Lyndhurst’s Martin scores 1,000th career point

When Carley Martin was a young girl, growing up in Lyndhurst, she would attend the basketball camps run by her father, Chuck, the former head boys’ basketball coach at Lyndhurst High School.

One of the counselors at Chuck Martin’s camp was the star player on the Lyndhurst girls’ basketball team named Camila Alonso, who went on to become the 2012-2013 Observer Female Athlete of the Year.

“Camila was my absolute idol growing up,” Martin said. “I remember her teaching me how to do drop steps and up-and-unders. I wanted to do whatever she did. I was absolutely obsessed with her. I wanted her fame and I wanted her glory.”

And there was a particular accolade that Alonso reached during her playing days that intrigued young Martin.

“I looked at the trophy case and saw the ball with all the 1,000-point scorers,” Martin said. “That’s what I wanted to do. Scoring 1,000 points has been my dream since third grade.”

Alonso was the last Golden Bear girls’ basketball player to reach the 1,000-point plateau eight years ago.

That is, until last week, when Martin etched her place in Lyndhurst folklore forever.

Martin reached the 1,000-point milestone with a long jump shot against rival Secaucus last Tuesday on Senior Day. It was only fitting that Martin reached the plateau in a home game with an assortment of family and friends on hand.

“My biggest dream had come true,” Martin said. “You don’t know how much I wanted to get to 1,000. That is the ultimate basketball goal to be a 1,000-point scorer.”

And yes, Martin is the first Lyndhurst girls’ basketball player to reach 1,000 points since Alonso did with an absolute barrage her senior year. It’s only fitting that Martin joined her childhood idol in Lyndhurst basketball history.

There were a few times that Martin thought her dream was history.

“I thought the dream went out the window freshman year,” Martin said. “I didn’t score that much, but then I got a tooth knocked out.”

In a game against North Bergen, Martin lost a tooth and had a gash that required 20 stitches after oral surgery. Martin missed about 10 games that year.

“But I worked my butt off to come back,” Martin said. “I wanted to be remembered as a 1,000-point scorer. There was no way I was not going to get it.”

But there was a pandemic to worry about and the schedule being condensed to just 15 games this season.

Martin had another bit of inspiration.

Her grandfather, Rich Ferruggia, was in failing health when the basketball season began in January. Ferruggia knew that he was going to pass away, so he asked to have all of his grandchildren to see him to bid farewells. Ferruggia was battling pulmonary fibrosis and then contracted the coronavirus in November.

“He wanted to say goodbye,” Martin said. “I promised him I’d get it. I said, ‘I’ll do it for you, Poppy. I’ll do it for you.’”

When Martin scored the 1,000-point basket, her two best friends, Alexa Borino and Gianna Alberti, came onto the floor with balloons and a sign.

“Gianna said, ‘You know who’s watching? Poppy. You know how happy he was watching you.’” That was really special.”

Although the Golden Bears lost the thrilling game 58-54 to undefeated Secaucus, it was still a day to remember for Martin, who scored 20 points in the game.

“It was awesome,” Martin said. “All I wanted to do was to be remembered. My Dad told me when I was a freshman to see if I could get my name on the ball, so that when I come back to the school with my kids when I’m 35, I can show them what I did.”

Lyndhurst girls’ basketball coach Perrin Mosca was happy for his senior guard.

“We were a little worried with the shortened season whether she’d get it,” said Mosca, who was also fortunate enough to coach Alonso eight years ago. “But Carley has been playing great lately. She put a lot of work in. She had a goal in mind and she got it.”

Mosca said that he talked to his assistant coaches after the game.

“We all said, ‘What are we going to do without Carley?’” Mosca said. “She’s the kind of player you get every once in a while.”

In this case, every eight years.




Lyndhurst senior Carley Martin scored the 1,000th point of her career last week against Secaucus. Photo courtesy of Carley Martin


Lyndhurst senior Carley Martin poses with her father Chuck, the former boys’ head basketball coach at Lyndhurst, after she scored the 1,000th point of her career last week. Photo courtesy of Carley Martin



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Jim Hague | Observer Sports Writer

Sports Writer Jim Hague was with The Observer for 20+ years — and his name is one of the most recognizable in all of sports journalism. The St. Peter’s Prep and Marquette alum kicked off his journalism career post Marquette at the Daily Record, where he remained until 1985. Following shorts stints at two other newspapers, in September 1986, he joined the now-closed Hudson Dispatch, where he remained until 1991, when its doors were finally shut.

It was during his tenure at The Dispatch that Hague’s name and reputation as one of country’s hardest-working sports reporters grew. He won several New Jersey Press Association and North Jersey Press Club Awards in that timeframe.

In 1991, he became a columnist for The Hudson Reporter chain of newspapers — and he remains with them to this day.

In addition to his work at The Observer and The Hudson Reporter, Hague is also an Associated Press stringer, where he covers Seton Hall University men’s basketball, New York Red Bulls soccer and occasionally, New Jersey Devils hockey.

He’s also doing work at The Morristown Daily Record, the very newspaper where his journalism career began.

During his career, he also worked for Dorf Feature Services, which provided material for the Star-Ledger. While there, he covered the New York Knicks and the New Jersey Nets.

Hague is also known for his announcing work — and he’s done PA work for Rutgers Newark and NJIT.

Hague is the author of the book “Braddock: The Rise of the Cinderella Man.”