Here’s a message to the rest of Conference II...
Don’t count Carey out.
A young and injured Seahawks team, now following the lead of its junior second-string quarterback Ray Catapano rushed for 239 total yards as Carey handed Wantagh its first loss of the season, 33-23 Saturday afternoon.
Carey (3-1) took to the ground immediately following the opening kickoff. On its first drive, the Seahawks ran the ball on all seven plays culminating in a 13-yard scamper by Michael DeLeo to give Carey a 7-0 lead.
The Seahawks, which last week saw Catapano throw for a school record 340 yards, knew that they had throw a bunch of different looks on Wantagh (3-1) in order to keep the Warriors guessing.
“We knew that if we wanted to have a shot at this game, it needed to be upfront,” Carey’s head coach Mike Stanley said. “We need to win the battles upfront…I think we did a pretty good job at that.”
After both teams exchanged possessions in the first quarter, Catapano again spurned the Seahawks offense with a big 27 yard run which set up a 3-yard punch-in by Matt Robison to give Carey a 14-0 lead.
Wantagh looked to have all the momentum on their side following a big 3rd down 43-yard reception by quarterback Roddy Roche. Five plays later, Brandon Watson punchced it in the end zone with a 9-yard touchdown run to cut Carey’s lead in half to 14-7.
However on the ensuing kick DeLeo was off to the races and returned the kick 90 yards for the touchdown, re-upping Carey’s lead to 21-7.
Coach Stanley knew something big had to happen to keep the game in Carey’s favor.
“That’s what we really needed. They started getting momentum after a big third and long conversion on our sideline,” Stanley mentioned. “We knew that they were going to make big plays and we had to respond there.”
DeLeo, who had 15 carries for 50 yards on the ground and two overall touchdowns, also knew it was a huge momentum-shifter.
“It was great. We were explosive right out of there, and we had a great job with the wedge,” DeLeo said. “It was a total team effort.”
Wantagh came out like gangbusters in the second half as Watson returned the opening kick off 80 yards for the score to cut the lead to 21-14.
Watson finished the game with 13 carries for 125 yards and two touchdowns overall. He also had 6 receptions for 93 reception yards.
However, aside from a last-minute Wantagh touchdown, that would be the last real points the Carey defense would give up all game.
Robison (5 yard rushing TD) and Nick Spillane (94-yard interception return) added Carey’s other scores as the Seahawks made a state in Conference II with its biggest win of the season.
It’s a feeling expressed by DeLeo and the rest of him team.
“We’re young but we work so hard,” DeLeo said. “We can do anything.”