As quarterback of the vaunted Immaculata High School football program, Antonio Natale is used to making contributions with his arm.
But Friday night it was Natale’s legs that got the Spartans going and a stingy, opportunistic defense that kept them in control as they kicked off coach Pierce Frauenheim’s 47th and final season with a 37-8 victory over Plainfield in Somerville.
Natale ran for three touchdowns and 140 yards on eight carries after his sprints of 55 and 21 yards a mere two and a half minutes apart staked Immaculata to a 14-0 cushion on the opening play of the second quarter. The senior quarterback also completed six of 14 passes for 116 more yards.
Lightning was sighted in the area, causing the game to be halted at 8:12 p.m. for one hour and eight minutes with Immaculata holding a 24-0 lead and 3:31 still to play in the half.
While Frauenheim may be closing out his legendary career Plainfield coach Clint Jones is trying to restart his. Jones, who compiled a 57-41 record in 10 seasons at Plainfield, returned to the Plainfield sideline last night after a five-year absence.
PARK 21, PINGRY 20 (OT): Quarterback Tim Landers threw for 140 yards and three touchdowns and John Dugan tallied 159 yards from scrimmage but it was not enough as Pingry fell to visiting Roselle Park in overtime.
The Big Blue struck first in overtime as Dugan turned a screen into a 30-yard touchdown, but a missed extra point left Pingry vulnerable and Roselle Park took advantage, scoring on the next possession on a sweep and converting the point after to prevail in the debut of former Governor Livingston coach Terry Hanratty.
NORTH HUNTERDON 13, LINDEN 12: Junior Sam Follansbee caught a six-yard touchdown pass from Marc Monks with six seconds left in the third quarter to tie the score, and Pete Dehkes’ extra point gave North Hunterdon the margin it needed to win at home.