SOMERDALE (N.J.) - The Middle Township High School boys' basketball team found itself on the road again in search of its first sectional title since 2011.
Middle Township's Anthony Trombetta, left, and Bubba McNeil, right, pose with the South Jersey Group 2 trophy following a 60-52 win over Sterling in the South Jersey Group 2 final at Sterling High School in Somerdale, New Jersey on Tuesday, February 28, 2023. Kiersten Cowgill/D2 Sports Network
The Panthers traveled over 80 miles to knock off third-seeded Cinnaminson, 71-44, in the South Jersey Group 2 semifinals on Saturday. Their next opponent, Sterling, was fresh off a win over Colonial Conference rival Haddonfield and awaited Middle Township 73 miles away in Somerdale.
The Silver Knights started on the right foot with a13-12 lead after the first period, but Middle Township responded. The Panthers dominated the glass en route to a 60-52 win over Sterling in the South Jersey Group 2 final on Tuesday night. Middle Township secured its first sectional title in 12 years.
Re'Ale Basquine grabbed 11 of Middle Township's 34 rebounds and added nine points. Bubba McNeil tallied a game-high 19 points for the Panthers, including three 3-pointers, as his younger brother, Jamir McNeil, added 15 points. The siblings combined for 34 of the team's 60 points.
Bubba McNeil caught on fire in the second half and scored the entirety of his 19 points over the last two quarters.
"I just found holes in the defense and got open shots up," Bubba said. "I'm glad I could hit those shots and help the team win."
"It's special," Jamir said. "Getting to win a championship with my brother is something we've both dreamed of, and now we made it come true."
Caleb Mundell posted a team-high 18 points and six rebounds for Sterling. Jaydis McFadden chipped in 15 points as the Silver Knights concluded their season with a 21-10 record.
Middle Township coach LaMarr Greer is a legend in the community. He was a McDonald's All-American selection for the Panthers was named the New Jersey High School Player of the Year in 1994. He propelled the Panthers to a pair of Group 2 state championships in 1993 and 1994 and graduated as the school's all-time leading scorer.
Greer's first sectional title as a head coach was just as special for himself and his alma mater.
"This means the world to me," Greer said. "The community is thriving right now with the girls team winning a sectional last night and now we just won one, too. Doing this for my alma mater and the community means more beyond words."