ORANGE, NJ - After trailing 21-10 at halftime, the Nutley Raiders varsity football team tied the Orange Tornadoes in the fourth quarter and fell 36-29 in overtime.
The on-the-road loss puts Nutley at (2-5), while the Orange has improved to (3-3-1).
Orange went on a scoring spree in the first half, while Nutley only scored one touchdown and a field goal.
In the first quarter, Orange sophomore wide receiver Nyquee Hawkins returned an interception for a 37-yard touchdown and senior running back Tyrese Harris added a 19-yard touchdown. Harris ran 51 yards en route to another touchdown in the second quarter.
Nutley’s inability to protect the quarterback and their opponent loading up the box prevented them from being able to run the ball affectively, Head Coach Tom Basile said in a post-game interview.
“We had people open, when they were open we weren’t getting the ball there, when they were covering we were getting sacked,” Basile told TAPinto Nutley.
After returning from halftime, Nutley made an onside kick. With 7:51 remaining in the quarter, sophomore running back Johnny Luberto caught a 27 yard pass in the endzone.
“We came out with the onside kick, we got the ball, that translated into a score,” Basile said.
With 7:00 left in the fourth quarter, Nutley junior wide receiver Nick Mainiero returned a punt for a 63-yard touchdown.
Junior wide receiver Nick Saporito was later tackled at the two-yard line and Mainiero ran the ball into the end zone on the next play, with 32 seconds remaining in the fourth quarter. An extra point followed which tied the game 29-29.
Orange junior Quesean Waite caught the game-winning eight-yard pass from sophomore quarterback George Crespo in the end zone during overtime.
While Nutley played some good offense, they had a difficult time rushing to Orange’s quarterback, Basile said.
“They’re very athletic. If you make one mistake on the edge they bounce the ball outside and they get positive yards,” Basile added.
Nutley will host the (3-5) Chatham Cougars next Saturday at 1 pm.