Bergen Catholic came back from a 20-10 halftime deficit to beat St. Joe’s Montvale, 24-20.
The game began with an exchange of field goals before Joe’s scored on a 5-yard run by Shane Stewart. The big play of the drive was a 25-yard Michael Alaimo to Gavin Sharkey pass. Each team had a big play set up their field goals, with Andrew Boel finding Tyler Devera for 39 yards and Audric Estime running 73 yards to the 12-yard line, being caught by safety Griffin McGovern.
In the second quarter, Bergen successfully completed a 98-yard drive, beginning with Andrew Boel finding Garrett Cody for 34 yards on the first play. Rahmir Johnson ended the drive with a 3-yard touchdown through the middle. Joe’s took the lead on a 27-yard field goal by Angelo Guglielmello and extended that lead just before the half with an 87-yard run by Te’Rai Powell, as he broke through a tackler and raced down the left sideline.
Bergen needed to get something going early in the third quarter if they had any chance to win and made it happen on a 1-yard run by Boel. Boel completed a 29-yard pass to Cody on the previous play and the Crusaders were within striking distance, 20-17.
Anthony Corbin intercepted for BC on on the first play of the fourth quarter, giving the Crusaders the ball on their own 25. The pick also stopped momentum from Joe’s, just after a 70-yard completion from Alaimo to Brett Buckman. Boel found Cody for 37 yards and the Crusaders took the lead when Corbin, in the wildcat, ran it in from ten yards.
Any win in this series is huge, but this was one BC needed. Corbin was invaluable; his interception set up the winning score he ran in, while filling in for an injured Johnson. Boel took a step forward, completing big passes. Cody also came through with some big plays and Jeremiah Grant had three sacks. McGovern made two tackles prevented touchdowns: the one he made on Buckman late in the third and the tackle on Estime in the first quarter made Joe’s settle for a field goal – instead of fourteen points, Joe’s ended up with three.
It was a tough loss for Joe’s, but there were some bright spots. Estime, a sophomore, is on his way to becoming a big-time running back and Powell is not far behind. They have a very good team and one gets the feeling these teams could meet again.