Leadership from the “Little Ones”


Lilly Hamlin, Sports Editor

The boys varsity basketball team has been successful this season without having any seniors, going into the season with seven wins and three losses against Old Tappan, Teaneck and Dumont. 

Marco DeCroce, a sophomore varsity basketball player, said how the team dynamic has changed because of the lack of seniors.  

Decroce is a massive presence in the paint for the Norsemen (Photo Courtesy of Jacob Krylov)

“Coach has relied on me, Zach and Brandon, knowing the trust we have built together from last year. Building a trustful bond with a coach is very important when being a younger team who is working on developing. We are learning how to play through adversity when faced with it and working hard to accomplish our goals set for the season,” DeCroce said. 

Last year’s team was filled with senior leaders, so players like DeCroce, Brandon Sherbnik, and Zach Schweid have been stepping up and acting like leaders on and off the court.    

The boys are working hard in practice every day to accomplish the goals they have set for this season as they play through adversity as well. 

“We have very high expectations for this year. We are playing to be one of the top teams in the state, competing against the bigger teams such as Ramapo, Ridgewood and Bergen. We have trust in each other, and we know how capable we are to go far,” DeCroce said. 

Injuries took a toll on one of their returning seniors, Malcolm Solomon, who couldn’t play this season because of a shoulder injury. 

The boys are finding different ways to express leadership for their team full of underclassmen, their coach Patrick Gabriele also found different ways to motivate them and come up with game plans for each game. 

Srebnik has provided great leadership as a junior. (Photo Courtesy of Jacob Krylov)

“Last year was filled with senior leadership compared to this year’s team. Coach Gabriele has pushed us to become a strong team as we work together and set high standards for the future of the program. Coach Gabriele is motivating us to be the best we can, knowing how much talent he has on the court,” Brandon Sherbnik said. 

Sherbnik and DeCroce said being a leader on a varsity team can be difficult at times,  but having a voice on the team, especially since it is a team full of young teens, is important. 

“Being a voice on the court is very important because of how young of a team we are. Nerves can often play a role when playing in such a large crowd, so holding the team together during games is very important,” DeCroce said. 

The boys are constantly working hard this season, pushing to win against the bigger teams such as Ramapo, Ridgewood, and Bergen Catholic. With the support of their coach and each other, they are confident they will go far this season.