MONARCHS 35 MARINERS 13
Since Jeff Doroski first became the defensive coordinator at McGann-Mercy three years ago, he’s patiently waited for his team to capitalize on a defensive touchdown.
The Monarchs came close in a Week 1 win at Center Moriches when Paolo Foscolo intercepted a pass and returned it to the 2-yard line before getting tackled.
“I preach every week, we need a defensive touchdown,” said Doroski, who’s now in his second year as head coach.
He finally got it Saturday afternoon when Foscolo returned an interception 60 yards for a touchdown to put the finishing touches on a 35-13 win over Southampton.
It was a testament to how far the Monarchs’ defense has improved over the last few years.
“We’re really starting to get a good grasp on what we’re able to do as a defense,” Doroski said.
The Monarchs are now 2-0 to start the season, their best start in years. And they’ll return home next Friday against Wyandanch (0-2) with a chance to equal their win total from last season.
“We’re anxious to get back home and play in front of our home crowd,” Doroski said. “We’ve gotten great support from our fans the first two weeks. We’ve really had great crowds and I hope that continues Friday night.”
The Monarchs got a huge offensive game from sophomore Reggie Archer, who finished the game with a career-high 203 yards on 20 carries. He scored one touchdown on a 54-yard run.
Tom Kent returned to the lineup after missing the first week with an illness. He punched the ball across the goal line for a 2-yard score that broke a 13-13 tie in the fourth quarter. He finished with 61 yards on 11 carries.
The Monarchs got a turnover on the Mariners’ next possession on a forced fumble by Jack Strnad, and ran off just over seven minutes of the clock. Foscolo scored from five yards out to make it a two-possession game at 28-13.
Mercy scored 22 points in the fourth quarter.
Doroski credited the work of the interior defensemen for clogging Southampton’s running holes.
“Our two defensive tackles, Chris Motlenski and Ray Ellis, and our two inside linebackers, Pat Marelli and Pat Rossi, have really taken away the inside run game that teams have tried to come at us with. It’s forced teams to run the outside and we’ll get better out there. We did give up a couple long runs on the outside, which we have to fix up.”
Mercy scored the game’s first touchdown on a 16-yard pass from Asaiah Wilson to Christian Reyes.
“To be 2-0 is good,” Doroski said. “We’re excited about that, but I told our guys again today the thing is we still have room to get better.”
MUSTANGS 28, WILDCATS 0
There’s never much secret to the Mount Sinai football team’s offense. The Mustangs have been running the same offense under coach Vinnie Ammirato for years.
When the Mustangs execute, it can be hard to stop.
Shoreham-Wading River saw first-hand Saturday afternoon how tough it can be to stop the Mustangs’ rushing attack. Mount Sinai pounded out more than 200 yards on the ground in a 28-0 win to hand Shoreham its first loss after the Wildcats opened the season last week with a dominant win over Bayport-Blue Point.
“You try to take some things away from them that they do well,” said Shoreham coach Matt Millheiser. “Mount Sinai’s a great team and anything that we took away they had a counter punch for us. They executed plays off their main plays and beat us up pretty good.”
The Wildcats were able to move the ball offensively, but couldn’t convert into touchdowns.
Millheiser said he was impressed with the poise of sophomore quarterback Danny Hughes.
“He had a lot of pressure on him and he took some big hits,” Millheiser said. “But he was never rattled.”
Mount Sinai, which is not playing any night games this season, led 21-0 by halftime. Halfback Mark Donadio put the Mustangs ahead with a 70-yard touchdown run in the first quarter. He finished with 152 yards on only seven carries.
Mount Sinai quarterback Billy Tartaglia threw a pair of touchdowns.
“The better teams don’t make mistakes at critical times,” Millheiser said. “And we’re still getting there.”
Shoreham returns to the field Friday night for a rare home night game against Port Jefferson (1-1).