Long Island's top two public school football teams get it on this week in a showdown of unbeatens. Top-ranked Connetquot travels to Longwood in a key Suffolk Division I game Saturday on Homecoming Day in Middle Island at 4 p.m.
"We hope to play tough, hard-nosed, mistake-free football," Longwood's first-year coach Jeff Cipp said. "It's a huge game. I try to keep our kids grounded and I'm not letting anyone get bigheads. But it is homecoming and it is on MSG Varsity. There will be a huge crowd. It's an exciting time for Longwood."
Lions senior halfback Isaiah White has run over the competition for the past four weeks. He has 13 touchdowns, including 12 on the ground and one on a fumble return. He leads Suffolk I with 802 yards. Connetquot knows the key to victory lies in shutting down White.
"He has an extra gear and runs the ball like he's shot out of a cannon," Cipp said. "I didn't realize it until I watched film. He's got speed, power and elusiveness. He's just a humble kid who'll do anything for team."
Longwood (4-0) is averaging 46 points per game and the starting defensive unit has only allowed one score through four games.
Connetquot (4-0) beat the Lions twice last year, 22-14, and 33-6, in the playoffs. The Thunderbirds also light up the scoreboard averaging 34 points per game with a balanced attack behind quarterback Jack Cassidy and halfback Jack Richardson.
Oceanside (2-2) at MacArthur (3-1), Friday night, 6 p.m.: MacArthur's only loss came in an overtime heartbreaker against Baldwin, 30-27, in Nassau I. This is a must-win for both teams if they want to host a home playoff game. Oceanside quarterback Vinny Guarino can score points, but can the Sailors defense slow down the Generals offense?
Farmingdale (3-1) at East Meadow (4-0), Saturday, 3 p.m.: Farmingdale scored 44 points in the first three games but got untracked over previously unbeaten Freeport in a 37-34 win last week in Nassau I. To knock off two unbeatens two weeks in a row the Dalers will have to stop rugged halfback John Wilson.
Mepham (3-1) at Wantagh (2-2), Saturday, 3 p.m.: Mepham quarterback Tyler Davis has rushed for nine touchdowns and thrown for seven in the Pirates' 3-1 start. The Warriors took it on the chin last week against first-place Garden City and need a rebound win in Nassau II.
Smithtown East (3-1) at Half Hollow Hills West (4-0), Saturday, 2 p.m.: Two of Long Island's top quarterbacks square off as Smithtown East's John Daniggelis, who's rushed and passed for over 1,000 all-purpose yards, meets Lenny Lucarelli, a dual threat on the run and in the air in Suffolk II.