Orthopaedic Institute Football Player of the Week: Wall’s Colin Riley
Every week this season, Shore Conference football fans will have their chance to vote for the Orthopaedic Institute of Central Jersey/Shore Sports Network Football Player of the Week on our website.
The Week 5 Player of the Week is Wall sophomore outside linebacker Colin Riley, who had a dominant defensive performance in a 34-7 win over Brick Memorial that helped the top-ranked Crimson Knights improve to 6-0.
Riley was unstoppable as a pass rusher with five sacks and added two tackles for loss for a whopping seven plays behind the line of scrimmage. He made 10 total tackles on the night as Wall built a 34-0 halftime lead to win comfortably and continue its fantastic season.
Part of a standout sophomore class, Riley was one of several Wall freshman who saw time last season and entered 2019 as a player the coaching staff knew could burst onto the scene as an impact player. He has done exactly that as one of the Shore Conference’s best pass rushers through six games, boasting a team-high nine sacks along with three tackles for loss among his 37 total tackles, plus a forced fumble.
Wall began the season as one of the Shore Conference’s most intriguing teams thanks to a good returning senior class and a great collection of juniors and sophomores. The Crimson Knights started the season ranked No. 9 in the Shore Sports Network Top 10 but skyrocketed all the way to No. 1 thanks to a perfect 6-0 record highlighted by wins over Rumson-Fair Haven and Mater Dei Prep. Riley has certainly played a major role in the team’s success, helping Wall’s defense stifle opposing offenses to the tune of allowing just eight points per game with one shutout.
The Knights can clinch at least a share of the Shore Conference Colonial Division championship on Friday night when they host St. John Vianney (3-2). As the only unbeaten team in the division, Wall controls its own destiny with games against the Lancers and Brick (3-2) remaining to close out a division title.
A division title may be the first goal on Wall’s list, but its aspirations go well beyond that. The Crimson Knights are currently ranked first in the South Group 3 playoff standings and can secure the No. 1 overall seed in the super section by winning their final two regular-season games.
The Player of the Week vote ended up being a two-man race between Riley and Manchester junior linebacker Chris Gille, and it was Riley who emerged victorious with 23.08 percent of the votes. Matawan running back Marcandrew Gangeron and Ocean running back/defensive back Trebor Pena each had monster games in Week 5 and finished third and fourth, respectively, in the poll.
Managing editor Bob Badders can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow him on Twitter @Bob_Badders. Like Shore Sports Network on Facebook and subscribe to our YouTube channel for all the latest video highlights.