Brown Leads Blue Devils with 215 Total Yards, 3 TD Passes and INT
WESTFIELD, NJ – Entering the annual Thanksgiving Day Game between Plainfield and Westfield, the question was could the high scoring Cardinals find a way to maintain its prolific offense against arch rival Westfield? A year ago, the Cardinals entered the holiday contest scoring an average of 27 points per game during a similar four game winning streak. The Blue Devils came away with a 14-0 shutout.
This year, Plainfield came into Kehler Stadium on a four game winning streak where it averaged almost 46 points per game. Once again, it was Westfield’s stingy defense that won the battle by limiting the Cards to just 13 points. In addition, senior QB, Trey Brown turned in a superb performance of running and passing along with a nice defensive play to give the Blue Devils its 10th straight win in the series, 42-13.
Brown completed 9 of 14 passes for 115 yards and 3 TDs, and rushed 14 times for another 100 yards. He also made a crucial late second quarter interception and returned it deep into Plainfield territory, and set up his first TD pass for a 21-7 halftime lead. Senior running back, Dylan Wragg rushed 21 times for 135 yards and 2 TDs. Sophomore TE, Colin Coyle caught 3 passes for 45 yards and 2 TDs.
Basketball standout, Peter Meixner hauled in two catches for 20 yards including the reception of Brown’s first TD pass with 19 seconds to play in the first half for a two score lead. Alex Tilyou and Enzo Ferrer both caught two passes for 25 yards. Aidan Harper rushed 10 times for 34 yards and junior backup QB, Max Cho saw action in the 4th and rushed twice for 34 yards including a 28 yd TD to wrap up the win.
Alameen Watkins and Yasir Wyatt stood tall in defeat for Plainfield. Each had a TD score in the contest. Wyatt scored first on a TD run that was almost fumbled away to tie the game at 7-7 in the second. Watkins then got the Cardinals back within two scores at 28-13 on a TD run midway through the third. Watkins showed plenty of athleticism with his running and passing before being injured late in the game.
The victory gave Westfield a 65-45-7 edge in the series. The last time Plainfield won was in 2011 (22-21). The two teams did not play in 2020 due to the pandemic. The Cardinals battled for almost a good quarter and a half before Westfield began to pull away. The Blue Devils applied pressure early by stopping Plainfield on its first offensive series, and then utilizing a fake punt by Wragg to get into scoring position.
However, the Blue Devils were unable to take advantage as a 27 yard FG attempt just sailed to the right of the goalpost. Plainfield gave Westfield another opportunity though when it tried a fake punt deep in its own end. It was a gutsy call to make by a Plainfield squad riding the momentum from its North Jersey Group 5 Invitational Championship, and looking to find a spark. The pass play was on target, but the catch could not be made along the Cardinals sideline.
A few moments later, Wragg pushed through the right side of the Westfield line into the end zone for a 7-0 lead with 50 seconds to play in the first. Plainfield would respond in the second with its first TD in the last 15 quarters of this series dating back to 2017. Led by Watkins, Wyatt, and Samir Cherry, the Cardinals put together a scoring drive that was capped by Wyatt’s TD to knot the game at 7-7 with 7:41 left in the 2nd.
Over the last 31:41 of the game, Westfield outscored Plainfield, 35-7. The onslaught began with a prompt response of a drive down the field in just 4:26 to go back in front again at 14-7 on another TD run by Wragg from a yard out with 3:15 to go in the first half. Plainfield took the ball looking to respond, but Brown jumped on a Cardinals pass play over the middle for an interception and returned it inside Plainfield’s 20.
With time running out in the second quarter, Brown took the snap, rolled to his right toward the Westfield sideline and zipped a pass to Meixner in the corner of the end zone for a touchdown. Henry Hipschman converted his third extra point of the day for a 21-7 Blue Devils advantage with 19 seconds to go before the intermission. Westfield then got the second half kickoff and proceeded to add to its lead.
The Blue Devils took the second half kickoff and used a combination of runs by Wragg and Brown to quickly move the ball beyond midfield into Cardinal territory. Brown then completed a pass and followed it up with a run to the Plainfield one yard line. Then after a stop by the Cardinals defense, and then a fumble on the next snap, Brown found Coyle in the left side of the end zone for a TD, and a 28-7 lead at the 7:42 mark of the third.
Plainfield tried to stay within striking distance by coming up with a critical drive in response. Consuming just under three minutes of clock, Watkins drove his Cardinals down the field, and capped the drive with a nice pass for 23 yards over the middle to Al-Khabir Bethune, and then a one yard run over the right side for a TD with 4:40 remaining in the third. The PAT was no good for a 28-13 Westfield lead.
Westfield took the ensuing kickoff, and again marched swiftly downfield for another score. The Blue Devils used up about four minutes to get back into the end zone. This time, Brown hooked up with Coyle again on the right side of the field toward the Plainfield side for a 22 yard TD pass. After Hipschmann’s fourth PAT, Westfield led 35-13 with 19 seconds to play in the third.
Plainfield was unable to recover after that as the fourth quarter only had one more score, and that was Westfield’s as well. With its reserves now in the game, the Blue Devils still managed to put together another scoring drive that consisted of several runs by Harper and a couple by Cho. The second run by Cho was a QB keeper that found daylight as he sprinted away from the Plainfield defenders for a 28 yd TD, and a 42-13 lead with 3:31 left.
With the victory, Westfield concluded its season at 8-3 overall including a 4-0 record and the title in the BCC’s American Gold Division. The Blue Devils reached the North Jersey Section 1 Group 5 semifinals before losing to Union City (20-14). Plainfield, which competed in the BCC’s Liberty Silver Division with the likes of North 2 Group 4 champ North Hunterdon (11-2), Watchung Hills (7-3), and Montgomery (7-3), concluded its season at 5-6.