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Boys Soccer Preview B North

With only one game against each divisional opponent during the regular season, it is not only common for division titles to be decided in the final set of division games; it is to be expected. What has made Class B North unique is that not only has the division race gone to the wire, but it has gone to the wire with more than two teams in the mix. Last season, five teams were competing for a piece of the division until the final game: division champion Colts Neck, Neptune, Long Branch, Ocean and Manasquan.

With Colts Neck, Long Branch and Manasquan returning key pieces throughout their respective formations, a pile-up at the finish line could be in the cards again this season. Ocean also has the program pedigree and experience in key spots to be a factor, while Matawan remains a tough out. The wild cards will be Freehold Boro and Neptune – one a new member of the division with some scoring prowess (Freehold) and the other a returning contender without many returning players (Neptune).

In a division with several potential winners, every game feels huge and that is how the Class B North slate will feel this season – all the way to the end.

Colts Neck sophomore Kyle Moore. (Photo: Tom Smith |
Colts Neck sophomore Kyle Moore. (Photo: Tom Smith |

In predicted order of finish

Colts Neck

Compared to their competition for the top spot in the division, the Cougars have more holes to fill from last year’s division championship team. They also possess a couple of advantages: they are starting from the top and they are going to boast a very dangerous offensive roster. Kyle Moore is off to a sparkling start to his high-school career and heads into his junior season as a reigning All-Shore player with nine goals and 11 assists in two seasons.

Although he is the only returning player among Colts Neck’s dangerous group of 2022 forwards, Moore will have help around him again this season. The first name among that group is also Moore: Kyle’s brother, Sean. Just a freshman, Sean Moore has shown early on that he is going to make a significant impact on the attack as a complementary scoring threat to his older brother. Junior midfielder Sam Gershon is another returning starter and difference-maker, while Tim Foley, Nick Sergio, Dan Dahko and C.J. Collins will be newcomers on the attack.

Center back Ben Berkovsky is the lone senior in the starting lineup, prompting 25-year head coach Art Collier to refer to this team as the youngest team he has had since Colts Neck’s first season as a program, when the Cougars did not have any seniors in the school. In addition to Moore, Colts Neck is slated to start underclassmen in several spots: sophomore Ben Kazani in the midfield and classmates Ryan Spencer and Dillon Younger in the back. Liam Calluro returns in goal after starting as a freshman and will split time with junior Dan Ravelo, who suffered a season-ending injury in the 2022 preseason and is back to try and reclaim at least part of the job. It is a young squad, but one that is also deep and talented – a dangerous combination over the next several years.

Colts Neck at a Glance

Head Coach: Art Collier, 25th season
2022 Record: 9-5-1 (6-1-0, first in Class B North)
SCT Group: 8 (Lacey, Shore, Red Bank Catholic)
NJSIAA Section: Central Group III
Key Losses: Jairo Chira (Forward), Nick Mavica (Forward), Nico Cappelini (Defense), Ryan Gershon (Midfield), Jeff DeCarvalho (Forward/Defense), Josh Applebaum (Defense), Matt Bartelli (Defense)

Projected XI (With 2022 Stats)

Returning Starters in Bold

Kyle Moore, Jr., Forward (9 goals, 5 assists)

Sean Moore, Fr., Forward

Tim Foley, Jr., Forward/Nick Sergio, Jr., Midfield

Dan Dahkno, Jr., Midfield/C.J. Collins, So., Forward

Sam Gershon, Jr., Midfield (3 goals, 1 assist)

Ben Kazani, So., Midfield

Ben Berkovsky, Sr., Defense

Ryan Spencer, So., Defense

Josh Katsnelson, Jr., Defense

Dillon Younger, So., Defense

Daniel Ravelo, Jr., Goalkeeper/Liam Calluro, So., Goalkeeper (3 shutouts)


Other Key Players

Daniel Killick, Jr., Forward

Danielson Chinchilla, Sr., Forward

Tim Nadolny, Sr., Midfield

Sebastian Failla, Jr., Defense

Dean Natale, So., Defense

Gabe Kruglyansky, So., Midfield

Jonah Chiang, So., Forward


Long Branch

The past four years have seen Long Branch’s program take noteworthy strides and reach key milestones for any team – all under the direction of Adrian Castro, who stepped down after last season to accept a position as an administrator. Tim Farrell – Castro’s longtime assistant – takes over and will try to keep the Green Wave moving toward several program firsts that barely eluded the Green Wave. Last year, Long Branch was a round of penalties away from reaching its first ever Shore Conference Tournament semifinal and will return a group with a whole host of players who vividly remember coming close to a division title and SCT quarterfinal berth.

Long Branch’s strength this season will be on the attack, led by seniors Chris Garcia Lopez and Nick Borges Da Silva – two proven scorers who combined for 11 goals and 11 assists in 2022. All-Shore selection and 2023 graduate Anthony Vasquez leaves a hole in the midfield, but the Green Wave will move some experienced pieces around and cover the middle of the formation with battle-tested players: senior Wyatt Vincente, senior Anthony Hernandez-Garcia, junior Johan Gomez and sophomore Nick Ribiero.

Protecting the goal is where Long Branch will have to answer its most pressing questions. The graduation of Jeremy Hernandez represents a big loss and juniors Alejandro Lopez-Flores and Evan Santiago will have to lead the way going forward. The Green Wave will also be turning to a new starting goalkeeper, although sophomore Gerardo Rodas-Maldonado got a taste of the varsity field last year and should be a strength of the team sooner rather than later. Questions aside, Long Branch remains a talented side that will almost certainly figure prominently into the B North race and postseason tournaments.

Long Branch junior Chris Garcia Lopez. (Photo: Tom Smith |
Long Branch senior Chris Garcia Lopez. (Photo: Tom Smith |

Long Branch at a Glance

Head Coach: Tim Farrell, first season
2022 Record: 9-5-3 (4-1-2, second in Class B North)
SCT Group: 7 (Jackson Memorial, Ranney, Brick)
NJSIAA Section: Central Group IV
Key Losses: Anthony Vasquez (Midfield), Jeremy Hernandez (Defense), Chris Lazo (Goalkeeper), Kayk Moreira (Forward)

Projected XI (With 2022 Stats)

Returning Starters in Bold

Chris Garcia Lopez, Sr., Forward (7 goals, 6 assists)

Nick Borges Da Silva, Sr., Forward (4 goals, 5 assists)

Johan Gomez, Jr., Midfield/Forward (3 goals, 1 assist)

Wyatt Vincente, Sr., Midfield (1 goal, 3 assists)

Anthony Hernandez-Garcia, Sr., Midfield/Defense

Nicholas Ribiero, So., Midfield/Defense

Alejandro Lopez-Flores, Jr., Defense (2 assists)

Evan Santiago, Jr., Defense

Kenny Oliva, Sr., Defense

Angel Medina-Perez, Sr., Defense

Gerardo Rodas-Maldonado, So., Goalkeeper


Other Key Players

Everado Hernandez-Garcia, Jr., Defense

Erik Mendez, Sr., Defense

Marvin Oyuela, So., Midfield

Rene Sannchez, Sr., Midfield

Thomas Silva Ferreira, So., Forward

Afonso Machado, Sr., Goalkeeper

Owen Baillo, Jr., Defense

Ever Lopez Lara, Jr., Midfield

Tristan Pierre-Louis, Jr., Defense

Andres Rodas-Maldonado, So., Midfield

Jonathan Sarminto Gasper, Sr., Defense

Ighor Silva, Jr., Midfield



Manasquan finished two full games (four points) behind division champion Colts Neck, but that does not properly convey just how close Manasquan was to winning a share of the division championship. All three of Manasquan’s division losses were by a single goal, including a 5-4, overtime loss to Colts Neck. After going toe-to-toe with Colts Neck last year, Manasquan will have a composition similar to that of the defending champion Cougars in that the Warriors will not be all that reliant on seniors, although not nearly as young as Colts Neck overall.

The two top returning scorers on the Manasquan roster are junior Cristian Gonzalez and sophomore Cruz Farkas – the latter of whom came off the bench for most of his freshman season and made a huge difference doing so. The midfield is where Manasquan will lean most heavily on its seniors, led by Lucas Farkas, Luke Roy and Shane Salvatoriello. Juniors Brandon Kunz, Tristen Davalos-Guillen and Jorge Cruz Cruz are all dynamic players on the attack that will complement the established mix, while senior Kevian Kraemer is an accomplished scorer off the bench two years removed from scoring six goals and four assists as a sophomore.

Junior Griffin Linstra leads the defense as Manasquan’s 6-foot-4 center back, with seniors Mason Gardner and Patrick Woodrow rounding out a defense Manasquan hopes will be lockdown in front of junior goalkeeper Dylan Morris, who played part-time as a sophomore. Linstra has an ability to push up and score, but the Warriors have enough firepower on the attack and uncertainty in the back that he could look to hang back in the early going. If Manasquan can get its positions settled, the Warriors have a great chance to win both their division and their Shore Conference Tournament group in order to set up a special postseason.

Manasquan's Griffin Linstra (30) celebrates his Shore Conference Tournament goal vs. Manalapan. (Image: Matt Manley)
Manasquan's Griffin Linstra (30) celebrates his Shore Conference Tournament goal vs. Manalapan. (Image: Matt Manley)

Manasquan at a Glance

Head Coach: Tom McGill, 10th season
2022 Record: 13-6-1 (4-3-0, tied fourth in B North)
SCT Group: 3 (Freehold Twp., St. Rose, Raritan)
NJSIAA Section: Central Group II
Key Losses: Matt Karolak (Forward), Aidan Sugrue (Midfield), Mike Flanagan (Defense), Drew Perkins (Defense), Vin Hyland (Midfield), Tyler Collinson (Goalkeeper), D’Arcy McGill (Defense)

Projected XI (With 2022 Stats)

Returning Starters in Bold

Cruz Farkas, So., Forward (6 goals, 2 assists)

Brandon Kunz, Jr., Forward

Cristian Gonzalez, Jr., Forward/Midfield (6 goals, 4 assists)

Lucas Farkas, Sr., Midfield (3 goals, 6 assists)

Luke Roy, Sr., Midfield (1 goal, 3 assists)

Tristen Davalos-Guillen, Jr., Midfield

Shane Salvatoriello, Sr., Midfield

Griffin Linstra, Jr., Defense (4 goals, 4 assists)

Mason Gardner, Sr., Defense

Patrick Woodrow, Sr., Defense

Dylan Morris, Jr., Goalkeeper (1 shutout)


Other Key Players

Jorge Cruz Cruz, Jr., Forward

Kevian Kraemer, Sr., Forward

Peter Debenedetto, Sr., Defense



Injuries have befallen Ocean in each of the past two seasons and that trend is already carrying into the 2023 campaign with the loss of senior defender Justin Cook to a season-ending injury. The Spartans have always boasted a deep enough program to remain competitive, but after finishing in the state top five in 2018 as the Shore Conference Tournament and Group III champion, just qualifying for tournaments does not live up to the annual expectations of a decorated program like Ocean.

Scoring goals was a struggle for Ocean last season and the good news for the Spartans is they return the top scorer on the 2023 team in Alexander Korolev. While six goals is not a robust number for a leading scorer, it came with Korolev playing in the six position, which makes the number more impressive. For Ocean to reach its potential, it will need some other scorers to emerge. Junior Noor Ekay finished four goals a year ago and classmate Jacob Gomez returns as another midfield starter. Junior Angel Maldanodo and sophomore Lucas Renvoize will be the x-factors as the newcomers at forward.

The defense will have to quickly adapt to life without Cook and seniors Andrew Palumbo and Marc Gleason will be invaluable leaders in guiding a defense that includes new starters Joe Critelli and Ryan Fernandes through the early part of the schedule. Ocean also has an experienced senior in goal to lean on, with Zach Frabizio entering his third season as a starter. Scoring will be a question and Cook’s absence in the back will be a challenge to overcome, but a solid midfield and goalkeeper will keep Ocean a contender in the B North race and a team to mind in the postseason.

Ocean junior Jacob Gomez (14). (Photo: Tom Smith |
Ocean junior Jacob Gomez (14). (Photo: Tom Smith |

Ocean at a Glance

Head Coach: John Terlecsky, seventh season
2022 Record: 8-8-1 (4-3-0, tied fourth in Class B North)
SCT Group: 6 (Rumson-Fair Haven, Middletown South, Lakewood, Keyport)
NJSIAA Section: Centra Group III
Key Losses: Stephen Aliaj (Midfield), Dan Abrams (Defense), Jake Schwartz (Forward), Archeley Eugene (Forward), Thomas Alessi (Midfield/Defense), Leon Leon (Jr., Defense), Stavros Fay (Midfield)

Projected XI (With 2022 Stats)

Returning Starters in Bold

Angel Moldanodo, Jr., Forward

Lucas Renvoize, So., Forward

Noor Ekay, Jr., Midfield/Forward (4 goals)

Jacob Gomez, Jr., Midfield (2 goals, 3 assists)

Zach Sutton, Jr., Midfield

Alexander Korolev, Sr., Midfield/Defense (6 goals)

Andrew Palumbo, Sr., Defense

Marc Gleason, Sr., Defense

Joe Critelli, Sr., Defense

Ryan Fernandes, Jr., Defense

Zach Frabizio, Sr., Goalkeeper (6 shutouts)


Other Key Players

Justin Cook, Sr., Defense (Injured, out for season; 1 goal, 3 assists)


Freehold Boro

The Colonials finally escaped the Class A North torture chamber and landed back in Class B North, where they should find themselves a nice, competitive home. With a 0-7 division record last season, Freehold Boro was not up to the task against the A North behemoths, but the Colonials certainly weren’t a bad team. Outside of A North competition, Freehold Boro was 7-6 and used its experience playing the top teams in the Shore to win the Shore Coaches Cup Tournament.

If just changing divisions was not enough reason for optimism, Freehold Boro also returns several key pieces, led by top 2022 scorer and all-division selection Ammar Danish. In Danish, junior Michael Feller and senior midfielder Nelson Orellana, the Colonials have a trio of returning starters in the midfield and up top that should pose a threat to any and all opposing defenses on the schedule. There is also experience in the back, with senior returnees Danny Vazquez and Danny Austin on the back line in front of returning goalkeeper Angel Tlacoxolal.

The rest of the lineup will be notably young, with three sophomores and a freshman accounting for the remaining five lineup spots. Sophomores Isai Quiroz and Ryan Dominguez are slated to work the midfield along with freshman Humberto Hernandez, while junior John Ward and sophomore Cole Turner round out the defense. The young players will need to make a mark, but with Danish leading a solid senior-junior group, Freehold Boro should live well in B North.

Freehold Boro junior Ammar Danish. (Photo: Kristen Tomazic, Freehold Boro Photography Club)
Freehold Boro senior Ammar Danish. (Photo: Kristen Tomazic, Freehold Boro Photography Club)

Freehold Boro at a Glance

Head Coach: Mike Parshelunis, sixth season
2022 Record: 7-13 (0-7, eighth in Class A North)
SCT Group: 4 (Marlboro, Toms River East, Barnegat)
NJSIAA Section: Central Group III
Key Losses: Colin Wozniak (Midfield), Kieran McLean (Defense), Advait Gupta (Midfield), Gabe Bartra (Defense), Cesar Vivas (Defense), Thomas Hughes (Defense)

Projected XI (With 2022 Stats)

Returning Starters in Bold

Ammar Danish, Sr., Forward

Michael Faller, Jr., Forward

Nelson Orellana, Sr., Midfield

Isai Quiroz, So., Midfield

Ryan Dominguez, So., Midfield

Humberto Hernandez, Fr., Midfield

Danny Vazquez, Sr., Defense

Danny Austin, Sr., Defense

John Ward, Jr., Defense

Cole Turner, So., Defense

Angel Tlacoxolal, Jr., Goalkeeper (3 shutouts)


Other Key Players

Cade Cascone, So., Goalkeeper

Antonio Izzo, Sr., Midfield/Defense

Joe Haney, So., Defense

Jayson Munoko, Sr., Defense



With a senior-laden roster, the 2022 Matawan Huskies were on their way to a disappointing season heading into the NJSIAA Tournament: their three division losses were by a combined 11-0 score and they bowed out in the first round of the Shore Conference Tournament. As has been the case under coach Tyler Isaacson, however, Matawan was at its best in the NJSIAA Tournament, in which the Huskies knocked off Colts Neck – a team that beat Matawan, 5-0, during the regular season – and Class B South co-champion Jackson Liberty to reach the Central Jersey Group III semifinals.

A loss to Allentown ended the Cinderella run, but Matawan enters 2023 hopeful that the young players who pushed their way into the lineup will be ready to ride that momentum into this season. Junior Nico Skeete is a possibility at both striker and center back and with seven goals last season, the Huskies are likely to lean on his ability to find the net. Senior Sean Hart also showed some scoring prowess a year ago, while senior Andrew Battipaglia and junior Anders Nielsen return to the midfield after angling their way into some starts late last year.

Seniors Noah Pagan, Owen Nappi and Erik Friedman return with experience in the back – experience that should allow first-year goalkeeper Gavin Veres ease into his new job. Matawan is typically a team that gets better during the course of the season and the makeup of this year’s roster suggests that will be the case this year. If the Huskies can snag a few wins early – especially in a Shore Conference Tournament pod that does not have an overwhelming favorite – they can set themselves up to be one of the eye-opening teams in this year’s Shore Conference landscape.

Matawan sophomore Nico Skeete. (Photo: Tom Smith |
Matawan junior Nico Skeete. (Photo: Tom Smith |

Matawan at a Glance

Head Coach: Tyler Isaacson, eighth season
2022 Record: 8-9-1 (3-3-1, sixth in Class B North)
SCT Group: 9 (Toms River South, Monmouth, Henry Hudson)
NJSIAA Group: Central Group III
Key Losses: Amar Dzombalic (Midfield), Aaron Kalish (Midfield), Jared McMeans (Goalkeeper), Evan Arendt (Midfield), Daniel Rabinovich (Midfield), Andrew Fanelli (Forward), Maddox Cole (Defense)

Projected XI (With 2022 Stats)

Returning Starters in Bold

Sean Hart, Sr., Forward (4 goals)

Sal Fassano, Sr., Forward

J.P. Pinto, Sr., Forward

Nico Skeete, Jr., Forward/Defense (7 goals)

Anders Nielsen, Jr., Midfield

Andrew Battipaglia, Sr., Midfield (2 goals, 1 assist)

Noah Pagan, Sr., Defense (1 goal, 3 assists)

Owen Nappi, Sr., Defense

Erik Friedman, Sr., Defense

Evan Coco, Jr., Defense

Gavin Veres, So., Goalkeeper



Opponents who faced Neptune last season and will see the Scarlet Fliers again this year might be surprised they are looking at the same program. Neptune went through massive roster turnover since last season, starting at the top with Bobby Feeney replacing longtime head coach John Knight. Feeney will have a developmental job on his hands with Neptune graduating 10 starters and almost all of its scoring from a 13-win team that stayed in the Class B North race through the end of last year.

Senior Sebastian Canaverde is the only returning starter to the Neptune lineup and as a senior midfielder coming off a six-assist season, he will try to get the new starters involved in the attack. Junior Julian Lemus contributed five goals coming off the bench last year, which will make him a target up top. Lowenski Fifi is the only other senior in the mix for playing time and the rest of the lineup, meanwhile, will feature up to four freshmen.

The defense will be especially inexperienced, featuring two freshmen (Mason Imbracio and Denilson Mata-Fabian) and a sophomore (Andrew Wardell) playing in front of first-year junior goalkeeper Trevor Rummel. Neptune has gone through its cycles of winning and losing and with such a young team in such a tough division with a new coach, this year will likely be the first year of the rebuild as the Scarlet Fliers work their way back toward to contention over the next two-to-three seasons.

Ocean's Andrew Palumbo and Neptune's Sebastian Canaverde challenge for the ball in a 2022 match. (Photo: Tom Smith |
Ocean's Andrew Palumbo and Neptune's Sebastian Canaverde challenge for the ball in a 2022 match. (Photo: Tom Smith |

Neptune at a Glance

Head Coach: Bobby Feeney, first season
2022 Record: 13-5-1 (4-2-1, third in Class B North)
SCT Group: 1 (CBA, Pinelands, Jackson Liberty)
NJSIAA Section: Central Group III
Key Losses: Ernst Louisious (Forward), Kervins Lafortune (Forward), Anthony Muñoz Garcia (Defense), Lee Petrowski (Forward), Aidan McAnee (Midfield), Jack Tinik (Defense), Kevin O’Neill (Goalkeeper), Marc Bondurant (Defense), Luckerson Pierre (Midfield), Alexis Altamirano (Defense)

Projected XI (With 2022 Stats)

Returning Starters in Bold

Julian Lemus, Jr., Forward (5 goals, 2 assists)

Lowenski Fifi, Sr., Forward

Chris Hankins/ Brandon Navarin, Fr., Forward/Midfield

Sebastian Canaverde, Sr., Midfield (1 goal, 6 assists)

Lenskey Raoul, Jr., Midfield

Hunter Reynolds, Fr., Midfield

Mason Imbracio, Fr., Midfield/Defense

Kenny Northrup, Jr., Defense

Denilson Mata-Fabian, Fr., Defense

Andrew Wardell, So., Defense

Trevor Rummel, Jr., Goalkeeper


Other Key Players

Joey Taylor, So., Defense

John Lazo, Jr., Defense


Class B North Players to Watch

Kyle Moore, Colts Neck

Chris Lopez Garcia, Long Branch

David Borges Da Silva, Long Branch

Ammar Danish, Freehold Boro

Cristian Gonzalez, Manasquan

Alexander Korolev, Ocean

Cruz Farkas, Manasquan

Jake Gershon, Colts Neck

Griffin Linstra, Manasquan

Nico Skeete, Matawan

Angel Tlacoxolal, Freehold Boro (GK)


Breakout Players to Watch

Sean Moore, Fr., Forward, Colts Neck

Cruz Farkas, So., Forward/Midfield, Manasquan

Noor Ekay, Jr., Midfield/Forward, Ocean

Gerardo Rodas-Maldonado, So., Goalkeeper, Long Branch

Sebastian Canaverde, Sr., Midfield, Neptune

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