Surf Taco Football Player of the Week: Brick Memorial’s TJ McArthur
Every week this season, Shore Conference football fans will have their chance to vote for the Surf Taco/Shore Sports Network Football Player of the Week on our website.
The Week 5 Player of the Week is Brick Memorial senior quarterback and linebacker T.J. McArthur, who had a huge game on both sides of the ball to lead Brick Memorial to a 21-7 victory over then-No. 8 Toms River South to give the Mustangs their first victory of the season. McArthur will receive a $25 Surf Taco gift card.
Playing with a heavy heart one week after the death of his grandfather, McArthur put forth an inspiring performance that ended up being the best game of his career. Operating Brick Memorial’s triple-option offense, McArthur ran for 140 yards and two touchdowns on 29 carries and completed 11 of 14 passes for 116 yards and a touchdown. On defense, McArthur made 16 tackles and recorded two sacks as the Mustangs held a dynamic Toms River South offense to only one touchdown.
Toms River South took a 7-0 lead on a 41-yard touchdown pass from Jack Huber to Gavin Migliori, but it was all Brick Memorial after that. An interception by JT Henderson and consecutive long gains on passes from McArthur to senior Akhi Barksdale moved the ball to the Toms River South 12-yard line with eight seconds left in the first half. Two plays later, McArthur hit Mike Angrosina for a 3-yard touchdown with less than one second left to tie the game 7-7 at halftime.
A 3-yard touchdown run by McArthur with 3:29 left in the third quarter gave Brick Memorial a 14-7 lead and he added an 8-yard touchdown run with 3:22 left in the game to give the Mustangs a two-score cushion.
"TJ's performance was legendary," said Brick Memorial head coach Walt Currie. "It will go down as one of the best two-way games ever at Brick Memorial. And for him to do that in the wake of the sudden passing of his grandfather is mind-blowing, especially considering how close they were."
McArthur now has 419 yards rushing and three touchdowns along with 195 yards passing and a touchdown on the season. On defense, he has 56 tackles, two sacks, six tackles for loss and one fumble recovery.
Brick Memorial will try to build off the win over Toms River South as it enters the regular-season finale against archrival Brick in a crosstown battle on Saturday afternoon. The Mustangs will try to snap a seven-game losing streak to the Dragons and win for the first time since 2012.
The Week 5 Player of the Week poll featured several candidates with great numbers and it was McArthur who prevailed with 22.4 percent of the votes.
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.