ROSE Caverly  and SANI Santiago are two players who names are mentioned, when talking about the best. Both are elite guards in the state. But there is a reason why Rose Caverly right now  is one of the most recruited point guards in the “18 class. Rose Caverly is a great of example of putting hard work ahead of all. When she was a incoming freshman I wrote that one day she could be the best point guard in all of New Jersey. She is closing in on becoming just that, these days. Sani Santiago, I have known since she was in diapers, and now she can only be called a diaper dandy. Last season I said she was one of the two best incoming freshman in the entire state. While she had a year every other freshman in the state would dream about. She did not have the over powering freshman year that I predicted. But she still was one of the top 5 babies in the state…expectations are some times not fair.


I doubt a day goes by that a college coach recruiting a point guard, doesn’t bring up the name Rose Caverly. Yes her size, strength and basketball IQ jump off the page. But what does not jump off the page is her work ethic. This the part of her game only her coaches see day in and day out. I have a saying that goes like this ” the hardest thing to do in sports is to show up everyday” make no mistake Rose Caverly SHOWS UP EVERYDAY. What separates Rose from so many other players is her attitude towards teammates  and coaches. This is a young lady that is first to clap, laugh and cheer. It these traits that make her the ultimate floor leader. It’s why, when she gets to college in two years, she will be a major impact player and that my friends is  fact.


Sani Santiago’s big sister was a D1 player at Fairfield U and a vocal leader. Sani was all  that toughness and work ethic, her talented sister had.. EXCEPT MORE. When Sani was little, she would dribble the ball on the sidelines and watch her sister train. She must have picked up a few things, because she the newer better version of her stud sister. There is no point guard in the ’19 class in her world. No guard has the pure shooting talents and insane quickness to go along with the best handle I have seen in years. No guard stops and changes direction like Miss Santiago. She doesn’t have a lot to say, but is the classic lead by example player. She also is that rare player that can beat you up on both sides of the ball. Santiago is nightmare on defense for opposing guards. Her ability to pressure the ball without fouling is nothing short of special for such a young player. There are those who say Sani is not bigger enough to play at a Power 5 school. That I can only laugh at, because you can’t teach the things Sani brings to the table.


There are always going to be very talented players. Those players with that ability to rise above the rest of the talent. Then again there are rare talented players who can take their game to another level and separate themselves from even the best. These players all have something in common, they can overcome a weakness and make it a strength. They understand their is another level to get to as a player; Rose Caverly is such a player. I remember saying to Rose Caverly last year, get in the gym, train more and play less. She nodded her head, that’s what 90% of kids do, they tell you what you what to hear. But Rose Caverly wants to be the best she can be, she has goals and dreams. Last spring, you could not keep Rose Caverly out of the gym and she did two things to get her game to the next level. First she became the best shooter of any guard maybe in the state behind ball screens….WITH RANGE. Rose Caverly behind ball screens is murder and this is a true next level skill, that other guards can dream of having. We couldn’t say this a year ago about Miss Caverly. She is a next shooter and scorer at the rim, start counting how many true points really have these skill sets. While Rose Caverly has always been a great ball handler, she has taken her handle to the next level. Rose Caverly can get to any spot on the floor and she can do it against any defense or player of any style. Now you may understand why college coaches are begging for her services…but what you may not know is this….ROSE CAVERLY IS OUT GROWING THE VERY D1 SCHOOLS RECRUITING HER RIGHT NOW!


I went to see Sani Santiago at a Christmas tournament last year. She played well but was not the dominate player, I knew she could be. I was a little surprised how she did not take over the game. Now you may say she was only a freshman, she did have double figures in the game. But Santiago is no ordinary freshman and I was just a little worried. Then in the spring Sani Santiago switched AAU teams and joined the Masonious Belles. This was a team that had played together for years and had Stella Clark and Addie Masonious in the backcourt. I was worried for Santiago, it’s never easy to join a group that has played together all their lives. But Santiago is no ordinary player and the great ones look better with better players. So Santiago, joined the Belles and it was her back that was issue not her new teammates. Sani could not practice and missed all of the spring, she returned to the Belles in July and while she played well it was clear she was far from 100%. But towards the end of the Summer we all got our first glimpse of what was about to come this fall. The Academic Elite event to the close July was packed with D1 players and coaches, and one person stole the show….Sani Santiago, who put on a show and reminded everyone she was the Badd-est women in the gym. The laser like passes, the pull up jumpers, the pure shot from the three point line and drives to the rim with such control and vision. Santiago reminded everyone that she was that rare talent, that can play at the highest LEVEL OF BASKETBALL, BECAUSE HER TALENT IS SOOOO RARE.


This fall Nasi Santiago was named the NO BOYS ALLOWED MOST OUTSTANDING PLAYER. When you get a chance look at the names that played in that event. Sani Santiago is all the way back, she is healthy and her game is at the highest level. When she showed up at NBS, I knew right away she was really to claim her title as the best guard in the ’19 class. She was ready to make her march toward ALL STATE. Santiago has a next level game, MEANING A HIGH MAJOR TYPE GAME.



Rose Caverly has been taking visits to colleges recently. These are  schools who programs, just like her game, she can move to the next level. Rose Caverly has been a winner at every level of basketball. She has rarely not been successful in anything she had done.  She is not just a mega basketball player, but she is a mega student as well. She has the D1 offers now and the real question is who is going to win the Caverly sweepstakes. My advice to all those schools, hope and pray she is open to a early decision, because if you ask me…ROSE CAVERLY IS A HIGH MAJOR STARTING POINT GUARD…

Rose Caverly and Sani Santiago have the one thing all the great have in common…they have a WILL, A MENTAL STRENGHTH AND A DESIRE TO BE THE BEST. My guess is both will never be happy with there games. Real gym rats never do, there always be searching for a edge. That edge that will get them to even another level….THIS WHY THEY ARE DIFFERENT FROM EVERYONE ELSE!




Donald Hand Jr. Junior Elite Featured Player



Donald Hand Jr.
7th Grade
Virginia Beach, VA
Donald Hand Basketball

Scouting Report:  The kid is a winner,  it’s as simple as that.  Donald imposes his will on the offensive end by playing downhill and initiating contact on his drives.  His strength and athleticism, coupled with his ability to handle to rock, leave defenders helpless when Donald chooses to attack the rim.  Once Donald adds some consistency to his three point shot, watch out! He is a lockdown defender and will be a name to watch in the coming years.

Events Attended: DMV Jr. Elite, Future All-American Camp

Khalil Farmer: Junior Elite Player of the Day

Khalil Farmer


Khalil Farmer
8th Grade/2021
Team Final Blue

Events Attended: Philly Jr. Elite, Metro Jr. Elite, Future All-American, Kevin Boyle PG Weekend

Scouting Report: Khalil is one of the most polished players in the Class of 2021.  He possesses a complete offensive game with the ability to knock down catch-and-shoot threes, take defenders off the bounce and finish at the rim, and hit mid-range pull-ups off of the dribble.  Khalil competes on both ends of the floor making him one of the best two-way players at the guard/wing position.  His skill set combined with his length and athleticism make him one of the most intriguing prospects moving forward.  Big things to come!

**Note: Farmer was a member of the 1st-Team Philly Jr. Elite in the Fall of 2016. He was also an award winner at Kevin Boyle PG Weekend and a top underclassmen at Future All-American in the summer of 2016.



So much of trying to reach a goal invokes pain and suffering. Tia Montagne, is a very smart young lady and so is her family. Her mother and her father are very low key people.  They have two drop dead gorgeous daughters, who happen to also be great basketball players. The family is from Jackson and their older daughter Tiffany played for Jackson. Tiffany was part of a star studded Jackson Memorial team that was ranked in the state and had all 5 starters go play D1 basketball.  This was a time when the 7th ranked team in the shore could win a TOC or a SCT. This was a different time, a time we may not see for years. This was a time when 23 seniors went on to play D1 basketball. Tiffany, just may have been the best point in all of New Jersey that nobody knew about. I remember her at NBS, just flat out destroying kids who were suppose to superstars. I was in shock when the family  told she had no D1 offers. She had D2 schools offering her the house to sign. But the family KNEW better and waited. Tiffany went on to sign with D1 Northeastern University and had a great career which included 30 point games as a freshman and sophomore. This was the same kid NEC schools told me she was not quick enough…more proof by the way the recruiting is sadly a snap spot. Tia Montagne and her family watched this all play out and knew their talented young daughter was not going to be short changed like Tiffany.


Jackson Memorial had two of the best freshman in the entire state expecting to enter their school 4 years ago. Rachel Goodale, the fiery coach had to think she was going to be great for years. She had a superstar in Kimi Evans, a 6’2″ center who become the best player in the shore as a junior and Tia Montagne who made THE HOOP GROUP ALL FRESHMAN FIRST TEAM. The problem is that both players accomplished all this at other schools. Kim Evans, THE HOOP GROUP PLAYER OF THE YEAR, decided to play for SJV and Tia Montagne, decided to attend RBC. Both made the tough decision to play for programs who corner the spotlight. I believe Tia Montagne and her family figured out that they didn’t want Tia to get lost playing in Ocean County, where the spotlight was not as bright. They knew Tia just may have been more gifted than her superstar sister. They didn’t want to take a chance, she could get lost in the sauce as they say. They wanted a stage where she could showcase her skills.


Tia Montagne as a freshman showed she was going to be special. She was quick like her sister. Her handle was off the charts and she could flat out shoot the rock, she was a natural scorer.  She had special nights as a baby, and their was no doubt Tia Montagne was not just a D1 player but one day, would be a superstar in the Shore Conference. There was no doubt that Tia Montagne was on her way to greatness. There was no doubt that she would not have to travel the road her sister had to travel. She played for a elite program, she was a top freshman in the best conference in the state. She would be a four year starter for a Hall of Fame Coach in Joe Montano. To be honest she  had all the things that her big sister never had…life was great for Tia!


The great Hubie Brown once said “never forget, you are always one step away from being on the street” A incident, or a injury could put you out on the street. Tia Montagne found out exactly that. During here  “sophomore” year the entire Montagne family, went though a hell few could ever imagine. When big sister Tiffany Montange tore her ACL as a junior at Northeastern, it had to come as a shock to the family. This was the year Tiffany would become one of the best players in the American East. It was clear she was on her way to superstardom. After all it took her to get there, they had to think, how can this be happening.  But when weeks later Tia Montange tore her ACL as well,  it had to feel like a nightmare. Two daughters, two beautiful daughters ready for breakout out seasons, both tearing their ACL’S at the same time. What could be worse for a family, what could be worse for a player, what could be worse for two close sisters. The Montagne family knew what the impossible and real disappointment truly looked like. The family was living in a nightmare, that could only take place in a bad dream.


While Tiffany Montagne lost her junior year and finished her senior season, Tia Montagne  missed her entire sophomore season. It was a season where she knew her teammates could have used her. But it also a season, when she watched her fellow class members Josie Larkins and Maureen Coakley become stars and household names.  She also watched a super talented freshman class move into RBC. She watched as Rose Caverly became one of the best freshman guards in the state and also become one of the most recruited point guards in all of New Jersey. It had to make her worry about her future. She had to worry if she would be a after thought when she returned in the middle to her junior year. She had to wonder if she still part of the future and next great guard at RBC. Tia Montagne would return to RBC and her role would also change.


Last year in the middle to the RBC season. Tia Montagne returned. Gone was the buzz, college coaches were just watching and no longer begging. Tia Montagne, had in a way become her older sister. A major talent, who was being overlooked by so many. Coach Montano, worked her slowly into the rotation. It was clear the shooting and the ball handling skills were still special. But it was also clear, there was a hesitation from the ACL and real fear to anyone watching. But even a 80% Tia Montagne is better than most. It was also clear her role had changed. It clear she was not the clear cut ball point guard. She had to share the ball with other guards. It had to be humbling for Tia to know that she was now just another talented player at RBC and not the so called POINT GUARD.  Now she was the point guard and scoring guard. The SAME role she played as a freshman… but it wasn’t the same. Now she was coming off the bench and a role player at a time many believe she would’ve been the team leader.

Crossing out Lies and writing Truth on a blackboard.

For Tia Montagne things had changed the spring going into her senior year. Where she played, who she played with and how she trained became more important than ever. She could not afford a set back. The family knew that the  AAU world was full of game after game and more importantly filled with dishonesty. They needed to make sure that all went well, they needed to surround Tia with people she and they could trust. So Tia Montagne stayed with the man the family had 100% trust in…. Walter Welsh and IEXCEL. It was a brilliant move, because when I saw her at the Cardinal classic in the spring, I knew she was back. I knew her senior year would be huge. It was clear that Tia Montagne was still indeed special. The question was if college coaches had forgotten about the superstar baby from 3 years ago. Building a reputation and name recognition takes time, but it doesn’t take a whole lot for it to disappear.


This fall Tia Montagne didn’t train in groups very often, I believe the family was afraid of injury. But what Tia did was shoot and work on her skills. She would come to hoop group and do a workout with her dad. It could last at times 2-3 hours. But it never appeared to me they wanted contact drills. I knew they were worried and wanted to get to the season, without injury. They wanted to get though the recruiting period without a setback. But one day, while shooting. Tia Montagne,  jumped in at Core Skills and matched up with a D1 guard and my jaw dropped. If I thought she had come all the way back watching her at he Cardinal classic, watching her at core skills made me think she was back to the ALL SHORE status we all expected before the injury. I watched Tia Montagne and the first thing I thought was; Joe Montano had two of the best point guards in the shore. Tia Montagne, I thought was going to get RBC over the top. As I sit here right now, I say to myself… RBC is going to have A REAL CHANCE TO WIN THE TOC AND SCT….TIA MONTANGE IS THE BIGGEST REASON WHY.


I received a phone call from one of the best young recruiters in the country. Heather Zurich leaves no rock unturned. She is the king of following up on things. She is going to be a head coach one day. She is a future star in the business and that is a fact folks. . The former Rutgers star coaching background is special as she played for …Jeff Jasper and Vivian Stringer. Zurich’s boss, Coach Oliver is a beast, did you hear me a Beast. Folks trust me, Stephanie Oliver knows how to build a program. He staff is talented and they as I like to say…get after it. They know how to evaluate and LIU  once again  is going to be a real power house. LIU asked me about a player on my cheat sheet that college coaches get. I told them that player, Tia Montagne could be a star and they would be wise to see her play. A few days later, Heather Zurich called me and said that the LIU staff loved Tia Montagne. They loved that she was a scoring point guard and that she was so talented. They asked me what kind of family and kid she was…that was easy, I told her first class in every way. Long Island University, offered Tia Montagne and for the 2nd year in a row, LIU got a player that is special and it’s because they out worked the competition and did their HOMEWORK.


The journey of Tia Montagne is scary when you consider that a family with two talented kids has had such a tough road. I am not sure many people could have gone though, what both girls and the family have gone though. But here is what I do know, LONG ISLAND UNIVERSITY has been given a gift. They have a kid who has been though it all. She has seen her big sister go though it all. She has watched family and teammates worry about her. But now they can all stop and admire, what a real warrior and survivor looks like…sometimes you have to make a decision, to be a victim or a survivor. Long Island University like Tia Montagne was a star in the Northeast Conference and fell on hard times. Just like Tia Montagne, Coach Oliver has LIU over coming some bad times.. ….both  LIU AND TIA MONTAGE ARE SURVIRORS OFR HARD TIMES….CONGRATS TO TIA MONTANGE..RBC AND HER FAMILY…YOU HAVE ARRIVED.







I have no idea where kids and families find the strength some times. I have no idea how it’s not easier to just give up and move on. Haley Dalonzo of Middletown South gave ST. PETERS UNIVERSITY A VERBAL COMMITMENT LAST NIGHT. To arrive at this marriage last night, there had to be some bumpy times. There had to be some difficult decisions to be made. Haley Dalonzo, has had more decisions to make than almost any kid I know in recent years.



 I met Haley Dalonzo when she was in 4th grade. I nick named her The Future, because her future was so bright. She was a special athlete even at that age. She was quick, strong, and so competitive. She also said not a single word, no matter how much I teased her. It was always a chore to get her to speak, because she was all about letting her game speak for her. She also was a soccer player and not just a run of the mill, soccer player. She was a stud who played on an elite team. But she found time to do both and when she got to high school that’s exactly what she did. But like all players who excel at the highest level. She needed to make a decision 2 years ago. Play high level AAU basketball or continue with high level soccer, while keeping one foot in basketball.


I will never forget walking out of Rutgers Prep two years ago with Mr. Dalonzo, we discussed his daughter. He told me for the first time his daughter would train full time in basketball. She would be in the gym all fall. He told me she would go play with the AAU guru Beth Chambers. Haley, he said wanted to play Division 1 basketball. She was now all in with both feet. She also would begin her Freshman year at Middletown High School.  It would be a special year as she and Stephanie Karcz would lead Middletown South to it’s first state title in 20 years. She also made the All Shore Freshman team which meant she was a lock to be a Division 1 player. It was a year that the entire school would never forget, local kids staying home and winning the title for the town and playing in the TOC. Haley was on the cuff of stardom and it was clear her future was bright. She was playing for one of the best high school coaches in the state, in Tom Brennan. Her high school team was sure to be a contender for another State title, a SCT, another TOC  and she was considered one of the best players in the Shore. The future looked very bright for Haley Dalonzo.


Last summer, the buzz surrounding Haley Dalonzo was big. The college coaches fell in love with the explosive guard with the college ready body. She finished a summer playing for Beth Chambers and the Central Jersey Hawks. It was a team stacked from top to bottom. She raised her game to a different level and joined the elite. She was mentioned in the same breath as all the Top Guards in the shore and she was just entering her junior year. In the fall Haley Dalonzo took it up to a new level. She lived in the gym, she missed nothing and more importantly took no short cuts. If there was a work out she was there. The transformation from great soccer player to full time committed basketball player was amazing because of all she gave up. This was a young lady who soccer was a major part of her life. Soccer was where her friends and her competitive edge came from. It was this sport that taught her about being competitive and being a teammate at the highest level of competition. Now she had officially walked away from it all, Haley Dalozno wanted everyone to know she was a BASKETBALL PLAYER.



It was last year when the D1 offers for Haley Dalanzo started to come in. It was last year her stock had begun to rise. It was last year that schools were calling and writing letters. It appeared that Haley Dolanzo, had a made a decision that no matter how hard it was, that it paid off. Haley Dalonzo was going to be able to write her own story. It seemed all was going right for Middletown South last year to start the season. Stephanie Karcz was off to a Player Of the Year type start and Haley Dalonzo was having a year that was just as good. Many believe they were the best one/two combination in the state. Two powerhouse guards, built like mack trucks running over the competition. This was going to be the year Middletown South could match the elite team’s of the shore talent wise at least from a starting 5 stand point. It was the year when all was right and everyone was ready for nothing short of greatness. The stars were lined up perfectly and Dalonzo was playing like a first team All Shore Player. But then it all went it bad…real bad. Tom Brennan was forced to step down for health reasons (he is back this year) and then HALEY DALONZO TORE HER ACL.


When I received the news that Haley Dalonzo tore her ACL, I was in shock. I couldn’t believe this could be happening to a kid, who had made so many sacrifices. I was heartbroken, because here was a kid with D1 offers on the table. I was worried, that news would travel and travel fast right to the ears of college coaches. I was worried that as junior, she would not just lose her junior year, but because she tore her ACL in December, her senior year as well. It also meant what to do about college, their would be no AAU before her senior year. It was decision time for Haley Dalonzo, She should play it safe or just jump on the offer. “A bird in the hand vs. a bird in the bush”. She didn’t have a choice, she learned the hard core facts of college athletics….it’s a business. The  schools that offered her, stopped calling, wouldn’t answer her calls. All Haley Dalonzo heard was crickets!. It had to be a painful and scary time for someone that made such a hard decision a year earlier. She must have doubted herself and her decision. This summer I told Haley Dalonzo, to attend academic elite just to walk around, I wanted college coaches to remember that she was still out there. I was worried they would forget about the “Future” and miss the boat on one of the best players in the state.


There were D2/D3 schools trying to get Dalonzo to commit early. She had schools who knew how to recruit that were putting the pressure on her to make a decision…good recruiters trying to steal a player do this. But Haley Dalanzo and RBR coach James Young were working and getting ready. Haley knew if she could just get back for the season, the D1 schools would come back and realize she is THE FUTURE AND MAYBE THE FUTURE OF THEIR PROGRAM.  Haley Dalonzo was taking a risk putting so much energy into rehab and passing on D2 offers. But like every hard decision she has made along the way, it has paid off. She waited and took a major risk, she found out that all the love she received from schools early was not the kind of love she expected in the end. But she never went into panic mode, she never gave in to bad times, she fought for her athletic life. HALEY DALONZO showed what a real confident decision maker looks like after being pushed to the brink of disappointment……Because  “THE FUTURE…AKA HALEY DALONZO IS  OFF TO ST. PETERS UNIVERSITY…..