Boys Soccer – Holmdel Coasts to Second Straight CJ 2 Title
Written By Kyle Clancy and Matt Manley
HOLMDEL - The Holmdel boys soccer dominated the NJSIAA Central Jersey Group II bracket, a run that ended Tuesday with a 4-0 win over 13th-seeded Shore Regional at Bob Roggy Memorial Field.
The Hornets’ dominant play, which included a four-game goal differential of 27-1, did not seem to phase their coach.
“We expect to be here,” coach John Narcarlo said. “This is what we expected and this is what we wanted in the beginning of the year.”
PHOTO GALLERY: Shore at Holmdel by Paula Lopez
Junior Forward Jack Giamanco led Holmdel with two goals, both in the first half and had two more called back. Senior Henry Kiechlen added a goal and an assist in the win and senior Ryan Fergusen chipped in a score as well.
Giamanco’s first goal came off a header to his feet from Kiechlen in the 25th minute.. Senior Anthony Arena found Giamanco with a long pass for a 2-0 lead in the 31st. Fergusen headed in a deep service by senior Jack Russo in the 56th and Kiechlen capped the scoring off a Mark McStay assist 59 minutes in.
Holmdel has now won five straight games while Shore’s improbable playoff run came to an end. Though Holmdel was the favorite coming into the game, they could not afford to overlook the Blue Devils, who won three straight overtime games on the road to reach the sectional final.
“Shore is a great team, they had a great run and we had to play hard,” Giamanco said. “Their ranking does not matter.”
“Shore Regional is a tough team. I knew their coach (Christian Pontier) would have them well-prepared for this game,” Narcarlo said. “They created some chaos to start the game. We were able to settle down.”
“It’s a great feeling to come up big in a big game,” Giamanco said.
“Our team's ability to attack dangerously stood out to me today,” Holmdel coach John Narcarlo said. “Jack Giamanco had a terrible practice yesterday, so I was happy he was able to come up big for us with two goals.”
During Coach Narcarlo’s tenure as head coach, Holmdel has a lot of experience going this deep into the playoffs. It is Holmdel’s second straight sectional title and seventh in the last 13 seasons.
“Torre (Avitabile), (Jack) Murray, and the Arenas have all been here before,” Coach Narcarlo stated. “They have been a part of three runs since their freshman years.”
After today’s big win, Holmdel is going to face a familiar opponent in Delran. Holmdel beat the Bears, 3-1, in last year’s Group II semifinal and also beat Delran in the 2015 Central Jersey Group II championship game. The teams will clash Tuesday night at Hopewell Valley High School with kickoff scheduled for 5 p.m.
“It’s going to be a battle,” said Giamanco.
“We expect Delran’s best. They have been fired up to play us from last year,” coach Narcarlo said. “So was Ocean, so if we can learn from our meeting with them, we will be fine.”
Holmdel 4, Shore 0
Goals (Assists): (H) Jack Giamanco (Henry Kiechlen) 25', Jack Giamanco (Anthony Arena) 31', Ryan Fergusen (Jack Russo) 56', Henry Kiechlen (Mark McStay) 59'
Shots: Holmdel, 20-6
Saves: (S) Chris Panduri 6; (H) Jack Murray 3