June 22, 2022

With Burch Setting the Pace at Both Ends of the Court, Majeski Tops PATH Academy in Summer Hoops Opener

BURCH BARK: Naysean Burch of Majeski Foundation, left, guards a PATH Academy player last Wednesday in the opening night of action of the Princeton Recreation Department Men’s Summer Basketball League. Star guard Burch scored nine points as Majeski prevailed 57-28 with Pat Higgins scoring 17 and Danny Bodine chipping in 11 for the victors. (Photo by Frank Wojciechowski)

By Bill Alden

There were plenty of laughs and good-natured ribbing as Naysean Burch and his teammates on the Majeski Foundation squad hit the Community Park court last Wednesday evening to start action in this year’s Princeton Recreation Department Men’s Summer Basketball League.

The team, which is comprised of players from The College of New Jersey Men’s basketball program, engaged in a spirited pre-game shootaround as people caught up with each other.

“We are just building team chemistry out here with our new guys, the freshmen, and our transfer Pat Higgins,” said Burch, a rising senior guard for TCNJ. “We are getting to know everybody’s game. We are excited to be out here for sure.”

Facing PATH Academy, Majeski got the summer off to an exciting start, building a 23-14 halftime lead and then pulling away to a 57-28 victory.

“I was happiest about our defense, we held them to 28,” said Burch, who scored nine points the win which saw Higgins lead the way with 17 and Danny Bodine chip in 11.

“We just looked like we were having fun. When we are having fun, we are going to win.”

Brunch had fun in helping to top spark Majeski to the win by setting the pace at both ends of the court.

“I am just an older guy,” said Burch, a 6’0, 170-pound native of Edison, who averaged 7.3 points a game last year for TCNJ as it went 10-14. “I look to control the pace, play defense. I am a nice role player, that is really me.”

With Majeski having reached the best-of-three championship series in the summer league in 2021 and getting swept by three-time defending champion LoyalTees, the squad is looking to take it one step further this year.

“We are hungry for sure, we want to win it,” said Burch. “We are trying to get the trophy for this league. I don’t think we have won it yet. LoyalTees has been killing it but we are trying to get it this year.”

No matter what happens this summer, though, competing this summer in the Community Park courts should yield benefits for the Lions in their 2022-23 campaign.

“It is working on our defensive principles and being where we are at,” said Burch of the squad which played decent defense but lost 55-47 to Market on Main last Friday and then fell 54-49 to Princeton Supply last Monday. “It is going to translate over into the fall, it is going to make us better really.”