Winning isn’t an unfamiliar routine for Hayden Greer.
His Moorestown basketball team did just that 29 times last winter and captured the NJSIAA Group 3 state title in the process.
And then Greer picked up another championship in the spring, helping the Quakers win the Group 3 golf title as well.
But the Moorestown senior hasn’t had to be a star — until now.
With the Quakers’ basketball team off to yet another 5-1 start and right back in the mix for state title contention, it’s Greer’s emergence from sixth man to leading scorer that is turning heads in the early going.
“He kind of came into his own at the end of last year with his shot,” coach Shawn Anstey said. “We were looking for him to carry us in terms of scoring [this year,] and he’s been doing just that.”
A year after scoring just 98 points all season, Greer has already scored 103 through six games this year, averaging 17.2 points per game as the Quakers’ clear leader on that end of the floor.
From Greer’s perspective, though, it’s less about leading through his on-court play and more about what he can do as a veteran. Moorestown lost nine seniors from last year’s team, and just three players who saw action in 10 or more games are back this year.
That means imparting on this group what he learned from last year’s deep run.
“[Last year] gave me the confidence to know that we can do that,” Greer said. “We’re already talking about how we can get there again this year. … We knew we’d have a target on our backs and we want to prove to everyone that we can still be a great team.”
It wasn’t obvious to Anstey before the season where Greer was going to fit in. But the coach said he realized by the second half of their season opener, a 52-45 win against Mainland, that Greer’s game had really taken a leap.
Greer scored 20 points that day and followed it up with 23 six days later as Moorestown routed Kingsway, 62-40.
A third win vaulted the Quakers into the Inquirer’s South Jersey rankings, although they’ve since dropped out.
But with the 6-5 Greer already firing on all cylinders offensively, his coach can foresee even more growth on the defensive end, which should only boost Moorestown as it looks to repeat.