Tech JV Basketball on their ‘Priceless’ 2022-23 Season


For Coach Anderson and Brooklyn Tech’s junior varsity basketball team, a season of growth and preparation led up to March 13th: the first round of the PSAL playoffs. An undefeated 12-0 league record earned Tech the number one seed in the citywide tournament. However, the team’s regular season achievements were suddenly in the past, as the journey to hanging a championship banner started with a challenge from the Clinton-Dewitt Hawks, who sought to shock the Engineers before their run could even start.

The buzz was palpable in the Tech gymnasium as 5:00 PM approached and the bleachers filled with Tech students ready to cheer on their classmates. As Tech controlled the opening tip, it did not take long to see how the game was going to shape up. Tech’s swarming, full-court defense led by Josh Lou (‘25) and Joaquin Rodriguez (‘25) flustered Clinton’s guards who struggled to even get the ball past half court. Clinton’s struggles played right into Coach Anderson’s game plan, which he described as “forcing the other team into playing faster” and “forcing them into quick shots.”

Tech’s crisp ball movement and high-level shotmaking allowed them to open up a 20-point lead early in the second half, which ballooned all the way to 40 behind six three-pointers from Josh Lou (‘25). Tech was able to cruise the rest of the way to a 78-28 win, advancing to the quarterfinals

With a trip to the semifinals on the line, a far more rigorous challenge awaited against the 9 seed High School of Communication Arts

With another packed gym in support, the Engineers exploded out of the gates to a 16-3 lead at the end of the first quarter. The tenacious defense that held Clinton to just 28 points was stifling anything that Graphics Campus tried to do on the offensive end. However, unlike Clinton, Graphics Campus did not back down and began to pick apart the Tech defense, cutting the Engineer lead to just eight points by halftime.

However, Coach Anderson’s locker room plead for more aggressiveness and focus was clearly effective, as Tech extended their lead to 16 behind a three-point barrage from Joaquin Rodriguez (‘25), who attributed his performance to his “improved scoring ability running the point.” His five three-pointers, along with three more from Lou held off a late Graphics Campus rally to secure a hard-fought, 63-56 win.

With the win, the stage was set for the semifinal, Brooklyn Tech versus the Brooklyn High School for Law and Technology, with a trip to the city championship game on the line.

Unlike the first two games in this playoff run, the Engineers got off to a slow start, mustering only nine first-quarter points. However, a boost off the bench from Alijah Banks (‘25), who had only scored two points in the first two games of the playoffs, sparked a run.

Making an impact off the bench is difficult, but Banks has made the transition by “dropping his ego and telling himself that everyone has to play their role” and understanding the little things he can do to help his team win. His eight points and eleven rebounds, along with a double-double from Mathew Feldman (‘25) helped Tech take the lead despite quieter scoring performances from stars Lou, Rodriquez, and Troy Hornbeck (‘25). This balance, which the team attributes to their hard work in practice, helped Tech coast to a 62-49 win on a day when their leading scorers were not at their best.

Celebrations after the Engineers advanced to the championship game

On the other side of the bracket, South Shore survived upset bids from Cardozo and Canarsie to finalize a championship showdown with Tech.

For the first time in their playoff run, the Engineers were away from the friendly confines of their home gym against a South Shore team with playoff experience, having advanced to the semifinals last season.

The Eagles jumped out to an early lead as major contributors Lou, Feldman, and Rodriguez, who had starred throughout the playoffs, were held to just eight points combined. Sophomore superstar Hornbeck did all he could to carry the load, scoring 34 out of Tech’s 55 points, but it was not enough as the Eagles were able to control the game on the way to a 68-55 championship game victory.

Despite the heartbreaking loss, there is a feeling of pride amongst the team for the work that they put in on and off the court throughout the season. Rodriguez (‘25) praised Coach Anderson for motivating the team to “work hard in practice, while still maintaining their academics, which can be very challenging and stressful at a school like Tech.” Even with this year’s group moving up to the varsity level next season, Anderson will always be immensely proud of his players for their fighting spirit. He said, “They played for each other all the way to the PSAL championship game…#1 overall seed finishing 26-1, priceless.”