Freeport hadn’t lost a game since November of 2017. The two-time defending Long Island Class I champions were on Long Island’s longest current winning streak at 24 games.
Winning streaks ultimately come to an end. Some are stopped in dramatic fashion. Others, like Freeport’s, can come to a crashing halt. And that’s what happened on Saturday.
Massapequa used a rugged ground game led by Tim Morrow and Kyle Tobin to beat the Red Devils, 43-6, in a Nassau Conference I game in Freeport. Morrow rushed for 107 yards and a touchdown on 10 carries and Tobin added two scores.
"Our lines have been working all offseason," Morrow said. "They’ve been grinding their butts off. My guys, like [Michael] Rollo, who gave it one heck of a push today, and Jakob Menichini and Keith Irving, were the key."
This was a no doubter. Freeport — which also had a 13-game home winning streak snapped — is in a complete rebuilding phase with no starting players back from the 2019 Long Island championship team. And that inexperience created an epic mismatch against senior-laden Massapequa, which hadn’t beat the Red Devils since a 21-13 win in 2017.
"We really had no idea what to expect," Freeport coach Russ Cellan said. "But we knew it could be ugly because we need time to develop some guys. We don’t have one starter back in the lineup, so we have no experience. We usually prepare for seven months and we had two weeks. We don’t have the depth on the bench with role players and we put our special teams in Friday. Combine that with a good Massapequa squad and this is what happens."
Massapequa is loaded with talent. Backup quarterback Tim Garguilo, filling in for starter John Giller (under COVID-19 quarantine), proved he could start for most teams on Long Island. He was brilliant, completing 7 of 9 passes for 204 yards and two TDs. He hit Jake Ciolino with 20- and 87-yard scoring strikes, the second one coming on a beautiful over-the-shoulder throw that Ciolino caught in stride on his way to the end zone for a 36-0 third-quarter lead.
Ciolino finished with four catches for 129 yards.
"Tim Garguilo really played well," Massapequa coach Kevin Shippos said. "He stepped right into the role comfortably and played great. We had all of our trust in him and he showed up today."
Massapequa opened the scoring when Tobin capped a six-play, 53-yard drive with a 3-yard touchdown plunge. Joe Fraschilla added the kick and Massapequa led 7-0 midway through the first quarter. Morrow added a 5-yard scoring run and Michael D’Alessandro added the two-point conversion run for a 15-0 lead with 10:58 left in the half.
"I am pleased with the team’s effort overall as it wasn’t just one phase," Shippos said. "It wasn’t one player, it was the entire team. This is the ultimate team game and these kids have been working for over a year to be back out there this spring. I couldn’t be prouder of these guys."
Freshman Freeport quarterback D’Angelo Gordon scored on a 2-yard run with 6:20 left to avert the shutout.
"It’s going to take some time to mold a young group," Cellan said. "But that’s coaching. I want them to compete in any situation."