Cardinal Newman and Heathwood Hall dealt with the effects of Hurricane Matthew wiping out most of last week’s games across the state.
Neither had practiced since last Tuesday, but on Monday, they staged their best impersonation of Monday Night Football in the Cardinals’ 21-9 victory.
After a sloppy first half in which the teams totaled 139 yards of offense combined, Cardinal Newman scored two second-half touchdowns to keep its playoffs hopes alive.
The Cardinals had 50 yards at the half, but took the opening drive of the third quarter 72 yards in nine plays. Cam Tringali, a USC baseball commitment, scored on a 1-yard quarterback sneak with 6:10 remaining in the quarter to give Cardinal Newman (3-4, 2-4) the lead. Tringali missed practiced last week, even when the Cardinals were able to practice, because of nagging injuries.
“It was pretty sloppy,” Cardinal Newman coach Doug Dutton said. “Not having any consistent practices showed because our execution wasn’t good. It was the same for both of us, but we finally got it figured out in the second half.”
The final touchdown came after an 18-yard punt gave the Cardinals possession at the Highlanders’ 31-yard line. Six plays later, Shane O’Connor scored on a 6-yard run to make it 21-7 with 7:50 remaining.
Cardinal Newman took an intentional safety with 16 seconds remaining for the final points.
Heathwood Hall (1-6, 0-6) opened the scoring when Mac Hardy raced 63 yards on a double reverse to give the Highlanders a 7-0 lead with 4:05 remaining in the half.
Cardinal Newman’s offense was almost nonexistent in the first half, but it worked the final minute perfectly to go into the half tied. Heathwood Hall started a drive at its own 5-yard line with 1:22 remaining and after losing two yards, had to punt it away.
The Cardinals took possession at the 28-yard line, and on the next play, Tringali connected with Patrick Reedy for the score with 8 seconds remaining. That momentum carried over to the second half
Taylor Reed: The Cardinals’ two-way standout lineman didn’t play in the first half, but made a difference in the second half. His blocking opened up holes for the backs and he recorded a sack on defense.
Joshua Garcia: The senior lineman has missed a few games with injury, but made his presence felt with two sacks.
179/205: Totals yards of offense for Heathwood Hall and Cardinal Newman, respectively, putting on display the effect of the lack of practice time.
91: Yardage on two scoring plays in the first half, part of the 139 yards of total offense by the teams in the opening half.
THEY SAID IT
“Overall in the second half we started to play with more urgency and more physical and that showed in our production.” Dutton
“We talked to the kids about this being our playoff. We have to keep winning to keep playing. Hopefully we can get some practices in a continue on this path.” Dutton
“We got sort of amped up because it was a crosstown rivalry. Everybody knows a lot of those guys and we wanted to come out and play hard and stuck to what the coaches told us. We mixed up some things on important downs and it worked out for us.” Cardinal Newman senior linebacker Sam Hall
How they scored
HH – Mac Hardy 63 run (Matt Watford kick) 4:05
CN – Patrick Reedy 28 pass from Cam Tringali (Andrew Tilton kick) 0:08
CN – Tringali 1 run (Tilton kick) 6:10
CN – Shane O’Connor 6 run (Tilton kick) 7:50
HH – Safety, 0:16d
Rushing: HH – Mac Hardy 2-63, Duffy Beal 7-(-16), Davis Buchanan 3-0, Reagan Olsen 7-9. CN – Zenas Murphy 10-34, Shane O’Connor 11-60, AJ DePalma 9-40, Cam Tringali 7-(-6),, Andrew Tilton 1-(-11).
Passing: HH – Beal 14-32-1-128. CN – Tringali 11-20-3-88
Receiving: HH – Wade Allen 1-8, Benton Mason 6-58, Olson 4-29, Buchanan 1-3, Hardy 1-18, Trevor Squirewell 1-12. CN – Patrick Reedy 3-28, Chico Carter 3-26, Jalen Geiger 1-2, Akele Pauling 2-13, Deon Tay Smith 1-19, DePalma 1-0.