The Roadrunners men’s basketball team defeated the Montclair Red Hawks in a New Jersey Athletic Conference match on Saturday, as Ramapo head coach Chuck McBreen earned his 300th collegiate coaching victory.
Ramapo topped Montclair 98-84 to improve their Conference record to 6-7 and 12-8 overall, while the Red Hawks fall to 5-13 overall and 2-11 in the NJAC.
“He said that it’s never been about him, and how it could never have been accomplished without all the players that helped get to the milestone,” said junior Frank Brock of his coach’s reaction after reaching the milestone.
Ramapo opened their season with a strong 9-2 start, but had lost six of their last eight games coming into Saturday’s matchup. Despite a tough loss to Kean University last Thursday, a win against the last place Red Hawks kept the Roadrunners in the sixth and final playoff spot in the NJAC.
The game was highly competitive throughout the entire 40 minutes, with Montclair arguably putting up a better performance than was to be expected from the Conference’s last place team. The Red Hawks jumped out of the gate fast, taking a 6-1 lead after the first few minutes, before Ramapo answered with a run of their own.
Ramapo took a 40-36 lead into halftime before erupting for 58 points in the second half. Montclair managed to score 48 points of their own, but it was not enough to hold off the Roadrunners.
Nock was arguably the best player for Ramapo as he dominated the game offensively, finishing with 28 points. Nock seemingly did whatever he wanted against Montclair’s defense, driving into the paint and creating his shooting opportunities no matter how aggressively the Red Hawks’ defense played. If the Roadrunners want to make a run into the NJAC playoffs, Nock has to play really well, plain and simple.
Ramapo’s freshmen made their own impact on the game, a notion that speaks very well for the Roadrunners’ future. Freshman Ve’Shawn Polite had an impressive 25 points, while fellow first year student Thomas Bonacum chipped in 13 points and 12 rebounds.
McBreen, who has earned all 300 of his collegiate coaching wins with Ramapo, has compiled a 300-155 record over 17 seasons behind Ramapo’s bench. He has led the Roadrunners to three NJAC Conference Championships in 2005, 2007 and 2013.
The Roadrunners hope that the sucess McBreen has had in the past carries on for the rest of the 2014-2015 season, as the team prepares for their final four NJAC Conference games of the season, beggining on Saturday when the Roadrunners host Richard Stockton.
“He keeps us focused,” Nock said. “Coming down the stretch there are a lot of distractions and with our team being so young, he does a great job at keeping us focused and prepared. It’s our job to go out and execute.”