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For the sixth year in a row, Pingry participated in the annual Basilone Bowl, held on June 14 at Somerville High School. Just days after his graduation, Big Blue center A.J. Weaver '18 was selected to play in the all-star game, and music teacher Jay Winston opened the evening by singing the National Anthem.
Sponsored by the United States Marine Corps (USMC) and the Somerset County Football Coaches Association, the Basilone Bowl is a post-season, all-star game comprised of over 80 recently-graduated seniors from Somerset County's 13 football-playing schools, as well as Delaware Valley Regional High School in Hunterdon County. The game is a tribute to Raritan borough's Gunnery Sgt. John Basilone, the only enlisted Marine to receive the Medal of Honor and Navy Cross in World War II. He was killed in combat on Iwo Jima 70 years ago in February.
In recognition of Basilone's heroism, players are chosen by the Coaches Association for their athletic ability, scholastic performance, and content of character, and Pingry was proud to showcase one of its own. A.J. played for the Devil Dogs, which were defeated by the Leathernecks, 21-3.
Active-duty marines watched the game from the sidelines, and during half-time festivities, more than two-dozen USMC recruits took to the field to reaffirm their commitment of service.
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