Barrons QB Perfect in Debut Versus Winslow Township at Battle of the Beach
WOODBRIDGE, NJ—After losing the likes of QB Anthony Santino, do it all RB Ali Lee, and WRs Treyshon Fudge and Justin Magera, some wondered whether the Woodbridge Barrons could match the success they have enjoyed over the past two seasons under the guidance of fourth year head coach Joe LaSala.
In the finale of the 2021 Battle at the Beach on Sunday at Camden Catholic, the 2021 Barrons Football team responded with a huge statement, and senior QB, Matt Stanton led the way. A transfer from St. Joseph’s, where he played varsity his first three seasons, Stanton completed all 7 of his pass attempts for 138 yards and 4 touchdowns while rushing 5 times for 27 yards.
Stanton, the Big Central Gridiron Player of the Week for Week 0, accounted for 61 percent of Woodbridge’s total yards from scrimmage, averaged nearly 20 yards per completion, and over 5 yards per carry. More importantly, he didn’t throw and interception and demonstrated much of the same game management capabilities that recently graduated Anthony Santino had shown over the previous two seasons for the Barrons.
Having weapons such as super sophomore AJ Bosch, seniors Isaiah Allen and Mike Calvert along with a stout defense anchored by AJ Elhossiani, Amir Wallace, Lamar Knight, Dennis Smith, Dylan and Jayson Bradley, and Laz Lisojo makes things easier for Stanton to not put too much on himself much like Santino did with the likes of recent graduates Ali Lee, Justin Magera, Treyshon Fudge, Eric Mapoy, Mike Osafo, Dylon Edwards, Isaiah Jackson, and Jordan Harris around during the previous two seasons at Woodbridge.
The result was an essentially flawless game for Stanton, and a 26-14 victory for the Barrons over a Winslow Township team that had entered the season ranked 4th in the South Jersey Sports Zone’s Top 15, and 15th in the state according to NJ.com. The win gave the Big Central Conference its only win in four games at the Battle of the Beach this past weekend in Ocean City and Cherry Hill.
For LaSala, who is now 21-7 overall in his head coaching career, it helps send a message to the Big Central as well as the rest of the state that the Barrons are still a formidable team despite significant losses to graduation this past June. Stanton will be a significant piece to this year’s puzzle, especially if he continues to orchestrate the Barrons offense like a conductor directs a symphony.
Previously at St. Joseph’s, Stanton played two seasons, completed 105 of 231 passes for a 45.4 percent completion rate, and 1233 yards, or about 5.3 yards per pass and 11.7 yards per completion with 12 TDs and 11 interceptions. During that same span, Stanton also rushed 37 times for 93 yards and two touchdowns. As a junior, Stanton completed 52 of 119 pass attempts for 500 yards, 4 TDs, and 5 INTs. In his sophomore campaign, Stanton completed 53 of 112 passes for 733 yards, 8 TDs, and 6 INTs.
Two years ago, the Falcons were 8-2 in 2019, the last year of Greater Middlesex Conference football before the formation of the Big Central Conference in 2020. Last year, St. Joe’s was 3-5 overall competing in Division 5D with the likes of Bridgewater-Raritan, Elizabeth, Ridge, Union, and Westfield. The Falcons also played Delbarton of the Super Football Conference and Rahway in a Big Central Crossover as well as Woodbridge.
Congratulations Mike on a job well done in Week 0, and best of luck the rest of this season, and in the future.