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TROJANS CRUSH MAC ARTHUR, WILL FACE HEWLETT IFRIDAY IN CONFERENCE II SEMIFINALS by Jake White
Back on October 1, the Garden City Trojans took a 37-0 halftime lead against MacArthur and went on to win by a merciful 44-0. Last Friday in a Nassau Conference II Quarterfinal mandated by a misguided playoff system, the Garden City Trojans took a 37-0 halftime lead against MacArthur and went on to win by a merciful 44-0. Anyone see "Groundhog Day?"
As a result of the win, the undefeated (8-0) Trojans advance to the Conference II semifinals against Hewlett (5-3) at Hofstra's Shuart Stadium Friday at 4 p.m. Carey and Elmont meet in the other semifinal at 7:30 p.m.
Hewlett is the one school in the 14-team Conference which has gone toe-to-toe with Garden City in the last few seasons. The teams are 2-2-1 since 2001, including GC's 28-14 triumph on October 8. The Bulldogs suffered key injuries in that game and went on to lose two more games while they waited to get healthy. Most of Hewlett's walking wounded are back now and the Bulldogs have won two straight, including a 20-9 victory over neighborhood rival Hewlett in the quarterfinals last weekend.
Speedy receiver Jason Casanova, who caught two TD passes against the Trojans, has returned to add to the Bulldogs' big play capability. Also back is running back/linebacker Randy Platnick. The Bulldogs are well-coached and have not been pushovers for Garden City's over-powering offense which last week showed excellent balance with 185 rushing yards and 130 passing against MacArthur. With outstanding running backs Justin Lynch and Chris Ciquera, quarterback Steve Carroll and a defense which has yielded only four points per game, Garden City presents a severe challenge.
In the MacArthur game, Kyle Walsh got things going with a 70 yard run that set up Dillon Dwyer's record-setting sixth field goal of the season, a 25 yarder. Steve Carroll took over from that point, completing 6 of 13 passes for 116 yards and three touchdowns before halftime. Steve Dachille caught TD passes of 31 and 14 yards and Brian Leistman outjumped a defender to grab a perfect 12 yard toss at the right rear corner of the endzone.
Offensive Coordinator Tom Casey was able to give 11 different ball carriers a chance to shine and Rob Stufano (7 carries, 32 yards and a touchdown), Gavin Brennan (5 for 35 yards) and Dean Gibbons ( 3 for 25 yards) responded well. Meanwhile, MacArthur was held to just four first downs and 46 total yards by the Trojan defense.
EXTRA POINTS: Dillon Dwyer's streak of 30 straight successful PAT's was snapped when the Generals blocked a kick. He did, however break Chris Massey's school record of 38 extra points in one season. Dillon has 39. Dwyer also passed Bob Seaman (1985), Chris Massey (1992) and Adam Cox (2003) with his 6th field goal of the season....Kevin Betts caught two passes for 57 yards....GC is 22-1-1 against MacArthur since 1979....Strange sight at a Friday afternoon 2 p.m. football game: classes still in session as the first half was played.....The JV game on Saturday was dubbed the "JV Bowl" since Coach Doc Dougherty was able to arrange a game between his undefeated squad and the unbeaten Sewanhaka JV. The game lived up to its billing. The Indians very strong squad opened up a 16-0 first quarter lead and led 24-14 at the half.
GC came back in the second half to close to within 24-21, and then missed a 39 yard game-tying field goal. But on the final play of the game, QB Brendan Carroll scrambled away from defenders and launched a 23 yard pass to Ryan Dowling who made a leaping catch in the back of the end zone. The win was the GC JV's 8th this year and extended its four year unbeaten streak to 32-0.....The 8th and 7th grade football teams
Each beat Bethpage and Grand Avenue (Bellmore) to finish undefeated.. The district's four football teams have a combined record of 26 and 0.