The final stage of New Jersey high school football is here and the Jersey Sports Zone team has all the highlights of the first day of Regional and State Championships at MetLife Stadium plus an incredible finish from a sectional title game in Allendale.
Red Bank Catholic 13 DePaul 8 | Non-Public B State Championship
Alex Brown’s 2-yard TD run in the third quarter proved to be the game-winning score and the Caseys defense delivered an incredible performance to cement a state title at MetLife Stadium. Brown opened the scoring with a 33-yard TD pass to Najih Rahman on the opening drive of the game. DePaul got a safety in the first on a blocked punt and opened the second half with a drive capped off by a Tyler Brown 11-yard TD run to take an 8-7 lead. DePaul drove the ball to the RBC 30-yard line in the final seconds but Brown broke up the final pass in the end zone to seal the deal.
JSZ’s Rich Chrampanis has the highlights from East Rutherford:
Northern Highlands 35 Ramapo 30 | North 1 Group 4 Sectional Championship
Was this the North Jersey Game of the Year? Over 5,000 people packed into the stands around Northern Highlands’ football field would all likely agree. A back-and-forth game featuring two of New Jersey’s most explosive teams gave us one of the most incredible finishes of the 2021 season. Trailing 30-28 with 66 seconds left in regulation, Highlanders QB Enzo Arjona orchestrated a game-winning drive, capped off with a 15-yard touchdown pass to Kyle Major to secure the second sectional title for Northern Highlands in the last three years. The game was emotional from start to finish as the late Ramapo HC Drew Gibbs was honored just 10 days after his sudden passing.
JSZ’s Jay Cook has all the highlights and reaction:
Cedar Grove 13 Park Ridge 12 | North Group 1 Regional Championship
Both Cedar Grove (11-1) and Park Ridge (10-1) score on their first drives but the first half finished 6-6 as it was quiet from there. The defense of Cedar Grove buckled down and halted Park Ridge on two goal-line stands. A long catch and run by Patch McCarthy set up the game-winning touchdown pass from Alfonso Lombardi to Nick Iannacone with under a minute left as the PAT from Chris Babcock gave the Panthers the one-point lead. Michael Marinelli had a receiving touchdown and interception for Cedar Grove in the win. Matthew Manning had two touchdowns for Park Ridge.
JSZ’s Ken Bradley has the highlights from MetLife Stadium:
West Morris 53 Cranford 14 | North Group 3 Regional Championship
West Morris (10-3) denied Cranford (12-1) an undefeated season as the Wolfpack claimed the North Jersey, Group 3 Regional Championship. Two opening touchdowns put West Morris ahead by five after the first quarter. They would tack on two more scores in the second quarter to lead 26-7 at halftime. The second half belonged to the Wolfpack defense as they forced a turnover on the opening kick off and Vinnie Desiderio returned an interception for a 40-yard touchdown. Quarterback Trevor Hillier and running back Noah Turner both finished the night with three touchdowns.
JSZ’s Nery Rodriguez has the highlights and post-game reaction from MetLife Stadium: