Hilbert breaks game scoring record at SCCC

Article Posted -- December 22, 2017

There’s something special happening on the basketball court at Sussex County Community College this winter, and the fun is just beginning.

Brielle Hilbert, the point guard on the Lady Skylanders hoop team, has been shattering scoring records right and left and has been leading the charge as the women’s team is off to its own record-setting season. It takes 5 to win, but clearly, Hilbert is the straw that is stirring the drink for SCCC this season.

The team’s leading scorer, Hilbert recently broke the school record for points in a game for women AND men by scoring 50 points on Dec. 9. That record-breaking performance eclipsed Hilbert’s own record that she had set two weeks prior when she scored 46. The 50 points broke Steve Pappas’ record of 49 points in a game, set way back in 1988. It is clear as can be that Hilbert will soon enough crack the 1000 point career scoring barrier, setting yet another standard for women’s basketball at SCCC. 

The 5-foot-4 Hilbert may not be big by basketball standards, but her game is BIG. And she’s getting plenty of attention not just in Sussex County, but throughout the state. The sophomore education major from Franklin has heard from several college scouts in New Jersey.  Most recently, a scout from Fairleigh Dickinson University watched her in action at a home game against Brookdale Community College. After the game he spent time with her to talk about opportunities at FDU. She’s also heard from Kean University and Stockton University. As word continues to spread about Hilbert’s exploits, there be may others calling before long. 

“It’s nice to be noticed (by the schools),” said Hilbert humbly. “It’s kind of fun.”

Hilbert, whose average of nearly 28 points a game is second in the state in Division III, is “weighing the options.” Some of those options might include scholarships.

“Brielle is extremely talented,” said SCCC coach Kaitlyn Gaffney. “She’s a really hard worker. She never gives up. She’s got the kind of attitude that any coach would love to have. And she’s a true leader. Brielle inspires the other girls.”

Hilbert is smooth on offense, almost deceitfully so, as she maneuvers her way down court with precision. She is constantly in motion, with or without the ball. Give her an inch behind the 3-point line and she’ll make you pay.  

“I work hard to create shots (for myself),” Hilbert said. “It’s all about creating shooting opportunities.”

Yet she respects her teammates big time, and isn’t afraid to pass the ball to an open player with a better shot. 

This isn’t the first taste of success for Hilbert. At Wallkill Valley High School (WVHS), she was the first girl to top 1000 career points and in the process broke the school record for 3-point goals.  This, despite knee surgery after her junior year and a broken wrist that kept her out of action for a month in her senior year. She fully recovered from both injuries.

“Brielle had many accomplishments in basketball throughout her high school career,” stated Ed Paiva, former WVHS women’s basketball coach. “I am fortunate to have coached such a special player. But as a coach, I think her most outstanding achievement is that she is a great teammate and wonderful person. I look forward to her future success on and off the court.”

In addition to her offensive skills, Hilbert is equally adept on defense. She leads the team in steals and usually defends against the opponent’s best player.

“I take pride in my defense,” she said. “I don’t let my opponent get off easily.” 

As a team, SCCC struggled in Hilbert’s freshman year, but this year it’s been a totally different story.

“It’s been a great season so far,” said Hilbert, who wants to become a teacher, and in time, a coach. “Not just about me and the scoring records, but for the team.”

Indeed, this is shaping up as the winningest season ever for SCCC, and hopes Hilbert, a trip to the playoffs for the first time in school history. With Hilbert leading the way, all goals are on the table.

Currently, the Lady Skylanders Basketball Team set the school record for wins in a season with their 8th win this year.