The game plan worked to perfection for the Toms River High School North football team
And with it, Toms River gained both bragging rights and revenge.
In the 47th football meeting between the two town rivals, Toms River North defeated Toms River High School South, 42-0, on Oct. 12.
The annual “Civil War” showdown as well as Toms River North’s homecoming activities drew a huge crowd that evening to the Toms River North field.
The victory enabled Toms River North to avenge a 21-14 loss to Toms River South last season.
Toms River Norths’ coach, Dave Oizerowitz, explained that his team played well in covering various phases of the game.
“The team moved the ball through the air, defensively we limited their offensive game and forced them into long yardage situations, on special teams, we created great field position especially with the blocked punt. The plan for this team was to get out fast in this game,” Oizerowitz said.
He said that the intensity is ratcheted up because of bragging rights in this local showdown.
“Our team lost last year. That loss really burned us. For 365 days, we were stewing about that loss. We wanted to win Toms River back,” Oizerowitz said.
Toms River North will now bid to knock off the other public school in town, Toms River High School East. The rivals will collide this Friday, Oct. 19, at Toms River East. The game is scheduled to kick off at 7 p.m.
“Getting the team ready to play against Toms River East won’t be an issue. Preparation is the key for this team. Toms River East is an improving football program. The game will definitely be a good one,” Oizerowitz said.
Toms River North’s sophomore quarterback, Jake Kazanowsky, threw for 210 yards and three touchdowns to guide the Mariners past Toms River South.
“The offense was able to get the passing going and we executed more than we did last week which is good. This win has us going,” Kazanowsky said.
Kazanowsky said the “Civil War” game was a big victory.
He said that the game brought the squad closer together as the Mariners gear for the remainder of the season.
Toms River North’s senior wide receiver, Dashawn Wilder, contributed to the victory with a TD reception and a scoring run.
“Our offensive line did a great job tonight. They just had me seeing green grass ahead,” Wilder said.
Toms River North, which improved to 4-2, was also sparked by back Jarrod Pruitt, who scored two touchdowns, and wide receiver Dominick Jacob, who recorded a touchdown.
Meanwhile, coach Ron Signorino showed praise for his Toms River South players.
“I just wanted them to have fun playing football. The team is trying not to look at the scoreboard here on out. This team is young and inexperienced. Toms River North is a good football team. I am proud of my guys. We battled and fought. We just have to learn to do some things better and learn how to win. These are my guys and I love them,” Signorino said.
Signorino said he wants his players to continue to have fun when the Indians (0-6) take on their next foe, Jackson Liberty High School, on Oct. 20 in Toms River. Kick off is set for 7 p.m.
“The team just needs to look at film and see where we went wrong and what we can do better. The team needs to move on from there. The team needs to stay positive,” said Toms River South’s senior back, Sam Akinlolu.