It was going to be a tall task for Christian Alacqua to surpass his previous week’s production, coming off 174 yards rushing with two touchdowns.
But the Chaminade senior running back was up to it on Saturday. Even if it required wearing two different numbers in the process.
Alacqua rushed for 187 yards and four touchdowns on 13 carries, lifting Chaminade to a 45-14 home victory over St. Peter’s in a CHSFL football game. After having his jersey torn late in the first half, Alacqua switched to No. 16 from No. 11 for the second.
"My jersey ripped in half on one of the plays where I got dragged down," Alacqua said while laughing. "It’s all good; I’ll get it back next week. I still played pretty well, I think."
Alacqua broke free off the right side and sprinted in from 20 yards out for his second touchdown of the first half, extending Chaminade’s lead to 17-0 with 8:05 left in the second quarter. He found the end zone on an 11-yard run for his third touchdown on Chaminade’s next possession, giving the Flyers a 24-0 advantage entering halftime.
Chaminade coach Kevin Dolan credited Alacqua for thriving in a larger role after replacing recent graduate Mario Fischetti Jr., who was a dynamic Flyers running back for two seasons.
"When you step into the shoes of Mario Fischetti, who was blowing out the scoreboard for two years, that takes courage," Dolan said. "There are comparisons. That’s why Christian is a captain on our team. He just stepped forward and took ownership of that."
Chaminade maintained its momentum to begin the second half. Hagan Wagner returned the opening kickoff 70 yards for a touchdown, stretching the Flyers’ advantage to 31-0. They outscored St. Peter’s 21-0 in the period.
"It was a short kick and they put their best seven guys on one side and I saw where they were weak," Wagner said. "I got a few good blocks on the other side and burst through the hole."
Chaminade (2-1) also received an impressive performance from its sophomore kicker, Tim Tomlinson, who was ranked the No. 12 best kicker in the Class of 2024 at the 2021 Kohl’s National Scholarship Camp in Pittsburgh. He opened the scoring with a 48-yard field goal with six minutes left in the first quarter.
"We don’t really take 10th graders at our school," Dolan said. "He’s the first sophomore to be brought up to varsity since 2002. And the last one to get called up before him was me in 1983. He’s just a special kid. He played soccer last fall and decided to try out for our freshman team and fell in love with it. We’re so happy to have him."