Brett Osman's four TDs lead Miller Place over Sayville
Nothing fancy, nothing secretive. The Miller Place offense isn't big on style points and doesn't hide its intentions. Give the ball to Brett Osman between the tackles and let the 5-11, 185-pound senior go to work.
"I love taking it on every play," Osman said after he did precisely that for portions of Saturday's game. Osman twice carried the ball on every play on scoring drives and tallied all four touchdowns in the Panthers' 25-18 victory over Sayville in a Suffolk III game played at Miller Place.
"That's my role. I love power football," said Osman who finished with 30 carries for 164 yards.
Miller Place turned the power into the glory, beating Sayville, county champions the last three years, for the first time since 2003 and ending the Golden Flashes' 19-game league winning streak, dating back to 2010. Sayville was undefeated in Suffolk III in both the 2011 and 2012 seasons.
"At the moment, it's a big deal," Miller Place coach Ron Petrie said of the victory. "And for the sake of our program it's a big deal because Sayville is such a quality program. But this is just Step 2 for us. We are very far from our ultimate goal."
The Panthers (2-0), the coaches' No. 1 preseason seed for the first time in school history, scored on their first possession with Osman running between the tackles on every play -- four times for 44 yards, capping it with a 17-yard touchdown gallop.
On the first possession of the second half, Osman again got every carry on a five-play 53-yard drive. His 34-yard burst set up his 1-yard TD run for a 19-6 lead.
Sayville (1-1) cut it to 19-12 on a 2-yard run by Matt Selts, a workhorse in his own right with 20 carries for 85 yards and four receptions for another 36. Osman capped a seven-play, 65-yard drive that included a slick 32-yard pass from Liam Walsh to Austin Yezarski with an 11-yard touchdown run for a 25-12 lead.
The Golden Flashes made it a tense fourth quarter when freshman Jack Coan (13-for-27, 144 yards, two touchdowns) hit Chris Rupp down the right sideline for a 32-yard touchdown that reduced the deficit to seven points.
There was no further scoring, but the combination of Miller Place's stout defense and an Osman-infused ball-control offense cemented the victory. "There's no shame in getting three or four yards a carry. Brett is a workhorse. We count on him and he wants that kind of pressure," Petrie said. "We're a team that likes to control field position and play great defense. We thought that up front we could control the line of scrimmage."
Osman was the chief beneficiary. "I love my line. They make it easy for me," he said of the blocking quintet of Kevin Lopez, Bradley Williamson, Austin Mooney, Chris Buchalski and James McNulty.
"Sayville knew we'd be running up the middle," Osman added. "When I came to contact, I tucked the ball in, waited for the hit and kept my legs moving."
It was a formula that produced the first four-touchdown game of his career. Fancy that.