This was an offseason with some changes for the Lancers after the unexpected resignation of Mark Ciccotelli. Ciccotelli had led the team to their best season in school history with a 10-1 record, and a trip to the Non Public Group III Semifinals. Excitement was in the air as St John Vianney had one of their best offseasons in the weight room. The players were poised and ready to take this show to the next level. Now everyone wonders how the players will respond going into the new season. How will the team respond to start this 2015 campaign?
St John Vianney Athletic Director Rich Lamberson officially hired Derek Sininsky in late July to take over the program. Sininsky is a strong leader with a lot of coaching experience. The veteran coach had stops in Raritan, Monmouth Regional, and Marlboro before taking this job. He has also been a long time assistant in other programs. Sininsky is a defensive minded coach that will add a lot of focus and intensity on that side of the ball. The defensive line and linebacker positions will be a major priority. The new coach has already build a strong rapport with the players. “Coach Sininsky has done a great job making everyone comfortable, and keeping the team together. He really cares about the program”. added St John Vianney Wide Receiver Khalil Haskins. Offensive Coordinator Jim Reid, Defensive Coordinator Mike Tedeschi, and Special Teams Coach Eddie Hernandez will all remain from last years’ staff. This has helped make the transition process easier for all of the players. The main thing will be to keep everyone motivated. This is an offense with some of the best skill position players in the State. If the players remain focused and dedicated to the craft, they will really do some great things in the Shore this year.
ST JOHN VIANNEY PREVIEW
Head Coach: Derek Sininsky ( 10th season overall 30-60)
2014 Record: 10-1
Key Returns: Anthony Brown Jr (Sr QB/DB) Khalil Haskins (Sr WR/DB) Calvin Beatty (Sr FB/LB) Jamaal Beatty (Sr OL/DL) Micah Clark (Jr OL/DL) Michael Stapert (Sr WR/DB) Mike McGimpsey (Sr DE) Tyler Tedeschi (Jr LB) Jeff Sheard ( Sr WR/LB)
Key Losses: Danny Calabro (WR/DB) Aaron Mora (RB/LB) PJ Braccia (WR/DB) Clay Kemp (OL/DL) Kyle Gibson (OL/DL)Louis Iovine (OL/DL)
Key Newcomer: Chris Chukwuneke (Jr RB/LB) Marcque Ellington (Sr WR/DB)
The Lancers return Quarterback Anthony Brown who led the Shore Conference in passing for 2014. Brown passed for 2,198 yards and 25 touchdown passes. The senior is also a threat with his legs, running for 811 yards and 9 touchdowns. This has been a very busy offseason for Brown. The dual-threat quarterback found a home with Head Coach Steve Addazio and Boston College. “I felt like home, and that I could be there for the next four to five years. That is what really went into my decision”. refected Brown on the decision making process. Brown will once again look to take the Shore Conference by storm. As a player, he is visibly bigger and stronger. He has great vision down the field, and displays tremendous accuracy. He has great arm strength, and can easily hit running backs in the flat. After observing training camp, Brown has excellent timing with all of his receivers. He is surrounded by targets who are a threat to score at anytime. SJV had one of the State’s deadliest offenses in 2014, averaging 43 points per game. Expect Brown to build on these numbers and turn in another phenomenal performance in 2015. The signal caller is in a great position.
We had a chance to catch up with QB Anthony Brown.
The Lancers will once again have an extreme running attack. The team returns powerhouse Fullback Calvin Beaty. Beaty is a big powerful back at 6’0″ and 225 lbs. He is a one cut, downhill runner that has mastered his technique. He brings a north and south running ability that will constantly keep the chains moving. The Lancers will easily get 5 yards or more every time Beatty is powering forward. SJV will also add Junior transfer Chris Chukwuneke from JP Stevens. Chukwuneke comes over after rushing for 1,069 yards and 10 touchdowns. The Junior also led the team in receiving with 21 receptions and 2 touchdowns. Chukwuneke is 5’11”, 180lbs, and has tremendous speed, running a 4.4 in the 40 yard dash. Beaty and Chukwuneke will be the perfect thunder and lightning combination to really make this running attack go. Johnny Buchanan will also be in the rotation. Buchanan is a good all around back that can pick up the tough yards and catch the ball when needed.
If you’re looking for a passing game that is going to excite you in 2015, look no further than this St John Vianney Lancers team. This may very well be the greatest show on turf for the upcoming season! Senior Khalil Haskins leads the way and is prepared to have an outstanding season. Haskins caught 25 passes for 398 yards and 2 touchdowns in his junior season. He was also a threat out of the backfield, rushing for 566 yards. Haskins is a speedy receiver at 5’10”, who will line up inside and cause all kinds of problems in the slot. Haskins simply loves playing football! After scoring a touchdown in practice, you can hear the excitement in his voice when he said “put the student section over here, it’s showtime”. The Lancers also have two huge targets on the outside as Marcque Ellington and Michael Stapert both stand at 6’6″. Ellington comes over from Neptune and will be a matchup nightmare for defensive backs around the league. Ellington can easily use his power to make the tough catches in the red zone. Stapert will be another problem on the other side. Stapert is very athletic and will be consistent down the stretch. Anthony Brown will have a number of options in the passing game. This receiving core will be nearly impossible to defend.
Khalil Haskins stopped by to chat with us about the season.
The Lancers offensive line are strong and really balanced going into the season. Juniors Jamaal Beaty and Micah Clark return and will provide the leadership to really anchor this group. They bring a lot of experience after being a big part of the line last year. Jamaal is 6’4″ and 245 lbs. He will use his strength to keep defenders from getting to Brown and company. There are also a lot of spots up for grabs. Juniors Matt Jones and Anthony Deflippo are in the mix competing for time. The team has several players that are still fighting for starting positions. “We need to develop an attitude on this line. With Micah and Jamaal up front, there’s no reason why we shouldn’t dominate defensive fronts. We need to have a chip on our shoulder. That toughness factor has to come in”. added Head Coach Derek Sininsky stressing the importance of SJV winning every battle at the line of scrimmage. The team will look to set the tone from the start.
Defensively, the Lancers will be a major force in this league. This was a unit that dominated last season, and will look to make their mark on the Shore again. Senior Linebacker Calvin Beaty returns and will be a huge part of this group. Beatty is coming off a fantastic season. Beatty can do anything that the coaching staff asks of him. He is a very strong downhill linebacker. He can easily shoot through the gap and make an impact in the backfield. The team will really count on his leadership to set the example. Junior Tyler Tedeschi also comes back and will be a big part of the team. Tedeschi is very athletic and can make plays anywhere on the field. Tedeschi can help in run support and pass coverage. Matt Bordfield is also a tough linebacker who will make his presence known on the field. Bordfield is instinctive and can anticipate what opposing offense’s are doing. Look for Johnny Buchanan to also contribute in a big way. He is another linebacker that is always around the ball. All four of these linebackers will make things happen throughout the season.
St John Vianney also brings back a very disruptive defensive line. Both Micah Clark and Jamaal Beaty are just as strong on the defensive side of the ball. Beatty and Clark can easily overpower offensive lineman around the league. They are also athletic and can get into the backfield. The younger players will rely on their leadership to be successful. Senior Mike McGimpsey will also be very tough coming off the edge. He can get to the quarterback as a pass rusher, and stop the run around the side. The Lancers will need McGimpsey to show that toughness. The team also has some younger players that are battling for spots on this line.
This secondary looks to be one of the biggest strengths of the St John Vianney defense. Senior Khalil Haskins returns at the cornerback position. Haskins was one of the best defensive backs in the Shore. He picked off six passes in 2014. The senior is very instinctive and knows how to be in the right place at the right time. He can excel in press coverage, and bump and run as well. Opposing Wide Receivers will have a very tough time dealing with his speed. Junior Chris Chukwuneke will also be a great addition at the safety position. Chukwuneke is coming off a great sophomore season at JP Stevens. Chukwueneke can provide run support in the box, and help in coverage. The team will really benefit from his athleticism. Jeff Sheard also has a lot of experience and will be critical in huge games. The Lancers are in a great position with several athletes in this area. Class A Central is a division with a lot of good passing teams. This unit will have to be on top of their game, and limit the big plays.
The coaching staff is very excited about this team going forward. Coach Sininsky is looking to establish a level of mental toughness and physicality to an already talented group of players. While expectations are very high for this group of kids, Sininsky wants his players to understand that in order to win in this league, you must focus on every opponent one week at at a time. “I’m very humble. I don’t look toward the end of the season. Don’t worry about the teams down the road. Let’s take everything one game at a time, and focus on Matawan. Matawan is our biggest challenge right now.” The Lancers will open their season against the defending Central Jersey Group III champion Matawan Huskies. The Huskies are always a huge challenge with Head Coach John Kaye running the show. The Lancers offensive and defensive lines will have to be very dominant in order to get a victory in that game.
The sky is the limit for this Lancers team. Anthony Brown is one of the best prospects at the quarterback position. He can make all the throws, and make you miss with his legs. The Lancers receiving core is extremely talented and can run four to five deep. The defense is full of athletes that can simply fly around. They can run players over and make huge plays. St John Vianney has all the talent to make a tremendous run throughout the season. It will be up to Coach Sininsky to keep everyone focused and put the pieces together. Look out for the Lancers in 2015!!
We had a chance to talk with Head Coach Derek Sininsky about the upcoming season.
ST JOHN VIANNEY SCHEDULE
9/12 at Matawan – 2PM
9/18 vs Holmdel – 2PM
9/25 at Central Regional – 7PM
10/2 vs Rumson Fair Haven – 7PM
10/9 At Manchester – 7PM
10/16 vs Raritan – 7PM
10/23 at Donovan Catholic – 7PM
10/31 At Monmouth Regional – 12PM
11/6 vs Manasquan – 7PM
11/13 State Tournament/Consolation – TBD