Defense Lifts Roosevelt Past Sleepy
Defending Section 1 champion Roosevelt blanked Sleepy Hollow, 20-0, on Saturday to improve to 2-1 on the season.
Quarterback Alton Ritter threw for 181 yards and a touchdown on just six completions. Dennis Sanchez caught four of those passes for 129 yards and a touchdown.
Defensively, Roosevelt’s Raquan Ross intercepted two passes, including one in the back of the end zone. Klaudio Selimaj intercepted a pass on the 1-yard line to keep the Horsemen scoreless.
The game started out balanced with both teams struggling to move the ball. After a Ross interception, the Indians drove to the Horsemen 12. But junior Tyler O’Donnell intercepted a pass and returned it 16 yards for the Horsemen.
After a punt, Ritter took over the game for Roosevelt. After Ritter ran for 21 yards, he connected with Sanchez for a 49-yard touchdown. The Horsemen tried to respond with a drive of their own. But Klaudio Selimaj intercepted a pass as the 1-yard-line as Roosevelt went into the half with a 7-0 lead.
The Horsemen held their own again to open the second half. After two punts, the Horsemen drove to the Indians’ 25 before Ross made another spectacular play, intercepting a pass in the end zone.
Roosevelt coach Mike Meade was pleased with the way the defense played, specifically the secondary.
“Having those guys back there, it’s great,” Meade said. “Defense wins championships and it’s so important to have those types of guys back there to make plays.”
Senior running back Thomas Boddie, along with Selimaj, provided a strong rushing attack the second half. Selimaj ran for a 7-yard touchdown to end the third quarter. Halfway through the fourth, Boddie ran 20 yards for a touchdown after a 58 yard reception by Sanchez. Boddie ended the day with 110 yards on 19 carries.
Roosevelt will face undefeated Nyack next week.
After the game, Meade switched his focus to preparing for Nyack, which is coming off an impressive 28-7 victory over Rye on Friday night.
“Next week, we’ve got to stop number 26 (Donald Davis, who ran for 278 yards and 3 touchdowns in Friday night’s game),” Meade said. “Everyone knows he’s going to be coming; it will be a challenge.”