BRIDGEWATER – In a flash, Bridgewater-Raritan High School’s football team had a 14-7 lead late in the first half of Thursday night’s game with Watchung Hills. Then in the little time remaining – about a minute to go in the half – Watchung Hills took the game over.
Watchung’s run was the start of what turned out to be a 38-14 triumph in a Big Central Conference inter-division game as the Warriors (3-2) stopped a two-game losing streak.
Bridgewater-Raritan (2-3) was held to about 15 yards of offense, before scoring its first touchdown on a 67-yard TD pass from Joe Spirra to Matt Macioiek.
The Panthers then came right back to go ahead on Colin Kurdyla’s long interception return that set up Drew Davis’ 8-yard TD. Kurdyla followed with a conversion reception from Spirra for a 14-7 Panthers lead with 1:14 left in the half.
Watchung Hills rebounded quickly with a long pass from quarterback Dylan Kelly to Jack Clintook that set up Kelly’s TD sneak that tied the game.
Kicker Ryan McCann followed his extra point that tied the game at 14-14 with an onside kick that he recovered.
Watchung took the lead for good at 17-14 on McCann’s 40-yard field goal with two seconds left in the first half.
The second half was all Watchung Hills.
“We won the line of scrimmage,” Watchung Hills’ center/nose Hunter Seubert said.
“I challenged our guys up front,” said Warriors coach Rich Seubert, Hunter’s father. “I told them that this would be the best defense we saw this year. We just played a little better tonight.”
Five different players scored TDs for Watchung Hills – David Labib, Dylan Kelly, Brendan Fahs, Nirio Garcia and David Dubas.
By the numbers
Garcia ran for 87 yards and a TD on 17 carries. The Warriors ran 39 times for 171 yards.
They said it
Watchung Hills coach Rich Seubert told his team after the game, “We played physical tonight. We played the kind of football we want you to play. Fast, physical and fun.”
Both teams resume division play next week. Watchung Hills plays at Montgomery in a Big Central Liberty Silver game. Bridgewater-Raritan plays host to Ridge next Friday in a Big Central American Silver game.