In an historic season, the 18-1 Eagles captured our first ever league and county championships, topped off by a Conference championship- the best team in the 38 school NJIC! The season started with a bang when Camden Vogel rolled a 300 in an early season match against Rutherford, part of a program record 865 game (4 bowlers). An astonishing 6 different bowlers made first or second All-League teams while Camden Vogel and Sebastiano Secades also took home 1st Team All County Honors. Coach Aaron Goldstein was deservedly awarded “Coach of the Year” in both Passaic County and the NJIC Colonial Division. Additionally, the team and administration value his spiritual mentorship for the program, focusing team devotions on God’s love and grace.
The junior varsity team also finished first in the division, led by Peter Wang and David Zhang. With the strong performance from our JV team and multiple starters returning, we look to continue our success in the league and county next season as well as challenging for a spot in the state tournament.
Our girls team made their program debut this season! Led by Ella de Waal Malefyt and Hannah Wang, season highlights included beating Indian Hills 5-2 and tying an incredible program (IHA) in the opening game.
Middle School Girls Basketball
With the stated goal of community building through athletics, the girls middle school basketball team learned that good teams and good teammates listen to and encourage one another, accept the common goal of the season and their roles on the team, challenge one another to become better athletes and people, and bring to the court laughter, joy, song, determined silence and pure grit. Led by 8th graders Kierra Faasse, Brielle Heerema, Skylar Kuiken, Hannah Leegwater, and Charlotte Ohnegian, this group proved to be master builders of community. They reconfirmed for their coach, Kim Meserole, that winning is much more than the score at game’s end. Each player can proudly hold their head up (a good dribbling skill to practice!) knowing that their attitudes and efforts helped to fortify their team and in so doing their greater community. It was by any definition indeed a successful season!
Middle School Boys Basketball
The middle school boys basketball team represented Eastern Christian with sportsmanship and skill as they elevated their play to the level of the league’s top contenders. Led by 8th graders, Jack Meserole and Andrew Mwirigi, Coach Culp’s crew posted a 5-6 record with wins against Wallington, Garfield, Hawthorne, and HCA. Peak performances also included close games against Haledon and Waldwick. Time and time again, the character of this team shone brightly as they responded to aggressive play with strength and poise. The team’s plea for a rematch against the league champions following the final game reveals a hunger for continued growth, and suggests that bright days lie ahead.
Boys JV Basketball
Though finishing with fewer wins than 1st year coach Rich Troast had hoped for, the team never gave up, bringing energy and enthusiasm to every game and practice. With 8 games decided by 10 points or less the boys enjoyed plenty of competitive contests this season. Relative newcomers to man to man defense, they demonstrated vast improvement as the season progressed. On the offensive end they made 97 three-pointers, improved from the free throw line, and learned to break a variety of full court presses. The future is bright for Eagles basketball and we can’t wait to see some of this group at the Varsity level.
Girls Varsity Basketball
The young Eagles put together a solid and satisfying season in a rebuilding year. Playing in the conference’s most competitive division, the team fell just one game short of their quest to be a .500 team but succeeded in their goal of competing as one with humility and grace. Lone senior starter and captain Gabbi Angelucci led a lineup that included mostly freshmen and sophomores. Improving steadily as the season progressed, there were many memorable moments down the stretch including strong performances against the league’s best teams and convincing wins vs cross division opponents in the final week. Junior Juliana Hopeck led the team in points, rebounds and blocks and returns with six other underclassmen who will contribute next season. Coach Veenstra believes if the girls continue to work on basic skills in the off season and retain their unselfish team first mentality, a .500+ season is within reach next year.
Girls JV Basketball
Coach Araneda enjoyed coaching this athletic and enthusiastic group through a very competitive schedule that saw the Eagles represent our school with sportsmanship and a never quit team spirit that represented our school well. With strong guard play, tenacious rebounding and increasingly effective man to man defense, eight different players contributed significant minutes each game en route to a .500 season and plenty of great memories.
Boys Varsity Basketball
The young varsity boys basketball team won 8 games while playing a very competitive independent schedule full of games decided in the 4th quarter, learning plenty of lessons in what it takes to finish games along the way. Season highlights included a last second steal and lay-up from Junior Jean Italien capping a 24-10 run in the final 12 minutes for a 52-50 win at Bergen Charter. Jean averaged 12 points and started every game along with Sophomore Lucas Genuario, who led the team in scoring at 14 points per game and paced the team with tenacious rebounding and infectious aggression on offense. Lone senior starter Jake Faasse averaged 11 points per game, highlighted by a 27 point outburst and stellar defense to help defeat Wallington. With 75% of the team’s production set to return next season, the boys team looks forward to turning those close losses into wins and a positive record overall.
This year’s Winter Track Team was a combination of underclassmen talent and senior leadership. In meets that had a separate Freshmen division, EC’s runners, jumpers and throwers took home dozens of medals. Ruslan Gorter and Caleb Kuperus earned multiple golds and silvers and Alex Culp threatened a number of Freshman school records. Junior Anneke Kuperus repeated as County Champion in the High Jump and Ruslan earned a second team all county, also in the high jump. Four EC athletes medaled at the State Meet including Anneka, Ruslan and Luke Parker in the High Jump and Daniel Park in the hurdles. All season long seniors Allie Borduin, Rachel Post, Griffin Stansel, Gary Guo, Peter Visser, along with Daniel and Luke provided an amazing amount of leadership and assistance for coaches Stephen Bailey and Joel Apol who believe this team is going to accomplish great things in the next couple of years.
1st Team All County: Anneke Kuperus
2nd Team All County: Ruslan Gorter
Honorable Mention All County: Rachel Post, Allison Borduin, Luke Parker, Daniel Park
Honorable Mention All County: Juliana Hopeck, Gabbi Angelucci
2nd Team All League: Juliana Hopeck
Honorable Mention All League: Gabbi Angelucci
Honorable Mention All County: Lucas Genuario, Jean Italien
1st Team All County: Camden Vogel, Sebastian Secades
2nd Team All County: John Zhang
Honorable Mention All County: Derrick Zheng, Josh Heerema, Hannah Wang, Ella de Waal Malefyt
1st Team All League: Camden Vogel, Sebastian Secades, John Zhang, Derrick Zheng
2nd Team All League: Tim Kim, Josh Heerema
Honorable Mention All League: Ella de Waal Malefyt