PLAYER OF THE YEAR: Tyler Ennis, St. Benedict's, Sr., G (Syracuse): The 6-2 senior has proven numerous times the past two and half seasons that he has the capacity to score, pass and defend with equal ability?
Ennis also knows how to send a message.
Just hours after learning he was not named a McDonald's All-American Feb. 14, Ennis exploded for a school-record 53 points to spark a 116-65 win over Eastern. The Brampton, Ontario native then combined for 47 points over the next two games to power victories over Hun and Blair to help the Gray Bees claim the state Prep A championship.
The Syracuse-bound point guard was named to Jordan Brand Classic roster soon after the McDonald's snub, and will represent the East in that game April 13 at the Brooklyn Barclays Center. Before that he will lead St. Benedict's in the ESPN High School National Invitational beginning April 4 in Bethesda, Md.
Ennis steered the Gray Bees to a 35-3 mark last year and was honored as New Jersey's 2012 Gatorade Player of the Year. Sophomore forward Karl Towns of St. Joseph of Metuchen was this season's recipient. Ennis averages 20.8 points, 5.1 rebounds, 6.1 assists and 3.1 steals this season for 30-1 St. Benedict's.
DeAndre Bembry, Patrick School, Sr., G (St. Joseph): The 6-6 wing averaged 21.6 points and 11.9 rebounds to steer the Patrick School (24-4) the Union County Tournament championship and to the finals in South Jersey, Non-Public B, where the Celtics fell to Roselle Catholic.
Bembry established a reputation as a tireless worker on both sides of the floor and as an effective offensive performer both on the break in a halfcourt game. He scored a career-high 43 points Feb. 11 in a 73-53 win over Union.
Reggie Cameron, Hudson Catholic, Sr., F (Georgetown): The 6-7 senior is not defined by his perimeter shooting--he's far too good a scorer off the boards and in transition to be pigeonholed. But once Cameron did establish his touch, there was often very little else to discuss because it usually meant the game was over.
Cameron knocked down 94 3-pointers this season at a 45-percent clip and averaged 22.6 points to guide the Hawks to a 29-2 mark and to their second straight Hudson County Tournament crown. He also averaged 7.7 rebounds and 1.7 assists. In three seasons at Hudson Catholic, Cameron scored 1,930 points and helped the school win 76 games.
Tyler Roberson, Roselle Catholic, Sr., F (Syracuse): His consistent play inside became the cornerstone of the Lions' milestone season, which included a first Non-Public B state champions followed 10 days later by their first Tournament of Champions crown.
The 6-8 Roberson averaged 17.5 points, 11.7 rebounds and 3.3 blocks, and accomplished those numbers against one of the most ambitious schedules in New Jersey. He was particularly strong during the state tournament and outstanding in the T of C final with 19 points, 12 rebounds and two blocks in Roselle Catholic's 65-49 win over St. Joseph of Metuchen.
Josh Brown, St. Anthony, Sr., G (Temple): The senior guard's numbers speak well of his overall talent and work ethic--averages of 15 points, 6 rebounds, 4 assists, 3 steals--but the insights of head coach Bob Hurley reveal all you need to know about Brown.
Hurley has said that Brown is good enough to have played on any of his previous teams, and even in championship years that is not an endorsement he throws around casually. The Friars (28-2) lost to Roselle Catholic this year in the Non-Public B final, though Brown was a starter last year for a 32-0 team that won a state title and the school's 12th T of C crown.
Jaren Sina, Gill St. Bernard's, Senior, G (Northwestern)
Mike Young, St. Benedict's, Senior, F (Pittsburgh)
Karl Towns, St. Joseph (Met.), Sophomore F/C (Kentucky)
Trevis Wyche, St. Peter's Prep, Senior, G (St. Peter's)
Spencer Weisz, Seton Hall Prep, Senior, G (Princeton)
Ed Bermudez, Westwood; Joe Crabbe, Hasbrouck Heights; Alex DeCandia, Cresskill; Rashard Figures, Hackensack; Andre Frasier, Elmwood Park; Marcus Fulmore, Teaneck; Mike Gibney, Wood-Ridge; Joel Hernandez, Teaneck; Brian Horn, Pascack Hills; Shawn Johnson, St. Mary; Paul Jorgensen, Don Bosco Prep; Shaakir Lindsey, Teaneck; Troy McLaughlin, Old Tappan; Kyle Menard, Paramus Catholic; Pat Mensah, St. Joseph; Chris Myers, Hackensack; P.J. Reed, Bergen Catholic; Dondre Rhoden, Ridgefield Park; Gary Whritenour, Wood-Ridge.
Nadir Alston, Bloomfield Tech; Isaiah Briscoe, St. Benedict's; Elijah Brown, Irvington; Everson Davis, West Side; Temple Gibbs, Seton Hall Prep; Akbar Hoffman, East Side; Rakwan Kelly, Newark Tech; Tom Lacey, Seton Hall Prep; Matt Lane, MKA; Jerrell Murray, University; Dwayne Murrill, Newark Tech; Jameel Patterson, Jerrell Pruitt, Arts; Bloomfield; Paul Rufo, Cedar Grove; Ismael Sanogo, East Side; Keywon Savage, Central; Tahlib Swan, Montclair; Tyree Sykes, Newark Tech; Denzell Taylor, St. Benedict's; Jonathan Williams, St. Benedict's.
Nassir Barrino, Hudson Catholic; Tim Coleman, St. Anthony; William Conyers, Snyder; Hallice Cooke, St. Anthony; Damian Corredor, Weehawken; Sean Cummings, St. Peter's Prep; Garry Gaston, Bayonne; Alex Gill, North Bergen; Duane James, Dickinson; Kyle McLeggan, Hudson Catholic; Anthony Purvis, Hoboken; Desmen Richardson, Bayonne; James Richardson, Snyder; Manny Rivera, Memorial; Jaron Smith, Marist; Tarin Smith, St. Anthony; Kavon Stewart, Hudson Catholic; Manny Suarez, Marist; Rocco Timpone, Union City; Austin White, St. Peter's Prep.
Darnell Alford, Nottingham; Russell Austin, Lawrence; Khalil Batie, Trenton Catholic; Jordan Glover, Lawrence; Juwan Harrison, WWPN; Austin Hill, Hopewell Valley; Tommy Hussong, WWPS; Isaiah Johnson, Notre Dame; Zavon Johnson, Lawrenceville; Trey Lowe, Ewing; Grant Mackay, Hun; Hashim Moore, Hun; DeAndre Noble-Haywood, Peddie; Davon Reed, Princeton Day; Bryan Rivers, WWPS; Rasheed Wallace, Trenton; Josh Williams, Notre Dame; Isaiah York, Ewing; Shaquan Worthy, Trenton.
Sultan Aminu, Old Bridge; Wade Baldwin, St. Joseph; Amir Bell, East Brunswick; Chris Bourne, South Brunswick; Deon Brown, Dunellen; Jake Dadika, Spotswood; Tyler Drews, Old Bridge; Iverson Fleming, North Brunswick; Dennis Ford, North Brunswick; Marcus Freeney, Piscataway; Eddie Harris, Woodbridge; Dan Leung, East Brunswick; Tyrell Lockley, Caarteret; Tyler Harris, South River; Dylan Hoski, Dunellen; Turell McClendon, Piscataway Tech; Jared Pearson, Woodbridge; Corey Taite, Sayreville; Bleriot Thompson, Colonia; Marques Townes, St. Joseph; Rob Ukawuba, East Brunswick.
Rob Cantelli, Holmdel; Dwight Clark, Long Branch; Terrel Cox, Long Branch; Brandon Federici, Colts Neck; Anthony Firkser, Manalapan; Jack Herrmann, Rumson-Fair Haven; J.R. Hobbie, Manasquan; John Horrigan, Freehold Twp.; Conor Ledy, St. Rose; Danny Markulin, Keansburg; Eric Musto, Ocean; Quenton Nelson, RBC; Dan Pillari, Shore; Lou Pillari, CBA; Shakeem Richardson, Neptune; James Sobieski, Colts Neck; Alex Thompson, Keyport; Cody Thompson, Middletown North; Tommy Toole, Manasquan; Jimmy Walsh, Manasquan.
Sam Asani, Boonton; Pat Barron, West Morris; Sam Carson, Chatham; Ryan Curran, Delbarton; Ryan Harris, Randolph; Sean Haughey, Madison; Zach Heeman, Mt Olive; Sean Hoehn, Morristown; A.J. Holleran, Whippany Park; Tyler Jones, Jefferson; Ryan Kelley, Roxbury; Rashaan Spencer, Mt. Olive; Mike Talbert, Randolph; Paul Tarnawski, Mountain Lakes; Joe Timmes, Ryan Traub, Mt. Olive; Bobby Stolz, Mendham; Chatham; Brian Walls, Morris Hills; Jesse Warich, Montville; Matt Williams, Hanover Park.
Tymere Berry, TRS; Tyrice Beverette, Lakewood; Kyle Carrigton, TRN; Riley Calzonetti, Point Pleasant Beach; Eric Carter, Jackson Memorial; Jarred Craddox, Lakewood; Matt Farrell, Point Pleasant Beach; Mike Gesicki, Southern; Mike Golden, Brick Memorial; Mason Jones, Manchester; P.J. Kineavy, Point Pleasant Beach; Kyle McGarry, Point Pleasant Boro; Malik Mendez, Lakewood; Zach Policastro, Southern; Damien Singleton, TRN; James Sofield, Jackson Liberty; Nick Specht, Jackson Memorial; Solly Stansbury, TRN; Dominique Uhl, Point Pleasant Beach; Ben Watson, Lakewood.
Luke Basket, West Milford; Zaheem Beal, Passaic Tech; Jetor Brown, Paterson Eastside; Juwan Carter, DePaul; Liam Connors, Wayne Valley; Xavier Grant, Clifton; Alphonso Gee, Paterson Kennedy; Sanders Green, DePaul; Asem Johnson, Paterson Eastside; Rashaan Johnson, Passaic; Nazmi Maliqi, Manchester; Josh Marquez, DePaul; Stefan Minic, Passaic Valley; Thomas Rivera, Paterson Eastside; Hassan Towns, Paterson Kennedy; Gerron Williams, Passaic; Isaac Williams, Passaic Tech; Jamir Williams, Manchester; Scott Wills, Wayne Hills; Jihad Wright, Passaic Valley.
Tyus Battle, Gill St. Bernard's; Nick Brooks, Rutgers Prep; Hamilton Capellan, Bound Brook; Karl Charles, Rutgers Prep; Austin Colbert, Gill St. Bernard's; Kevin Doolan, Ridge; Matt Gerrity, Ridge; Ricky Holliday, Bound Brook; Matt Hornich, Hillsborough; Chris Jenkins, Gill St. Bernard's; Eric Klacik, Ridge; Justin Kovacevich, Montgomery; Hugh Morris, Ridge; Eric Murdock, Bridgewater-Raritan; Vincent Pace, Bridgewater-Raritan; Jalen Parham, Hillsborough; J.R. Rodriguez, Bound Brook; Mike Rubayo, Montgomery; Steve Weidlich, Watchung Hills; Jack Welti, Bound Brook.
Jevon Allen, Rahway; Terrell Bagley, Linden; Thomas Bonacum, Scotch Plains; Elijah Brown, Dayton; Jaleel Chain, Union; Denzel Christian, Plainfield; Jared Clayton, Asante Gist, Roselle Catholic; Dayton; Dontay Julius, St. Mary; Ashton Lofton, Union Catholic; Damon Lynn, Union Catholic; Al-Jameer Mallory, Hillside; Ba'Shawn Mickens, Summit; Damon Miraud, Elizabeth; Quadri Moore, Linden; James Redmond, Roselle; Chris Regus, Patrick School; Malachi Richardson, Roselle Catholic; Hakeem Rogers, Elizabeth; Hakim Saintil, Roselle Catholic; Scott Toresco, Westfield.
Bryce Aiken, Pope John; Noah Barofski, Belvidere; Ryan Callahan, Warren Hills; Anthony Capone, Delaware Valley; Peter Christ, Delaware Valley; Mitch Cohen, Sparta; Moustapha Diagne, Pope John; Jeff Dzierzawiec, Hunterdon Central; Zach Frick, Sparta; Craig Gares, Delaware Valley; Ryan Izzo, Pope John; Matt Jarvis, North Hunterdon; Mike Knight, Hunterdon Central; Jermaine Lawrence, Pope John; Sean Lubreski, Blair; Jake Melville, Sparta; Mitchell Palmer, Voorhees; Graham Senour, North Hunterdon; Marial Shayock, Blair; Mike Silverthorn, Blair.
Team of the Year: Roselle Catholic (25-5)
The talent-rich Lions knew they'd immediately been branded as underachievers when they lost, as the No. 1 seed, to sub-.500 Union Feb. 16 in the Union County Tournament quarterfinals.
But Roselle Catholic also knew that none of those opinions mattered as long as it was willing to use that loss as a learning tool and a motivator rather than a epitaph.
The Lions beat a talented Colts Neck team, 84-65, one week after that Union loss, then opened the state tournament with a 94-26 rout of Ranney in the first round of South Jersey, Non-Public B. Three weeks later, Tyler Roberson, Malachi Richardson, Hakim Saintil, Asante Gist and the rest of the Lions were standing on the floor of the Sun National Bank Center in Trenton as the Tournament of Champions winner following a 65-49 decision over St. Joseph of Metuchen.
"The thing I'm most proud of is they refused to listen to anyone on the outside as far as how our season was going to turn out from there," head coach Dave Boff said. "We blocked out all the critics and focused on what we had to do."
Coach of the Year: Bo Henning, East Brunswick
A Bo Henning team without exceptional individual talent will still average about 16 wins a season and outclass a more skilled group from time to time through preparation and discipline. His Bears customarily play tough defense, rebound well against bigger opponents and create open shots with off-ball activity and crisp passing.
Now, give Henning some proven talent--like NJIT-bound senior guard Rob Ukawuba and junior guard Amir Bell, a Princeton commit--and you've got something special.
East Brunswick (26-4) set a school record this year for victories, won the Greater Middlesex Conference-Red Divisional title with an undefeated record and claimed its first state sectional championship (Central Jersey, Group 4) since 1986. Two of those GMC-Red wins came against St. Joseph of Metuchen, who edged the Bears in double overtime, 66-63, in the GMC Tournament final and who would later advance to the T of C final. East Brunswick lost to Atlantic City, 51-49, in the Group 4 semifinals.
This was Hennings' 25th season at East Brunswick. He has 389 wins with the Bears and 398 overall.
Mike Kinney covers boys basketball for MSG Varsity. Follow him on Twitter: @MikeKinneyHS