Holy Cross defeats St. Francis Prep
On Saturday night, September 10, the Holy Cross Knights played host to the Terriers of Saint Francis Preparatory School at SUNY Maritime College in the Bronx. For the first time in a number of years, this marquee match-up was a non-league game as the Terriers moved from the Catholic High School Football League (CHSFL) AAA division last year to the CHSFL AA division this year. Holy Cross remains in the CHSFL AAA division as a top dog contender.
Holy Cross, ranked seventh in the CHSFL, came in to the game with size, strength, and confidence. The Knights are expected to have a superb season as they face a difficult schedule. In front of a standing room only crowd, on the eve of the 10-year anniversary of the terrorist attacks on September 11, 2001, both teams were revved up and ready to go. Sophomore running back Brandon Pelzer sprung into action scoring two touchdowns both on breakout runs thanks to the Knights’ exceptional offensive line. St. Francis drove down the field well on their second possession, but when they were forced to punt on fourth down, Malachi Hoskins blocked the punt and punched it in for a 30-yard touchdown.
Although a difficult game to swallow for the Terriers, as they lost to the Knights 31-6 opening night, St. Francis has a lot to look forward to this season. In the CHSFL AA division, the Terriers will be competitive. The players are hopeful to have a winning season and they understand that they need to string together a few productive seasons before they can move back up to the AAA division.
– Neil A. Carousso
John Adams improves to 2-0
The John Adams Spartans returned to the field and defeated the Wagner Falcons 22-12, in a game where chemistry proved most important.
“I think it’s fantastic – our chemistry is growing a little bit day by day,” said Spartans senior quarterback Danny Perez. “We are coming together as a team and taking it one game at a time.”
The game remained scoreless until the second quarter, when the Spartans got on the board first – a factor that head coach Gerry Weitzen believed was of utmost importance to the outcome of the game.
“It was very important to score first since we had a terrible game [last week] at Brooklyn Tech. This time we thought we could play with Wagner,” said Weitzen. “We figured we were competitive with them and I thought we were the favorites.”
After going up 14-0, the Spartans gave up Wagner’s first score of the year on a 75-yard touchdown run. The Spartans defense would give up 302 offensive yards on the day, with 270 of those coming on the ground. Senior Benjamin Ezike had 243 yards rushing on 17 attempts for Wagner.
“We made glaring mistakes and we let them back in the ballgame but as I said, a win is a win,” said Weitzen
For the Spartans, Perez was the offensive star of the game completing seven out of 10 passes for 125 yards with a touchdown and an interception. Because of his performance, Weitzen called Perez the MVP of the game – an honor which surprised the young field general.
“I didn’t even think he would say that,” said Perez. “Well you know MVP is just a title, it was the whole team. [Devven] Baker ran for over 100 yards and Antoine [Arnold] ran for 100 yards. Everybody came together, it was a team effort but I do acknowledge the MVP.”
Senior wide receiver Shane Hubbard was Perez’s favorite receiver, receiving 70 of the 125 yards. On the ground, seniors Arnold and Baker had a 105 and 111 yards respectively with each scoring a touchdown.
With the win, the Spartans improve their record to 1-1 while the Falcons record drops to 0-2.
Next up on the schedule will be the Spartans toughest test yet, the Tottenville Pirates who are one of the best teams in the city. In order for the Spartans to win the game everything must click and work seamlessly.
“Tottenville is a tough team and you know championship winners we are going to have to work hard every day, “Perez added.
– Heather Zwillenberg