South Jersey Boys' Soccer Tournament Preview

by Marc Narducci | Nov 10, 2020
South Jersey Boys' Soccer Tournament Preview

The South Jersey boys' soccer tournament begins this week with a different format due to the shortened COVID-19 season. There will be no state championships. Teams can only win their section. The Groups are also a little different, for instance there are two Group 1 fields. 

Here is a look at the different sections:
Southwest Group 1 A
Opening round: Nov. 14 
Championship: Nov. 21 
Teams: (1) Haddon Township, (8) Wildwood, (9) Audubon, (5) Penns Grove, (12) Palmyra, (4) Woodstown; (3) Schalick, (6) Lindenwold, (11) Maple Shade, (7) Glassboro, (10) Woodbury, (2) Pitman. 
Outlook: Haddon Township is the favorite after winning the big-school Colonial Liberty title. Senior midfielder Jacob Chatten is among the top players in South Jersey. Pitman entered the week unbeaten but the Panthers haven’t played the schedule of Haddon Township. Also Schalick will be a tough out.  
Southwest Group 1 B
First round: Nov. 14 
Championship: Nov. 21 
Teams: (1) Clayton, (8) Riverside, (9) Buena, (5) Salem, (4) Pennsville, (3) Gateway, (6) Paulsboro, (7) Willingboro, (2) Florence. 
Outlook: This is a wide-open field. Clayton entered the week 5-7, but the Clippers have played a tough schedule in the Tri-County Conference that will prepare them for the playoffs. Watch out for Pennsville, which has split two games with Clayton. Florence is capable No. 2 seed.  
South 2 Combined
First round: Nov. 13 
Championship: Nov. 21 
Teams: (1) Oakcrest, (8) Lower Cape May, (9) Middle Township, (5) Delran, (12) Pleasantville, (13) Collingswood, (4) West Deptford, (3) Haddonfield, (14) Cedar Creek, (6) Cinnaminson, (11) Haddon Heights, (7) Bordentown, (10 Delsea, (15) Pemberton, (2) Sterling. 
Outlook: Delran hasn’t played many games, but the Bears are always a team to watch in the postseason. No. 2 Sterling has two wins over Haddonfield and bears watching. Senior Casimir Ejianreh  has scored a team-high seven goals for the Silver Knights. Don’t count out two other Colonial Conference teams, Haddonfield and West Deptford.  
South 3 Combined
First round: Nov. 14 
Championship: Nov. 21 
Teams: (1) Triton, (8) Cherry Hill West, (9) Hammonton, (5) Seneca, (12) Timber Creek, (13) Highland, (4) Mainland, (3) Ocean City, (14) Burlington Township, (6) Northern Burlington, (11) Deptford, (7) GCIT, (10) Cumberland, (15) Absegami, (2) Moorestown. 
Outlook: Top seeded Triton has had a good run, but No. 2 Moorestown and No. 3 Ocean City bear watching. With 10 goals, junior Ryan Gale leads a balanced Triton team, that began the week 11-0. Moorestown began the week 8-1-2, having lost its opener to Rancocas Valley and has been unbeaten since, including a rematch win vs. Rancocas Valley. Ocean City’s lone loss entering the week was to powerhouse St. Augustine. Also watch out for Seneca, which owns a win over Shawnee.  
South 4 Combined
First round: Nov. 14 
Championship: Nov. 21 
Teams: (1) Shawnee, (8) Eastern, (9) Williamstown, (5) Cherokee, (12) Millville, (13) Lenape, (4) Egg Harbor Township, (3) Kingsway, (14) Vineland, (6) Cherry Hill East, (11) Rancocas Valley, (7) Washington Township, (10) Bridgeton, (15) Atlantic Tech, (2) Clearview.  
Outlook: Shawnee, with a rich soccer tradition will be a major contender. The Renegades’ best win came against St. Augustine. Tri-County teams Clearview and Kingsway will be threats. Kingsway beat Clearview, 2-1 in their first meeting. 
South Non-Public Combined
First round: Nov. 14 
Championship: Nov. 21 
Teams: (1) St. Augustine, (8) Holy Spirit, (9) Gloucester Catholic, (4) Holy Cross Prep, (3) Bishop Eustace, (6) Doane Academy, (7) Wildwood Catholic, (2) Paul VI.  
Outlook: Top seed St. Augustine is the favorite. The Hermits began the week 10-1-1, with a loss to Shawnee and a tie with Clearview, two Group 4 contenders. Paul VI has benefited from a tough schedule but no team has the depth of St. Augustine. 

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Author: Marc Narducci

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