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High School Football:
Deptford Finds a Way to Protect Home Field

Saturday, October 22, 2005

By Jerome Michaels
SJSports Special Correspondent

The way this game started out, it looked as if the Spartans from Deptford would be victims of Gloucester Catholic’s controlled running game. The Rams held onto the football during the game’s opening drive for just about all of the first quarter. Deptford’s bend don’t break defense would be able to dig their cleats deep into the mud and prevent the Rams from scoring on that drive. Both teams would score second quarter touchdowns, but it wasn’t until the second half that halfback Ryan Leafey scored his second and third rushing touchdowns of the game and pull away from Gloucester Catholic. Deptford would pick up their fifth victory of the season with their 28-13 victory over the Rams.

Gloucester Catholic has proven that they could run the ball against any team on their schedule. Runningback Vinny Santangelo had ten touchdowns this season before the game and the Rams were looking to increase that number and pick up the win. During Gloucester Catholic’s first possession of the game, the running game was the favorite play called and Santangelo was the ball carrier moving the ball deep into Spartan territory. But inside the red zone, the Spartans would stop the Rams on their fourth down play. Deptford would turn the ball over on downs during their first possession only to see Gloucester Catholic score the first points of the game. Santangelo would score on a 3-yard run in the second quarter and the Rams were ahead by a 7-0 score.

From that point on, the bench got fired up mentioning that they were not going to let anyone coming into their house and knock them around. Leafey started Deptford’s comeback when he got past the linebackers and into open spaces and scored from 66-yards out. It was the start of 28 unanswered points scored by Deptford. With the game tie at seven to start the second half, Leafey picked up right where he left off. Touchdown runs of 38 and 91 highlighted Deptford’s dominance in the third quarter. Halfback Shawn Blackshear would score a one yard rushing touchdown for Deptford in the fourth quarter. Santangelo would add his second touchdown of the game later in the quarter.

Photos by Art Redd

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