Lack of scoring, injuries plagued BCC men’s team

first_img BY TIM MORRISStaff Writer A 6-8-2 season has Brookdale Community College’s men’s soccer coach Mike Costa fired up for next year. Costa, who was hired for the job just before the season began, noted that he had to return to the Lincroft campus next year to make up for ’06. Any thoughts that it might have been a one-year stint to help the Blues out were erased. “I have to do it now,” he said. “I’ve got to do something about this. “It was an introduction to Murphy’s Law, whatever could go wrong does go wrong,” he added. “It was frustrating.” Injuries hit the team early (midfielder Joe Shan before the season even started) and often. The Blues lost their keeper early in the season and had to turn to a field player for the rest of the campaign. Costa found himself still holding tryouts during the season, yet his team remained competitive. It was a decided disadvantage in one-goal games that left the Blues one game short of the Region XIX tournament. “We lost a lot of one-goal games,” Costa said. “We had a tendency to not come back when we fell behind.” Those close one-goal games were a positive indication that the talent-level cupboard at Brookdale is hardly barren. “The kids worked hard and they have great athletic skills,” said Costa, who turned Jackson Memorial into a Shore Conference and state power when he was coaching high school. “There were certain shortcomings that we couldn’t overcome.” Among them, Costa observed were the lack of enough physical players and a strong center halfback. It was a midfielder Helder Andrade (Ocean Township), who was BCC’s best all-around player. “He was our top player all year by far and one of the best in Region,” said Costa. Christian Pozo (Neptune) and Tomas Cholula (Colts Neck) led the Blues in scoring with nine goals each and Mike Baur (Colts Neck), chipped in with seven. Cholula was felled by the team’s injury jinx late in the season. “In a lot of games we had the better of the play,” Costa remarked. “We didn’t score when we needed it.” As an example, Costa pointed to one week in the season where the team lost three straight games -1-0, 1-0 and 2-1. A goal here or there in any of those games could have turned the season around and put them in the playoffs. When the goal-tending position became open, it was Pablo Penagos who was the forward that moved from the field to keeper. “He did a pretty good job,” said Costa. “It was a lot to ask of him.” Penagos did record three shutouts. Costa will spend the off-season building toward 2007. He a good core of freshmen that he can build next year’s squad around. Perhaps most importantly, it will be his team and it will have a full preseason camp with their coach before the season opener. “Next year will be a little easier,” he said. BY TIM MORRIS Staff Writer last_img

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