POINT BEACH – Week in and week out — for 15 consecutive weeks now — the Shore Blue Devils have answered the bell. Winning game after game. Proving that this is one heck of a good football team.
In the seven games they have played this season, the first team defense has allowed a grand total of 17 points.
That’s not too shabby.
In a Class B Central matchup at Point Pleasant Beach Friday night, the Garnett Gulls had no answers, no game plan that could neutralize coach Mark Costantino’s unbeaten bunch.
Shore led 21-0 at the half and 42-0 in the fourth quarter, winning42-7.
The Blue Devils play Asbury Park next week and a victory would secure a third consecutive conference crown. This victory was very much a team effort with four different Devils scoring the first four touchdowns.
Through seven games, the Shore offense has piled up 277 points while the defense has only surrendered 44.
“This is a great team, we have a good senior base,” Costantino said. “The defense is playing great. We had a great week of practice.
“Asbury is explosive. If they win, they will win a share of the conference title, but we don’t feel like sharing it with anybody. And whoever wins will be the number one seed in Central Jersey Group 1.”
Shore took the opening kickoff and drove 67 yards to take a 7-0 lead. The first seven snaps were runs, with Doug Goldsmith getting the pigskin four times, including a 40 yard sprint to the Gull 10 yard line.
On the eighth snap, junior quarterback Matt Pennell (3-5, 37 yards) dropped back, rolled left, stopped, scanned the field, and threw a strike two yards into the endzone in front of the goalpost. Connor Rempel caught the five yard touchdown pass.
Shore led, 7-0, after one quarter, but the Garnett Gulls were hanging in, competing. They had no penalties and no turnovers. That changed in the second quarter, and the game seemed to get away from Point Beach.
On the second play of the second quarter, Shore defensive back Jack Britton intercepted a pass at midfield and returned it 25 yards. The Blue Devils took advantage of the turnover, needing eight plays to drive the 25 yards for the score. Senior Alex Johnson scored from two yards out.
On Shore’s next possession, the Blue Devils overcame a second down and 33 yards to go hole and again reached the endzone on a Goldsmith run from four yards out.
The halftime score was 21-0, and Shore smelled blood. The Devils had clipped the Gulls’ wings.
Any chance of a Beach comeback were dashed when the Gulls fumbled the ball away on the second play of the third quarter. This time, the 25 yard drive took six plays and quarterback Pennell became the fifth Blue Devil to cross the goal line, running it in from one yard out.
On Shore’s next possession, Johnson collected his second touchdown, racing through traffic from 21 yards out to push the advantage to 35-0. Britton’s ended the third quarter with a 47 yard six point sprint down the right sideline and Shore led, 42-0.
The Gulls put together a 12 play, five first down drive to avoid the shutout with 4:31 remaining. Freshman Bradley Parry scored from one yard out.
KEY PLAY: Britton’s interception early in the second quarter sort of turned this from a game to a rout.
OFFENSIVE GAME BALL: Quarterback Pennell, who played smart, mistake free football.
DEFENSIVE GAME BALL: Defensive end Jeremy Redaelli, stout as always.
UP NEXT: Shore collides with Asbury Park with a share of the conference title on the line.
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