Newton Braves’ 2022 football team stacked with seasoned players

NEWTON. Under Coach Parzero’s leadership, the Braves have a path to victory.

Newton /
| 23 Aug 2022 | 10:08

The success that the Newton High School football program has realized since Matt Parzero became the head coach in 2016 is quite obvious to even the most casual of local athletic observers.

Parzero has a remarkable record of 54-8 since he began steering the ship for the Braves. That includes an NJSIAA State Sectional championship in 2017 and a 10-1 record in 2021. Newton advanced to the North 1 Group 2 Sectional Tournament semifinal round last season.

But, Newton isn’t sitting back and resting on past accolades. Rather, they’re looking forward to the tough schedule that awaits them this season.

The Braves open the regular season with a road challenge at Warren Hills on September 2. The Blue Streaks had a fine record of 6-4 last year.

“We are very optimistic heading in the 2022 season as we return starters in every position group,” Parzero said.

Among the key returning student athletes to the varsity level for the Braves are Brayden Nolan (senior, running back and linebacker, All Conference in 2021), Thaylor Sibblies (senior, running back and defensive back, All Conference in 2021), Pasquale Festa (senior, tight-end and linebacker, All Conference in 2021), Matt McLean (senior, offensive line and linebacker, All Conference in 2021), Robert McCullough (senior, kicker and punter, All Conference in 2021), Rylan Ivaldi (senior, offensive line and defensive line), Brody Guerra (senior, defensive line), Matt May (senior, running back and defensive end), Michael Melillo (senior, offensive line and linebacker), and Claudio Ibarra (senior, defensive line).

Festa, Nolan, McLean and Sibblies are the team captains for Newton this year.

Newcomers looking to make a strong impact on the varsity roster include Dom Ferdenzi (senior, wide receiver), Garrett Wikander (senior, wide receiver and defensive back), Duece Edwards (senior, wide receiver and defensive back), Dom Boscia (senior, offensive line and linebacker), Dylan Cotter (junior, running back and defensive end), Alano Festa (junior, offensive line and defensive line), Matt Finn (junior, offensive line and defensive line), Billy Greenhalgh (junior, offensive line and defensive line), Michael Hudson (junior, offensive line and defensive line), Demarius Posey (junior, running back and defensive back), Matt Teets (junior, quarterback and defensive back), Pat Teets (junior, offensive line and defensive line) and Jason Teets (junior, tight end and linebacker).

The Braves compete in the North Jersey Super Football Conference American Blue Division along with Kittatinny, Wallkill Valley, Hackettstown, Lenape Valley and Sussex Tech.

“Keys to the season will be how well this group can respond to adversity and the development of the newcomers,” Parzero said. “Our goals are to win the Division and compete for a Sectional title.”

2022 Newton Football Schedule:
September 2: At Warren Hills, 7 p.m.
September 9: Home - Sussex Tech, 7 p.m.
September 17: At Wallkill Valley, 12 p.m.
September 23: Home - Kittatinny, 7 p.m.
September 30: Home - Lenape Valley, 7 p.m.
October 7: At Hackettstown, 7 p.m.
October 14: Home - Ramsey, 7 p.m.
October 21: At Sparta, 7 p.m.