New Jersey Boys Poll
|2||Don Bosco Prep||4||1||1|
- Delbarton (2-0-1): With three games snowed out in December and only one made up, head coach Bruce Shatel has had more practice time than he wanted this year. But it could pay off for his young team, which continues to have a major target on its back while chasing a seventh straight private state title. The return of senior Chad Otterman (3-3-6) has already paid dividends, while sophomores Anthony Delgaizo (0-5-5) and Tyler Kobryn (3-1-4) have stepped up their games and freshman Troy Kobryn could be the answer in goal. With 13 games in a 29-day span, expect Delbarton to lose some contests (its Jan. 18 game against Massachusetts champion Malden Catholic comes to mind) but ready itself for another postseason run.
- Don Bosco Prep (4-1-1): The Ironmen are pretty much right on schedule through December, suffering their only loss to Massachusetts power BC High and earning a road tie with CBA in Gordon Conference play. Senior goalie Jarred Liscio is the program’s cornerstone, with defensemen Cody Calcagno and John Stimola very impressive on the blue line. Of the speedy forward corps, junior Hunter Garlasco (3-4-7) and senior Dylan Healey (1-6-7) are off to the best starts, with the production of junior Griffin Welsh (3-2-5) a promising sign. Games with Delbarton on January 12 and February 4 have been circled on the Don Bosco calendar since practices began.
- Randolph (5-0-1): Six games, four wins by a single goal. Just business as usual at Randolph. One of the highest-ranked public schools in the last 10 years at No. 3, the Rams’ scoring stems from its depth, with senior Mitch Gaudioso, junior Jonathan Abrams, and sophomores Dan Janson and Chris Holowko among those finding the net, even with senior Stefan Tamminga out due to injury. Seniors Brendan Siegel and Luke Wright lead an experienced defense corps in front of senior goalie Andrew Holowko. If Randolph can show as much progress from December to March this year as they do most years, a first Mennen Cup title since 2008 could be in the cards.
- Chatham (6-0-3): Returning most of the players from the team that went 9-1 down the stretch en route to last year’s Public B state title, Chatham has lived up to that promise in the early going, its ascent slowed only by inconsistency. Junior Teddy Simson (8-11-19) has been red hot, with senior Brett Montgomery (6-3-9) and junior Will Barnett (4-2-6) among other offensive contributors. Senior Robert Graziano and junior A.J. Albanese lead the defense in front of steady goaltender C.J. Albanese, but Chatham slipped up ever so slightly in ties with Morristown-Beard and Westfield. Impressive wins over Morristown and Bergen Catholic have the Cougars back on track heading into January.
- CBA (7-1-1)
Prodigious offensive numbers come from the Colts’ overwhelming talent advantage in mandatory Shore Conference games, but that does not take away from the skill of junior Conor Tierney (10-13-23) and sophomore Bobby Hampton (11-16-27) at forward and sophomore Ryan Bogan (6-14-20) on defense. The health status of injured seniors Anthony Cusanelli and Brendan van Riemsdyk remains CBA’s main concern when facing Gordon Conference opposition.
- Ramsey (8-0-0)
Barely challenged in division play, Ramsey passed its two toughest tests of the young season with wins over Morris County schools Morris Knolls and Kinnelon last week. Junior forward Alex Whelan (10-8-18) is the type of individual standout who could lift Ramsey above the rest come playoff time, but he is hardly a one-man show; Connor DiTomaso (5-8-13) and Nick Botta (5-4-9) are among the other capable scorers, while sophomores Brandon O’Callahan on the blue line and Tyler Harmon in goal lead the defense. No matter what happens against Randolph on Monday night, Ramsey’s January will be defined by its progress in the Bergen County Tournament, where the Rams will try to take on the big private schools and earn a spot in the final against (presumably) Don Bosco Prep.
- Morristown-Beard (7-2-1)
After an inconsistent start, the Crimson won five straight games prior to a 2-1 loss to Randolph on Dec. 27, and their 10-6 win over St. Peter’s Prep seems to mark Morristown-Beard as a contender in the private ranks this year. Senior forwards Michael Meisenbacher (8-5-13) and Luke Moser (5-5-10) and sophomore Alex Borowiec (6-7-13) lead the high-scoring offense, while freshman goalie Billy Naples has handled pressure well over the last two games in relief of injured sophomore Daniel Porth.
- Glen Rock (9-1)
The small-school darkhorse posted a landmark win over Morristown and solid triumphs over St. Joseph Montvale and Ramapo. Senior forwards Matt Roy (12-11-23) and Mike Buckel (9-7-16) lead the way offensively, while 6-foot-7 senior defenseman Matt Jorgensen (4-14-18) cuts an imposing figure on the blue line and sophomore Matt Rosario has filled a worrisome spot in goal. The Panthers will prepare for the Public B state tournament with games against Public A teams Robbinsville / Allentown, Randolph, and Bridgewater-Raritan.
- Morristown (6-3-1)
It may feel a bit clichéd to have this many Morris County teams in the top 10, but after Morristown’s performance at the Ice Vault Tournament, it was hard to avoid. The Colonials won one-goal games over Bergen Catholic, St. Joseph Metuchen, and Summit (preseason Nos. 4, 5, and 9, respectively) in a five-night span to vault back into the state-wide conversation. Junior goalie Shane Brown remains an indispensible figure, and while Morristown may not possess the scoring talent of past seasons up front, it has gotten solid production from seniors Cam (6-6-12) and Jack (3-4-7) Szary and Brian Begley (6-5-11), with sophomores Jakob DeFares (4-5-9) and Bradley Greik (5-1-6) getting into the action as well.
- Bergen Catholic (4-5)
After showing great promise in its first three games – wins over Morris Knolls and CBA and a close loss to Delbarton – Bergen Catholic lost four straight games, albeit all against good teams. The goaltending tandem of sophomore Pete Negron and senior Gennaro Anzevino has been solid, with sophomore Evan Wisocky, senior Kyle Marano, and senior Zach Larsen leading the offense. While the team’s continued development remains to be seen, Bergen Catholic appears talented enough to reach the private semifinals for the first time since 2009.