SOUTH PLAINFIELD — Maurice Ffrench rushed for 171 yards and two touchdowns and the New Brunswick High School football team held South Plainfield to just 26 yards of offense in a 27-12 victory at Frank Jost Field on Friday night.
The Zebras limited the Tigers to minus-4 yards on offense in the game’s first half, and pitched a shutout after intermission to start the season with back-to-back victories.
“I thought we gutted it out and grinded in the second half; we made some mistakes on special teams, but I thought up front we did a pretty good job,” New Brunswick head coach Don Sofilkanich said.
Ffrench put the game out of reach for good with an 18-yard touchdown run with 8:52 left in the game. He said afterwards that the Tigers’ defense didn’t intimidate him and his teammates.
“I saw they didn’t look like they wanted to tackle us, so I knew I was going to press them and they didn’t do a good job of containing the outside, and that’s what I do. If you let me go to the outside, it’s six,” Ffrench said.
The senior tailback led a Zebras rushing attack that ended the game with 290 yards on the ground on 46 attempts. Samad Davila rushed 24 times for 104 yards and a three-yard touchdown and quarterback Jahbree Jeffery added 11 yards on seven carries and a touchdown, while going 3-for-8 and 51 yards passing.
“We spread it around and gave it to some different guys and whoever had the hot hand, we went with him. That’s how it works. I think the kids did a nice job,” Sofilkanich said.
After Ffrench scampered home with a 44-yard touchdown for New Brunswick to put the Zebras up 14-6 in the second quarter, Ruben Torres returned the ensuing kickoff 80 yards for a score, cutting the lead to just two after the two-point conversion pass fell incomplete.
Torres helped set up the Tigers’ first touchdown of the game, bringing the opening kickoff 66 yards down to the New Brunswick 8-yard line. He finished with 165 return yards on the game.
Jason Lee carried twice on the opening drive for South Plainfield, the second time for six yards and his fifth touchdown in two games this season after going for four in the Tigers’ 27-6 season-opening win over St. Joseph last Friday. But he was limited the rest of the way to just 32 yards on his final 13 carries to finish with 40 yards on the night.
South Plainfield quarterback Patrick Waldorp was pressured all night by the New Brunswick defense, completing just 2-11 passes for only three yards, while taking two sacks for a total of minus-23 yards.
“We were riding the wave from last week and we didn’t come to play. We didn’t play tough like last week. It’s a learning experience. We’re not as good as we think we are. We have to get better,” South Plainfield head coach Gary Cassio said.
NEW BRUNSWICK (2-0) 7-14-0-6-27
SOUTH PLAINFIELD (1-1) 6-6-0-0-12
SP – Lee 6 run (kick failed)
NB – Davila 3 run (Garcia kick)
NB – Ffrench 44 run (Garcia kick)
SP – Torres 80 kick return (pass failed)
NB – Jeffery 1 run (Garcia kick)
NB – Ffrench 18 run (kick failed)
Passing – NB: Jeffery 3-8-51; SP: Waldorp 2-11-3, Lee 0-1, Marston 0-1.
Rushing – NB: Ffrench 14-171, Davila 24-104, Jeffery 7-11, Jackson 1-4; SP: Lee 15-40, Gonzalez 3-13, Lundy 1-0, Torres 1-0, Waldorp 2-minus 23.
Receiving – NB: Hernandez 1-22, Ffrench 1-21, Davila 1-8; SP: Sepini 1-10, Lee, 1-minus 7.