September 5, 2015
By Braulio Perez
This one seemed like it was over early on in the first quarter.
In front of a raucous crowd in Oradell on Saturday afternoon, No. 3 Bergen Catholic had no trouble at all taking down American Heritage (Fla.), recording a convincing 37-7 victory to start the season.
The Crusaders opened the contest with a pooch kick and recovered the ball at the American Heritage 27-yard line. Then, with 10:11 remaining in the first quarter, freshman running back Josh McKenzie got the Crusaders on the board first with a three-yard score.
It was McKenzie’s first touchdown of his career. He recorded 51 yards on eight carries before suffering an injury late in the first half. McKenzie did not play in the second half. The severity of his injury was not available at press time.
Defensively, Bergen Catholic also impressed, specifically in the trenches. This was highlighted with 11:50 to go in the first half, when defensive lineman Sal Mauro sacked American Heritage quarterback Cameron Smith in the end zone for a safety, putting the Crusaders up 9-0.
The scoring onslaught wasn’t close to over, though.
Then, right before the end of the first half, star quarterback Jarrett Guarantano, a Tennessee commit, hit wide receiver Andrew Vito for a 13-yard touchdown, giving Bergen Catholic a 30-0 lead going into halftime.
With 8:06 remaining in the third quarter, Guarantano scored on a three-yard rush, giving Bergen Catholic a 37-0 lead. After that touchdown, Guarantano and many of the starters hit the sidelines for the rest of the game.
The future Tennessee signal caller finished the day with 104 passing yards, 40 rushing yards and the two touchdowns. American Heritage’s Devin Singletary added a touchdown run late in the fourth quarter to close the scoring at 37-7.
With the lopsided victory, the Crusaders now enter week two with plenty of confidence. They’ll host No. 5 St. Peter’s Prep at 2:30 p.m. on Saturday, Sept. 12.