Ramapo scored with no time left and their two-point pass attempt for the win was ruled out of bounds, giving Willingboro a 20-19 victory in a thriller. It was a North vs. South showcase for New Jersey and made Willingboro’s hour-and-forty-five minute bus ride worthwhile.
First Quarter: On their second possession, Ramapo scored when Charles DePrima found Rich Sica for an 8-yard touchdown and a 7-0 lead. Willingboro moved the ball down the field, as 10-yard runs by Nasir Abney and Ah-Shaun Davis gave the Chimeras a first down on the 19. On third-and-9, Davis completed a pass to Demie Sumo to the 1 for a first-and-goal. Davis crashed in for a touchdown, but the two-point conversion failed.
Second Quarter: There was no scoring in the quarter. Two of Ramapo’s three drives ended with interceptions by Daniel Doegan and Sumo, giving Willingboro the ball at midfield both times. The Chimeras turned the ball over on downs both times, with a Sean Clapp sack being key on one of those drives. The third Ramapo drive of the quarter was turned over on downs, giving Willingboro the ball on their 41 with twelve seconds left. After a pass to Chance Bennett netted 10 yards, the last pass of the half fell incomplete.
Third Quarter: Ramapo drove the ball on their second possession and capped it off with a DePrima run for a 5-yard touchdown. The extra point attempt was no good to make it 13-6 with 2:28 left in the quarter. Davis found Bryan Gary for 51 yards to the 29 and made it as far as the 14, but turned it over on downs with eleven minutes left in the game.
Fourth Quarter: Ramapo took possession, but fumbled a minute later with Willingboro recovering on the Ramapo 30. Sumo ran 26 yards to the 2-yard line and Davis scored on the following play. Bryson Bright ran the two-point conversion into the end zone to put Willingboro in front, 14-13 with eight minutes left. A DePrima pass to Ben Robinson put the Raiders on the Willingboro 38, but a fourth down pass was intercepted by Naseem Greshan and returned to the Ramapo 43. It was Greshan’s second interception of the game and the Chimeras took advantage on a 19-yard touchdown by Abney for a 20-13 lead with 1:29 left. DePrima found Clapp for 47 yards to the 11-yard line with 53 seconds left. DePrima ran 10 yards to the 1 for a first-and-goal. A false start penalty brought the ball back five yards. After a DePrima pass was broken up by Jaheim Wright in the end zone, Ramapo had six seconds left on the clock, where DePrima found John Skead in the end zone with two defenders on him. There was no time left and Ramapo decided to go for the win with a two-point conversion attempt. DePrima’s pass to Clapp was complete but ruled out of bounds and gave Willingboro the win.
Conclusion: It was a terrific game that was scheduled on short notice. Willingboro showed North Jersey what a good team they are and represented South Jersey very well. In addition, the Chimeras had not played since week two, a four week layoff in this COVID-crazy season. Willingboro is not the typical Group 1 team North Jersey is used to seeing with terrific skill players such as Davis and Sumo plus a huge offensive line. It was a tough defeat for Ramapo, with both of their losses being decided by one point. In the end, the four interceptions and one lost fumble was a big difference, while Willingboro did not turn the ball over.
As for myself, I was ready to cover the Bergen Catholic-Don Bosco game, but once I heard Willingboro was travelling north to Franklin Lakes, I immediately decided on this game. It isn’t often a good South Jersey team is twenty minutes away and it was an easy decision for me. I only wish there could be more of these games. I was treated to Somerville from Central Jersey playing Old Tappan two weeks ago and I was also entertained by that game.
Additional Note: For those of us in North Jersey, Willingboro’s nickname is pronounced Ky-merras (maybe even Ky-meeras). When asked, a Willingboro supporter said a chimera is a lion with a serpent’s tail and dragon’s wings – out of Greek mythology.