EAST HANOVER, NJ- Senior RB Rory Deluca rushed for 247yds and scored on runs of 58, 48 and 27yds to give Hanover Park the edge over Caldwell 28-22 on a cold windy Friday night in East Hanover. Hanover Park controlled the opening half scoring first on a 58yd run by Deluca with 2:32 remaining in the first quarter. The Hornets widened their lead to 21-0 on another touchdown run of 27yds by Deluca and a WR option pass of 15yds from Jimmy Fortier to junior Michal Radomski to take a three touchdown lead at halftime.
Caldwell cut the lead to 21-7 late in the third quarter on a 4yd touchdown run by Anthony Costigan. Hanover Park scored quickly after a short Chiefs punt that gave the Hornets’ the ball on Caldwell's own 48yd line. Deluca took the first hand-off a rambled down the left sideline to give Hanover Park a 28-7 lead with 10:27 remaining in the game. The proud Caldwell team was not going to quit and scored on a 70yd pass from Brian Clarkin to James Miller and after a interception cut the lead to six points as Costigan scored on a 2yd touchdown run. Clarkin’s two point conversion brought the score to 28-22.
Hanover Park's seniors knew their season was now on the line with six minutes remaining and their leadership took over. Eric Magnifico who rushed for 26yds, caught three passes for 47yds, including a game clinching pass on a fourth and three with 1:52 left in the contest. Eric also was a force on defense with five tackles and one QB sack. Donato Casolaro chipped in 54 rushing yds and completed 8 passes for 97 yds. Besides the three touchdowns Deluca and fellow LB Ed Schimminger combined to limit the Chiefs to less than 60yds rushing.
Hanover Park’s offense totaled over 400yds and 14 first downs to improve their record to 8-2. The Hornet's will play next weekend against the Madison/Hackettstown winner. Head Coach Gerry Moore was “pleased to move on with the win that advances his team to the next round.”