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Somers RB Nick Rossi (9) celebrates his TD with teammates in host Tuskers’ 35-12 win over previously unbeaten Nyack Friday.

Somers, Yorktown, Brewster, Lakeland to Host 1st Round Playoff Games

Carmel Coach Cayea Sets Sight on 150th Career Win vs. Mahopac, Higgins Trophy Up for Grabs

As we ride off into the sunset of the regular season, the Section 1 Class A playoffs are wide open this year. As per usual, the classification is choc-full-of-contenders, with a slew of state-ranked challengers with one or fewer losses, including No.6 John Jay CR (6-0, the No.1 seed in the playoffs), No.17 Somers (5-1, the No.2 seed), No.14 Nyack (5-1, the No.6 seed), No.16 Yorktown (5-1, the No.5 seed), No.19 Rye (5-1, the No.3 seed), plus unranked Brewster (5-1, the No.4 seed) and Clarkstown South (5-1, the No.7 seed).

SOMERS is locked and loaded after the Coach Tony DeMatteo’s Tuskers roughed up visiting Nyack, 35-12 behind 207 rushing yards and two scores from junior RB Jack Kaiser, who manhandled a Nyack unit that crushed Yorktown with explosive plays a week prior. The Tuskers’ rushed for 339 yards on the ground, which controlled time of possession and limited Nyack to just nine offensive plays in the second half.

“Ground and pound, the O-line was producing holes and giving me the chance to do some things,” Kaiser said. “We knew Nyack was a very fast team, so our game plan was just to contain them and stop the homerun plays.”

Mission accomplished: Starting with a 12-play, 62-yard drive, capped by a two-yard Kaiser with 3:24 left in the first quarter, which gave Somers a 7-6 lead, the Tuskers never looked back, never trailed and put the section on notice.

Somers junior QB Jackson Kossow hit on 5 of 10 passes for 53 yards and rushed for another 53 yards and two TDs while Somers out-gained Nyack 389-128 from scrimmage. Somers RB Nick Rossi added a five-yard TD run, which provided a ton of first-half momentum.

Somers DL Charlie Grindrod paced the defense with eight tackles, three for loss while T.J. Deagan added six tackles and a sack. Tuskers Eric Krauss and Anthony Cheek had seven tackles apiece.

YORKTOWN had its way with host Fox Lane in a 42-0 trouncing Saturday. Coming off its lone loss of the season, the Huskers (5-1) had laser sharp focus and ran roughshod over the Foxes (4-2). Yorktown QB Trevvon Johnson rushed for 133 yards rushing and two scores. Powerful Husker RB Dylan Smith found gaping creases in the Fox Lane defense and rushed 19 times for a game-high 158 yards, including a 50-yard touchdown run that saw his O-line open a hole a truck could drive through. Dynamic WR/RB Keith Boyer added a pair of touchdowns for the Huskers.

LAKELAND struggled with rival WALTER PANAS for a half before the host Hornets went off on defense and special teams to pull away for a 42-14 win, defeating the Panthers for the first time since 2015.

Lakeland junior QB Tyler Santucci continued in what has been one of the finest seasons in recent memory for a Hornet QB, clicking on 18-23 passes for 196 yards and four TDs, the bulk of those scores going to senior RB Matt Makar (8 catches, 74 yards, 3 TD catches, 8 rushes, 43 yards, 1 rush TD). Indeed, Makar had himself a career day. Lakeland’s Mike Castelli (3 catches for 83 yards, 1 rushing TD) was also involved.
Defensively, John Giofrida (10 tackles, 1 blocked punt), Danny Libretti (10 tackles) and
Jason Green (10 tackles, 1 INT) were spectacular. Green’s pick was a thing of beauty. He batted up a pass at the line of scrimmage and corralled at the one, which set up an easy Lakeland score. The Hornets are now 4-2 after finishing last season 2-7.

The Panthers fell to 1-5 and did not qualify for the field of 16 playoff teams, but they hung tough for a half behind QB Mark Perez who fired two TD passes to Robert Ennis, giving Perez nine TD passes for the year, six to Ennis.

BREWSTER RB Thomas Consolato exploded for three touchdowns, finding paydirt on jaunts of 14, 60 and 54 yards in a 35-7 win over host HEN HUD Friday. Brewster improved to 5-1 on the season while Coach John ‘Big Cat’ Catano’s Sailors fell to 3-3 and discovered they will be competing in Class B next season. The last time Hen Hud was in Class B the Sailors lost to Sammy Maldanado’s Harrison Huskies in the 1999 Section 1 title game.

has all but locked up the No.2 seed by virtue of a 38-7 win over visiting Scarsdale, giving Coach Todd Cayea the 149th win of his career.

Ram QB Andrew Nunez had his finest game, connecting on 12 of 13 passes for 183 yards and two touchdowns. Five of those completions went to versatile WR/RB Alex Beauchesne for 114 yards and a score. Carmel senior RB James Cox continued his excellence with 90 yards on the ground and two more scores as the Rams improved to 5-1 and likely locked up the No.2 seed, with rival Mahopac standing in the way and the coveted Bryan Higgins Memorial trophy up for grabs. The favored Rams are seeking a fifth-straight Higgins win over the Indians.

In Arlington’s 23-13 win over host MAHOPAC, the talk of the town centered on the Indians’ likely drop in classification next season, dropping down from Class AA to A. As of press time Monday morning, the state’s BEDS numbers (Basic Educational Data System) were not officially released, but word did leak out about Mahopac dropping from Class AA to A, and Hen Hud moving from Class A to B for the 2020 season.

The Indians (2-4) fell behind 16-0 and fought back valiantly when sophomore QB Anthony DeMatteo passed for over 100 yards for the first time in his career, hitting of 5 of 9 passes for 103 yards, one TD and a pick. Mahopac WR Tommy Elliot (Fairfield Commit for lax) had five receptions for 43 yards, two of which were highlight reel grabs.

Vincent Bastone led the Indians defense with nine tackles while Dom Perricone and Matt Puckhaber also performed well on defense, according to Coach Dominick DeMatteo.

NWE/Putnam Top 5 Grid Poll

No.1 SOMERS – Since Week 2 loss to Yorktown, Class A state-ranked (No.17) Tuskers (5-1) look like the team we thought they would be, and should the seeds hold up we could be staring down the barrel of a Somers vs. Rye semifinal. For now, Somers draws No.15 TZ in qualifying round in what should be a cakewalk.

No.1A CARMEL – Class AA Rams (5-1) will likely celebrate a fifth-straight Higgins Trophy victory over Mahopac this Friday, what would be the 150th career win in Coach Todd Cayea’s 25-year career. This guy is #TheStuffofLegend.

No.1B YORKTOWN – State-ranked (No.7) Class A Huskers (5-1) have apparently put the Nyack loss behind them, and should they find the Week 2 mojo that undressed Somers, this unit could find itself challenging for the Section 1 title. No.5 Yorktown should find that mojo and then some in qualifying round game against No.12 Hen Hud.

No.4 BREWSTER – Class A Bears’ (5-1) would have signed in blood for this regular season, but the 2nd season is another story for the No.4 Bears, who drew No.13 Pelham in qualifying round, and they could be on a collision course with No.5 Yorktown should the seeds remain intact after the 1st round re-seed. Imagine the Bears’ Den would be lit if the Huskers come northeast and The Crop travels well. #SignMeUp.

No.5 LAKELAND – Class A Hornets (4-2) came to life in the 2nd half of their win over rival Panas, and now the No.8 seed sets its sights on a home playoff game against No.9 Fox Lane. A win over the Foxes might be Lakeland’s biggest win since a 2009 playoff win over Fox Lane, but this is by no means any easy assignment as the Foxes have a mighty RB in Michael Washington.

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