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  • Writer's pictureDan Russoman

Devils poised for strong season

THG/Dan Russoman. To purchase photos in The Gazette, call (609) 704-1940. Hammonton senior Carter Bailey (11).

HAMMONTON—With most of its roster returning from one of the best seasons in the program’s history, Hammonton High School’s boys soccer team should be a contender not only for a Cape Atlantic League (CAL) title this season, but also a South Jersey Group 3 championship.

After finishing 17-6 in 2021, earning the top seed in the sectional playoffs as well reaching the CAL championship game and securing a spot in the 16-team Coaches Cup tournament, Hammonton is confident it can be one of the region’s top teams this year.

Experience will be a key for the Blue Devils this year, as they return several starters and Cape Atlantic League All-Stars.

The Blue Devils showed last season that they can compete against the CAL’s best teams, and this year they will be tested again with games against perennial title contenders like Egg Harbor Twp., St. Augustine Prep, Bridgeton, Millville and Vineland.

A talented group leads the way for Hammonton, including seniors Carter Bailey, Tyler Lowe, Brandon Martinez and Michael Gehres.

Bailey led the Blue Devils with 12 goals and 13 assists last year, earning first-team All-Star recognition from the CAL. Lowe added 11 goals and 10 assists in an outstanding season.

Martinez and Gehres were excellent defenders who moved the ball well and provided protection in front of the net for Hammonton.

Junior Marco Schiano also returns after a season where he scored 11 times and handed out seven assists.

Also back is senior midfielder Fernando Flores, a strong defender and ball-handler.

Senior Gavin West scored 11 goals last year and returns to add depth and scoring up top for the Blue Devils. Nick Iuliucci, a senior had five goals and three assists last year, while sophomore Jaxon Miller returns after a strong freshman year.

Aaron LaSasso, Matthew Smith, Luke Griscom, Caden Humphries, Luis Dionicio, Ethan Dustman, Rolison Turpin and John Waddell also saw action last season and add experience and depth to a talented roster.

Head coach Steve Adirzone has been encouraged by the team’s play this summer and expects to see Hammonton make a deep postseason run this year as the Blue Devils chase their first sectional title since 2009.

Hammonton opens the season on September 8 against Middle Twp. at 4 p.m.

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