NRS Boys Soccer Player of the Week

Matt O’Connell, Pinelands

The senior goal-scoring specialist has picked up where he left off last year, when he scored 19 goals and 12 assists. Pinelands is off to a 2-1 start thanks to O’Connell, who recorded hat tricks in both of his team’s wins. He scored three of Pinelands’ four goals – including the golden goal in overtime – in a come-from behind win over Lakewood on opening day and also assisted the equalizer. He later led the Wildcats to a key early-season win over Point Boro by picking up his second hat trick of the year in a 4-1 Pinelands victory.

B South Honorable Mention: Corey Brantz, Barnegat; Jon Michael Pereira, Donovan Catholic; Jonathan Toichihuitl, Lakewood; Kevin Garry, Jackson Liberty

Pinelands senior Matt O'Connell (10) against Donovan Catholic in 2015. (Photo by Matt Manley)

A North

Louis Reale, Colts Neck

The Cougars are off to a fast start thanks, in large part, to Reale, who returned to the team this season after spending last year playing in Argentina. Reale recorded a first-half hat trick in a 6-4 win over Freehold Township on Tuesday and set up a pair of goals by Christian Saavedra on designed penalty kicks. Saavedra also scored three goals this week, including one in a win over Neptune on Saturday.

A North Honorable Mention: Patrick Kollman, CBA; Andrew DiBella, Freehold Twp.; James Weinberg, Marlboro; Abelardo Herrera, Freehold Boro


A Central

Carson Greengrove, Rumson-Fair Haven

Technically, Rumson’s win over Don Bosco does not count towards the regular season but it will count toward the Players of the Week tally. Greengrove scored a goal in that Rumson win over the Iron Mikes, which was determined by the NJSIAA to be a scrimmage because it was played a day before the regular season was to begin. He also scored the deciding goal in a 1-0 decision over St. John Vianney, the Bulldogs’ first official win of the year.

A Central Honorable Mention: Nick Benoit, Raritan; Dante Montesinos, Shore; Anthony Quattrocchi, Matawan; Torre Avitable, Holmdel


A South

Griffin Bacon, Central

The Golden Eagles are flying high to start 2016 and Bacon has had a hand in each of his team’s three wins to open the year. He scored a goal each in wins over Toms River East and Lacey, then recorded a hat trick Monday in a 4-0 win over Brick.

A South Honorable Mention: Mike Schoener, Jackson Memorial; Matt Benvenuto, Toms River North; Tyler Egnatuk, Toms River South; Joe Kiernan, Southern


B North

Ryan Harmon, Middletown North

In two games this season, Harmon has delivered both in quantity and quality for a Lions team with big expectations. He scored two goals and assisted another in a 7-0 drubbing of Red Bank Catholic on opening day, then scored the lone goal in a crucial 1-0 win over Wall on Tuesday.

B North Honorable Mention: Venancio Fernandes, Long Branch; Santieno Harding, Ocean; Erick Vasquez, Ocean; Dan Del Guercio, Manasquan


B Central

Matty O’Malley, St. Rose

Other players in Class B North had bigger statistical weeks than O’Malley did, but the senior midfielder delivered in a big game against a quality opponent outside of B Central – a significant measuring stick for players and teams in the division. O’Malley scored the overtime winner in a 2-1 Purple Roses win over Wall on Saturday and contributed two goals and an assist during St. Rose’s 3-0 start.

B Central Honorable Mention: Davensky Joinvilmar, Asbury Park; Ian Dobrzynski, Ranney; Brendan Wall, Ranney; Fenelson Etienne, Asbury Park