Xavier Arline had an answer for everything on Friday night.
The Shoreham-Wading River quarterback was an offensive force, responding to every challenge with a quick juke or an on-target pass to lift the Wildcats to a 40-6 victory over Glenn in Suffolk IV. Arline finished with five touchdowns, 144 yards rushing on 16 carries and went 7 of 13 through the air for 127 yards.
“Your mind takes you where to go, you just react,” Arline said. “Once you break free and you hit that second gear, there’s no better feeling.”
Arline got SWR on the board with 40 seconds left in the first quarter, finding Dominic Visintin for a 36-yard pass before sprinting 49 yards into the end zone for his first touchdown of the game.
He padded the lead with 4:20 in the second quarter, capping off a three-play, 42-yard drive with a 21-yard run straight through the line to make it 14-0.
“It’s definitely nice to have a player like that, but it’s also nice to have the senior line we have because they’re opening holes for him,” SWR coach Aden Smith said.
The Wildcats (3-1) defense held its own throughout the first half, limiting Glenn to 58 total yards, but it was the offense that stole the spotlight.
Arline moved his team down the field on the two-minute drill, connecting with Johnny Schwarz for a 24-yard touchdown pass on the final play of the second quarter to give the Wildcats a 21-0 lead heading into halftime.
“The credit goes to the o-line first because I have to have time to throw that pass,” Arline said. “The o-line stepped up and did their thing and the skilled players did everything they could. We just put it together.”
Glenn (3-1) did its best to rally, opening up the third quarter with a 12-play, 73-yard drive that took nearly seven minutes off the clock. Daysean Johnson wrapped up the possession with a 21-yard touchdown grab in the corner of the end zone, but that was all the Knights would get.
Arline responded again.
He connected with Visintin, who dodged one defender and dashed 46 yards up the sideline to give the Wildcats a 21-point lead with 3:56 in the third.
Arline finished his night with a 22-yard touchdown early in the fourth. The Wildcats took advantage of the short field after Jake Wilson forced a Glenn fumble and Jeffrey Lachenmeyer recovered.
“We had momentum on our side the whole game and we just didn’t let it go,” Smith said.
It was a big-time game for Arline, but as far as he’s concerned, this is just the start. He knows what this team is capable of and, with their sights set on a county title, knows the Wildcats are ready to make a statement.
“If we face adversity, we know we can come back,” Arline said. “Momentum is the biggest part of sports and being able to cut the momentum and turn it into our own is huge.”