Homecoming Brings Good Luck as West Orange High School Football Claims its First Victory

WOHS Homecoming Game Credits: Cynthia Cumming
WOHS Homecoming Game Credits: Cynthia Cumming

WEST ORANGE, NJ – Previously winless, the West Orange football team upset the undefeated Bloomfield Bengals at Homecoming, 35-14, on Friday night.

West Orange is now 1-5.

"The team played their hearts out and it was nice to win for all the alumni that came out to show their support for West Orange," said West Orange Head Coach Jim Matsakis.

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The Mountaineers displayed a great performance starting early in the first quarter. Less than a minute into the first period, the Bengals threw an interception at the 21-yard line. Three minutes later, the Mountaineers’ quarterback Marshall Lipsey threw a 10-yard touchdown pass, giving WOHS a 7-0 lead.  

On the very next play, the Bengals returned the kickoff for a 70-yard touchdown, tying the game at 7-7.  

Bloomfield later took the lead with 2:45 to go in the first quarter with a 60-yard touchdown run, making the score 14-7.

Just 24 seconds later, the Mountaineers scored on a 50-yard touchdown pass, tying the game again at 14-14.

The second quarter was not as exciting. With 7:13 to go before halftime, Lipsey ran into the end-zone, and the Mountaineers took a, 21-14, lead.

At halftime, the Homecoming ceremony began. The nominees for king included Robert Parisi, captain of the varsity baseball team; baseball team member, Liam White; and Chinese Club member Marcus Williams. The nominees for queen included varsity softball player Taylor Dellacqua; Glee Club President Roula Ramadan; and Senior Class President Siena Stanislaus. The official winners were Dellacqua and Marcus.  

The third quarter of the game featured a massively intense play. With 4:36 in the third period, Michael Osuji of the Mountaineers recovered a fumble and ran it for a 60-yard touchdown, making the score, 28-14.

But in the fourth quarter, the crowd went insane. With 10:35 to go, the Mountaineers scored one more 3-yard touchdown. WOHS then caught its second interception of the game. From that point on, it was just burning down the clock. As the clock struck zero, the West Orange High School Mountaineers claimed their first victory of the season.

WOHS’s Matt Mincolelli exclaimed, “I’m at a loss for words for how great this feels! It’s not every day that a winless team beats an undefeated team in a high school football game.”  

One anonymous cheerleader commented, “We really didn’t expect our completely winless team to beat the undefeated Bengals. It’s such a great feeling!”

West Orange next plays Montclair at home on Oct. 23 at 7:00 p.m.

Josh Baker, Anita Calmday and Jonathan Banks are students from West Orange High School participating in a journalism program with

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