Stick with’s group of reporters all season lengthy for one of the best protection of Central Jersey highschool soccer
Wochit | Greg Tufaro

As some gamers and groups throughout the nation in any respect ranges proceed to stage peaceable protests of police brutality and racial inequality in the course of the enjoying of the Nationwide Anthem, a number of New Jersey highschool soccer packages are honoring those that shield and serve.

St. Joseph Excessive Faculty will maintain its second annual Army, Police and Fireman Appreciation Day throughout Saturday’s house recreation towards Woodbridge.

The occasion, which former St. Joseph head coach Casey Ransone initiated with large success final season, features a pregame ceremony and complementary tailgate for the honorees.

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“This is America, the land of the free, the home of the brave,” St. Joseph head coach Rich Hilliard said. “You are allowed freedom of speech and to have your own beliefs. Here at St. Joe’s we feel we owe (gratitude) to the first responders and to our military. This is not a political statement. It’s our way of saying thank you to the people that put their lives on the line for us every day.”

Hilliard’s son is a police officer, his brother is a retired firefighter and his father was a U.S. Marine.

Ransone, who is now at Hunterdon Central, held a similar event last week at the Flemington-based high school that he called “Honoring Our Heroes,” during which the Red Devils paid tribute to those in law enforcement, fire, rescue, active military and veterans.

Woodbridge plans to honor township policemen, firemen and EMTs prior to its home game against J.F. Kennedy next weekend. football analyst Marcus Borden, an NJSIAA and NJFCA Hall of Fame mentor and past president of the New Jersey Football Coaches Association, said he believes during his 30-plus years of being involved with the game that St. Joseph last season became the first Greater Middlesex Conference school to honor those who protect and serve.

“Congratulations to St. Joe’s for doing the right thing,” State Sen. Patrick J. Diegnan Jr. said. “It’s now more than ever we need to make an effort to unite our country and everyone agrees our military, police, firefighters and first responders should all be respected and thanked for their service.”

South Plainfield head football coach Gary Cassio, a detective sergeant with the borough’s police department, and Piscataway head football coach Dan Higgins, a community police officer who works largely at the high school, both weighed…