Adrian Barajas and Rocky Garretson were high school rivals for four years but both announced Saturday that they are soon-to-be teammates.

Barajas and Garretson both announced verbal commitments on Twitter to continue their respective soccer careers at Fairleigh Dickinson University.

Barajas led Freehold Township in scoring as a senior this past fall, scoring 13 goals to go with 10 assists for a Patriots team that went 12-7-1 and reached the Shore Conference Tournament semifinals despite losing 14 seniors and replacing the head coach from the 2015 season.

Freehold Township senior Adrian Barajas. (Photo by Matt Manley)

 

As a junior, Barajas was an Shore Sports Network All-Shore defender on a team that went 15-4-4 and won the NJSIAA Central Jersey Group IV championship. Barajas also started as a sophomore in 2014, when Freehold Township won the Shore Conference Tournament.

Garretson also enjoyed a championship career at Manalapan while playing against Barajas's Freehold Township teams twice per season. Garretson was a freshman starter on a Braves club that won the Shore Conference Tournament championship in 2013 and, as a sophomore the following year, helped Manalapan win the Central Jersey Group IV championship.

Manalapan senior Rocky Garretson (10) against CBA's Ryan O'Connor. (Photo by Larry Murphy)

Like Barajas, Garretson enjoyed his best statistical season as a senior this fall, when he scored 16 goals to go with 10 assists to lead Manalapan in scoring. After the Braves failed to qualify for the Shore Conference Tournament, Garretson led them on a run to the NJSIAA Central Jersey Group IV semifinals, where Manalapan finally bowed out to a 20-win Marlboro team in overtime.

Garretson scored two goals in a 2-2, penalty-kick win over a second-seeded, one-loss Princeton team to help the Braves score one of the biggest upsets in the tournament.

Garretson's father, Rick, is the head girls soccer coach and boys basketball coach at Manalapan and also served as a part-time assistant under first-year coach Kerry Eisman this season.

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