YORKTOWN HEIGHTS — For more than two quarters Friday, Yorktown held a dynamic Somers offense at bay, taking away the Tuskers’ newfound passing game and stuffing their running backs. The Huskers went ahead by two scores early in the third quarter before losing the lead in a flash. What they did next could come to define their season.
Yorktown not only regrouped, it went on to beat the Tuskers 34-13 in a meeting of the second and third-ranked teams in The Journal News’ Class A rankings. The Huskers were led by the running and passing of Jose Boyer, who threw for a touchdown and rushed for two more during the second half rally.
Somers had taken command with a quick flurry. The Tuskers scored twice late in the third on a pair of touchdowns from senior Matt Pires. He caught a 66-yard pass from Kevin Olifiers for the first and then took an end-around 61 yards to give Somers a 13-12 lead.
“The talk at halftime was there was going to be some adversity. Something was coming,” Huskers’ coach Mike Rescigno said. “This was a golden opportunity to overcome it and we did.”
Yorktown responded by scored 22 points in the fourth quarter. Boyer slipped a 9-yard touchdown to Alex Ujkaj just 23 seconds into the fourth. After a short Somers punt, he drove the Huskers back inside the red zone and capped the drive with a 14-yard score.
Boyer wasn’t done. After penalties threatened to ruin another scoring drive, the elusive quarterback slipped loose for a 43-yard run up the Somers sideline that was good for another touchdown.
“We didn’t let up once. We didn’t give up once,” Boyer said. “When I came after the field after both of their scores, I didn’t see one guy with his head down. Every guy said, ‘OK, we’re up for the challenge.'”
The Huskers staked themselves to a 6-0 halftime lead on a pair of field goals by Giulianno Santucci late in the second quarter.
Player of the game: Jose Boyer, Yorktown. Boyer eclipsed both 100 yards rushing and passing while playing nearly every down on defense. He rushed for 159 yards in the second half alone, atoning for an interception thrown on the third play of the game. In total, Boyer rushed for 202 yards and two touchdowns, and was 11 for 19 passing for 186 yards and a touchdown.
Boyer’s passing actually got the Yorktown offense moving early. Despite being held to two field goals, the Huskers began to gain momentum in the screen game with Boyer connecting regularly to running backs Brett Makar, Dominick Cioffi and Brandon Meyreles.
“Jose wants to be in the middle of the things,” Rescigno said. “That’s why he’s successful at the things he does in life. He’ll be doing that for the rest of his life. So will a lot of these kids, man, so to just name Jose tonight wouldn’t be fair.”
Quotable: “The holes they were giving me, anyone could’ve ran through those. House could’ve ran through those,” Boyer said, referencing the team’s nickname for Rescigno. “They were great all night.”