T&T Coast Football Top 10, 10/4/16
Even with a pair of top-10 matchups during Week 4, there will be minimal movement in the T&T Coast Top 10 this week.
The rankings held true, albeit barely, with No. 1 Middletown South edging No. 5 Rumson-Fair Haven, 14-13, and No. 4 St. John Vianney outlasting then-No. 8 Brick, 22-14 in overtime. The rest of the top 10 was victorious while battling through treacherous conditions during a rainy, windy Friday night.
Week 5 is, in a way, the quiet before the storm with just one matchup between ranked teams. That will take place Friday night when Red Bank Catholic visits Wall in a pivotal Class B North game. Down the road, Week Six has some massive divisional games while Week Seven has the much anticipated Toms River North vs. Middletown South game.
SHORE SPORTS NETWORK TOP 10
1. Middletown South (4-0). Last week: No. 1
The Eagles won a thriller for the second week in a row as they edged No. 5 Rumson-Fair Haven, 14-13, in a nondivisional game. Sophomore running back Anthony Summey ran for a short touchdown, senior quarterback Aneesh Agrawal threw a 61-yard touchdown pass to senior Jeremy Joyce and sophomore Chris Kaldrovics kicked two extra points, which proved to be the difference. Junior Jake Krellin led an outstanding defensive effort with 14 tackles, two for a loss, a crucial stop on fourth down and a pass breakup on Rumson’s final play. Middletown South’s win streak now stands at 16 games. Next week: The Eagles host Long Branch (1-2) in a Class B North game on Friday night.
2. Toms River North (4-0). Last week: No. 2
Senior running back Parker Day ran for 200 yards and three touchdowns to lead what continues to be an unstoppable Mariners offense in a 58-33 win over Howell. Senior quarterback Mike Husni ran for a touchdown and also threw a touchdown pass to senior wideout Bryce Watts, senior Darrion Carrington returned an interception for a touchdown, senior Pete LaQuaglia returned an onside kick for a touchdown and junior Daryn Blackwell had a rushing touchdown. The Mariners have allowed 67 points in their last two games, which would be a major problem if they hadn’t scored 120 in that same span. Toms River North is averaging 50.3 points per game this year and has won 14 games in a row. Next game: The Mariners host rival Toms River East (0-4) on Friday night in a Class A South game.
3. Manalapan (4-0). Last week: No. 3
The Braves’ offense wasn’t its explosive self in a 14-0 win over Freehold, but its defense was impenetrable in recording its third straight shutout. Sophomore linebacker Tommy Pearce made 16 tackles, junior linebacker Sal Tardogno made 13 stops with two tackles for loss and senior Jonathan Pimentel recorded two sacks. Offensively, junior quarterback Luke Corcione completed 10 of 19 passes for 121 yards and touchdown passes to juniors Symir Blacknall and Scott Scherzer, while junior running back Naim Mayfield had 154 yards rushing on 21 carries. Next game: The Braves host Colts Neck (1-3) in a Class A North game on Friday night.
4. St. John Vianney (4-0). Last week: No. 4
A touchdown run by senior running back Chris Chukwuneke in overtime capped a rally from a 14 points down as the Lancers topped No. 9 Brick, 22-14. The muddy conditions at Brick’s Keller Memorial Field caused all sorts of problems for St. John Vianney’s offense, as the Lancers turned the ball over six times, two of which led to Brick touchdowns, plus a fumble that went out of the end zone and wiped out a touchdown. The defense held the fort by not allowing a first down after halftime. Junior linebacker Johnny Buchanan was sensational with 13 tackles, including three for a loss, along with Josiah Walker, who had 11 tackles, and Rutgers recruit Micah Clark, who finished with 9 tackles. Alex Calabro also had a strong game with 8 tackles, 2 for a loss, a forced fumble and two fumble recoveries. Next game: The Lancers travel to winless Holmdel (0-3) on Friday night in a Class A Central game where they’ll look to run their winning streak against Shore Conference teams to 24 games.
5. Rumson-Fair Haven (2-1). Last week: No. 5
The Bulldogs fell to top-ranked Middletown South, 14-13, in a game that came down to the final minute. Senior running back Matt Vecchiarelli ran for a 12-yard touchdown and senior quarterback Mike O’Connor had a 5-yard touchdown run. Senior linebacker Mike Ruane was outstanding with 15 tackles, three for a loss, a sack and a fumble recovery. Next game: Rumson will look to get back on track when it goes on the road to face Matawan (1-3) in a Class A Central game on Friday night.
6. Wall (4-0). Last week: No. 6
Senior running back Sean Larkin ran for a career-high 268 yards and three touchdowns and senior Shane Richey returned an interception return for a touchdown in a 27-7 Class B North victory over Long Branch. Larkin scored on runs of 41, 53 and 5 yards and now has 535 yards rushing and 10 total touchdowns this season. Wall is now 4-0 for the first time since 2011. Next game: The Crimson Knights have another big divisional game this week when they welcome No. 7 Red Bank Catholic (3-1) to town on Friday night.
7. Red Bank Catholic (3-1). Last week: No. 7
In his first start at quarterback, junior Nick Brusca ran for 137 yards and three touchdowns to power a 35-0 win over Colonia. Junior running back Zach Bair added 114 yards rushing and a touchdown and Tahj Berandesco returned an interception for a touchdown. Next game: The Caseys will travel to No. 6 Wall on Friday night for a pivotal Class B North game.
8. Freehold Township (4-0). Last week: No. 9
The wind and rain made for a tough night for the Patriots’ passing offense, but a fourth-quarter touchdown pass from senior quarterback Charles Sabbagh to senior wide receiver Adrian Rybaltowski put Freehold Township ahead for good in a 10-6 Class A North win over Neptune. Senior Anthony Lotti had 11 tackles, an interception and a forced fumble to lead a defense that caused three turnovers. The Patriots are now 4-0 for the first time since 1980. Next game: The Patriots will look to continue their tremendous start against a winless Perth Amboy (0-3) team on Friday night.
9. Brick (2-2). Last week: No. 8
Senior Ja’Sir Taylor ran for two touchdowns and sophomore Jimmy Leblo had two fumble recoveries and an interception for a defense that forced six turnovers, but the Green Dragons could not mount any offense in the second half and fell to St. John Vianney, 22-14 in overtime. Next game: The Dragons will try to snap a two-game losing streak when they host Toms River South (2-2) in a Class A South game on Friday night.
10. Middletown North (2-1). Last week: No. 10
The Loins had a bye in Week 4 after a 38-7 win over Howell in Week 3. Next game: Middletown North returns to action on Friday night in a nonconference game at New Brunswick (1-3), which is coached by former Asbury Park and Neptune head coach Don Solfikanich.
Dropped out: none
Teams to watch:
Mater Dei Prep (4-0): Junior quarterback George Pearson tossed two touchdown passes and the Seraphs continued to roll with a 37-15 win over Highland Park. Next game: Mater Dei hosts defending Class B Central champ Shore (3-1) on Saturday afternoon.
Point Boro (4-0): The Panthers rolled up 405 yards rushing with junior quarterback James Fara running for 146 yards and three touchdowns to lead the way in a 42-0 nondivisional win over Monmouth. Next game: Point Boro travels to Manchester (2-2) for a Class B South game on Friday night.
Lakewood (3-0): The Piners had a bye last week and were red-hot before the break with two shutouts and a point differential of plus-89. Next game: Lakewood will try to keep pace with Point Boro in Class B South when it travels to Lacey (3-1) for a divisional contest on Saturday afternoon.
Manasquan (3-1): Junior running back Connor Morgan ran for over 200 yards and three touchdowns as the Warriors shut out Barnegat, 31-0, in a nondivisional game. Next game: Manasquan has a bye this week, and will return to action in Week Six against Ocean.
Central (3-1): The Golden Eagles had a bye in Week 4 after a huge one-point win over Jackson Memorial the previous week. Next game: Central looks to remain unbeaten in Class A South when it hosts Brick Memorial (0-4) on Friday night.
Football editor Bob Badders can be reached at email@example.com. Follow him on Twitter @Bob_Badders. Like Shore Sports Network on Facebook and subscribe to our YouTube channel for all the latest video highlights.