MCCC Men’s Soccer Team Honored as National Champs


NJCAA Champs: (top row, from left) Marius Kapxhiu, Dave Smith, Don Giovacchini, Marcus Price, Jeff Fisher, Dan Steingall; (second row) Kevin Bailey, Travis McKoy, Shay Sharaby, Tom DeStefano, Roy Sharaby, Tom Fink; (third row) Mohamed Morlaye, Jason James, Felix Martey, Darnell Smith; (fourth row) Artie Taylor, J. Brandon Dowdell, Diego Panasiti, Jose Miranda, Jose Moya; (bottom row) Pres. Robert Rose, Asst. Coaches John Pietrowski, Larry Povia, and Pat Snyder, and Head Coach Charlie Inverso. Not pictured Felipe Faundez and Carlos Ramirez.


Following a triumphant season that concluded with a National Junior College Athletic Association (NJCAA) title, the Mercer County Community College men’s soccer team was honored at a recent ceremony. This year’s win was the eighth soccer championship in Mercer history and the fifth under Head Coach Charlie Inverso, who just completed his 19th season with the Vikings.

During the ceremony, Inverso told his players, “While I want this to be a highlight of your life, I don’t what this to be the pinnacle, but one of a series of great things that will happen for you.”

Inverso noted that a winning team puts individual egos aside. “We are an extremely diverse group. The most important thing is that we have trust in each other. We are as close as a soccer family can be. I can’t tell you how much I’m going to miss this group of guys.” He congratulated his team for their hard work and sacrifice. “You really deserve to be champions.”

Added MCCC President, Dr. Robert Rose, “We have such a wonderful athletic program at Mercer that it would be easy to take for granted that we produce championship teams. But there is nothing natural about winning a national title. It is a culmination of hard work, dedication, skillful coaching and even a little luck.”

Also participating in the ceremony were Timothy Losch, chairman of the MCCC Foundation Board, and Bob DeFalco, a member of the Board of Trustees.

The players received commemorative plaques and tee shirts. They will also receive championship rings to honor them for their achievement.

Players selected for the All-Region and All-GSAC teams for 2004 were Travis McKoy, Kevin Bailey, Shay Sharaby, Marius Kapxhiu and Jason James.

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