Projected seeds, 2010

February 15, 2010 on 7:24 pm | In analysis | 6 Comments

It’s the most important day of the New Jersey hockey season, and everybody is getting ready to start speculating about state tournament positioning. Thanks to a partial holiday today, I had some time to go over the list of qualifiers and draw up some seeding projections.

If you note a factual mistake (team qualified/not qualified or in the wrong public bracket), please post a comment or email me at jty [at] and let me know. If you disagree with the way I’ve ranked things, please post a comment and explain why. I need logic founded on results, but I will consider making a change if there’s a strong argument. Remember, only results through today’s 2/15 cutoff can be considered for seeding!

With all that in mind, here we go:

As always, the private field was slightly easier to seed, but the split Gordon Conference really threw a few wrenches into the process. I don’t know if RBC and MonDon deserve at-large bids, but I’ll put them in anyway.

1. Delbarton – This was an easy one.
2. Gloucester Catholic – Lost to DBP and tied SA, but their head-to-head win over CBA was key
3. CBA – Just missed out on No. 2
4. Morristown-Beard – Head-to-head win over SHP keeps them here despite loss to Chatham
5. Seton Hall Prep – No surprising wins, and they pay for their surprising loss to MB
6. Pingry – 0-1-1 vs. MB dropped them this far; close games with MB gave them edge over DBP
7. St. Augustine Prep – Could certainly have been higher and played well down the stretch; tie vs. Paul VI hurt
8. Don Bosco Prep – Two one-goal losses to SA in December; losses to MB, PJ, BC hurt
9. Paul VI – Wasn’t sure what to do with these guys; they tied SA in their only non-league game
10. Pope John – Finish ahead of SPP in Gordon; beat SJMet, RBC; lost to Ran, MK, SJV
11. St. Peter’s Prep – Also improved down stretch, beating MD and RBC and tying DBP, but still finished behind PJ
12. Red Bank Catholic (at-large) – Lost one-goal games to PJ, SPP; fourth among non-CBA teams in Shore A
13. Montclair Kimberley – Beat DPC, tied SJMet, recent loss to Livingston makes them a question mark
14. Monsignor Donovan (at-large) – If I let RBC in, I have to let MonDon in. They might both miss out.
15. St. Joseph Metuchen – Likely to finish just behind Paul VI; split with MonDon, loss to Ridge hurt
16. Bergen Catholic – Showed potential in wins vs. DBP, SPP
17. DePaul Catholic – Lost 3-2 to MKA in rare non-league test
18. Bishop Eustace – Difficult schedule but 2-18-1 doesn’t deserve a home game

This was a really difficult one. I felt solid about the top and bottom, but the middle stretch from 7-26 or so was very hard. It was tough to separate teams from the same conference in many cases, and I tried to avoid setting up games between regular season division rivals. I’ve included my picks for at-large bids (Ridge, Wayne Valley, Clifton)

1. Morris Knolls – They did tie Jef, Kin, and Ran but are unbeaten vs. publics and finished tied for first in state’s toughest division
2. Montgomery – No losses in Public A, two ties vs. Hboro, second in very competitive Skyland
3. Hillsborough – Lost to Rid down stretch but finished third in Skyland
4. Randolph – Came on down the stretch; only bad loss was to Peq in December; beat SJV 3-0
5. Brick Memorial – Slightly crowded here. BM won Shore A and went 1-0-1 vs. Bri; tied SJV; lost to How, Mtgry, Jef, RBC
6. Middletown South – Third in overall Public A and just beat Brick; went 2-1 vs. top Shore C teams; only game vs. north was 3-2 win vs. Sum; crushed SJV twice
7. Brick Township – Losses 6-1 to BM and 4-2 to MidS; also slipped up in tie vs. TRN; beat SJV 2-1
8. Morristown – Split w. Jef; beat PC (6-1), Spa, Rwood; only bad loss to Peq in early December
9. Freehold Township – Beat Ste, Kin to open year, then won Shore C despite 0-1-1 vs. How; tied SJV, Mah; lost to Sthrn, Ocn
10. Howell – Only losses to Mlpn, Bri, MidS; 1-0-1 vs. FrT but 2nd place; beat BM, SJV (4-1), TRS, Wall, PC (9-4)
11. Manalapan – 1 loss since mid-December, went 1-0-1 vs. How, beat MidS on Saturday; beat WWPS twice, tied Lak and lost to Rbville early; tied Wall; crushed Sthrn
12. Roxbury – losses to Mad, Hboro, Bri, Peq on Saturday; beat Para; tied Vero
13. Westfield – Beat Vero, Rid, HV in non-league; lost to Mad; tied BR
14. Ridge (at-large) – Strong second half, finished 4th in Skyland; beat WE, John, GL; tied MK; lost to West, BM (twice)
15. Bridgewater-Raritan – Only bad loss to WatH in December; 5th in Skyland; tied West; won Mclr tourney
16. Montclair – Beat Rmpo, no bad losses, 2nd in Mclr tourney
17. Fair Lawn – Lost to Mclr in tourney; hot second half (8 unbeaten); lost to Hksck, Rwood, Cli all in December; beat Rwood, tied Hksck in 2010
18. Tenafly – Only non-league loss to BR; fifth in Mclr tourney
19. Middletown North – Won series vs. rival MidS but inconsistent and lost to Spa, Cra; wins vs. OB, Ste, WWPS, Pri
20. Clifton (at-large) – If only to increase tournament scoring average; beat Sum in only non-lg. and finished just ahead of WayV (split head-to-head) in division
21. Wayne Valley (at-large) – Props for playing in Tri-County’s more competitive division; beat Nut, IH in non-lg.
22. Ridgewood – Likely to win division; split with Hksck, FL; very inconsistent; lost to BM, Mor, WE at Jef tourney; tied WM, DPC
23. Hackensack – Likely to finish 2nd behind Rwood; split with Rwood, 1-0-1 vs. FL, 1-0-1 vs. Bay; lost to Kin, Nut non-league
24. Bayonne – Inconsistent – tied Passaic leader PcV and last place WayH; best win was Cli in Dec; worst loss SJMont (0-1-1)
25. Toms River South – Struggled against good teams in losses to TRN, How; 1-0-1 vs. Wall earns respect via Wall’s results (beat HV, tied BM)
26. West Windsor-Plainsboro North – Best wins vs. Ste (2-0); 0-2 vs. HV; terrible non-conference schedule
27. Steinert – Got in on last day and likely to finish fourth in Colonial; no strong wins
28. South Brunswick – Losses to Paul, SJMet in lg. play, FrT; beat JPS twice
29. Old Bridge – Fourth in NJIHL South, tied Liv; lost to BR, MidN
30. Livingston – Beat MKA for only good win; tied OB
31. WWPS – 0-6 non-lg.; lost to Mlpn twice, BR
32. Jackson Memorial – 3rd in combined Shore B (split w. Sthrn); lost to WWPN, JPS
33. Southern Regional – 4th in combined Shore B; beat FrT but lost to TRN, Mlpn (8-1)
34. Newton-Lenape Valley – Split with Ber, 2-1 vs. Vern

Also a tough one choosing between all the very good Morris County and NBIAL A teams, then trying to mix in the many mid-level squads from Passaic and Union Counties and on down the state.

1. Ramsey – 1st in most competitive Pub B division; beat Kin, Rid, SPP; lost to Ran, DBP
2. Kinnelon – Strong second half; lost to Rmsy, Rmpo, FrT; 1-0-1 vs. Ran, beat Cha, Jef; tied MK
3. Jefferson – Beat GR, WM, Hboro, BM; split with Cha, Mor
4. Chatham – Hurt by late ties with Sum, Spa; big wins over MB, Jef, WE, Cra
5. Glen Rock – Hurt by losses to Jef, Rwood; 11-2-1 down stretch but lost to Mah
6. Northern Highlands – Likely to tie with Rmpo for 3rd (teams split); very impressive wins vs. Mtgry, RBC, plus head-to-head GD over Rmpo (9-5); lost to SPP
7. Ramapo – Beat Kin, Rid and tied SPP but hurt by non-lg. results (tied Nut, lost to Mclr)
8. West Essex – Tied Mtgry and won division but hurt by no big non-league wins and tie w. Mclr, losses to MKA, RBC, Rid, Cha
9. Passaic Valley – Best team in Passaic County but played 0 games vs. non-league NJ opponents
10. Lakeland – Tied Mlpn in December, crushed Vern Sunday in only non-lg. results
11. West Milford – Lost to Kin (6-3) and Jef (2-1) in non-lg. results that earn some respect for all Passaic teams
12. Summit – Strong second half and favorite for UCIHL title but lost to Cli, Spa, MidS
13. Wall – Beat HV, Mboro; tied BM; lost to MidS, How; tied Mlpn
14. Hopewell Valley – Won Colonial but no good non-lg. wins; lost to Wall, West, Hboro
15. Mahwah – 2-3 vs. big NBIAL tms; tied FrT in only major non-lg. game; beat Reg (4-1); close to Ten (tied Pri, which is worse than HV)
16. Sparta – Best wins Sum, MidN; key losses Ten, Mor; tied Cha
17. Nutley – 6 ties make tough to judge; lost to GL, WayV; barely beat Dmnt
18. Verona – Tied Ten, Rox; lost to West; beat Cra, ML, Peq
19. Johnson – 1-1-1 split w. Sum but no good non-lg. wins – scheduled strong but lost to Hboro, MK, SPP, Rid
20. Governor Livingston – Beat Nut, Mad; tied Ber, WMC; lost to Mor, Rmpo, Rid
21. Cranford – Best win MidN; also beat Ber, Pri; lost to Vero, Cha, Hboro
22. Madison – Basically an honorary UCIHL member; lost to Spa, GL; beat West, NLV; tied Sum
23. Rumson-Fair Haven – Fifth in combined Shore B; beat Mboro; tied SJV; lost to RBC, MidS
24. West Morris – Beat Ber, Rbville; behind Rox in Haas; lost to Mor (5-4); 0-2 vs. Mad, tied GL
25. Freehold Boro – Finished behind Mboro; beat Ocn; 2-0 vs. Hight
26. Ocean Township – Beat FrT, WWPS; lost to FrB, Mboro
27. Robbinsville – Best win Mlpn; edged WWPS for Valley; split with Pri, Hight
28. Bernards – Lost to Cra, Peq, WMC; tied GL; 0 big non-lg. wins
29. Mount Olive – Bad losses to Pars, NLV; best win Vern
30. Old Tappan – *added after receiving additional results* PkV best win; none over a .500+ team
31. Hightstown – Best results win vs. Rbville, tie vs. Ste; 8 of 10 wins vs. Ewi (4), Law (2), Not (2)
32. East Side – I love these guys but this is unavoidable; 0 wins vs. winning teams

NOTE: The NJSIAA lists its Public A/Public B breakdowns in this document. However, the document omits two teams in Public A (Jackson Memorial, Monroe) and two in Public B (Jackson Liberty, Sparta). It also includes an extra team, Wallkill Valley (JV only), in Public B.


  1. Jon, you know how much I respect your opinion and how grateful I am for all you have done for NJ High School Ice Hockey. I respectfully disagree with your At-Large entrants since it fails to include Pequannock. I feel there is a strong case to be made to enter the Pequannock Township Golden Panthers into this year’s Public B tourney.

    Here are the reasons:
    PTHS Ice Hockey Team record is 8 Wins – 11 Losses
    This record does not include snowed out games v. Mendham (a likely victory since the first meeting was 4-0 Pequannock) and Freehold Township.
    The team is ranked # 26 out of 106 Public School teams in the State as of 2/10/2010( That is the top 25% of all public schools
    This ranking does not include a loss to #10 Jefferson and a 6-4 victory over #22 Roxbury
    The team had significant victories over #5 Randolph & #13 Morristown
    The team had 3 one goal losses to #4 Chatham and #28 Mountain Lakes(twice)
    The team had 3 dominating victories over #52 Montville and #57 Indian Hills(twice)
    Difficult schedule: 7 of 11 losses were to #4 Private Morristown-Beard, #1 Morris Knolls, #4 Chatham, #6 Kinnelon, #10 Jefferson(twice) and #13 Morristown. Several of these teams are Private or Public A entrants into this year’s tourney, if enetred, Pequannock could face Chatham, Kinnelon or Jefferson in the Public B.
    Strong finish: the team is 3-1 in last 4 games
    Two years ago (2007-08) a 10-12-1 PTHS team was not entered into the tourney and won the inaugural Halvorsen Cup beating both Public B State Finalists, Kinnelon & Jefferson!
    There are 7 Seniors on this year’s PTHS Ice Hockey Team and this is their final chance to play a State playoff game. The Pequannock Township Golden Panthers must be allowed into this year’s Public B State Playoffs based upon their strength of schedule. significant victories, strong finish and history of accomplishment.

    I beg the NJSIAA At Large Committee to allow this deserving team into ‘the show’.


    Dave Coar

    Comment by Dave Coar — 16 February 2010 #

  2. I agree with comment by Mr. Coar, Peq deserves a shot at states. Class act and can surprise anyone.

    WMC is in Public A I believe.

    Comment by Pete Halko — 16 February 2010 #

  3. I feel like you have a slight inclination toward South Jersey. Any reason why? I respect all your seedings, but just get that feeling of you thinking hockey is better there?

    John – That’s good to hear, because if anything, I usually get accused of having a Morris County bias! If it appears that way, it’s probably because there are a limited number of games between teams from South Jersey and the rest of the state on which to base seeding. A few wins can go a long way in that environment. — JY

    Comment by John Smith — 17 February 2010 #

  4. Well, Pequannock did it again. Didn’t qualify for state playoffs, then beats #1 Jefferson (#3 overall Public B) in the Halvorsen Cup. I guess Dave Coar was right.

    Comment by Matt — 25 February 2010 #

  5. how did you come up with trhs being ranked 25th? one bad game all year and is that what you were stuck on? that was in dec have not lost since and tied hillsbourgh ,after out shooting them and beat wall, howell and won dowd cup.

    Tom – Please remember that state tournament seeding is based only on results through 2/15, so the tie with Hillsborough and the Dowd Cup playoffs did not count. TRS did not have any impressive non-league results at the time, so their best result was a transitive one (Wall’s win over Hopewell Valley), which in my book earned TRS being ranked ahead of WWPN but no higher. Obviously, they’ve been very good of late and wound up quite a bit higher, helped in part by the committee’s surprising respect for the CVC. — JY

    Comment by tom phillips — 27 February 2010 #

  6. i guess i was correct without stating the obvious

    Comment by tom phillips — 5 March 2010 #

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