By Warren Rappleyea
After winning just one of its first three games, South Brunswick High School’s football team evened its record at 2-2 Oct. 7 with a convincing 42-7 win over Edison High School.
The Vikings were coming off a disappointing 26-14 loss to Piscataway Township High School Sept. 23. This time out, South Brunswick was a most inhospitable host, taking control of the game early and dominating throughout.
“That’s the kind of game you have to play,” coach Joe Goerge said. “We made too many mistakes against Piscataway. You can’t do that and expect to win games. The competition is just too good.”
Goerge’s team was out in front, 21-0, just past the halfway mark of the opening quarter. South Brunswick struck on its first offensive play, as quarterback Josh Liao hooked up with Felix Quinones for a 68-yard touchdown pass to delight the home crowd.
The Vikings got the ball right back, as Justin Shorter picked off an Edison pass at his own 40-yard line. South Brunswick cashed in for seven more points when Thomas Joe-Kamara ran 16-yards for a touchdown.
After forcing the Eagles to punt, Goerge’s team scored when Liao teamed up with Quinones again — this time for a 70-yard scoring pass. Edison managed to cut the lead to 21-7 early in the second quarter, but the Vikings defense was solid for the remainder of the game.
Liao only threw six times — all completions — for 249 yards and four touchdowns on the night. Quinones and Shorter each caught two touchdown passes for the Vikings. Jaylon Lawson led the ground game with 57 yards on eight carries.
Edison (1-2-1) had previously played Old Bridge High School (2-1-1) to a 42-42 tie and lost a tough 18-13 decision at home to Sayreville War Memorial High School (4-1).
“Edison is a very good team,” Goerge said. “They have a lot of experienced players, and they can score points. Our defense did a great job. We didn’t want to get into an up-and-down game with them.”
South Brunswick will look for its third win Oct. 14 when the Vikings visit East Brunswick High School (1-3). The Bears lost, 20-14, in overtime to Marlboro High School (2-3) Oct. 8.
North Brunswick Township High School, meanwhile, lost, 23-14, to John P. Stevens High School (1-3). The game was tied, 14-14, at halftime, as sophomore Christian Petrillo threw two touchdown passes for the Raiders.
The Hawks took the lead on a safety early in the fourth quarter. J.P. Stevens later recovered a North Brunswick fumble and then scored on a 16-yard run by Devon Fowlkes.
North Brunswick (0-5) returns to action Oct. 14, when it will look for its first win against John F. Kennedy Memorial High School (2-3), which is coming off a 52-20 loss to Woodbridge High School (2-3).
South Brunswick improved its record to 6-1 with a 5-0 win over Edison Oct. 5. Gabrielle Iordache, Anisha Malhotra and Anisha Javvaji all won in singles, as did the doubles pairings of Ashima Agarwal and Swathi Chandrika and Ahsna Mediratte and Tiffany Xu.
The Lady Vikings were set to begin play in the NJSIAA Central Jersey, Group IV tournament Oct. 10 against 10th-seeded Freehold Township High School. South Brunswick, the second seed, received a first-round bye. Alexandra Iordache, who plays first singles, has qualified for the individual portion of the tournament.
Earlier in the season Rashmi Venkatarama and Gabrielle Iordache were runners-up at second and third singles, respectively, in the Greater Middlesex Conference. Malhotra and Chandrika and Javvaji and Xu finished in second place in the doubles competitions.
Also in girls tennis, North Brunswick fell to 6-6 after losing in straight sets to East Brunswick Oct. 6 in the Central Jersey, Group IV tournament. The Raiders had previously downed South Plainfield High School, 5-0, Oct. 4.
Carly Lodise, Abby Tan and Athmika Vaseeharan swept the singles matches and Kally Huang and Harshitha Katikala won at first doubles, while Jeevana Chirra and Naomi Feliz won at second doubles.