St. Joseph boys soccer to compete with short roster

Anthony Fiatarone, Kevin DeCicco and Jake Pacacha are team captains for coach Thomas Connelly’s Cadets.

Anthony Fiatarone, Kevin DeCicco and Jake Pacacha are team captains for coach Thomas Connelly’s Cadets.

St. Joseph Athletics / Contributed photo

St. Joseph boys’ soccer coach Thomas Connolly, whose Cadets graduated eight senior starters from a 5-4-2 team, quoted Manchester United’s Sir Matt Busby when asked about having a roster dominated by underclassmen.

“If you’re good enough, you’re old enough,” was penned by Busby, who managed United’s Red Devils to great success in European football between 1945 and 1971. His message is still on the wall in the Manchester United player’s dressing room.

“We have 16 teams in the FCIAC,” Connolly said. “Fourteen are Class LL, Wilton is Class L and we are Class M. We will compete against teams double our size and look to get a (positive) result and grow at the same time.”

St. Joseph rosters five seniors, seven juniors, seven sophomores and four juniors. Connolly said it was fun but not optimum to coach such a young team.

“We had 23 players try out and that is a low number,” said Connolly entering his third season. “We won’t have a junior varsity team. We have two seniors, a few freshmen, a sophomore goalkeeper, and a couple of juniors that will start.”

Kevin DeCicco, Anthony Fiatarone, and Jake Pacacha are team captains.

DeCicco will lead from his center back position. The senior will be joined by junior Henry Reickenbach, sophomore Michael Fiatarone and senior Kellen McTigue on defense.

Jason Lambert, a sophomore who started JV as a freshman, will be the goalkeeper. Braiden Smith, a freshman, is backup keeper.

Anthony Fiatarone will be joined in the midfield by Lucas Auten and Zane Guglielmoni, a pair of freshmen. Sean Keaney and Nick Palumbo, both juniors, will also play midfield with senior’s Andres Adrias and Jonathan Garcia, junior’s Tyee Okafor and Nick Cebrik, sophomore’s Joey Saunders and Josh Martinez, and freshman Connor McTigue.

Pacacha, a junior, and sophomore Joe Iazzetta will be strikers.

Connolly said: “Jake has been responsible for half of our tally the past two years. Joe is also dangerous, especially when Jake in being tightly marked. We will find a way to get him in good position.”

Andy Montaleza and Mateus DaSilva provide depth up front.

St. Joseph will visit Stamford on Friday at 4 p.m. Twitter: @blox354