Post 809 – Park Ridge 14 Hasbrouck Heights 0

Park Ridge 14 Hasbrouck Heights 0 

Park Ridge beat Hasbrouck Heights for the third time this year, a 14-0 win that gave them the North Jersey Group 1 Section 1 championship. The game was approximately two hours long and only had eleven possessions in the game. 

First Quarter: Park Ridge began the game with an eight-minute, thirteen-play drive, but came up empty when their fourth down pass fell incomplete. The big play on the drive was a 24-yard completion from Cole Hughes to Efren Gaytan at the left sideline. Heights came out with a drive that consumed over ten minutes with quarterback Jake Diaz running for three of their four first downs. But four penalties well into Park Ridge territory hurt them, including a touchdown pass that was called back. Two penalties in succession brought them back from the 14 to the 32. A sack by Andre Baskapan and Trevor Ludwig forced an Aviator punt from the 36 with 5:28 left in the half. 

Second Quarter: Park Ridge’s second possession consumed nearly five minutes and had six first downs on twelve plays. The biggest gainer was an 18-yard run by Matthew Manning until the Owls got on the board when Hughes lateralled to Kyle Bratcher, who passed downfield to Bryan Martel for the 33-yard score. 

Third Quarter: Heights came out with the ball and made it to midfield, but Bratcher intercepted for Park Ridge on their 49 to kill that drive. Heights had the ball again and were forced to punt, which was blocked by Brian Kennedy and recovered on the 18-yard line. After a 4-yard run by Bratcher, Park Ridge went behind Manning the next four plays with the last being a 3-yard touchdown out of the wildcat formation with fourteen seconds left. 

Fourth Quarter: Hasbrouck Heights went nine plays, reaching the Park Ridge 38 on an 11-yard run by Hunter Freschi. But the Aviators gained two yards on Freschi run, Diaz was sacked for a 4-yard loss by Baskapan, and threw two incompletions to turn the ball over on downs. Park Ridge kept strictly on the ground, going nine plays before they turned it over on downs with 2:43 remaining. Heights picked up a first down, but a sack by Baskapan pushed the ball back 17 yards and three incomplete passes gave the ball to Park Ridge with seven seconds left.  

Summary: Park Ridge made the key plays and did not hurt themselves. Those plays were the lateral to Bratcher/pass to Martel and the blocked punt by Kennedy. After that it was the ground game and 98 yards rushing by Manning. Keep in mind, Park Ridge only had five possessions in the game, not including possessions at the end of each half when they simply took knees. On defense, Baskapan had 2-½ sacks, making his presence known on the field. Bratcher also had an interception. There was the feeling in the second half that the Owls were not going to lose. 

Hasbrouck Heights was able to move the ball at times, but never made the key plays. Their best chance was their first possession, but penalties killed them, taking away their chance to have a lead. There were some good runs by Freschi, but there wasn’t much to their offense aside from Diaz runs. 

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