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CBA Colts defeat Howell, 2-1, to win 12th Shore Conference Tournament title

The Christian Brothers Academy soccer team celebrates winning its 12th Shore Conference Tournament championship with a 2-1 victory over Howell on Oct. 22 in Neptune.

NEPTUNE — The Christian Brothers Academy soccer team reigns over the Shore Conference Tournament once again in 2022 following its 2-1 victory over Howell High School in the championship match on Oct. 22 in Neptune.

With the victory, CBA claimed its 12th conference tournament championship.

The Colts and the Rebels played to a 0-0 standoff in the first 40-minute half.

CBA scored two goals in the first 21 minutes of the second half to take control of the action and held off the Rebels in the final 15 minutes of the match to win their second consecutive Shore Conference Tournament crown.

“It was a great feeling last year and it’s an even better feeling this year,” junior forward Dylan Milevoi said. “These past two years have been great. Our play up top has been amazing. Our defense has been solid. We are doing really well right now.”

Coach Tom Mulligan said his team had a “next man up” mentality on its run to the title. CBA played its final three matches of the tournament without senior forward Will Thygeson, who was sidelined with a hamstring injury.

Millevoi, senior Jack D’Eletto and junior Dimitry Corba stepped up on offense during the quarterfinals and semifinals to help the Colts reach the championship game.

In the quarterfinals and semifinals, D’Eletto scored two goals and Corba scored a goal and added two assists. Millevoi scored a goal in CBA’s 2-1 victory over Middletown North High School in the semifinals.

“I told everybody who was playing that they needed to pull a little more weight,” Mulligan said. “Everybody has a role on this team. Maybe that role changes over the course of a week or a season, but everyone’s role is important to us.”

In the championship match against Howell, junior midfielder Cameron D’Alterio stepped up for the Colts. In the 45th minute, D’Alterio headed home a brilliant cross from Millevoi to give CBA a 1-0 lead.

“Getting that first goal gave us the momentum and helped us feel good going into the final 30 minutes,” said Millevoi, who leads CBA with 11 goals scored this season and two assists.

In the 61st minute, junior defenseman Lawrence Mancino delivered on his scoring opportunity.

Following a back and forth sequence just outside the Howell penalty area, Mancino corralled a loose ball, dribbled to his left and shot a rolling laser from about 15 yards that went through the Howell defense and into the Rebels’ net for a 2-0 lead.

The goal was Mancino’s third of the season.

“I’m always looking for that one chance to score and that was the one moment I had,” Mancino said. “I had a nice strike at it and it happened to go in.”

The two-goal lead did not last long as the Rebels responded four minutes later.

In the 65th minute, Howell senior defender R.J. Eckelman redirected Nick Spisak’s corner kick into the CBA net to cut the Colts’ lead to 2-1. The goal was Eckelman’s third of the season.

CBA remained strong following the Howell goal and did not surrender the tying goal in the final 15 minutes of the match.

Since 2010, CBA has won six Shore Conference Tournament titles. This marks the first time since 2010-11 that CBA has won consecutive conference tournament championships and is the third time in the program’s history the Colts have won consecutive conference tournament titles.

CBA (15-1) has won 15 straight matches since losing its season opener against Marlboro High School.

“The kids have no quit in them. They have confidence they can win when we have gone into overtime or when we have been tied at the half. They just keep plugging along and playing. It’s fun to coach players who have that type of attitude,” Mulligan said.

Howell (11-3-2) was playing in its first Shore Conference Tournament championship match since 2007.

The Rebels and the Colts will both compete in the upcoming state sectional tournament. The state sectional tournament matchups will be released on Oct. 24.

Christian Brothers Academy defenseman Lawrence Mancino surges into the Howell zone during the Shore Conference Tournament final on Oct. 22 in Neptune. Mancino scored a goal to help CBA win its second straight SCT championship with a 2-1 victory over Howell.
Christian Brothers Academy defenseman Charles Paparella boxes out Howell's J.P. Candela for the loose ball during the Shore Conference Tournament final on Oct. 22 in Neptune. CBA defeated Howell, 2-1, to win its 12th SCT championship in program history.
Christian Brothers Academy midfielder Dimitry Corba dribbles the ball up the field during the finals of the Shore Conference Tournament on Oct. 22 in Neptune.
Howell High School boys soccer player Nick Turturro settles the ball in front of CBA's Lawrence Mancino during the Shore Conference Tournament final on Oct. 22 in Neptune. CBA defeated Howell 2-1.
Howell High School goalkeeper Charlie Scanlon punts the ball away during the finals of the Shore Conference Tournament on Oct. 22 in Neptune.
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