Glen Rock basketball teams looks for strong season


by Colin Morrow, Sports Social Media Editor

The Glen Rock boys basketball team has always stood up to the challenges that they have faced in past years. Entering the North 1 Group 2 tournament as an eight seed, Glen Rock had to defeat a determined Pequannock team in the first round, before facing a Ramsey  team who won their first round game by 20 points. Glen Rock did not back down from the challenge, and played them tough until the final buzzer, but fell to Ramsey to end their season. In the 2015-2016 season, Glen Rock will face a new challenge, as they lose their all-time leading scorer Khalil Williams.

Glen Rock will open up their season on Friday, December 18 against Conference rival Pompton Lakes. Glen Rock, who finished last season with a 14-12 record, will hope to begin their season with a win, getting them closer to their goal of winning the New Jersey Interscholastic Conference, Colonial Division, which they finished fourth in last season. The players have high expectations, allowing them to set impressive goals.

“The players want to get 20 wins this year,” Josh Frissora (‘17) said.

The Panthers do have to face the tough challenge of playing without their all-time leading scorer Khalil Williams, who graduated following the 2014-2015 season. Despite the changes that they will have to make, Glen Rock players and coaches are confident that they will rise up to the challenge and will play each game with high intensity in any given situation.

“Last year we relied on him a lot,” Frissora said of graduate Khalil Williams. “but now that he’s gone we’re looking for more balanced scoring from each player.”

Glen Rock has a lot of confidence coming into this season, due largely in part to their hard work in the weight room this offseason. Also, the team is much older, giving them more experience. They will likely be much less reliant on a single scorer, and will work on being more diverse in their scoring. Despite the talent, Glen Rock’s best feature is likely not based on skill at all, but rather the chemistry that the players have with one another.

Glen Rock senior guard Jesse Weiss said, “We all play well together, we push each other to be better on the court and work harder to play as a team. We’ve played together since we were little and we’re all excited to turn some heads this season.”

Every year, Glen Rock has followed a motto chosen by their head coach, Jason Mittleman. This year, the coach has decided to make the motto “Flexible but unbreakable.” This motto shows the team’s strength and commitment, even when facing tough situations.

The Glen Rock players have been gearing up since September, not only for Friday’s game, but the rest of the season as well. Despite high expectations this season, their experience and attitudes give them the opportunity and potential to accomplish any of their lofty goals. Their first test against Pompton Lakes could very well determine if they are still the same team with the same fighting passion that Glen Rock fans saw in the previous season.

“We’re resilient, battle-tested and ready for Pompton,” Glen Rock senior Mike O’Hagan said.