The Braves beat the Colonials, 39-7; eye place for the South Jersey section playoffs

0

1/5

Manalapan High School wide receiver Tyler Walker hit a 23-yard touchdown reception in a game against Freehold on Oct. 16 at Freehold. Manalapan beat Freehold 39-7 to move to 5-1 this season STEVEN BASSIN / STAFF

2/5

Manalapan High School defenders # 19 Matt Pirozzi and # 51 Mario Chierchia force Freehold quarterback Spencer Rushton to grope the football during a game played on October 16 at Freehold. Manalapan won 39-7. STEVEN BASSIN / STAFF

3/5

Manalapan High School quarterback Michael Heckel climbs the field for a first try during a game against Freehold on October 16 at Freehold. Heckel threw three touchdown passes in the contest. STEVEN BASSIN / STAFF

4/5

Manalapan High School wide receiver Austin Dille catches a first down pass during a game against Freehold on October 16 at Freehold. Manalapan is 5-1 this season STEVEN BASSIN / STAFF

5/5

Manalapan High School linebacker Jordon Gravesande celebrates his sack in a game against Freehold on October 16 at Freehold. Manalapan won 39-7.STEVEN BASSIN / STAFF


×

1/5

Manalapan High School wide receiver Tyler Walker hit a 23-yard touchdown reception in a game against Freehold on Oct. 16 at Freehold. Manalapan beat Freehold 39-7 to move to 5-1 this season STEVEN BASSIN / STAFF

2/5

Manalapan High School defenders # 19 Matt Pirozzi and # 51 Mario Chierchia force Freehold quarterback Spencer Rushton to grope the football during a game played on October 16 at Freehold. Manalapan won 39-7. STEVEN BASSIN / STAFF

3/5

Manalapan High School quarterback Michael Heckel climbs the field for a first try during a game against Freehold on October 16 at Freehold. Heckel threw three touchdown passes in the contest. STEVEN BASSIN / STAFF

4/5

Manalapan High School wide receiver Austin Dille catches a first down pass during a game against Freehold on October 16 at Freehold. Manalapan is 5-1 this season STEVEN BASSIN / STAFF

5/5

Manalapan High School linebacker Jordon Gravesande celebrates his sack in a game against Freehold on October 16 at Freehold. Manalapan won 39-7.STEVEN BASSIN / STAFF


The Manalapan High School football team are once again the Braves of yesteryear this season. Manalapan rose to 5-1 in 2021 with a 39-7 victory over Freehold High School on October 16 in Freehold Borough.

The Colonials fell to 3-4 with the loss on their home ground.

Manalapan’s 5-1 mark is the Braves’ best start to the season since 2017, when the team won 11 straight games before losing to South Brunswick High School in the Group V sectional championship game. the State of Central Jersey.

Manalapan is currently No.1 in the South Jersey State Group V playoff standings (the Central Jersey group has been knocked out), which is a welcome position for coach Dominick Lepore.

“We want the playoffs to go through Manalapan,” Lepore said. “This is our motivation. We just want to go out every week and be 1-0.

In Lepore’s first season at the helm in 2020, the Braves went 2-4 in a campaign that was cut short by the coronavirus pandemic. This is the first time since 2009 that Manalapan has failed to finish with a winning record.

The rare losing season left some people wondering what to expect from the Braves in 2021, but Lepore knew his team would regain the success that the football program had grown accustomed to over the past decade.

“We knew that once we had a full offseason of the weight room, summer workouts and a full preseason things would start to fall into place for us,” said Lepore. “It’s just amazing what these guys did. It says a lot about their character and their efforts.

Manalapan scored a high of 39 points (33 in the first half) against Freehold. In the first half, senior quarterback Michael Heckel had 164 yards and three touchdowns.

“It feels good,” Heckel said after the game. “It’s the most points we’ve scored in an attacking game. We started out a bit slow, but we did it every time after that. “

After running three games and kicking their first possession, the Braves scored touchdowns on their next five discs.

Running back Elijah Marquez entered the end zone on a two-yard run with 5:38 left in the first quarter for a 6-0 lead.

The Colonials came out three and when the Braves got the ball back Heckel threw a pass that was tilted by Freehold’s Marcus Murphy, but wide wide Michael Bimonte came back and caught the ball and scored a 9 with: 41 to play in the first quarter. Michael Calton’s extra point gave Manalapan a 13-0 lead at the end of the first quarter.

In the Braves’ first possession in the second quarter, Heckel hit wide receiver Tyler Walker with a 23-yard touchdown pass. Calton’s extra point gave the Braves a 20-0 lead.

Bimonte scored his second touchdown when, on defense, he recovered a fumble and sent it back 72 yards for a 26-0 lead with 5:50 left in the second quarter. The senior has scored six touchdowns in 2021.

“When everyone is in the right place, we all do well and we win,” said Bimonte. “It’s a credit to the guys up front. I was lucky to be in the right place when the ball appeared and was able to take it. It was a great game. ”

Mario Chierchia and Matt Pirozzi helped force the fumble. It was Chierchia’s third forced fumble this season and the second fumble on which the Braves have scored a touchdown.

The defense clicked on all cylinders while allowing less than two touchdowns per game (12.5 points per game). Manalapan allowed a touchdown against Saint John Vianney and a touchdown against Freehold.

“We’re just trying to do the right thing,” Chierchia said of the defense. “We are training hard. We are watching a film ; all the basics. We are a football team that prepares for every game.

Heckel capped off his outstanding first half by leading the Braves on a 60-yard touchdown that started with 2:42 left in the second quarter. He converted a second down and 16 running for 25 yards with: 50 left to play.

Heckel completed his next two passes, the second being a nine-yard pass to Walker who moved the ball to 6 with: 20 to play. After a time out, Heckel looked in Walker’s direction again and threw a dart for the score with: 14 to go. Calton’s extra third point gave Manalapan a 33-0 halftime lead.

Heckel had 10 touchdown passes in his first full season as a starter.

“Last year we lacked confidence,” he said. “This year is completely different. We all trust each other. We are all brothers. We have 100% more confidence than last year.

Marquez scored the team’s last touchdown on the first possession of the second half. A nice punt return from Walker put the Braves in place at Freehold 7 and Marquez raced for his second touchdown and a 39-0 lead. The senior hatchback has four touchdowns in 2021.

Freehold scored on his next possession on a 33-yard pass from Spencer Rushton to Yah-Sin Calhoun on a wide receiver screen. Kayden Hutchinson’s extra point made it 39-7 and that is how the game ended.

Manalapan will host the undefeated Catholic High School Red Bank on October 22.

Freehold will be heading to play at Holmdel High School on October 22.



Source link

Leave A Reply

Your email address will not be published.