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Coach likes ‘pure soccer brain’

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When Carlo Acquista sat down and evaluated what he wanted to upgrade in his team, the Adelphi University men’s soccer coach wrote down a few important characteristics: natural ability, ability to break teams down, technically and tactically sound, great vision.

The Whitestone native found all of that in Xaverian midfielder Dominick Parrelli, who is part of a 14−player Adelphi recruiting class.

“He’s very technical, a pure soccer brain,” Acquista said. “A player like him will be tremendous from the beginning where we can use him as a game changer.”

And Adelphi is a perfect fit for Parrelli, who wanted to play Division I college soccer, wanted to go away to school, but didn’t want to be too far from his Brooklyn home.

“I didn’t want to leave New York and playing Division I was a big deal for me,” Parrelli said. “I was interested in a couple of schools, St. John’s was one also. But I didn’t like the system at St. John’s. I was comfortable with Carlo at Adelphi, I visited the school and loved it. I’m getting the best of everything.”

Parrelli, who was a FiveBoroSports.com All−City second team selection, was an attacking midfielder for Xaverian, helping lead the Clippers to the CHSAA Class A quarterfinals where they lost to Fordham Prep.

“He’s very talented and you thought the ball had glue on it,” Xaverian coach Carlos Jaguande said. “The ball would not leave his foot, he has great vision and when Dominick wants to play, no one else on the high−school level could look at the field like he did. When he’s on, he could be one of the best players in the city if not the state.”

Acquista said Parrelli, who also played for the Met Oval Development Academy and was on the Olympic Development under−15 Region I team, could play a few different attacking positions in his preferred 4−3−3 formation.

“Maybe we’ll use him outside wide on the attacking end, or in the middle of the field,” Acquista said. “There’s going to be two or three options for him. We’re looking for that last ball. We want to be a lot more well−balanced in our attack.”

Acquista coached Parrelli two years ago at the Met Oval and recruited Parrelli, who also received interest from Columbia and Brown, early last season.

“I know Carlo as a coach, as a person, I know he runs the show,” Parrelli said. “I’m ready to work and fulfill all those expectations. I’m very much looking forward to getting started.”

Parrelli is part of a 14−man recruiting class at Adelphi, which was 12−6−0 last season and captured the Atlantic Soccer Conference regular season title before losing in the conference tournament.

He joins a roster featuring former New York City high−school standouts Mauricio Mora (Francis Lewis), John Koutsounadis (Francis Lewis) and Brendan Cullinan (Fordham Prep).

“The class we’re bringing in is going to make us much deeper,” Acquista said. “We’re bringing in players who can play more than just one role, having more mobility and versatility.”

Updated 11:48 am, January 16, 2019
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