BRIDGEWATER, NJ – Bridgewater-Raritan scored two touchdowns, in a thirteen second span, early in the third quarter to snap a 14-14 tie to go on and defeat the Watchung Hills Warriors 42-28.
The Bridgewater-Raritan Panthers and Watchung Hills Warriors were deadlocked after a hard fought first half. Watchung Hills blocked a field goal attempt with 17 seconds left in the first half keeping the game tied as both team went into the locker room. Any perceived momentum after the Warriors blocked field goal, however, would be extremely short lived.
Bridgewater-Raritan received the kickoff to start the second half. On 3rd and 8 from their own 40 yard-line Bridgewater-Raritan Quarterback Eric Nickel connected on a 60 yard scoring strike to Nick Attanasio. It was a broken play with Attanasio left wide-open for the 60 yard touchdown. The Panthers’ score put them up 21-14 with 9:37 left in the third quarter.
The ensuing kickoff, after Bridgewater-Raritan’s touchdown, went for a touchback. The first play from scrimmage Bridgewater-Raritan’s Jon Kaye picked off Watchung Hills Quarterback Mark Ball and returned the ball 30 yards for a touchdown. The score put the Panthers up 28-14 with 9:24 left in the third quarter. After an evenly matched first half, the undefeated Panthers erupted for 14 points in just thirteen seconds. The dramatic shift in momentum would prove to be the distance in the game as Bridgewater-Raritan held off Watchung Hills to win 42-28.
Bridgewater got on the board first in the game as Nickel connected on a 39 yard touchdown pass to David Usewick midway through the first quarter to put the Panthers up 7-0. Watchung drove right down the field on runs by Nadir Beyah and two personal foul penalties to get within the redzone. Warriors quarterback Mark Ball connected on an 11 yard pass over the middle to Greg Seawright to knot the game 7-7.
In the second quarter Bridgewater and Watchung once again traded touchdowns with the Panthers scoring on a seventeen yard run by Nate Muniz, and Ball throwing his second TD of the half to tie the score 14-14. That would be the high-water mark of the game as the Panthers took control for good early in the second half.
The victory improves Bridgewater-Raritan’s record to 6-0 on the season while Watchung Hills falls to 2-4.