfield

1981 – Plainfield

1980 – Plainfield

1979 – Plainfield – first time

1978 – Mother Seton – first time

1977 – Union Catholic – first time

1976 – Benedictine – first time

Championships:

Union Catholic 8

Plainfield 6

Roselle Catholic 5

Linden 3

Elizabeth 3

Scotch Plains 3

Gov. Livingston 2

Benedictine 1

Mother Seton 1

Hillside 1

New Providence 1

Summit 1

Union 1

Roselle 1

Cranford 1

Westfield 1

Patrick School 1

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