Chaminade's Wasp stings St. Anthony's in final
Zane Wasp was preparing to kick the biggest field goal of his life. It’s a scenario he’s played out in his mind for four years.
“Every time when I’m doing my workout or in practice, my last kick is always St. Anthony’s, championship game, game-winner,” the senior said. “I guess you can say I’ve been in this situation hundreds of different times.”
Wasp kicked what proved to be the game-winning 33-yard field goal with 47.6 seconds left in the fourth quarter as Chaminade defeated St. Anthony’s, 17-16, to win the CHSFL Class AAA title at Mitchel Athletic Complex Saturday afternoon.
“The second I heard the crowd cheer was honestly the greatest feeling ever,” Wasp said.
Chaminade (10-1) captured its fourth Class AAA title and first since 1998, snapping a streak of 18 straight losses to St. Anthony’s.
“I’m hoping I don’t wake up,” Chaminade fullback Danny Fowler said. “It’s unbelievable. It’s the best feeling I’ve ever had in my life.”
Fowler came up with a clinching block on Joshua Bacon’s 42-yard field goal attempt with 4.5 seconds left to seal the victory.
“It’s an unreal feeling,” Fowler said. “It means everything to this team, how hard we’ve worked and where we’ve come from, being 0-8 two years ago to this. It’s unreal. You can’t even describe the feeling.”
With the game tied at 14, St. Anthony’s (8-3) pulled ahead on a safety as Dan Carlone sacked Sean Cerrone in the end zone with 10:33 left in the fourth quarter.
The Friars had an opportunity to seal the win as Greg Galligan handed the ball to Anthony Anderson on 4th-and-1 from the St. Anthony’s 27-yard line. But the Chaminade defense, led by Brian Dunn, made a huge stop at the line.
To that point, Anderson was shaping up to be the offensive hero for St. Anthony’s, which made its 15th straight appearance in the Class AAA title game and was attempting to win the final for the 11th time in 12 years. He had 17 carries for 85 yards.
But the senior running back couldn’t get one more yard with Chaminade out of timeouts.
“You’ve got to get a yard,” St. Anthony’s coach Rich Reichert said. “There’s no excuse for that.”
Chaminade, ranked No. 14 in the Tri-State by MSG Varsity, took over with 1:54 left in the fourth quarter.
“The second he took him down I’m thinking in my head, I’ve got to get in the zone right now, get mentally prepared to get this kick,” Wasp said.
The Friars marched 55 yards to the Chaminade 25-yard line when Bacon went out to attempt a 42-yard field goal. The snap was high and Fowler fired through the gap and got a piece of the ball to end the game.
“I’m hoping I don’t wake up,” Fowler said. “It’s unbelievable. It’s the best feeling I’ve ever had in my life.”
Brendan Femiano took the opening kickoff 86 yards to the Chaminade 4-yard line and Naim Jones took the first play from scrimmage in for a touchdown. The Flyers responded on their next drive, going 71 yards in seven plays with Sean Cerrone tying the game with a 38-yard touchdown with 8:41 left in the first quarter.
Cerrone, who had 18 carries for 145 yards, then connected with Michael Walsh for an 11-yard touchdown to put Chaminade in front, 14-7, with 6:05 left in the first quarter.
Anderson ran for an 18-yard score to tie the score at 14 with 8:08 left in the third quarter.
That came after Wasp missed a 31-yard field goal as time expired at halftime.
He wasn’t missing late in the fourth quarter.
“I’ve been kicking since my freshman year,” Wasp said. “Every single kick I’ve taken in my Chaminade career has led up to this one.”