EAST RUTHERFORD, NJ - Montclair High School Mounties are three-time NJSIAA North 1, Group 5 champions after beating Passaic County Tech Bulldogs Saturday, 26-14.
“Three-peat, three-peat, three-peat,” chanted the Mounties and their fans repeatedly while holding up three fingers. After making it to the finals for the past five years, this is the third straight win for Montclair.
The first score of the game was made by third-seeded Passaic Tech (10-2), in the first quarter. With a 6 yard pass received by Jacquese Johnson from Zaire Weaver, Passaic Tech took the lead going into the game.
That lead was short-lived when Montclair clapped back with a score also in the first quarter. Elijah Robinson rushed for a 64-yard TD that tied the score at 6 with 7:15 left in the first quarter. Robinson then scored a second TD on an 8-yard run in the first with 0:59 seconds to go, thus pushing the Mounties into a 12-6 lead.
As a result of Robinson’s rush for 27 yards and a 34 yard pass, Montclair came out of the second quarter with a 6-yard TD run by Shaquan Oliver, moving them into a 19-6 lead going into halftime.
On a cold and rainy evening, the Mounties didn’t allow weather to stop their determination, maintaining the lead for the remainder of the game. Robinson later said, “The weather played a factor in our game plan, but before we came out, we decided to power through it.”
In the third quarter, Passaic Tech tried to make a comeback with a 1-yard TD by Zaire Weaver which topped an 8-play 68-yard drive. However, when Montclair’s Alfred Lumpkin caught the subsequent kickoff and ran an 85-yard TD, the Mounties were pushed into a 26-12 lead in the third.
Top-seeded Montclair (11-1) extended its winning streak to 11 games and won its third straight North 1, Group 5 title. The Boston College-bound Robinson rushed for 237 yards and two TDs on 39 carries for the Mounties.
“It was fun, I never played in the rain before. This one is great, it’s like icing on the cake. The last two years, it wasn’t my senior year so I wasn’t really able to celebrate like that because I was always thinking about the next season," added Robinson. "This is my senior year so I can celebrate a little bit. We wanted to score more than 26, but we couldn’t. PCT did a great job. Their defense did a great job.”