Sep 30, 2012 Phil Blackwell Uncategorized
Perhaps in seasons past, the absence of its top quarterback would prove catastrophic for a Christian Brothers Academy football team that leaned so much on its vaunted passing game.
That isn’t the case now, as Cody Radziewicz smoothly took over J.R. Zazzara’s duties and got plenty of help from the defense, too, in the Brothers’ 42-0 shutout of Central Square Friday night at Alibrandi Stadium.
Moving to 5-0 on the season, CBA, who’s moved up to no. 12 in the state Class AA rankings, also set up a first-place showdown with visiting Henninger next Friday at 6:30 to see who will claim the AA-2 division regular-season title.
Henninger is also 3-0 in league play (4-1 overall). The Black Knights feature a high-octane offense that, in its latest outing, blitzed past Cicero-North Syracuse 54-13 as Chris Hicks, Keisean Scott and Romero Collier each scored two touchdowns.
The Brothers will go to that game without Zazzara, sidelined due to illness. Radziewicz, a two-way threat at wide receiver and defensive back, took snaps in practice, and then took to the field Friday against a Central Square side still in search of its first win in 2012.
CBA didn’t show much mercy, picking up all of its points in a first-half offensive blitz where all of the team’s tools were on display.
Radziewicz, displaying his speed out of his new position in the backfield, took off on a 20-yard touchdown run early in the first quarter. Another scoring drive quickly followed, Deshawn Salter finding the end zone from nine yards out.
Even the Brothers’ special teams chimed in, as Andre Dowdell took a Red Hawks punt at his own 35, wove past the coverage and sped 65 yards to six more points, and Nolan Bower’s extra point (he went six-for-six on the night for PAT’s) made it 21-0 going to the second quarter.
After Salter’s second TD, on a 17-yard run, Radziewicz got to show off his passing skills. Twice before halftime, he connected on TD passes, going 45 yards to Dowdell for one and 19 yards to Jack Pfohl for the other.
With the game well in hand, CBA did not get any more points, but its defense, continuing to show why it might be the best in the Class AA ranks, maintained the shutout, even with reserves playing large portions of the second half.
As this went on, East Syracuse-Minoa, in the Class A ranks, was hosting Fulton and pounding its way past the Red Raiders 53-10 to improve to 3-2 on the season.
With Fulton intent on stopping Jeff McDuffie and the Spartans’ passing game, quarterback Sean Richardson made that plan backfire. Richardson completed 12 of 14 passes for 249 yards and three touchdowns.
Not that McDuffie was quiet – far from it. He caught a short Richardson pass and turned it into a 37-yard TD reception early in the first quarter, and later in the period scored again on an 18-yard run.
Steadily, the Spartans got away in the second period as Richardson threw two more scoring passes, each of them to Mike Gorney, going five and 19 yards. With that, ESM took a 28-10 lead to the break.
ESM’s defense pitched a second-half shutout, giving the hosts ample room to pull further away. McDuffie added a third TD on a 10-yard run, Nick Lobello scored from five yards out and Alex Seamans found the end zone in the final period on runs of two and 24 yards after the starters sat.
Next Friday night, ESM heads into the spotlight when it visits its neighbors from Chittenango, the reigning Section III Class B champions, in a non-league game that starts at 7 p.m. and will be televised by Time Warner Cable Sports.