It grew from a likelihood to a high probability to all but a guarantee, all just eight minutes into the Nassau II final between Garden City and MacArthur:
Garden City was going to make history. Again.
The Trojans scored on their first three possessions Saturday to build a 21-point lead in the first quarter on their way to a 48-7 thrashing of MacArthur at Hofstra’s James M. Shuart Stadium. It was Garden City’s sixth straight county title, tying its Nassau record for consecutive championships. The Trojans (11-0) also won six straight from 1990-1995.
"We knew we had a chance to put ourselves in the record book," senior left tackle Brendan Staub said. "Earlier in the week, when talking to the team, I mentioned that we have a banner in our gym and it’s got the numbers on it for county titles, the Rutgers Cup, undefeated seasons and LICs . . . Having the six in a row for counties with ‘21 at the end, that’s something that’s really special."
On Garden City’s second play from scrimmage, senior quarterback Luke Schmitt found the end zone on a 44-yard run just 35 seconds into the game. Then, after the defense forced McArthur (9-2) to go three-and-out, Schmitt capped the Trojans’ next six-play drive with a 1-yard touchdown. Garden City went up 21-0 on a 2-yard run by junior running back Robert Votruba just eight minutes into the game.
At the end of the first quarter, the Trojans, who were facing MacArthur in the Nassau II final for the third straight season, held a 163-31 advantage in yardage.
"We both know each other so well," Schmitt said of the Garden City-MacArthur matchup. "They know what we’re going to do. We know what they're going to do. So that's always a big challenge."
The most shocking part about the way Garden City’s offense hummed along with elite efficiency? It did so without two of its top playmakers, senior running back Jack Cascadden and junior running back Stevie Finnell, both of whom were out with injuries.
Votruba led the rushing attack with 12 carries for 81 yards, and sophomore Aidan Considine added five carries for 59 yards as the Trojans piled up 276 total yards on the ground.
"We knew we had to step up," Votruba said, "and I think the line did a great job blocking today."
Schmitt completed 10 of 13 passes for 124 yards and two touchdown passes, both of which went to senior wide receiver Jackson Perisa, who had seven catches for 82 yards.
Garden City will face either Bellport or Lindenhurst in the Long Island Class II championship at noon Saturday at Stony Brook. For the Trojans, it will be their first crack at winning a Long Island title since they fell to Lindenhurst in the championship game in 2019; there was no LIC last season.
"I think last season, coming out of the county championship, we all still wanted more," Staub said. "Whoever we play, I think between not having it last year and losing it two years ago, we’re going to be hungry and it’s going to be a really good one."