Falcons flying high with 3-0 start to 2022-23 basketball season


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Things are looking bright on the court for the Monmouth Regional High School girls basketball team early in the 2022-23 season.

Sixth-year coach Laura Forbes and the Falcons are off to a 3-0 start following a 49-23 victory over Jackson Liberty High School of Jackson on Dec. 20 at home in Tinton Falls.

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“I am very proud of them,” Forbes said. “All I want from them is to feel proud of what they do each day. I want them to feel good about themselves and to be excited with our success so far.”

The Falcons led the Lions 22-11 at halftime and extended their lead after the break.

With 1:00 to play in the third quarter, junior Julia Biasi tallied her third three-point field goal of the game to lift the Falcons to a 30-15 lead.

Senior Alyson Amadruto followed Biasi’s basket with back-to-back layups off Jackson Liberty turnovers and the Falcons took a 36-17 lead into the fourth quarter.

Amadruto and Biasi each finished the contest with 10 points.

“It was really nice to see everyone’s energy pick up with all those fast break points we put together” at the end of the third quarter, Amadruto said.

Regarding the team’s 3-0 start, she said, “When I was a freshman, we won (two games). We are 3-0 right now and it’s awesome to see how much we have grown.”

Junior Mia Troese scored back-to-back buckets to lift Monmouth Regional to a 44-23 lead with 4:00 to play.

Troese had an outstanding all-around game against Jackson Liberty as she scored nine points and added six steals, five assists and four rebounds.

“It felt good to come out strong in the second half to get the win,” Troese said. “We are feeling really good and I think this (feeling) will carry us the rest of the season.”

Forbes said it has been great to have Troese back in the lineup. After leading the Falcons in scoring as a freshman in 2020-21, Troese missed the entire 2021-22 season with an ACL injury.

Now that she is back and feeling strong for her junior campaign, Troese has been a force for the Falcons through three games. She is averaging just under 12 points per game with 20 rebounds and a team-high 13 steals and 10 assists.

“I am hoping to exceed what I did my freshman season,” said Troese. “It’s obviously been a challenge coming back from my injury, but my team has been here to help me. We are working really well together to get all our wins.”

On Dec. 22, Monmouth Regional will face Lakewood High School. A victory over the Piners would give the Falcons a 2-0 start in Shore Conference C South Division play.

The Falcons will participate in the Shore Regional Holiday Tournament in West Long Branch during the holiday break.

In a competitive C South division, Forbes said it will be very interesting to see how her squad competes against the likes of Shore Regional, Donovan Catholic High School and Ocean Township High School for the top spot in the standings.

One of the team’s goals for 2022-23 is to qualify for the Shore Conference Tournament, which the Falcons missed out on a year ago.

“We said as a group at the beginning of the season that our goal was to qualify for the Shore Conference Tournament. That is our goal,” Forbes said.

Troese backed up her coach’s comments by adding that she and her teammates are ready to take the program to the next level in the conference.

“I feel like we definitely can. This is a good year to do it,” she said.

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