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Sterling senior Justin Moroney setting a precedent for the Knights lacrosse program

Courier-Post (Cherry Hill, NJ) logo Courier-Post (Cherry Hill, NJ) 5/13/2022 Tom Rimback, Cherry Hill Courier-Post

WEST DEPTFORD — Justin Moroney doesn't miss baseball. Much. 

The Sterling senior switched to lacrosse for the Silver Knights first varsity season and finds himself as the first Sterling player to move on to commit to play collegiate lacrosse. 

“Once in a while, I do miss baseball a little bit,” Moroney said. “I grew up playing it starting when I was seven. I also love watching lacrosse. It's like hockey. If I could play both sports, I would love to play both sports. It's kind of sad that I can't.” 

The Sterling program was still at the club level when Moroney first got on campus. The Knights first varsity season was postponed from 2020 because of the COVID-19 pandemic. The Knights – and Moroney – made their varsity debut last season. 

“My freshman year, Coach (Clint) Wiley was always on my butt, saying you are a hockey kid, hockey kids are good at lacrosse. They were playing prep schools and all that, getting killed. I thought, why not try it sophomore year before COVID hit. I gave it a shot and it helped out getting me recruited. I kind of love it now.” 

What’s not to love? The Knights finished their first season at 11-1. After winning their first 10 games this year, Sterling is 10-2. With 21 wins in its first 24 games, the program is already a success, but far from a finished product. Their 7-5 loss to West Deptford on Thursday was as important as any win. 

More: South Jersey High School Girls Lacrosse final regular season Top 10

More: South Jersey High School Boys Lacrosse final regular season Top 10

“Last year, it was great to go 11-1, or whatever it was,” Moroney said. “It was great to know we can actually get the ball in the back of the net. We are winning against teams that are at our level or below our level. Coming out here to play a 20-year-old program, when we are in our second year and to lose 7-5 is a big step.” 

Moroney himself represents a giant step in the history of the Sterling program. Committing to play lacrosse at Albright College is more than just a good story, it’s proof of what is possible for anyone in the program. 

“I'm very happy for ‘Tank’ ’tank for him wanting to go to Albright and continue to play college lacrosse,” Wiley said. “I'm also happy for our program. He is our first kid ever going to college. This is a great example for our younger kids within the programs. Hey, you got a chance to go to college? Besides football, lacrosse is the second largest sport for scholarship money out there. It is a growing sport and it has a lot to offer for kids.” 

Sterling senior Justin Moroney takes a moment during halftime against West Deptford © Tom Rimback/Staff photojournalist Sterling senior Justin Moroney takes a moment during halftime against West Deptford

At this point, Moroney is just one of 45 kids in the Sterling program. Not all of them have college lacrosse in their future. Then again, not one of them can say that same opportunity is not possible. Moroney is proof of that. The toughest part of the process was choosing between Immaculata, Alvernia and Albright. 

“When I went down there, I kind of loved it,” Moroney said. “I'm a big football dude. They were having football practice here. Just seeing the brotherhood there, then seeing a couple of the guys was great. A lot of the kids are from around South Jersey. I talked to the coach and I just loved how it was there. The have a great sports management program. I’ll be going there to study sports management. I want to do something that involves sports.” 

Sterling senior Justin Moroney shoots low against west Deptford © Tom Rimback/Staff photojournalist Sterling senior Justin Moroney shoots low against west Deptford

Tom Rimback, sports reporter

Tom Rimback grew up reading the Burlington County Times and Courier Post sports sections and began writing for the BCT in 1996. He has covered everything from Super Bowls and Final Fours to Tri-County Swimming but he’s happiest on a sideline interviewing South Jersey scholastic athletes for the Burlington County Times, the Courier Post and The Daily Journal. Follow him on twitter @RimbackBCT. Email him with story ideas at trimback@thebct.com and, most importantly, support local journalism with a subscription.

Support local journalism with a subscription to the Courier Post, the Burlington County Times or the Daily Journal.

This article originally appeared on Cherry Hill Courier-Post: Sterling senior Justin Moroney setting a precedent for the Knights lacrosse program

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