PHILADEPHIA - Going into last night’s game between St. Joe Prep and Roman Catholic, Prep head man, Gabe Infante made certain that Senior Jeff Heath was involved all night on both sides of the ball. “Jeff needs to always be on the field because all he does is make plays,” quipped Infante. That, he did by running for one touchdown, intercepting one pass, setting up another touchdown with a completed halfback option pass and making 8 unassisted tackles in the Hawks 31-15 conquest over Roman Catholic in a Philadelphia Catholic league AAAA dual at Germantown High field.
The Hawks got things started on their first possession with a five-minute, 12 play, 65 yard drive ending with Heath’s five yard TD scamper. A couple of nice runs by Senior Mark Casale and a well timed 15 yard pitch and catch from Junior QB Skyler Mornhinweg to WR Paul McGann set up the score.
Prep continued their good fortune in the second quarter with another five minute drive and a costly Roman personal foul penalty culminating with Mornhinweg’s 13 yard touchdown pass to Senior Adrian Johnson.
Up 13-0, the Hawks scored again on the third play from scrimmage in the second half when Mornhinweg hit Johnson again for a 69 yard TD pass and a 21-0 lead.
After a Prep field goal and a 24-0 deficit, the Cahillites started to gather some momentum with their own six play drive highlighted by a Keir to sophomore William Fuller 28 yard pass and a Dennis Regan five yard touchdown run. Keir’s pass to Michael Boccelli for a two point conversion made the score 24-8.
In the beginning of the fourth quarter, any momentum Roman could muster was foiled when Prep Junior DL Luke Hutkin batted, then intercepted a Keir screen pass. The Hawks put the game away thereafter in four plays with a Casale 21 yard run, then Heath’s halfback option pass to Eric Medes to the Roman one. Mornhinweg completed the drive with a one yard TD run.
Mornhinweg was 7 of 14, had130 yards passing with two passing TD’s and one running. Johnson had both TD passes. Casale, unofficially had 57 well earned yards on 18 carries.
Infante was ecstatic with his team’s enthusiasm afterward and was not at a loss for words when asked about contributions. “The defense stepped up big time.” Pointing to Junior LB Dan Mancini, “The kid is a little undersized but makes play after play. He’s got a huge motor.” Guys like Hutkin, McGann, Phil Riehl and Frank Fanto were instrumental in our game plan. These kids make my job easier.” As for Mornhinweg, Infante’s reaction was candid. “What more can I say. Skyler is the leader of this team and does more than what the stats provide. He takes a pounding every week and bounces back. He never complains.”
The Hawks (losers in four of their first five and with one of the most difficult out of conference schedules behind them) have won three straight and are 2-1 in conference and a date looming with rival and top state ranked LaSalle next week.
Roman, who is finished with conference play, figures to be a serious force come playoff time. “Roman has a great team and a very efficient coaching staff” said Infante. “We very well may see them in the playoffs. No one looks forward to playing them.”