Monroe-Woodbury sends NFA to a 28-17 defeat

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  • Photos by William Dimmit The Crusader Cheerleaders hold up the banner honoring the seniors on the football team.

  • Crusader Kenny Hernandez (#2) scores on a 52-yard touchdown pass in the first quarter.

  • Mike Boyle (#7) hits this 32-yard field goal to put the Crusaders up 15-0.

  • John McCormick (#83) celebrates his 20-yard touchdown in the fourth quarter.

  • The Crusader defense shutdown the Goldbacks in the second half: Owen Chambers (#20), #5 Jack Colbath (#5) and Matt Seguniot (#4) throw the NFA runner for a loss.

CENTRAL VALLEY — On Friday night, Oct. 6, the Crusaders took on the defending Section 9 Champion Goldbacks of Newburgh in Central Valley.

With first place in Division 1 AA and home field advantage for the playoffs on the line, the two 4-1 teams met in another epic showdown.

The Crusaders struck first when Kenny Hernandez took a short pass from Steven Campione and sprinted pass the Goldback defense for a 52-yard touchdown.

On the ensuing kickoff, Mike Boyle hit a perfect onside kick and before the surprised Goldbacks were able to react, Danny Abrahams recovered for the Crusaders.

After a few short runs Campione found Jack Dembia along the far side line for a 33-yard gain, setting up a first and goal on the two-yard line.

The Crusaders went up 12-0 when Campione scored from there.

The Crusaders surprised the Goldbacks again when Boyle hit his second onside kick and after a scramble Hernandez recovered it.

Boyle capped off the drive with a 32-yard field , goal. At the end of the first quarter the Crusaders were up 15-0.

The Goldbacks fought their way back into the game in the second quarter, scoring on a 62-yard touchdown pass to Uh'chiaron Hanson and then a 26-yard touchdown run by Syncere Tatum.

But NFA missed both point after attempts so the teams went to the half with the score 15-12.

The Crusaders regained control of the game in the third quarter. The defense, led by linebackers Owen Chambers, Peter Mastropolo and Dylan Wynn, tackled everything in sight.

The defensive line came up big again, shutting down the Goldbacks run game and pressuring their quarterback.

Boyle hit two more field goals - one for 26 yards, the other for 28 yards, as the Crusaders stretched the lead to 21-12 lead.

With 6:03 left in the game, Campione hit John McCormick on a 20-yard touchdown pass and with the point after, the Crusaders held a commanding 28-12 lead.

In the final minute of the game,the Goldbacks got two points when the Crusaders took a safety rather than try to punt out of their end zone.

The Crusaders' 28-17 victory brings their season record to 5-1 and 3-0 in Division 1 AA.

The Crusaders will travel to Pine Bush on Friday night to take on the Bushmen at 7 p.m.

- William Dimmit

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