Dunellen has no answer for RB Tighe

Dunellen has no answer for RB Tighe


Dunellen has no answer for RB Tighe



Dunellen is known as the “Railroad Town,” but it was the Point Pleasant Beach High School football runners that kept chugging along Friday.

The Garnet Gulls went off the tracks with 433 rushing yards in a 41-8 win over Dunellen in a Greater Middlesex Conference/Shore Conference crossover at Columbia Park.

Danny Tighe rushed for three touchdowns and 225 yards, while teammate Kyle Samaritano added two rushing scores and 131 yards for Point Beach. Robert Young scored Dunellen’s lone touchdown on a 34-yard run in the fourth quarter, and quarterback Casey Wenzel added a two-point conversion run.

The varied attack, along with running back Andre Cochran, kept Dunellen (1-1) from keying in on one runner.

“Look, that’s a very, very good football team,” Dunellen coach Dave DeNapoli said. “A veteran team. Very experienced. Very strong. Quick. I think that’s a state finalist team. Just a very good football team. They had an array of backs they could give it to.”

Point Beach (2-0) set the tone on the game’s first play from scrimmage. Samaritano broke for a 65-yard touchdown after bouncing off a tackler and spinning around into open daylight near his team’s 40-yard line. Zack Yates kicked the first of his five extra points for the 7-0 lead 17 seconds into the game.

“Last year they took the opening kickoff back,” DeNapoli said. “We responded to them last year. This year we’re still just a little bit young and we couldn’t respond. But they were solid. They took everything away from us.”

Later in the first quarter, Danny Tighe barreled up the middle for a 57-yard touchdown and a 14-0 lead 7:15 left in the quarter.

Dunellen’s Nassan Anderson returned the kickoff 65 yards to the Gulls’ 16-yard line. Tony McGuane’s 27-yard field goal attempt, though, hit off the right upright. That was the closest the Destroyers came to scoring.

Wenzel, the Dunellen quarterback, returned from an injury in last week’s 23-21 win over Metuchen, but the Destroyers were still without wingback Deon Brown.

In the second quarter, Tighe intercepted the ball at Dunellen’s 34-yard line. Five plays later, Samaritano punched it in from 8 yards out for a 21-0 lead with 9:59 left in the second quarter.

The Gulls received the ball after the Destroyers turned it over on downs, keyed by a Lucas Jordy sack. Six plays later, Andre Cochran scored on a 15-yard run for a 28-0 Point Beach lead with 4:36 remaining in the first half. In the second half, Tighe added to the scoring with touchdown runs of 31-and 74-yards.

DeNapoli recalled his team’s 54-27 win against the Gulls in 2010.

“Those young [Point Beach] sophomores that are now seniors — they remember that,” DeNapoli said. “They’ve worked hard. It stung them back then and they made sure it wasn’t going to happen when they were seniors.”


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