A blog about living in Aberdeen, New Jersey.

Sunday, November 22, 2009

Huskies Shoot Down the Rockets (Matawan 46 Raritan 7)

The NJSIAA Central Group II semi-finals are now history: Manasquan defeated Rumson 23-11 on Friday night, and Saturday night Matawan totally crushed Raritan 46-7. The date and location for the tournament's sectional championship did not appear on Bracket Maker as of this writing. Everyone had a different idea of where and when the game would be held when I asked around tonight.

My wife and I got to the school at 5 pm, bought a stadium blanket and found great seats near midfield. I shot a bit of film of the team preparing for the game.

We were early but the stands began to fill around us soon enough. We were surrounded by parents and relatives of the Matawan players. We had a wonderful time hearing from them about the season so far, about the alum in the back row of the stands who always shouts "60-0!" at the beginning of each game, and about the college dreams of the boys they love so much. Throughout the game we shared observations of the plays and ref calls. I discovered about halfway through the game that I was sitting next to the sister of one of the coaches. Her son was carrying the Pop Warner flag up and down the field. And she even had a cousin on the Raritan team.

My throat is sore from all the yelling and cheering I did tonight. It might be due to how the refs began the night by calling an exceedingly tight game -- there were so many penalties! Maybe the boys were nervous, but then again maybe the refs were trying to set the tone? The Matawan fans became restless as they watched these  penalties bring back a number of great Husky advances on Raritan. More than once Matawan had 20 yards or more to go. How many first downs in a row, but going the wrong way across the field??! Well, after trading licks with the Rockets to only minor effect for nearly two quarters of play, the Huskies finally found the handle on the ball and soared to a 20 point lead. Raritan never recovered.  

Despite the score, it was pretty obvious that Matawan was weak against the Raritan passing game. And the Huskies threw away at least three extra points -- two by missed kicks and one by a poorly executed hiked ball. Hopefully the team will be viewing the tapes this week and working out those kinks. Manasquan is no slouch, being the defending champion and having won the sectional a record 11 times. There will be simply no room for lax pass defense and missed field goals at the championships.

Great game, Huskies! Good luck against Manasquan.


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