By: Rich Flanagan
Photos/Videos: Rich Flanagan & Geanine Jamison
FORT WASHINGTON, PA –At a school that was founded in 1759 and a boys basketball program that has been playing since 1924, having your name mentioned among historic and accomplished individuals who came before is a monumental accolade. When Jordan Longino arrived at Germantown Academy, his brother, Evan-Eric and Kyle McCloskey had just capped off careers where they each surpassed 1,000 career points and helped the Patriots win at least a share of five consecutive Inter-Ac titles.
He was part of the next class that hoped to continue what Evan-Eric (Kutztown) and McCloskey (Penn State) had started under legendary head coach Jim Fenerty, a man who won 17 league titles including 12 outright. All Longino did in that time was score the basketball at a record pace and gradually rise up the rankings. He surpassed 1,000 points as a sophomore. The following season, he became the second junior in Inter-Ac history to surpass 1,500 points in three seasons, joining Malvern Prep’s Deuce Turner (Bucknell).
His senior season has been cut short due to the COVID-19 pandemic but that hasn’t stopped him from consistently putting the ball in the basket. He surpassed his brother with a 31-point performance in a double overtime win over the Haverford School on February 16. Tuesday night brought about the final endeavor in a phenomenal career: passing a former Patriots and Villanova standout in Alvin Williams.
Longino scored 21 of his 27 points in the first half and became Germantown Academy’s all-time leading scorer in the process as the Patriots fell to the Friars, 82-64. He surpassed Williams’ previous mark of 1,702 career points. He only needed 10 points to break the record and made easy work of it with a dynamic first 16 minutes. With his brother and Fenerty looking on, he broke the record on a three-pointer from the wing that fell through the bottom of the net as have countless other attempts he has hoisted.
For Longino, the historical perspective of now being mentioned in the same breadth as a multitude of heralded players is incredibly humbling.
“To have my name up there with guys like my brother, Alvin, Devon Goodman and Matt Walsh is a blessing,” Longino said. “So many people including my coaches and teammates and my brother helped me get here.”
Goodman went on to play at the University of Pennsylvania. Walsh played under Billy Donovan at Florida. Williams starred with the Wildcats under Steve Lappas before going on to play almost a decade in the NBA, mostly with the Toronto Raptors.
Longino’s triple that put him past Williams on the all-time list gave the Patriots (4-2) a two-point lead late in the first quarter. The 6-foot-5 combo guard began to assert himself by scoring 15 of Germantown Academy’s next 17 points before a Casey Traina (16 points) layup put his side up by one with 4:39 left before halftime.
Jordan Longino briefly celebrates with his family after achieving his career milestone - PSD Photo by Geanine Jamison
Being on his way to Villanova, surpassing Williams has an even bigger significance for Longino.
“I texted Alvin a little bit,” Longino said. “He told me, ‘Don’t put any added pressure on yourself.’ I finally got some bragging rights. He has such a high prestige as a player. I look up to him as a mentor. He and Coach Fenerty have coached and mentored me since I was eight years old. Just to be in the same conversation as him is a blessing.”
Fenerty coached Evan-Eric four years then Longino for two seasons before head coach Matt Dolan took over in 2019. In that short time span, Dolan has learned a lot about the type of player and person Longino is.
He felt honored to be able to share this moment with his senior captain.
“He’s the best teammate I’ve coached,” Dolan said. “He’s concerned about how other guys are doing. He gets guys involved and he can really pass the basketball. He’s a really talented basketball player and he’s going to have a great career at Villanova. This is a special moment for him and, even though the result wasn’t what we wanted it to be, this is a four-year achievement. He earned it and deserves it.”
He scored the final basket of the first half with a floater in the lane to cut the deficit to four heading into the locker. From there, Malvern Prep (5-1), behind SJ Hutchinson (20 points), Towson commit Rahdir Hicks (18 points), and Fran Oschell (11 points, 14 rebounds, three blocks), a Duke baseball commit, pulled away in a hurry.
Oschell, a 6-8 senior forward, scored inside then Hicks nailed a pull-up jumper to push the lead to 44-37. Andrew Phillips provided a nice spark off the bench with 12 points and his three-pointer later in third increased the lead to nine. The Friars, who hit 10 three-pointers on the night, went on a 12-0 run to end the third and had a 68-46 lead heading into the fourth quarter. Hutchinson’s and-one inside increased the lead to 25 to close things out.
Hicks, who has battled Longino for four seasons, has played with a high volume scorer in Turner. He wanted to force Longino to put the ball on the floor and not allow him to get open looks from the outside.
“We just wanted to make them hard,” Hicks said. “He had a lot of pull-up opportunities. Coming out in the third, I wanted to get under him and force him to make more dribble moves. Keeping him uncomfortable.”
Whenever fans walk into the gym, they will soon see Longino’s name at the top of the scoring list. He will remain ahead of Williams, Walsh, McCloskey and Evan-Eric. He has a few games remaining to further increase his total but for one night, he was able to reflect on the fact that he sits atop that lengthy list of players.
Dolan finds it interesting that two guys, whose careers are intertwined at Germantown Academy and eventually will be at Villanova, are one and two in the scoring total.
“It’s a small world and funny how things worked out,” Dolan said. “In speaking with Alvin, he’s extremely happy for Jordan. Jordan is really humble and understands, from a tradition standpoint, where this lies. We’re really fortunate to have him in our program.”
Moving on to play for Jay Wright and the Wildcats program was always going to have an added element as Williams, who scored 1,423 points and led Villanova to three NCAA Tournament appearances, put together a very successful career on Lancaster Avenue.
Longino overtook one of his mentors and now both will be mentioned in Germantown Academy scoring annals forever.
“He’s a reason I chose to go to Villanova,” Longino said. “He has been giving me advice. He and Coach Fenerty have been talking to me about the coaching staff there ever since I was a freshman. To be in the conversation with him having played here and at Villanova, I couldn’t hope for anything better.”