Former Woodbridge Assistant Returns to His Roots to Become Head Coach
COLONIA, NJ–During the latter portion of the Summer of 2016, Brandon Hall came home. A former standout at Colonia High School, Hall led the Patriots to two GMCT Final Four appearances including a championship in 2006, and back to back North Jersey Section 2 Group 3 Championship Game appearances that included a thrilling double overtime win over Union Hill for the title in 2007.
Now, Hall, who recently served as an varsity assistant to Matt Gigliello as well as coached JV at nearby Woodbridge High School, is looking to bring his championship pedigree to a promising group of players at his alma mater. Hall replaced previous head coach, Chris Chiera, who took an administrative position at Woodbridge High School after coaching the Patriots to a GMCT crown as well as another North Jersey Section 2 Group 3 title in 2015.
Colonia took a hit to graduation in each of the past two years with the likes of 1,000 point scorers, J.J. Corbett (graduated in 2015) and Chase Barneys (Rutgers-Newark, graduated in June) along with a talented supporting cast that included the likes of Jodrell Thompson (Kean University), Kolby Chapman (Central Penn College), Bryce Barneys (Monmouth for football) and Pat Naguib all graduating. The Patriots do have a promising junior class led by the likes of Kristian Chapman and Frank Lehman. Eric Marcus, a reserve on last year’s team also returns for his senior year.
Two years ago, Chapman and Lehman led Colonia’s freshman team to the Final Four of the 2016 Perth Amboy Freshmen Tournament, where the team lost a heartbreaker to eventual champion, North Brunswick in overtime in the semifinals. The young Patriots then defeated Perth Amboy in the consolation. Chapman and Lehman, were also solid contributors as sophomores to last year’s varsity squad, which finished 16-9 overall and earned a share of the GMC White title with Sayreville. Over the last two seasons, Colonia was 40-14 overall including a 26-2 mark in divisional play.
In addition to the varsity players returning, the Colonia JV team had some success over the summer in the Colonia JV Summer League. The Junior Patriots finished third in the final regular season standings with a 5-3 record. Then, Colonia’s JV defeated Spotswood in the opening round of the playoffs before losing to runner-up Roselle Catholic in the semifinals. Hall, who was a four year varsity player at Colonia, and later moved on to play NCAA Division I college hoops at St. Peter’s University in Jersey City, has a good deal of youth, but also a lot of potential to work with at Colonia.