Sayreville’s O’Leary Helps Lift Bombers to 2nd Division Title in 3 Years
|Sayreville’s Ryan O’Leary poses with his family for pictures after the final regular season game where he scored his 1,000th career point on February 27th. O’Leary was recognized by GMC Hoops as the 2016 Impact Player of the Year.|
SOUTH PLAINFIELD, NJ–At the end of the 2014-15 season, the Sayreville Bombers, which went 13-14 overall on the year, but finished strong with an upset of third seeded Cardinal McCarrick in the 2015 GMCT Round of 16, didn’t wait long to get back to work. Head Coach John Wojcik put the Bombers in the Kean Spring League. Sayreville put in a complete off-season of Spring, Summer, and Fall League ball.
Sayreville took its lumps at Kean during the Spring, but qualified for the playoffs at Rahway in the Summer, and competed well at times during the Fall at the Hoop Group Headquarters as top returnee Jahsim Floyd pursued football. The Bombers figured to be in contention for one of the top four spots in the rugged GMC White. Then, came the addition, Ryan O’Leary, a transfer from South Amboy, which put the Bombers in contention for its second division title in the last three years.
O’Leary, who was one of nine players in the Greater Middlesex Conference to score his 1,000th career point this season, helped the Bombers improve by nearly five games over the season before. Sayreville earned a share of the GMC White Division crown with Colonia. Both teams also fought off a strong charge from a Woodbridge squad that began the season 0-2, and was 2-3 after the first 10 days before finishing the season with 18 wins in its last 21 games. J.P. Stevens also was a strong contender.
Sayreville reached the GMCT Quarterfinals for the fourth straight season. The Bombers also rallied from a 35-12 deficit to stun Montgomery in the opening round of the 2016 Central Jersey Group 4 State Playoffs. Sayreville also gave top seeded Hunterdon Central quite a battle in the quarterfinals before bowing out. The Bombers finished 18-10 overall including a 15-5 mark in conference and a 12-2 record in divisional play. Sayreville was 11th in scoring with a 55.4 points per game average, and outscored foes by a margin of just under a half a point per contest.
O’Leary made his presence felt right away on opening weekend when the Bombers took on his former team, South Amboy in the nightcap game of the Friends of South Amboy Showcase. He scored 32 points including the last second game winner in a 59-57 victory. Later on in the season, he performed similar heroics in a come from behind win over division rival, J.P. Stevens at the Bomb Shelter in Parlin on February 2nd. After converting a three point play with about 40 seconds to play, O’Leary, who finished with a game high 18 points, scored on a put back with seconds to play to give the Bombers a 45-43 win.
In the 2015-16 season, O’Leary played in all 28 games for Sayreville including a number with a slight hamstring injury. He made 149 field goals, 41 three pointers, and 102 free throws for 531 points, or 19.0 points per game. He scored in double figures in 26 of the Bombers’ 28 games. Of those 26 contests, O’Leary scored 20 points or more 15 times. Eight of those times, he scored at least 25 points. His impact on Sayreville was significant, and earned him the 2016 GMC Hoops Impact Player of the Year.