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Mario Fischetti Jr. carries Chaminade to OT win over St. Anthony's

Mario Fischetti Jr. of Chaminade gets a pick-me-up

Mario Fischetti Jr. of Chaminade gets a pick-me-up from a teammate after scoring the winning touchdown in overtime.  Credit: Dawn McCormick

It was a moment nearly a decade in the making.

Chaminade hadn't beaten St. Anthony's since the 2012 CHSFL AAA championship game.

So on Thursday, the Flyers called on their own "Super Mario," senior running back Mario Fischetti Jr.

"I know that once Mario gets the ball that anything can happen," Chaminade quarterback Tyler Burke said. "He’s something special. He’s a great kid and I just love being on his team."

Fischetti was up for the job in overtime. His 5-yard touchdown run gave host Chaminade a thrilling 19-13 win over St. Anthony, setting off a long-awaited celebration.

"I’m happy to be a part of this," Fischetti said after rushing for 106 yards and two touchdowns on 26 carries. "I had been hearing that going into this, so it’s good to know that in the next couple of years they’ll be talking about this team and how we beat them in overtime."

"The rivalry between us is unimaginable," Burke said. "It’s just a great feeling overall."

A big play by the Chaminade defense set the stage for Fischetti's winning TD. On the opening possession of overtime, James Goldefer recovered a fumble on third-and-goal from the 1 for the Flyers (2-1).

He also secured a crucial takeaway at the end of regulation, intercepting a pass deep in his own territory with the score tied at 13 and returning it to the Flyers’ 33 with 19 seconds remaining to force overtime.

"My eyes lit up when I saw that ball come out," Goldefer said. "I knew it was mine."

Trailing 13-0 entering the fourth quarter, St. Anthony’s (2-2) fought back to tie the score at 13 thanks to two touchdown passes from Connor McCreery, who replaced starting quarterback Dante Torres in the second half.

McCreery connected with Kenyon Miles on a 13-yard touchdown pass to even the score with 4:50 left in regulation, but the Friars failed to convert on the extra-point attempt.

"The biggest thing we need to be proud of with these boys, and I’m talking about St. Anthony’s as well, is the resiliency they’ve shown," Chaminade coach Kevin Dolan said. "They really had very little to expect of this season and of this type of victory. I’m just so happy for them."

Connor Collet opened the scoring for Chaminade by leaping up and corralling a blocked punt in the end zone with 7:16 left in the second quarter. The Flyers tacked on another touchdown with 14 seconds to go in the half as Fischetti ran it in from 5 yards out to complete a 53-yard drive set up by Matthew Vassallo’s interception.

So, what does it feel like to help your team end a nearly decade-long wait against a rival?

Said Fischetti, "This was the best feeling ever."

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