The tension is mounting as the awestruck youngsters try desperately to come to grips with the unrelenting pressure that consumes their strength, rendering them mere prey for the starving rivals that hunt them down, ready for the kill.
The truth is, the Westhampton Hurricanes, in Year Two of an unprecedented winning streak, don’t resemble scared rabbits by any stretch of the imagination. They are the all-consuming beasts, and they are very hungry indeed.
East Islip, a longtime rival, has stung the Hurricanes many times over the years, and the Redmen came into Westhampton Beach Friday night with upset on their minds. Easier said than done.
This year’s version of the Hurricanes can’t be classified as great just yet, but they carry the legacy of one of Suffolk’s best high school football teams ever, the 2017 edition that swept 11 games including the Suffolk and Long Island Conference III titles.
Gone is the all-American running back Dylan Laube, but not the blistering ground attack that was so dominating last season. In other words, the Hurricanes aren’t rebuilding; they reloaded. And by the way, this team has a vicious defense that may be even better than last season.
Jesse Alfano-St. John, a linebacker, picked off an errant pass and took it to the yard in the first quarter to set the tone for the game. The locals then used a punishing three-headed ground attack to control the clock and march down the field, culminating with a one-yard plunge by Liam McIntyre and a Jackson Hulse extra point.
Alfano-St. John then came up with another interception, and quarterback Clarke Lewis, off an Oscar-caliber play fake, lofted a 21-yard touchdown strike to Aidan Cassara, and just like that it was 21-0. Cassara was to score again, on a 30-yeard run, and Alfano-St. John closed out the scoring with a 25-yard fumble return.
First year Westhampton coach Brian Schaumloffel said he was impressed by the way his team improved over the previous week, and the Hurricanes looked pretty good then as well, winning on the road against Eastport/South Manor upending Hampton Bays 21-6 on September 14.
The ‘Canes will look to continue their winning streak — that’s 14 and counting, folks on Friday, September 21, at home against Harborfields at 6 PM.
In other action, Southampton won the Mayor’s Cup for the first time in 13 seasons by besting Hampton Bays 21-6: The Mariners used a steady ground game Naike Williams and Dimitrius Barranco and a stingy defense led by Nicere Buck to stymie the Baymen.
Williams rushed for 56 yards on 11 carries, including an 18-yard first quarter touchdown to open the scoring. Buck’s interception return gave Southampton a 14-6 third quarter lead; he recorded nine tackles on the day. Elijah White scampered 29 yards for a TD late in the third stanza. Dimitrius Barranco had six carries for 40 yards.
The Baymen play the North Forkers on the road Friday evening,