By Doug Johnston
Special to Section 9 Football Insider
KINGSTON, NY- Marlboro running back Ameer Williams made his mark early by scoring three first half touchdowns, leading Marlboro to a 27-0 shutout over rival Burke Catholic in the Section 9 Class B Semifinals.
“The guy just doesn’t stop. He wants every point he can get, every block he can get. He’s all for his teammates. I could not be any more proud of him for working hard and keeping his feet going. He had a great game,” Marlboro quarterback Sam Mongelli said.
Williams finished the game with 27 carries for 245 rushing yards to go along with his three rushing touchdowns. Mongelli had 110 rushing yards of his own on 16 carries.
The duo combined for a total of 355 yards on the ground.
Top-seeded Marlboro (8-1) dominated their rivals in this game from start to finish. Burke Catholic (5-4) could not stop the run.
Marlboro, the defending Class B champions, will look to win its seventh Class B title in nine years when it takes on James I. O’Neill at 7 p.m. on Friday at Dietz.
Williams scored his first touchdown of the game on a 1-yd run with 5:42 left in the first quarter. This scoring drive was following a safety that was caused by a blocked punt that was recovered in the end zone by Marlboro’s defense. These scores gave the Dukes an early 9-0 lead.
With 8:34 left in the first half Williams scored his second touchdown of the day on a 2-yd run to give Marlboro a 16-0 lead. Williams set himself up for the score with a 22-yd run earlier in the drive.
The running back scored his third goal line touchdown with 1:42 left in the second quarter. Eric Borchert then converted the two point conversion on his run to give Marlboro a 24-0 lead.
“Stay focused, follow your blocks, get down field and get first downs,” Williams said. It’s safe to say Williams was able to execute his gameplay coming into today’s matchup.
Although Williams will get all of the attention from his performance in today’s game, he gave all the praise to his teammates. “They were excellent,” Williams said.
The Marlboro defense played spectacular today. This was Marlboro’s fourth shutout of the season. Eric Borchert (Sr.), Devin Knight (Sr.) and Monte Walker III (Sr.) each had one forced fumble. The Dukes recovered all three fumbles. Linebacker Myles Barrington led the team in tackles with 11.
Burke Catholic quarterback Jackson Hoovler (So.) finished his season 2 completions shy of breaking the school’s single-season record (74) set by his brother, Heath, last year. Hoovler finished the game completing 3 of 10 passes for 55 yards and an interception. Nate Pena had 60 yards rushing on 11 attempts.
Although Burke Catholic and Marlboro are rivals there is nothing but respect between both programs. “We respect them a lot. They have some great kids on their team. They’ll help you up after a lot of tackles like [Nate Pena] (Soph.) on the other team. He’s a great kid. I can’t tell you how many times he helped me up after a tackle he made or anybody else on his team made. No bad blood at all between us,” Mongelli said.
Williams is already putting this win behind him and looking forward to the Section 9 Class B championship. “Just win one and move on to the next. Put everything in the past and that’s how you come into a new game. Let’s go,” Williams said.