Manasquan Gives Camden Standing Ovation For Winning NJ Hoops State Title After Egregious Buzzer Beater Robbery

High school basketball game

What an all-time showing of sportsmanship and class this was. Next time you see grown men fight at a sporting event, or are eager to engage in that activity yourself, take a page out of Manasquan High School’s playbook. This boys basketball team deserved a spot in Saturday’s state championship game, only to be totally screwed over by a reversed, would-be buzzer beater in the semifinals.

For a local New Jersey high school basketball game that otherwise wouldn’t register a blip on the national radar unless there was some sort of full-court winning shot that sneaked into SportsCenter‘s Top 10, this obvious blown call reverberated across the country. The state’s athletic association took all kinds of flack on social media. People were outraged. It’s among the most indefensible robberies in the history of officiating in any sport.

Not to take anything away necessarily from Camden for prevailing in that contest, but when they defeated Arts High School in a 69-50 rout in the state final at Rutgers’ Jersey Mike’s Arena, how could they not feel totally hollow? Camden is a 30-2 team who was a worthy state champion by any other measure — except the way they got there was a straight-up sham. Sorry to the victors. Just calling it like it is.

In an effort to not 100% dwell on the negativity and incompetence involved in the call that robbed Manasquan of a spot in Saturday’s game, let’s focus on how these teens handled the matter. They sat in the stands, watched Camden walk off the court with the state title they would’ve, could’ve, should’ve had, and chose to give them a standing ovation.

I said “not 100% dwell” right? So let’s cut back to less savory side of this issue, because I’m a little irked by how Camden’s coach carried himself afterwards.

If I were on Camden, and I saw Manasquan greet me with that warm reception, that’d almost make winning worse. The honorable gesture for Camden would’ve been to turn themselves in, admit defeat, and credit the semifinals win to Manasquan. Alas, they didn’t do that, and now their state championship will be among the most infamous ever, if not the most infamous ever.

Check out what Camden coach Maalik Wayns (correct spelling confirmed) had the nerve to say following his squad’s tainted triumph:

“I understand Manasquan’s pain. I played sports before I was a coach. I understand the frustration. All we can do is control what we control.”

Sir. You could’ve controlled the situation by declaring a rightful winner in the state semifinals when the referees on the scene wouldn’t. When the New Jersey State Interscholastic Athletic Association for trivial, semantic reasons in their unimpeachable rule book wouldn’t. When courts of law through which Manasquan tried to file lawsuits to delay the state championship game wouldn’t. But you didn’t.

A beer bottle on a dock



A beer bottle on a dock