Senior running back Jerod Johnson set the offensive tone for the Carteret High School football team, breaking off a 56-yard touchdown run on the game’s second play from scrimmage as the defending Greater Middlesex Conference White Division champion Ramblers rolled to a 49-17 season-opening victory over St. Joseph at Walter Overholt Stadium Friday night.
The contest marked the league debut for the fledgling Falcons, who are only in their second varsity season. Carteret resident Matt Olivo provided one of the few highlights for St. Joseph, capping a seven-minute drive on the opening series of the second half with a 19-yard run to close a 28-0 deficit to 21 points.
Sophomore sensation Brandon Gilder, ranked among the country’s top 100 freshmen by MaxPreps.com a year ago, returned the ensuing kickoff 95 yards for a touchdown, rebuilding the Ramblers lead to 35-7.
Carteret built a 14-0 lead late in the first quarter on fullback Naji Johnson’s 12-yard touchdown reception from quarterback Tyler Rodriguez. Soon afterward, the game was twice delayed by lightning. The delays lasted nearly an hour.
Jerod Johnson added another scoring run, this one from 17 yards out, to extend the Ramblers lead to 21-0 in the second quarter.
Jerod Johnson finished with 170 yards and three touchdowns on nine carries. Rodriguez completed 7 of 12 passes for 82 yards.
Matawan 24, Bishop Ahr 6: John Kaye, an assistant with the Huskies for 17 years, earned in victory in his head coaching debut. The Trojans, who graduated several key performers, including running backs Kenny Virden and Roger Kilgore, played the defending Central Group II champions tough.
Point Pleasant Beach 48, Cardinal McCarrick 8: The Garnett Gulls, coming off an 8-3 season, their finest in school history, spoiled the coaching debut of Rich Hilliard.