Old Tappan jumped out to a 14-0 lead in the first quarter with a furious pace and went on to beat Northern Highlands 28-0 in as dominant a 28-0 contest can be.
After forcing a Northern Highlands three-and-out, Old Tappan began on the Highlands 47. The Golden Knights moved the ball with the offensive line getting a consistent push and their ball carriers gaining yardage after contact, sometimes going five yards or more. They scored on a 2-yard run by Aidan Heaney to go up, 7-0. The Golden Knight defense forced another three-and-out and drove 59 yards for their second score, a 2-yard pass from Tommy Caracciolo to Alex Orecchio, who made a nice grab in the end zone.
The game settled down in the second quarter and it would have been hard for any team to play at the pace that Old Tappan had for four quarters. The biggest highlight was Orecchio picking off two passes.
The Golden Knights began the second half with a seven-minute drive that led to a Caracciolo touchdown pass to Evan Brooks on a fade in the left corner of the end zone for seven yards. Another three-and-out led to Old Tappan’s final touchdown drive, finishing with a Caracciolo 21-yard touchdown pass to Tim Clune, one minute into the fourth quarter. Highlands threatened to get on the board, including a touchdown pass that was called back for a penalty and eventually turned the ball over on downs. Old Tappan moved the ball, running out the clock.
Old Tappan was ready to play, being in control from start to finish and their time of possession was heavily in their favor. Their offense showed a good balance of running and passing, while their defense allowed only five first downs the entire game (courtesy of Sean Farrell from The Record). Caracciolo had three touchdown passes, while Orecchio had a touchdown reception and two interceptions. The offensive line was a big factor for the offense: left tackle Jack Small, left guard Nick Varni, center Ryan O’Neill, right guard Dennis Delaney, and right tackle Dylan Plescia. Old Tappan has returned to where they were before two mediocre seasons at 5-6 and 3-4.