Quarterback Mike Husni threw for 240 yards and 3 touchdowns through the air, including an 80 yard strike to Bryce Watts. Husni also ran for two scores as the Toms River North Mariners cruised to a 55-20 Class A South victory over cross town rival Toms River South.
One of my favorite parts of this game has always been the energy. You can expect the fans to really pack the stadium on both sides. I have to give a shout out to the TRN Pit. Those kids really brought the fire tonight. They will be celebrating with their team after a tremendous win!
The standout defense of the Mariners really made an impact. They were able to force five Toms River South turnovers. Four of the five being in the first half. Both Pete LaQuaglia and Anthony Sterino scored defensive touchdowns on fumble recoveries. Dashon Copes was once again a madman on defense, picking up 2 sacks in the game.
It was a much different result than what the Mariners had experienced in the previous week. This Toms River North football team faced the challenge of rebounding after a difficult loss to Brick Memorial. This week the Mariners were able to refocus and retool to get ready to execute tonight.
“Last week that was not Toms River North football. That wasn’t us out there. We did not play for each other. Pete LaQuaglia who is one of the hardest workers on the team said he would get me the ball. I trusted him, and that’s what he did”. added Mike Husni after the game.
The surging offense of the Mariners wasted no time getting the ball down field. One trademark of this Mariners team is their ability to make the big plays happen. Mike Husni opened the first quarter hitting Darian Carrington with a 47 yard pass all the way down to the 4 yard line. Husni would cap it off with a 4 yard dash into the end zone giving Toms River North a 7-0 lead.
Next it was the defense that would begin an assault on the Indians. Toms River South was facing a 3rd and 7 inside their own 20 yard line. The Mariners defensive line got into the backfield and sacked Indians Quarterback TJ Scuderi. The ball came out, and Pete LaQuaglia was there to pick it up. Before the Indians knew it, LaQuaglia was 20 yards down field in the end zone. Within two minutes, the Mariners had built a 14-0 advantage.
The Indians would get some offense going to respond. Running Back Marquoes Alexander would rip off a 67 yard run down the left sideline. This would put Toms River South in scoring position. Sophomore Quarterback TJ Scuderi found Running Back Tyler Sosa in the end zone for an 18 yard play. This would cut the Toms River North lead to 14-7.
However, Mike Husni was ready to go back to work. All Husni had to do was find a familiar target and things would just keep clicking. Husni rolled out and fired a pass to Bryce Watts. Watts made the catch and sprinted for an 80 yard touchdown. Two big plays in the 1st Quarter and this offense was soaring. All the momentum was going in one direction.
Turnovers would continue to haunt the Indians throughout this first half. Just when Toms River South was trying to get something going, the Mariners came up with the ball. Once again, Pete LaQuaglia came up with the recovery. LaQuaglia always seemed to be in the right place at the right time.
This would set up a 62 yard scoring drive for the Mariners. The Indians were nearly able to stall the drive, forcing the Mariners into a 4th down and 7 all the way down at the Toms River South 23. From there, it was Mike Husni who was Captain Clutch again.
Husni converted the 4th down and 7, hitting Junior Darian Carrington all the way down inside the 7 yard line. You could sense the frustration from Toms River South. They were fighting so hard to get back in this game. Asante Moorer would finish the job, pounding the ball in from the 3 yard line to give Toms River North a 28-7 lead.
Another fumble would again have the Mariners threatening in scoring position. This time it was Defensive End Dashon Copes who came up with the ball. Husni would score his second rushing touchdown of the game from the 19 yard line. The Mariners were now rolling 34-7.
The Mariners would close the half by denying the Indians another scoring opportunity. Two big runs from Marquoise Alexander brought Toms River South all the way down inside the 5. On 3rd and Goal with 2 seconds to play, the Mariners defensive line shut down Alexander. This kept the momentum in Toms River North’s favor going into the locker room.
Toms River South would open the second half with another turnover. This time it was Anthony Sterino who stepped up to make the big play. Sterino scored the second defensive touchdown of the game on a fumble recovery. All of a sudden, this was a 41-7 ball game.
But the Indians were not ready to quit yet. Toms River South moved Senior Jaden Kosh into the Quarterback position. The three year starter brought some renewed energy and motivation to the offense. Kosh was able to boost the running attack out of the triple option.
Kosh ripped off a few big runs to lead a third quarter scoring drive. The series was capped off with a 5 yard touchdown pass from Kosh to Tyler Sosa. This would cut the Mariners lead to 41-14 with 5:15 to play in the 3rd Quarter.
Toms River South would get another possession after recovering an onside kick. This would give Kosh another opportunity to go to work. Jaden would have another impressive outing leading the offense. Kosh scored his second touchdown of the game, ripping through the middle of the defense for an 11 yard touchdown. Kosh was one of the bright spots for the Indians.
The Mariners would finish this one off with two more touchdowns through the air. Mike Husni hit Darian Carrington for scoring plays of 45, and 13 yards. This was all Toms River North needed to close this one out. The Mariners would have Civil War bragging rights for 2015, winning the game 55-20.
Altogether, the Mariners looked like a completely different team. Offensively, we saw the big plays return. Defensively they were able to dominate the line of scrimmage, and force turnovers. You could tell that the Mariners were confident in the game plan. They were happy to get back on the winning track.
“We came up with a good plan and executed well early in the game. In the 3rd Quarter, we let our foot off the gas pedal a bit, but we played better in the 4th. Pete LaQuaglia was fantastic. The entire defense executed the scheme. It’s not easy after the game that we had last week. This week, the kids learned the meaning of being a soldier, and trusting the guy next to you. I’m proud of the boys effort, but we have to continue to get better as we take on more of the heavyweights in the division”. added Head Coach Dave Oiserwitz after the game.
Mike Husni was awarded the Greater American Rivalry Most Valuable Player Award. Legendary Coaches Ron Signorino Sr and Bob Fiocco were inducted into GAR Hall of Fame. Both Signorino and Fiocco were instrumental in this rivalry being so special for 44 years.
The Mariners will look to stay competitive in the always tough Class A South Division. It will be interesting when Toms River North will clash with Jackson Memorial and Brick Twp. Mike Husni is not ready to go there just yet! “Right now we are just focused on beating Marlboro. That’s all we’re going to be preparing for this week”.
After the game, NJSR had a chance to catch up with TRN Head Coach Dave Oiserwitz, Quarterback Mike Husni, Offensive Lineman Luke Butera, and Wide Receiver Darian Carrington.
Passing: Toms River North – Mike Husni 11-15-1-240. Toms River South – Scuderi, 3-5-0-44, Kosh 2-6-0-11.
Rushing: Toms River North – Moorer 14-65, Husni 13-47, Watts 2-21, Blackwell 2-8. Toms River South – Alexander 22-160, Kosh 14-54, Sosa 6-28, Scuderi 12-6, Guzzi 1-1, Laing 1–2.
Receiving: Toms River North – Carrington 5-150, Watts 4-83, Daniluk 1-9, Moorer 1-0. Toms River South – Sosa 3-34, Kosh 1-14, Laing 1-7.
TRN – Husni 4 yard run. (Bayha kick)
TRN – LaQuaglia 20 yard fumble return. (Bayha kick)
TRS – Sosa 18 yard pass from Scuderi (Sosa kick)
TRN – Watts 80 yard pass from Husni (Bayha kick)
TRN – Moorer 3 yard run. (Bayha kick)
TRN – Husni 19 yard run. (PAT failed)
TRN – Storino 24 yard fumble return. (Bayha kick)
TRS – Sosa 5 yard pass from Kosh. (Sosa kick)
TRS – Kosh 11 yard run. (PAT failed)
TRN – Carrington 45 yard pass from Husni. (Bayha kick)
TRN – Carrington 13 yard pass from Husni. (Bayha kick)
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