Preseason Team Preview: Christian Brothers Academy



TJ Hunt

Scouting Director, New Jersey



High School: Christian Brothers Academy

Head Coach: Martin Kenney (43rd season, 756-319)

2015 Record: 27-5, Parochial A Sectional Champs, Shore Conference Tournament Champs, Monmouth County Tournament Champs, A North Division Champs

 

There is no way around it: the expectations of 2016 have been set incredibly high for the Colts. Coming off a 5-championship 2015 that had not been seen in the Shore Conference in a decade, the Colts will be trying to repeat their historic 2015.  And they definitely have the capability to accomplish that feat.  It will not be easy playing in the toughest conference in the state, but the bullseye is always on the backs of the boys in Lincroft.

Looking toward this year, Coach Kenney and his staff expect nothing less than success.  The legendary coach returns no less than 11(!!!) quality high school arms led by MLB Draft prospect RHP Luca Dalatri (North Carolina) and RHP Kenny Campbell (Lafayette).  I saw Dalatri pitch at this summer’s Met Classic at Hofstra University - sat consistently at 87-90 and dominated the strike zone. From what I recall, the UNC commit struck out 7 in three innings of work.  Dalatri uses a bulldog mentality inside his physically intimidating body to become one of the best pitchers in the state as well as the country.  Campbell is much of the same. His mechanics are clean, and his arm action is exceptional, and he possesses a plus breaking ball. His methodical nature will lull Shore Conference hitters to sleep and before they know it, it’s the 7th inning. Other key contributors on the hill for the Colts this year will be juniors RHP Mason O’Mara, RHP Ronnie Meehan, and LHP Sal Morreale. Look for sophomore RHP Nick Hohenstein to get his feet wet at the varsity level this year as well.  Hohenstein is an intriguing 2018 prospect who seems poised to contribute at the varsity level.

Just like the pitching staff, the offense has a plethora of interchangeable parts. The lineup will be led by seniors OF Cid Porter (Catholic U.), Dalatri, C Brandon Martorano (North Carolina), and C/Ut. Brendan Galvin (Princeton). Martorano is the #7 ranked prospect in PBR’s top 2016 players, and will contribute in big ways in the middle of the order.  While he brings some pop to the line-up, Martorano is even more valuable behind the plate.  He manages the staff better than any catcher in the state, and has plus receiving and catch-and-throw skills, as were on display this past summer at the Met Classic Games.  Porter will be the leader in the outfield, and look for Galvin to contribute valuable innings behind the dish to spell Martorano. Other offensive contributors will be seniors C/INF/OF Anthony Falconite (Stevens), Campbell, and Luke Chece (TCNJ). The Colts will have talent waiting in the wings in junior OF Evan Menendez, sophomores SS Jack Harnish, and 3B Andrea Dalatri.

There is no doubt that the Colts will begin the year as one of the top 2 or 3 teams in the state. Whether they finish at the top of the polls will depend on whether the upperclassmen can repeat their successes of ‘15, and the newcomers can play their roles well.  The talent is all there, and with Coach Kenney leading the way, it would not be surprising to see another 5-championships at CBA.

Head Coach’s Bio:
Martin Kenney, 43rd season (756-319)
+756 wins is second all-time in New Jersey
+Started on the first ever CBA State Championship team: the 1965 Basketball team

Notable Baseball Alumni:
+Pat Light - (Monmouth, 1st Round Pick / AAA Red Sox)
+Jim Yacabonis - (St. Joesph’s, High A, Orioles)
+Joe Dudek - (Kentucky)
+Anthony Critelli - (Holy Cross)
+Matt Pidich - (Pittsburgh)
+John McCarren - (Wake Forest)
+Mike Caputo - (Seton Hall)
+Ryan Ramiz - (Seton Hall)
+Danny Avella - (Monmouth)
+Sean Arnott - (Monmouth)
+Pete Papcun - (Monmouth)
+Griffin Arnott - (St. Peter’s)
+Matt D’Angelo - (St. Peter’s)