With COVID-19 abruptly ending the high school basketball season and careers of area seniors, we wanted to provide a series to honor some of those seniors whose dreams were cut short. We kick off our 2020 Honor Series with a look at Hilliard Bradley super senior Matt Allocco.
Name: Matt Allocco
School: Hilliard Bradley High School
Career Record: 96-8
Major Accomplishment: 52-0 in OCC-Cardinal league play
Career-High: 33 points vs. Worthington Kilbourne on Dec. 20, 2016
District Titles: 2 (2018, 2020)
How would you describe Matt: Fearless, competitor, leader, tough as nails. He’s a guy that you want on your team when you’re going into battle. Matt’s unselfishness rubbed off on his teammates and the Bradley program. For being such an elite talent, Allocco truly bought into the we over me mentality and that helped Bradley win at the unprecedented level that they did.
Moment when I knew Matt was special: For me, it was when he was really young, probably in 7th grade when he was playing up with Dane Goodwin, Braden Norris and Isaiah Speelman’s 15u AAU team. Matt was tiny then, but I remember how fearless he was going up against guys two and three years older than him. From that point, I said if Matt grew to his brother Chris’ size (6’4), he was going to be special. And that’s exactly what happened.
Matt’s One Shining Moment: Getting redemption in the regional semifinals in a blowout win over Walnut Ridge this season. I knew that loss had eaten at Bradley all year and Allocco and the Jags came out like a team on a mission in the final game of the season. It’s unfortunate that Bradley was not able to play for a state title due to COVID-19. However, if they were, I have no doubt that Allocco was going to lead his team to its first state tourney.
Matt’s Plans for the Future: Matt has signed to play basketball at Princeton University. Allocco will become the second Central Ohio alum (Max Martz, Penn) to play in the Ivy League.