Many challenges await the Lenape Valley High School boys’ soccer program on the pitch this season. But, with a number of match-tested players back in the lineup, the Patriots are poised to contend at all times this fall.
Lenape Valley is scheduled to host High Point on September 10 under the guidance of first-year head coach Pete Scholl.
Varsity-level student athletes returning to the roster this year include Matthew Cardin (junior, forward), Dominic DeAgelis (senior, midfield), Lucas Granada (sophomore, defense), Ryan Lachman (junior, forward), Alfredo Lopez (sophomore, midfield), Nicholas Madrid (junior, midfield), Juan Panesso Osorio (senior, defense and midfield), Nate Samella (senior, defense and midfield), James Shertz (senior, defense), Timothy Van Klingeren (junior, goal tender), Aidan Waters (junior, forward) and Evan Williams (senior, defense).
Among the promising newcomers looking to leave their mark on varsity for the Patriots include Matthew Grochylski (sophomore, defense and forward), Cristian Morales (junior, midfield and forward) and Tyler Ruppert (sophomore, goal tender).
“There are several athletes on my team that I will be looking at as leaders,” Scholl said. “Evan Williams and Nate Samella have already become very vocal leaders that help to guide our team and lead through example. They demonstrate high levels of play and encourage their teammates to do the same.
“I am also looking at Lucas Granada, who is a talented defensive player, to guide our younger players in things such as playing the ball out of the back field and player positioning. I will also be looking to our goalie to be a commanding vocal presence on the field.”
The Patriots finished up with eight hard-fought wins and advanced to the NJSIAA North 1 Group 2 Sectional Tournament where they were defeated by Glen Rock in 2021.
“I have set some high expectations for my players this year,” Scholl said. “We hope to focus on a team first mentality and put the success of the team over any individual success. In doing this, and growing together as a team, we do hope to win the Colonial Division of our conference. I would also like to see at least two of my players make the first team of the Northwest Jersey Athletic Conference (NJAC).”
The Patriots compete in the NJAC Colonial Division along with Hopatcong, High Point, Kittatinny, Morris Tech and Sussex Tech.
“I believe we will be a contender for the Division championship,” Scholl said. “I see High Point as our toughest competitor this season.”