CHSFL football preview

St. Anthony's fullback Anthony Anderson reacts after scoring

St. Anthony's fullback Anthony Anderson reacts after scoring a touchdown in the second quarter of a game against Chaminade. (Oct. 21, 2011) (Credit: Kathleen Malone-Van Dyke)

St. Anthony's school-record 29-game winning streak will be in jeopardy right away. The Friars open their season with a non-league game . . . and not just any nonleague game. On Friday night they will host New Jersey powerhouse Bergen Catholic, which was ranked No. 17 nationally in one preseason poll and is picked ahead of another Jersey and national titan, Don Bosco Tech. And then, in a CHSFL scheduling quirk, top-seeded and three-time defending champion St. Anthony's visits No. 2-seed Iona Prep in its league AAA opener. To which starting quarterback Greg Galligan says: Bring it on. "I'm looking forward to the challenge," the junior said. "The more pressure I'm under, the better I perform." Fullback Anthony Anderson, a combination of speed and power who is the leading returning rusher and a Division I prospect, said of the winning streak, "We definitely don't want to be the class to lose." Linebacker Anthony Leggio, a returnee from last year's elite defensive unit, called the Bergen game "a great challenge. We want to make New York football known. Everyone wants us to lose, so there's pressure every day." Chaminade, led by lacrosse stars Dan Fowler and Tom Zenker, and Holy Trinity, with big-time quarterback Chris Laviano, hope to apply some pressure to St. Anthony's in AAA. In AA, St. John the Baptist looks to build on a winning season in 2011, led by CHSFL sack leader Jackson Moses.

ST. ANTHONY'S FRIARS (10-0)

Coach: Rich Reichert, 26th season

Key Players

Greg Galligan QB 6-0, 175, Jr.

Anthony Anderson RB 6-1, 220, Sr.

Fifi Familusi CB 5-11, 190, Sr.

Anthony Leggio LB 5-10, 215, Sr.

Jack Vivonetti OG 6-3, 285, Sr.

Joe Tustin OG 6-1, 290, Sr.

About the Friars: Defense was the team's strength last year. Now it's the offense's turn. Anderson, an impressive package of power and speed, gained 804 yards with 10 TDs. Galligan runs the complex triple-option well. The defense remains tough, led by Leggio (61 tackles) and Familusi (48 tackles). Coach Rich Reichert (211-48-3) needs one victory to break a tie with Bellport's Joe Cipp Jr. and become the winningest coach in Suffolk County history.

CHAMINADE FLYERS (6-4)

Coach: Stephen Boyd, fourth season

Key Players

Dan Fowler FB/LB 5-11, 190, Sr.

Tom Zenker WR 6-4, 220, Sr.

Joe Anile IV QB 6-0, 200, Sr.

Christopher D'Ambrosio LB 5-11, 200, Sr.

Matt Correa RB 5-9, 185, Sr.

Brendan O'Callaghan LB/DE 6-2, 210, Sr.

About the Flyers: Chaminade, which has 14 returning starters, is coming off a promising rebound season and enters the year as the No. 3 seed in the CHSFL. Fowler is an impact player on both sides of the ball -- a gritty fullback that averaged 6.66 yards per carry and a linebacker who had 97 tackles last year. Zenker, who averaged 22 yards per catch, and Anile, who had a 62-percent completion rate, round out the spread offense. D'Ambrosio is a force on defense, with 111 tackles, three sacks, two interceptions and six fumble recoveries.

HOLY TRINITY TITANS (3-7)

Coach: Tony Mascia, 22nd season

Key Players

Chris Laviano QB 6-3, 195, Sr.

Ryan Rossi RB/FS 6-2, 210, Jr.

Jeremy Perez G/DE 6-0, 255, Jr.

Peter Leary OT 6-6, 295, Jr.

Jaime-Chris Saint-Louis G/DT

6-0, 260, Jr.

Joseph Gotti FB/LB 5-10, 215, Sr.

About the Titans: Holy Trinity has one of the most decorated quarterbacks in the league in Laviano, who had 1,713 passing yards in 2011 for 4,360 career yards. The Titans have depth in the skill positions, starting with Rossi (414 yards, one TD), but return only one starter on the offensive line. Though young, their youth has experience.

KELLENBERG FIREBIRDS (4-7)

Coach: Kevin Hanifan, 17th season

Key Players

Rory Walsh LB 6-2, 215, Sr.

Brendan Fitzgerald WR 6-1, 185, Sr.

Brian Schmidt OL 6-3, 220, Sr.

Conall Ryan DT 6-1, 250, Sr.

Thomas Blau DB 5-8, 160, Sr.

Nicholas Rizzo WR 5-10, 190, Sr.

About the Firebirds: Kellenberg has a tough road ahead as the 12th seed in the CHSFL and the graduation of key skill players, including the star quarterback. Fitzgerald (20 catches for 163 yards and a TD) and Rizzo (15 catches for 169 yards and a TD) are capable receivers who will lead the air attack in the Firebirds' spread offense.

ST. JOHN THE BAPTIST COUGARS (5-4)

Coach: Keith Schweers, sixth season

Key Players

Jackson Moses DL/OL 6-2, 240, Sr.

Gregory Egan QB 6-1, 195, Sr.

Patrick Joy, DE/TE 6-0, 200, Sr.

Christian Turri DB/RB 5-11, 175, Sr.

Ryan McCann RB/LB 6-0, 205, Jr.

Jake Wiswall RB/LB 6-1, 220, Jr.

About the Cougars: Old favorites return including Moses, who led the CHSFL with 13.5 sacks and made 45 tackles. Egan, a three-year starter, threw for 1,050 yards. Joy had 42 tackles and 5 sacks. Turri had 4 INTs and 3 kickoff returns for TDs. SJB hopes to play ball control and pressure the QB.

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