Dominating the line of scrimmage throughout, the John Jay High School football team rushed its way to a 28-7 victory over Carmel on Sunday and a 2-0 record.
“It shows that last week against North Rockland, our win wasn’t a fluke,” John Jay senior running back Jared Sanchez said of the Patriots’ win over the perennial Section 1 Class AA power. “It shows that we’re a real team. We’re real competition this year.
“The goal is always to go to section finals. We’re right on track, 2-0 start.”
John Jay’s offensive line decided Sunday’s storyline on its initial drive, chewing up the field with short runs before Dan Kugler charged up the middle into the end zone from six yards away.
The Patriots’ defensive line then responded by shutting down the Rams’ running game and forcing an early punt.
Just two Carmel drives ended in something other than a punt: a third-quarter touchdown — which came on a pass — and a turnover on downs when the Patriots stuffed a fourth-and-inches run on their own 16-yard line with under a minute left in the first half.
“I thought we controlled the battle in the trenches,” John Jay coach Tom O’Hare said. “(The lines) got us a great push up front.”
The Patriots scored again in the second quarter on a 23-yard pass from Ryan Schumacher to Dimitrios Tsesmetzis, and converted an impromptu two-point conversion after Fitim Gashi caught a high snap for what would have been an extra-point attempt and decided to take off into the right corner of the end zone.
With a 15-7 lead, Sanchez took a handoff on the second play of the fourth quarter and burst through the line of scrimmage nearly untouched and took off up the middle of the field for a 28-yard touchdown.
“The line just did an outstanding job,” Sanchez said. “They made it easy on us to find the holes.”
Not long after, Sanchez took the ball again and ran for 42 yards down to the Carmel 18-yard line. He then finished the Patriots’ final scoring drive with a 2-yard touchdown.
“Jared Sanchez really stepped up at the end of the game, obviously” O’Hare said of his only third-year varsity senior. “He’s the guy with the most experience. Couldn’t have a more fitting guy to step up and put us on his back at the end.”