The Verona High School boys basketball team soundly defeated Cedar Grove yesterday but, together, the teams accomplished something much bigger than a victory for either side: They raised money for scholarships to honor a man who had split his life between both towns.
Tuesday was the first Jimmy Jandoli Tip-Off, a game organized by the Team Hill Foundation to honor Jandoli, who passed away from cancer in 2019 at only 56. While only a small crowd was able to watch the game in person–it was Senior Day for Verona–the game was live-streamed as a pay-per-view event.
“Team Hill is grateful for the support of the inaugural Jimmy Jandoli Tip-Off and sincerely appreciates the generosity of our sponsors,” said Fred Hill, the foundation’s CEO. “We look forward to awarding a scholarship to a student at Cedar Grove and Verona High School in Jimmy’s memory to support two communities that were dear to him.”
In the game, Verona defeated the Panthers 50-19 on strong scoring across the Verona lineup. Andrew Meyer, one of the team’s five seniors, led the scoring with 12 points, while fellow senior Graham Weber added nine. In addition to Meyer and Weber, the team’s seniors included Ron Arias and Kyle Malanga.
The win moves the Verona boys to 3-6 on the season. They travel to Bloomfield on Saturday for a 10 a.m. start.
The VHS girls basketball team improved their record to 4-1 by defeating Bloomfield yesterday 36-15. Emily Baumgard led the scoring with 16 points, while Melanie Naeris added eight. The girls will be at Cedar Grove on Thursday, weather permitting.