WEST ORANGE, NJ — The West Orange High School (WOHS) varsity football team lost heavily to the Montclair Mounties at the WOHS Homecoming game, 48-7, on Friday. Coming off a win against Barringer, WOHS had only one objective: to improve.

“Any time you can have a win against a quality opponent, it gives your team the confidence to play at the next level,” said WOHS coach Jim Matsakis. “Our main focus is to improve on what we did last week and take it one play at a time against a very explosive Montclair team looking to avenge their lone conference loss last season.

“The only pressure is that this is another conference game with a playoff berth at stake,” said Matsakis. “In football, we try to treat every game the same, but when it comes to playing the best team traditionally in the conference, the kids tend to get up emotionally easier than versus other opponents.”

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Five minutes into the game, Montclair scored a touchdown and a two-point conversion, securing an early 8-0 lead that the Mounties would never relinquish. WOHS later blocked a seven-yard field goal attempt to keep the score 8-0.

Early in the second quarter, Montclair recovered a WOHS fumble, only to have WOHS recover the fumble and run it in for the Mountaineers’ lone touchdown of the game. With just over five minutes to go in the first half, Montclair would score another touchdown for a 15-7 lead.

Montclair scored another touchdown fifteen minutes into the second half, but a blocked extra point rounded the score to 21-7. Montclair dished another blow three minutes later with a touchdown and two-point conversion to secure a 29-7 lead.

Montclair then scored two more touchdowns in the third quarter: once from the West Orange 33-yard line with a missed extra point, and a second with three minutes left.

Montclair sealed the score at 48-7 with a touchdown five minutes into the fourth quarter. After intercepting a pass with three minutes to go in the game, Montclair would burn the clock down for the remainder of the contest.

During halftime, WOHS announced the king and queen and honorary king and queen of the 2017 WOHS Homecoming.

The honorary king and queen (awarded to mentally challenged but academically successful boy and girl) were Ronald Rivers and Karen Kong. The nominees for king were Dane Clarke II, Thomas Hughes, and Marc Younker, and for queen Kaycie Elfani, Kefi Mutume-Segwati, and Isabel Oden. The winners were Dane Clarke II and Isabel Oden.

To read moreabout the homecoming king and queen, click HERE

The next and final game will be held on Friday against Livingston at 7 p.m.

This article was written by Joshua Baker, a West Orange High School senior participating in the TAPinto West Orange Student Internship program.