By ROHAN ROY, junior
While most kids lounged at the beach or in the pool during the summer, the boys soccer teams sprinted fifty-yard suicides, ran laps around the track, and completed ball-handling drills to get ready for the upcoming season. Frustration and fatigue faced the Hawks mid-way through the fall season as they were once again down 2-0 at halftime against Piscataway. Instead of giving up, the boys entered the second half ready to make a comeback, and every player kept constant pressure on Piscataway’s defense. Juniors Ryan Minor and Paul Trevidic tied up the game in the last ten minutes of regulation and changed the momentum of the game significantly. With less than five minutes left in overtime, the Hawks needed one more push past Piscataway’s defense; senior midfielder Jacob Hausman lobbed the ball flawlessly to striker Sayak Ghosh (11). With the game on the line, Sayak blasted the ball past Piscataway’s goalkeeper.
Although the team lost fifteen graduating seniors, they never showed signs of quitting. After three tough losses against Scotch Plains, East Brunswick, and Old Bridge, the boys defeated the North Brunswick Raiders behind Sayak’s two goals. The Hawks have also recorded pivotal wins against rivals Piscataway and Perth Amboy. Led by captains Alex Corrigan (12), Anthony Castelo (12), and Paul Trevidic (11), the Hawks have held their ground against many powerhouse high schools who underestimated the Hawks’ skill level. JP has found the back of the net twenty-one times with six different players scoring this season. Alex Corrigan leads the team with nine goals while Ryan Minor, who is on the top thirty list for assists, is in second place with four.
Injuries, on the other hand, have been plaguing the varsity team ever since the pre-season scrimmages. Although captains Alex Corrigan and Anthony Castelo sat out for key games during the season with serious foot injuries, the substitutes have been filling in their spots effectively. Parth Patel (11) has stepped up in the left defender position and prevented multiple goals in critical games while starters Paul Trevidic, Bret Sklar (12), and Brian Eng (12) have continued their solid performances in the backfield. In the goal, Max Glinn (10) has performed very well and is second in the state with exactly 123 saves. Captain Anthony Castelo reflects back on the season, saying, “The amount of tough games we’ve played in is very high, and our competition is top-tier. I believe that, considering how many new varsity players are on the team this year, we have all progressed into more skilled and smart players on the field.”
Likewise, the girls soccer team has shown progress and dedication every time they step onto the field. Even though their record is 2-6, the Lady Hawks have been very competitive in the difficult Red Division and have proven that other teams should not underestimate them.The team is led by seniors Samantha Dzema, Sarah Elshafei, and Frankie Racioppi, all of whom have had at least two years of varsity experience. Along with Coach Dato, all three captains have helped the girls soccer team develop into a talented and skillful squad. The girls have scored a total of eight goals so far this season with Samantha Dzema leading the team with an impressive three goals, including two against the New Brunswick Zebras. Goalkeeper Sarah Zimmer (10) has been a wall in net with an impressive 103 saves. Captain Sarah Elshafei has a positive outlook on this team, stating, “As a team, our progress has been improving, game after game, half after half. Seeing my team try harder and harder every game, makes me happy. Although [we don’t have] a winning streak, it’s important that as a team we don’t stop trying, and don’t stop playing the game we know how to play. It’s an honor to be a captain to these girls who have a passion for the game and doesn’t give up. We take a lost and use it to our advantage as motivation to just play better, and in my book, that’s a win.”