Edison High School may be on the verge of a memorable girls’ basketball season.
Coach Frank Eckert has four starters and two bench players back from last year’s Eagles team, which went 14-13, reached the Greater Middlesex Conference Tournament championship and the NJSIAA Central Jersey, Group 4 sectional tournament.
Edison fell to Piscataway High School, 51-37, in the GMC tournament championship and to Middletown High School South, 58-46, in the state sectional first round. The Eagles hope to win the GMC and advance further in the state sectional tournament this winter.
“We’re looking to get tested early and hopefully use that experience to make a run at the county title. Then once you hit states anything can happen,” Eckert said. “We’re playing a tough schedule to get us ready.”
So far, Edison is 3-0 against that tough schedule, beating Sayreville War Memorial High School, 50-38, on Dec. 14, Colonia High School, 53-33, on Dec. 18 and New Brunswick High School, 77-23, on Dec. 20. The Eagles are playing great team defense, which comes from playing together for more than a season.
They are also maximizing a lineup of versatile athletes.
Samira Sargent has 53 points in three games, including 21 on three pointers. The senior was always a three point threat, drilling 147 triples over the past two seasons. But last year, she also became a driver.
“She’s a great shooter,” Eckert said. “But last year she became our point guard and adapted to the role well.”
Edison plays a three guard lineup, with seniors Kenisha Chester and Lourdes Marasigan rounding out the group.
Chester is not a high volume scorer, but she may be Edison’s most well rounded player. She recorded nine assists, six rebounds, three steals and three blocks against Sayreville. Her stat line versus Colonia was similar.
“Kenisha is an athletic guard who defends all five positions and is definitely our fastest player,” Eckert said. “She started halfway through the season last year and gave us a spark.”
Marasigan, a third-year varsity player and second year starter, is similar to Sargent. She can shoot and drive, recording 10 points against Sayreville, six on three pointers and two on free throws. For good measure, she also added five rebounds, three assists and two steals.
“Lourdes is another scrappy guard and can shoot very well,” Eckert said. “Since she’s been with varsity for three years, she’s very in tune to what we’re doing.”
Daniella Marmol is Edison’s fourth returning starter, and the only forward. She can score (29 points in three games), rebound (seven boards versus Sayreville) and defend (two blocks in both of the first two games).
Junior Angella Consolazio came off the bench last winter, but earned the Eagles’ fifth starting spot this year. She is Edison’s glue girl.
“She can defend a bunch of positions, make open jump shots and pass it around,” Eckert said. “She knows her role on the team and is stepping up nicely.”
Sophomore Ciana McQuiller, a 5-10 forward, is Edison’s sixth man. McQuiller is an athletic rebounder who can pass out of the post. Eckert expects her to earn starters’ minutes as the season continues.
“It’s just a matter of her getting acclimated,” Eckert said. “She can fill up the stat sheet.”
The Eagles are versatile and cohesive, and they seem ready to do big things. Their season will continue on Jan. 3 at Woodbridge High School.
“They are feeling it in their blood,” Eckert said. “They know what to do and are ready to go.”