New Jersey Power Paramus Catholic Too Much For Archbishop Wood To Overcome
By Brian Ptashinski @BPtashinski on Twitter
WARMINSTER PA- New Jersey powerhouse Paramus Catholic jumped out to 14-0 lead and never really looked back Saturday night at William Tennent High School. The visitors left the rain-soaked turf with a convincing 34-14 win over the defending PIAA 5A State Champions.
The Paladins came into the contest as the number 2 ranked team by NJ.com top 20. They dismantled Wood in a way deserving of that ranking.
Paramus Catholic took advantage early as Wood fumbled on their opening possession. The Paladins scored quickly as QB Shelton Applewhite, who is getting interest from Rutgers, connected with WR Mohammed Toure for a 38-yard score just five minutes into the contest. Paramus Catholic enjoyed great field position all night due to several poor punts by Wood. Their second drive of the quarter ended as Applewhite hit Jonathon Clark for a 7-yard score and a 14-0 lead. That score came off a 10 yard Wood punt.
“You can’t give up a short field like that, especially to a team like that. We gave them the ball at the doorstep so many times tonight. We got a lot of work to do to correct this,” stated a dejected Vikings coach Steve Devlin.
Wood did mange to get on the scoreboard as they completed a 79-yard drive in nine plays culminating in RB Adrian Lambert finding the end zone from three yards out cutting the lead to 14-7. That would be the closest the Vikings would get for rest of the game.
Applewhite completed 8 of 15 passes for 141 yards and 4 scores. He connected with Toure again for 31 yards and a score giving the New Jersey school a 21-7 lead with about five minutes till half. Wood took the ensuing drive deep into Paladin territory, but an interception ended the drive at the 12 as the game reached intermission.
Paramus Catholic took the second half kickoff and started their drive at their 49. The drive was capped off with a one-yard dive by Henry Pearson upping the lead to 27-7 as PAT was wide right. Pearson was on the receiving end of a 14-yard pass from Applewhite, making the score 34-7 with about six minutes left in the game.
The Vikings did manage to score on an untimed down following a Paladin penalty with no time on the clock. The 44-yard bomb from QB Jack Colyer to Ryan Loughlin made the score 34-14.
The road doesn’t get any easier for Wood (1-1) as they travel to meet national power Bergen Catholic, another powerhouse in New Jersey next Saturday. The Paladins (1-0) will travel to face DePaul Catholic.
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