2015 GMC Gridiron Game Capsules–Week Ten

NJSIAA Consolation Games–Thursday Night

Consolation Round Opens with Nine Games on Thursday

SOUTH PLAINFIELD, NJ–On Thursday evening, the first set of NJSIAA Consolation round games will take place around the Garden State.  GMC Gridiron plans to take a trip out to Montgomery to see Monroe take on the Cougars from the Mid-State 38 Conference.  There are 9 consolation games involving teams from the GMC on Thursday night.  Besides the match-up between Monroe and Montgomery, there is also another interesting CJ Group 5 match-up between East Brunswick and Hillsborough, and a Group I consolation between Highland Park and New Egypt, which battled for the last playoff spot in that bracket before getting beat out by Burlington City.  Below are game capsules on the contests:

Monroe (4-5) at Montgomery (4-5)–In one of three games pitting teams from the Greater Middlesex Conference against teams from the Mid-State 38 conference in CJ Group 5, Monroe travels to Montgomery in the featured consolation game for GMC Gridiron.  The Falcons have had an up and down year, but have still managed to win four games, and would end up the season at .500 with a victory.  The Purple Birds are coming off a solid 24-0 victory over East Brunswick last week, and have won 2 of their last 3 and 4 of their last 7.  However, Montgomery has played a tough schedule that has included the likes of playoff qualifiers Ridge and Immaculata as well as last year’s N2 Group 5 champion, Linden, and had won three straight before losing to Watchung Hills last week.  QB Matt van de Sande, RB Chase Santiago, WR Miles Shipp, and K/P Josh Wood are standouts for Monroe.  Prediction:  Montgomery wins, 24-20.

East Brunswick (3-5) at Hillsborough (3-6)–Hillsborough has been a jekyll and hyde team all season with close losses to Franklin and Watchung Hills to open the season, and then a 42-0 blowout over eight seeded Hunterdon Central in CJ Group 5 in Week Three.  The Raiders have also defeated another playoff team in Union while losing by a touchdown to powerhouse programs in Phillipsburg (28-21) and Elizabeth (28-21) in overtime.  East Brunswick only defeated North Brunswick (16-14), J.P. Stevens (41-6), and Marlboro (24-15).  The Bears lost a heartbreaker in three overtimes to Edison that made things difficult to qualify for the states this year.  RBs Kyle Wiggins and Al Fitzpatrick lead the Bears behind a huge offensive line, but Hillsborough is at home and gets the edge here.  Prediction:  Hillsborough wins, 35-17.

Highland Park (3-5) at New Egypt (4-4)–How ironic is this?  Two weeks ago, both of these teams were battling for the final playoff spot in Central Jersey Group I.  Last week Highland Park lost a heartbreaker at home to South River (31-29) and New Egypt was soundly defeated by a solid Palmyra program.  As a result, Burlington City was able to get in through the back door and get the final seed.  So, this contest could be a very entertaining one.  The Owls and Warriors have registered wins against mostly sub .500 teams.  New Egypt’s wins over Riverside, Pitman, Wildwood, and Maple Shade are against teams with a combined record of 7-27 while HP’s three wins over Keansburg, Dunellen, and Point Pleasant Beach are against teams with a combined record of 6-20.  HP’s win over Point Beach was a nice quality victory, but close losses to Sussex Tech (35-33) two weeks ago and South River last week hurt.  The Owls still have a shot to finish .500 for the first time since 2011 with wins in their last two games.  QB Ryan O’Shea, RBs Nasir Boykins, Ogemde Nwadike, and Dylan Boynton as well as WRs Justin Sims and Noah Pointer are players to watch for the Owls.  Prediction:  Highland Park wins, 24-23.

Pingry (2-6) at Bishop Ahr (3-5)–GMC Gridiron has bet against the Trojans a few too many times this year, but not this time.  BGA is playing much better than in the beginning of the year, and have taken on a much tougher schedule against bigger schools.  Pingry has only beaten winless Manville (35-14) and a 2-6 South Hunterdon team (10-0).  The BGA has won 3 of its last 4 with the three victories coming by a combined total of 101-21.  The only loss was the playoff qualifier, South Plainfield, and the Trojans were in the game until SPHS got a couple late touchdowns to put the game away.  QB Tommy Galante, RBs Andrew Brazicki and Dane Lupton, WR Robert Gee, and KR/PR Remi Funderburke are ones to watch for Ahr.  The Trojans should win easily here.  Prediction:  Bishop Ahr wins 35-6.

Franklin (1-7) at North Brunswick (2-6)--This is a nice neighborhood battle for a consolation contest.  Franklin and North Brunswick would make a nice GMC match-up, and that almost happened a couple times including five years ago or so when the GMC approved Franklin’s application to join the conference, but the Skyland Conference vetoed that move.  Anyway, the Warriors started off the year with a nice win over a Hillsborough team that could have made the playoffs and lost to powerhouse programs, Phillipsburg and Elizabeth by a touchdown.  Franklin also only lost to Elizabeth by two points earlier in the season.  North Brunswick got a nice win on the road over a playoff team in Edison (40-21), and lost tough ones to Monroe (9-0) and East Brunswick (16-14).  The Raiders also played respectably in a loss to Sayreville (22-6).  This could be an entertaining one, but Franklin gets a slight edge.  Prediction:  Franklin wins, 28-27.

Dickinson (3-6) at J.P. Stevens (0-8)–Last year, these two teams played in the consolation at Caven Point in Jersey City, and Stevens emerged with its second and last win of the season (44-8).  However, those Hawks from a year ago, were much more competitive.  This year’s squad has struggled, but has played a much tougher schedule with all Group 5 schools.  On the other hand, Dickinson has played a number of smaller schools including Group 2 Hudson Catholic and Group 1 Hoboken, and were shut out in both games.  QB Luke Jacobi, RB Rashiek Howard, and WR/QB Jay’von Blacknall lead the Hawks, which are at home for this one and get a slight edge. Prediction:  J.P. Stevens wins 20-19.

Dunellen (0-8) at Bound Brook (3-6)–The Destroyers have fought through a challenging year with a young squad, and have played better offensively over the last half of the season with at least 16 points in three of their last four games.  Bound Brook has been more competitive though with single digit losses to playoff teams Roselle Park (29-20) and New Providence (28-20).  Mike Harmon is an up and coming player for the Destroyers while Preston Gibney and Alain Diaz are veterans that anchor both sides of the line for DHS.  The Crusaders are at home, and get our nod here.  Prediction:  Bound Brook wins, 34-18.

J.F. Kennedy (1-7) at Long Branch (2-6)–Both of these teams played Carteret earlier in the season, and beat the Ramblers by a touchdown.  Long Branch has played more competitively though throughout the season with close losses to Wall Township (24-14) and Neptune (28-21).  The Mustangs have been playing much better over the past several weeks with single digit losses to Monmouth Regional (14-9) and Perth Amboy (6-3) before defeating Carteret last week (7-0).  Long Branch is at home, and gets a slight nod.  Prediction:  Long Branch wins, 12-10.

North Plainfield (0-8) at Carteret (1-7)–This is the first time that these two teams are playing each other since Carteret upset North Plainfield in the opening round of the 2010 Central Jersey Group 2 Playoffs at Krausche Field (27-20).  Both teams, which have been solid programs over the years, were down this season.  Carteret played a schedule with bigger schools, and managed to beat one of them in two time White Division champion, Colonia (14-6).  The Ramblers also only lost to South Planfield (25-20), and lost last week to J.F. Kennedy (7-0).  The Ramblers are at home where they have been more competitive.  QB Angelo Golino, TE Justin Taylor, and FB/DE Sam Kamara lead the Ramblers.  Prediction:  Carteret wins, 16-14.

GMC Gridiron first plans to be at Lombardi Field for the final GMC Gridiron Freshmen Game of the Week on Thursday afternoon between Old Bridge and East Brunswick.  Then, we’ll head over to Montgomery to take in a consolation game between the Cougars from the Skyland Conference and Monroe.

GMC Gridiron Game Capsules–Week Ten–NJSIAA Consolation Games–Saturday Afternoon

Three Games Round Out Consolation Schedule on Saturday

SOUTH PLAINFIELD, NJ–Week Ten of the 2015 Greater Middlesex Conference varsity football schedule will conclude with four games involving GMC teams.  Three of those games are NJSIAA Consolation round games.  The featured match-up of the day will be at Metuchen with two of the best teams in the state of New Jersey, Bernards and Metuchen at the Dawg Pound in Metuchen.  Below are game capsules on the three NJSIAA Consolation games:

Bernards (5-3) at Metuchen (6-2)–This should be a playoff game although both teams are in different brackets.  They were both worthy of getting in, but despite having records well above .500, the Mountaineers and the Bulldogs are on the outside looking in.  Both teams have solid running games, but Metuchen’s defense has been more stout despite giving up 27 in a heartbreaking loss to Spotswood last Saturday.  Bernards has played a schedule with more bigger schools including three from Group 3 and three from Group 2.  Metuchen has only played two Group 2 schools in Spotswood and Mater Dei.  Prediction:   Bernards wins, 30-28.

South River (2-7) at Keansburg (1-8)–This is the second time this season that these two teams are playing each other.  The first time was in Week 4 when the Titans traveled to Denny Field and came away an 18-13 winner for its only win of the season to date.  The Rams will be looking to avenge that loss, and have a lot of momentum going their way with two straight wins including a thrilling come from behind win to knock Highland Park out of the state playoffs.  Mario Nigro and Mike DeSantis teamed up to make big plays throughout in the win over Highland Park last week.  Expect the same to continue this week.  Prediction:   South River wins, 26-23.

Perth Amboy (1-7) at Planfield (1-7)–These two teams could make a really good basketball match-up, but they meet this week on the gridiron as Amboy travels over to Hub Stine Field to take on the Cardinals.  While Perth Amboy has only scored 45 points all season, the Cardinals have scored as much as 32 points in one game this season.  Plainfield’s record can be a bit on the deceptive side since they lost to Ridge, a playoff team by only 11 (43-32), lost to Linden, Montgomery, and Hillsborough, which all just missed out on the playoffs, by a combined total of just 14 points, and put up 21 points on one of the top seeds in North Jersey Section 2 Group 5 in Elizabeth.    Prediction:   Plainfield wins, 28-13.