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Plainedge's Joe Iadevaio sets sights on LI crown

Plainedge's Joe Iadevaio scores a touchdown against Floral

Plainedge's Joe Iadevaio scores a touchdown against Floral Park during a Nassau Conference III football semifinal at Shuart Stadium on Nov. 11. Credit: Kathleen Malone-Van Dyke

No. 14 in the red jersey took a knee on the Shuart Stadium turf, posing in the front row for a group photo with his teammates and a Section VIII championship banner after he showed up again and again in the big picture.

Plainedge had what it was seeking Friday at Hofstra. It beat Bethpage, 27-0, for the Nassau Conference III title after falling in the final to Manhasset back in the spring.

As usual, Joe Iadevaio did his share just about everywhere — offense, defense and special teams.

The senior said it felt great to win it, but he wasn’t totally satisfied. No. 14 wants one more championship, the Long Island championship. Iadevaio and the 11-0 Red Devils will get their chance Friday at 4:30 p.m. at Hofstra in the Class III final against 10-1 East Islip.

"That’s the one that really matters," Iadevaio said.

His coach has called Iadevaio "Mr. Everything."

"He’s like a jack-of-all-trades," Rob Shaver said.

On offense, Iadevaio said, "Receiver is my main position, but I can play anywhere."

In that Bethpage game, Iadevaio was seen at receiver, running back and as a Wildcat quarterback. He finished with 210 all-purpose yards, including 113 on nine carries and 60 on two receptions, plus 37 on three returns of kicks and punts.

On defense, he made four tackles and broke up two passes.

He plays safety but has been seen elsewhere, too.

"It feels good," Iadevaio said. "I can help the team out. Whatever they need me to do, I’m going to do."

He even played a bit at QB in the semis — a 47-0 win over Floral Park in which he rushed for 96 yards and a touchdown and made two interceptions.

"He means absolutely everything," said teammate Shane Mosia, a junior running back and linebacker. "He plays running back, receiver. He can play linebacker. He plays cornerback. He plays safety. He’s just versatile. Wherever we need him to be, he’s there."

Iadevaio has 36 catches for 721 yards and eight touchdowns. He enjoys playing receiver.

Why? Iadevaio smiled.

"I like catching touchdowns," he said.

Back when he was a sophomore, Iadevaio was a quarterback for the JV before being called up for the playoffs.

"Then he naturally moved to receiver because of his incredible athleticism," Shaver said. "He’s an outstanding basketball player, too. So he’s a super athlete. What changed him was he really dedicated himself to the weight room."

In Iadevaio’s words, his weight two years ago was "a buck 30."

These days, he said he’s at about 180 to 185.

"I’ve bulked up a little bit to compete with the big boys," the 5-11 Iadevaio said. "And here we are."

Here’s his game plan for next season: college football.

"College-wise, he can play anywhere," Shaver said. "He’s super-bright. He picks up on stuff very well. It depends what a college wants. The great thing about him is you’re basically getting a versatile guy. If you’re struggling with receivers, he’s a receiver. If you need a d-back, he can play d-back."

The D-II crowd is in the running. Iadevaio said he’s talking to Northeast-10 and Pennsylvania State Athletic Conference schools.

"Going to know in a couple of months, probably," he said. "I want to play all four years, make an impact on the team."

For now, he’s thinking about one thing: going out as a Long Island champion.

"It would mean everything," Iadevaio said. "We’ve been working since August. It means everything to us. And we’re going to get it done."

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