Raider Football – Game 8 Notes

By TOM WILLIAMS

Ocean City suffered its second loss of the season in a game that decided who was in first place in the Independence Division of the West Jersey Football League. Mainland’s win clinches a tie for them and they can claim the outright division title by beating Egg Harbor Township on Thanksgiving morning.

Cooked: The Raiders pretty much got what they expected from Mainland”s exciting freshman Ja’Briel Mace. He averaged just over 140 yards per game over the first seven games and gained 112 against OCHS. His breakaway 40-yard TD run did break the scoreless tie in the second quarter. He also passed the 1,000-yard mark in the game and has scored 90 points, two points away from tying Nigel Jones of Holy Spirit for most points by a freshman. But it was Jake Cook, the 6-2 senior, who was really the big factor offensively. Cook averaged a little over 50 yards per game in receiving yards over the first seven games but made six catches for 140 yards against Ocean City, including three remarkable plays. Cook didn’t play football last year but was one of the Mustang quarterbacks as a sophomore. He scored 22 points and grabbed 11 rebounds in two basketball games against the Raiders last winter so Ocean City has seen enough of him.

The Great Chase: Ocean City quarterback Joe Repetti got in his steps last Friday. He dropped back to pass 32 times in the game. He was sacked eight times (four by senior linebacker Sean Bradley) and was forced out of the pocket another eight times, was hit five times and hurried four other times. Repetti managed to complete 14 passes for 123 yards and a touchdown to Jake Schneider. He also was Ocean City’s leading ground-gainer with 72 yards rushing, including two great runs up the middle. But it is a good bet that Joe slept well Friday night and likely dreamed about being chased by green men.

Defense: Junior Jake Inserra made eight tackles, including three solos, to lead the OCHS defense in the game. Brian Beckmann and Brad Jamison also had three solos apiece. Though Mace hurt the Raiders with some nice runs, Ocean City limited all the other Mainland ball carriers to four yards on nine carries. Two Mustang QBs did complete nine of 11 passes for 159 yards in the game, however. On the other side, Mainland linebacker Drew DeMorat made 12 tackles, including seven solos and a sack. He is one of the best defenders in South Jersey, much like his father, Gene, who is now a respected surgeon after great football careers at Millville and Princeton.

Jake: Junior Jake Schneider caught four passes for 52 yards and that touchdown on a deflected pass in the end zone. Schneider now has 30 catches this year for 472 yards. He lifted his career yardage to 1,020, becoming the fifth Ocean City receiver to gain over 1,000 yards. No. 4 on the list is Rick Lipford with 1,207 yards.

NJSIAA Group 4: In this unusual season where the differences between South Jersey and Central Jersey are blurred, Ocean City will compete in South Group 4. Almost everybody knows by now that the Raiders will return to Linwood on Friday to play Mainland again in the first round. The winner will play the winner between Highland and Long Branch in the semifinals on Nov. 15. If Ocean City advances it will be on the road again. In the other half of the bracket, Neptune is at two-time defending champion Shawnee and Millville is at Clearview. The South Jersey final will be the weekend of Nov. 21-23, presumably at Rowan University.

CAL Scoring Leaders: Issac Wilson (60 points) is fifth in points scored among players at Cape-Atlantic League schools and Schneider (42) is tied for 12th with five other players, including Solomon DeShields of Millville, Josh Kotokpo of Pleasantville, Elijah Steward of Holy Spirit, Jonathan Toney of Vineland and kicker Taylor Manning of Cedar Creek. Wilson is tied for third in rushing TDs with nine, Repetti is second in TD passes with 16 and Schneider is tied for third in TD receptions. Brendan McGonigle remains second in kicking points, field goals and extra points. Ocean City is averaging the second most points scored per game (behind Cedar Creek) among CAL teams and allows the second fewest points (behind Mainland). See all the CAL scoring leaders here.

Kevin Smith says: “I thought Mainland was more physical than we were and they did a nice job capitalizing on opportunities.”

Links: The complete Ocean City-Mainland stats are here. Complete eight-game OCHS stat totals are here. The video of the game is here. Standings in selected WJFL divisions are here. Links to online coverage of this weekend’s games are here.

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