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All-Brooklyn boys soccer honors

The season on the pitch was marked by near-misses for Brooklyn.

While Xaverian and St. Edmund Prep struggled in their respective divisions, Bishop Ford had a magical season in the CHSAA, winning the Brooklyn/Queens ‘B’ division title and advancing to the Class B intersectional title game, where the Falcons lost to rival Monsignor McClancy.

After an undefeated regular season, Thomas Jefferson fell in the PSAL Class B semifinals to eventual champion Queens Vocational Tech. James Madison and Erasmus Hall were ousted in the second round of the ‘A’ playoffs while Brooklyn Tech, Brooklyn International, Fort Hamilton, Lincoln, South Shore, Tilden and Boys & Girls all were bounced in the opening round.

All-Brooklyn Boys Soccer Player of the Year: Richie Carbone, Poly Prep

The Blue Devils lacked the standout strikers that had typified seasons past, and it led to early struggles, losses to Collegiate, Dalton and Horace Mann. Yet, whenever the year bordered on getting out of control, Carbone was there with a shutout. He had 12 clean sheets in all, tying the Poly Prep record he set his sophomore year.

He led the Brooklyn power back to the NYSAISAA final with a brilliant effort in postseason victories over UNIS and Horace Mann, although the Blue Devils fell to Dalton, 2-0, in the final, snapping their two-year run atop the state. Sure-handed and quick off his line, Carbone capped a brilliant career at Poly Prep with his best play to date.

“Richie is a great goalkeeper,” coach Gerry Stone said. “He’s a big, big, big part of our success.”

All-Brooklyn Boys Soccer Coach of the Year: Barney Cassidy, Bishop Ford

You could argue that he had the most talent in the CHSAA Class B, but Cassidy did a great job of managing that talent. There were plenty of potential pitfalls along the way, yet Cassidy guided Bishop Ford to the Class B intersectional final and the Falcons were one goal from their first title. He’s got an easy going style and gives his team some freedom, but Cassidy is still in charge. It’s taken some time, but Bishop Ford is a perennial contender for the ‘B’ title, and Cassidy has gotten them there.

All-Brooklyn First team

GK Steven Boundouris, Xaverian

It was a long and difficult season for the Clippers, but Boundouris’ heroics nearly extended it with a stellar performance in the CHSAA Class A intersectional quarterfinals. If not for one moment of brilliance by Regis midfielder Javier Mejia, the Clippers might have advanced. Along with Pappalardi, Boundouris was one of two Xaverian players selected to the CHSAA All-League team.

M Abraham Bravo, James Madison

The senior completed a memorable three-year career at Madison %u2013 three playoff berths and three Brooklyn A West crowns. He scored a division-high 19 goals along with three assists this fall. Although the Knights’ season ended earlier than hoped %u2013 against Curtis in the second round %u2013 the speedy Bravo had a splendid postseason with three goals.

M Shevoy Bleary, Thomas Jefferson

The acrobatic senior keyed the Orange Wave’s impeccable regular season. Depending on the opponent and the situation, he would play in the back, at midfield or up front. He finished the year with 12 goals and 19 assists %u2013 second in the city %u2013 impressive numbers that still didn’t do the brilliant four-year starter justice.

F Oscar Castillo, Bishop Ford

Castillo has all the tools, the breathtaking speed, a deft touch and a deadly shot in and around the 18-yard box. One of the top strikers in the city, Castillo was part of the fearsome threesome, featuring Angel Cordero and James Caicedo, that led Bishop Ford to the CHSAA Brooklyn/Queens ‘B’ division title and the Class B intersectional final.

D James Caicedo, Bishop Ford

Bishop Ford conceded a CHSAA Class B-low five goals during the regular season and Caicedo, a technically and tactically sound fullback, was a big reason why. He also made his presence felt in the offensive third, scoring directly off a corner kick in the Class B intersectional semifinals and striking a penalty kick in the final.

M Angel Cordero, Bishop Ford

The prototypical midfield destroyer, Cordero was a force in the center of midfield. He was never beaten in the air and he was a crafty distributor, as well. Had the CHSAA Class B intersectional final gone to penalty kicks, Cordero might well have been in goal; its actually his top position.

F Muhammad Elfaham, Brooklyn Tech

The Engineers’ season ended with three losses in their last four matches, but it wasn’t the fault of the skilled senior striker. He scored 16 goals, second in Brooklyn A West, to anchor Brooklyn Tech’s attack. Without him, the Engineers likely miss the playoffs.

F Aboubacar Fofana, Brooklyn International

The Buckeyes snuck into the city playoffs by winning their final four matches, during which Fofana found the back of the net eight times. He had 12 overall, triple the amount he produced a season ago.

D Jason Griffiths, Poly Prep

Carbone’s outstanding year wouldn’t have been possible without Griffiths, the do-it-all sweeper. He was solid in the back, as instrumental in Poly Prep’s shocking run back to the NYSAISAA final as anyone.

M Mike Pappalardi, Xaverian

The undisputed leader of the Clippers, Pappalardi could play any position on the field and often did depending on his team’s need. Skillful and strong with a never-ending motor, Pappalardi “has very good ability, very skillful with strong feet and a good work ethic,” according to Xaverian coach Carlos Jaguande.

M Max Watson, Poly Prep

The center midfielder was one of the Blue Devils’ linchpins, a potent attacking midfielder who scored a team-high 11 goals. He not only started the attack, but the senior often finished it off, too.

All-Brooklyn Honorable mention

GK Mateo Arboleda, Fort Hamilton

GK Luis Castillo, Bishop Ford

M Andrew Doar, Poly Prep

M Michael Doar, Poly Prep

M Mostafa Haridi, James Madison

GK Tim Horgan, St. Edmund Prep

M Bjarne Iverson, Fort Hamilton

M Stephen Pulkoski, St. Edmund Prep

F Romaine Purcell, Lincoln

M Andriy Stakhiv, Lincoln

F Brady Williams, Poly Prep

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