MOUNTAIN LAKES – The Morris County Boys Soccer Coaches’ Association saved the best for last on Tuesday. After acknowledging dozens of outstanding high school players individually, it announced Mendham is the Team of the Year.
The senior-laden Minutemen defeated Toms River South, 4-0, to win their first NJSIAA Group III title on Sunday. The players displayed the NJSIAA North 2 Group III and overall state trophies in the middle of their table at the annual luncheon. Yet they all looked a bit stunned at the announcement, which head coach Russ Raffay said was the culmination of a journey that started four years ago.
“To be recognized in this room is a major deal for Mendham soccer,” senior midfielder Matt Hanks said. “It’s going to hit me in a little bit, when I realize we stopped playing. I’ve been so happy lately, it hasn’t hit me at all.”
Delbarton senior defender Jack Kielty was named the coaches’ Player of the Year. James Nash, who guided Boonton from no wins a year ago to 13 this fall, was recognized as the Coach of the Year by his peers.
“I had no idea that was coming,” said Nash, whose Bombers went 13-6-2, their best season since 1986. “It’s great, especially having so many players here to witness that award. It’s an award for them. They made me a better coach.”
Mike Bruchac, a Morristown vice principal and the Morris County Tournament director, presented the Otto Haas MVP plaque to Delbarton defender Brian Finn. A three-year starter at center back, Finn was also part of the coaches’ first team.
The Green Wave completed their first quadruple crown this season, winning their own invitational, NJAC-United, MCT and NJSIAA Non-Public A.
“Everybody on my team deserves this award,” Kielty said. “I can’t do anything on the field without them to my left and my right.”
Kielty, Randolph midfielder Mateo Panizza, Dover striker Leandro Suarez, Morris Catholic striker Bryan Medina, and Mount Olive’s Hugo Almeida and Tim Watral will represent Morris County at the North-South Senior All-Star Game on Dec. 6.
Brendan Doyle awarded the UK Elite and Global Team Travel scholarship to Kinnelon senior Will Spreen.
“Our job is to make you better people, better athletes,” Hofstra assistant coach Gary Book said. “Every day, we make you a little uncomfortable, to help you reach the next level.”
Jack Kielty, Sr., Delbarton; Bryan Medina, Sr., Morris Catholic; Mateo Panizza, Sr., Randolph; Leandro Suarez, Sr., Dover; Kian Alberto, So., Delbarton; Hugo Almeida, Sr., Mount Olive; Justin Jennings, Jr., Parsippany; Walter Zuniga, Sr., Randolph; Liam Moylan, Sr., West Morris; Ian Johnson, Sr., Morristown; Chris Rubio, Sr., Dover; Grant Barrientos, So., Boonton; Brian Finn, Sr., Delbarton; Christian Pedercini, Sr., Mendham; Kendall Joseph, Sr., Mount Olive; Ethan Grossman, Jr., Montville; Tim Watral, Sr. GK, Mount Olive; Henry Stusnick, Sr. GK, Chatham
Arturo Ruiz, Jr., Morristown; Liam Lilienthal, Sr., Pequannock; Jonah Conway, Sr., Mount Olive; Skyler Frost, Sr., Morristown; Matt Hanks, Sr., Mendham; Drew Linz, Sr., Randolph; Luca Cacciottolo, Sr., Parsippany; Chris Naiman, Jr., Jefferson; Sebastian Solorza, Sr., Dover; Rodrigo Avila, Sr., Randolph; Charles Cadena, Jr., Delbarton; Steven Hadley, Jr., Delbarton; Brandon Fernandes, Jr., Parsippany Hills; Skylar Conway, So., Mount Olive; Steven Kleczkowski, So., Kinnelon; J.P. Scheunke, So., Madison; Jason Adamo, Sr. GK, Roxbury; Zach Bible, Sr. GK, Mendham.
Adam Elias, Jr., Montville; Michael Cordero, Sr., Morris Hills; Tim Azzolini, Sr., Madison; Bryan Ohlott, So., Boonton; Jason Rodriguez, Jr., Roxbury; Tristan LeMon, Sr., Chatham; Sebastian Cortes, So., Dover; Mateo Cobos, Jr., Morris Catholic; Zach Steinberg, Sr., Parsippany Hills; Declan Devens, Sr., Parsippany; Cole Langlois, Sr., Mountain Lakes; Oscar Aguilar, Sr., Jefferson; Matt Shishkoff, Sr., West Morris; Stephan Stasiak, Jr., Morris Knolls; Jordan Auriemma, Sr., Mendham; Graydon Rogers, Jr., Morristown; Alan Maldonado, Sr. GK, Morristown; Billy Troat, Sr. GK, Pequannock.
Jack Brancato, Jr., Boonton; Tim Rittinger, Jr., Boonton; Will Hanisch, Sr., Butler; Marc Anthony Federici, Butler; Harrison Cote, Jr., Chatham; Evan Gavalakis, Jr., Chatham; Rory Madigan, Sr., Delbarton; Bobby Fabricant, Sr., Delbarton; Bryan Calle, Sr., Dover; Sebastian Roman, So., Dover; Anthony Monticello, Sr., Hanover Park; Charlie Polk, Sr., Hanover Park; Shaun Bishop, Jr., Jefferson; Liam Fitzgerald, So., Jefferson; Greg Poposki, Jr., Kinnelon; Sophus Schanche, Jr., Kinnelon; Mike Noto, Madison; Alan Aguirre, Madison; Dillon Wintz, Sr., Mendham; Jack Vispoli, Sr., Mendham; Tyler Mackay, Sr., Montville; Harrison Sonn, Sr., Montville; Tyler Valle, Sr., Morris Catholic; Patrick Green, Jr., Morris Catholic; Kevin Hogrelius, Sr., Morris Hills; Kevin Pratt, Sr., Morris Hills; Michael Chapman, Sr., Morris Knolls; Dan Deblieck, Sr., Morris Knolls; Matt Manion, Jr., Morristown; Magdiel Paz, Sr., Morristown; Brian Gonzalez, Sr., Mount Olive; Jared Savastano, So., Mount Olive; Gary Iuliano, Sr., Morristown-Beard; Joey Velasquez, Jr., Morristown-Beard; Antonio DiBonaventura, So., Mountain Lakes; Daniel DiGiovanni, Jr., Mountain Lakes; Jake Marlowe, Jr., Parsippany; Jonathan Klausner, Sr., Parsippany; Sebastian Amaya, Sr., Parsippany Hills; Michael Cerri, Sr., Parsippany Hills; Matt Thomas, Sr., Pequannock; Dan Higgins, Sr., Pequannock; Kevin Weber, Randolph; Kyle Ross, Randolph; Nick Caciedo, Sr., Roxbury; Eric D’Arminio, Sr., Roxbury; Brendan Kaplan, West Morris; Jackson Meyer, West Morris; Eric Jones, Sr., Whippany Park; Zach Pitassi, Sr., Whippany Park.