Boca Christian’s Stefan Kneffel is Post’s All-Area soccer player of year


Stefan Kneffel is only a sophomore and has already scored more than 100 goals in his high school career, but one from last season stands out.

Boca Raton Christian was playing Somerset Canyons in the regional quarterfinal on coach David Weil’s birthday, and Kneffel made sure his coach would not be upset that night.

“I told him, ‘I’m going to score for your birthday,’ ” said Kneffel, who has played for the Blazers since he was in seventh grade. “Then I scored the second goal of the game, and I went up to him and gave him a hug.”

Kneffel’s goal in that playoff opener was one of 41 he racked up in his dazzling sophomore season. He added 11 assists during the season, making him one of Palm Beach County’s top offensive threats and The Post’s Small Schools Soccer Player of the Year.

“When I get to like 20, 25 (goals), I start losing count,” Kneffel said. “I go back to see the stats to see how many I have, but I really don’t care anymore and keep scoring.”

Kneffel was a key contributor to the Blazers’ unprecedented season in which they earned their first district title. 

“It was like the best feeling so far, since I’ve played soccer for Boca Christian,” Kneffel said. “We tried so hard last year. We came short in the district semifinals against Donna Klein. We’ve never had such a good season before.”

However, the Blazers’ storybook run through the playoffs had to come to an end before they reached the state playoffs.

Hosting Lakeland Christian, Boca Raton Christian played the Vikings closely through the game’s first 77 minutes before giving up the game’s only goal. The Blazers could not equalize and fell to the eventual state runner-up 1-0.

“After that goal, I saw one or two players laying down,” Kneffel said. “I was like, ‘Get up. Let’s try to get one. Three minutes left.’ Our whole team was (playing up), trying to score. It was frustrating.”

Kneffel still has two more years left at Boca Christian to try to take the Blazers further, and he has goals — literal and figurative — ahead of him.

“I want to win states and just score more goals every year,” he said. “Every year I try to score more goals and more assists, and that’s how I set my goals.”

First Team

Nick Adolphy, Lake Worth Christian, So., Forward: The Defenders star had 17 goals and four assists this season.

Mikael Ameris, Oxbridge Academy, Jr., Forward: Ameris was the ThunderWolves’ most potent offensive threat this year.

Caleb DeMarco, King’s Academy, Sr., Goalkeeper: Demarco put together seven shutouts while notching a 1.0 goals-against average.

Felipe Fonseca, Boca Raton Christian, Sr., Defender: Fonseca led the Blazers’ defense as they made a run to the regional finals.

Tyreik Fraser, Oxbridge Academy, Sr., Defender: One of the top defenders in the county played every game for the ThunderWolves.

Naisier Guanipa, Trinity Christian, Jr., Forward: A dominant offensive player, Guanipa racked up 20 goals and 21 assists.

Enzo Lerer, King’s Academy, Sr., Midfielder: Lerer helped lead the Lions to their first district finals appearance in four years. He moved to midfield after playing defender last year and scored 23 goals with seven assists.

Jacob Paul, St. Andrew’s, So., Forward: In his first year with the Scots, Paul scored 19 times in 14 games.

Douglas Phillips, American Heritage, Jr., Forward: The Stallions’ leading offensive weapon, Phillips scored 16 goals and had eight assists as a junior.

Adam Salama, Donna Klein, Jr., Forward: The junior forward, who was an alternate for the United States’ Maccabi Games soccer team, scored 22 goals and had 15 assists this season.

Gavin Titherington, Jupiter Christian, Sr., Forward: Titherington was a major factor in the Eagles’ 11-3-2 season, scoring 23 goals and picking up 13 assists.

Second Team

Nathan Ashley, St. Andrew’s, Fr., Midfielder

Alejandro Barcelo, Boca Raton Christian, Sr., Forward

Dennis Cabrera, Benjamin, Sr., Forward

Rogeni Decaster, Trinity Christian, Jr., Forward

Joel Dube, Jupiter Christian, Fr., Midfielder

Christian Ellison, Glades Day, Sr., Forward

Karym Florvil, American Heritage, Jr., Midfielder

Alejandro Gomez, St. Andrew’s, So., Midfielder

Nick Lodovico, American Heritage, Jr., Midfielder

Tyler Muschett, King’s Academy, Jr., Defender

William Platt, Trinity Christian, Sr., Goalkeeper

Honorable Mentions

American Heritage: Greg Anthony Boreland, Bryan Lopez, Jared Zauner; Benjamin: Caine Lukas, Sam Murphy, Jasua Samuels, Nick Taplett; Boca Raton Christian: Michael Bradway, Joao Conceicao, Giacomo Fabiani; Donna Klein: Dylan Joseph, Adam Saitowitz, Robert Shinder; Glades Day: Rett Lohmann; King’s Academy: Giancarlo Chinchilla, Justin Rothberg, Luiz Spolidoro, Cameron Stovel; Lake Worth Christian: Morisson Miller, Greg Pieternella; Oxbridge Academy: Leo Hirsch, Mason Janenda, Callan Walker; St. Andrew’s: Mario Mercado, Piruz Hashempour; Trinity Christian: Tanis Anderson, Abner Pang, Jaggan Ragoonanan.

Coach of the Year

David Weil, Boca Raton Christian: Took the Blazers to the regional finals —further than any Palm Beach County boys team — after winning the program’s first district title.



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