Boys Soccer – Bench Sparks CBA to Win over Freehold Twp., 12-0 Start
FREEHOLD TWP. - The Christian Brothers Academy boys soccer starting 11 is loaded with adept goal-scorers and Freehold Township kept all 11 from scoring during Friday's Shore Conference Class A North showdown.
The Colts, however, still scored four goals and overwhelmed another quality opponent to extend their perfect start to what is looking more and more like a special season.
Sophomores Joe Lozowski and Jack Gill accounted for three goals Tuesday and CBA - the No. 1 team in the Shore Sports Network Top 10 - topped No. 4 Freehold Township, 4-1.
Lozowski scored two first-half goals to help the Colts jump out to a 3-1 lead by halftime and Gill scored the game's lone second-half goal on a back-heel volley with his back to the goal. Both of Friday's goal-scorers are first-year varsity players who have given the Colts a lift off the bench this season.
"You just try to come in and pick up the flow of the game as quick as you can," Lozowski said. "Our seniors are great players and great teammates for us to have so our job is to go in the game and help however we can."
CBA opened the scoring 3:31 into the match when a Freehold Township defender inadvertently redirected the ball into his own net. Seniors Matt Thorsheim, Matt Mawson and Patrick Kollman played a combination and Kollman's cross to the front of the net wound up finding its way into the goal.
Lozowski made the score 2-0 in the 23rd minute when he slammed in a rebound after Freehold Township goalkeeper Josh Nastarowicz saved a shot by senior Scott Misson.
Lozowski's first goal began a stretch of 2:54 on the clock during which the two teams combined for three goals. Patriots senior Adrian Barajas answered the second CBA goal by heading in a free kick by senior Andrew DiBella in the 25th minute.
It took less than a minute for CBA to respond, with Lozowski knocking in a cross from senior Tom Judge 29 seconds after the Freehold Township had cut its deficit in half.
CBA capped the scoring in the 57th minute on a crafty finish by Gill. Thorsheim, Ryan Nigro and Mawson played a combination in tight space on the left side of the 18-yard box and Mawson chipped a pass to the front of the goal. With his back to the goal, Gill hit the ball with the back of his right foot and into the goal.\
"Mawson gave me a perfect ball and all I had to do was pretty much put my foot on it," Gill said. "The finish was good, but those other guys did most of the work."
Following a 12th straight win to open the season, CBA has five remaining Class A North divisional matches before the Shore Conference Tournament begins, with season sweeps of Freehold Township, Freehold Borough and Colts Neck already in the bag. The Colts also boast wins over Don Bosco Prep and renowned out-of-state programs DeMatha (Md.) and Chaminade (N.Y.) - the latter of which was nationally ranked when it fell to CBA.
"Going up to Delbarton and playing a nationally ranked team changed our outlook a little bit," said Nigro, referring to the showcase at which CBA played both DeMatha and Chaminade. "We saw how (Chaminade) played and we looked around at each other and said, 'We're better than these guys.'
"I think we've see how good we can be, but at the same time, we know it's going to keep getting tougher because now that we have the ranking, team's are going to come at us because we're their opportunity to make a name for themselves. It's definitely a challenge, but it doesn't change how we look at each game. We just have to worry about how we play and be ready to face everybody's best."
CBA's start to the season has earned the Colts the No. 3 ranking in the country according to Top Drawer Soccer's most recent poll. The success and notoriety has sparked thoughts of a perfect season, which CBA accomplished just five years ago when it went 21-0 and won the NJSIAA Non-Public A championship. A perfect season this year would likely give CBA a 25-0 record to end the year and after Tuesday's win, the Colts are nearly halfway to that mark.
"We came into the year knowing we were going to be ranked No. 1 in the Shore and pretty high in the state and we wanted to go 25-0. Now that we've made it to this point, I think we see that we're capable of doing it, even though we still have a pretty long way to go."