Quarterback Joseph Filardi of Half Hollow Hills West throws a...

Quarterback Joseph Filardi of Half Hollow Hills West throws a pass during a Suffolk Division III football game against East Islip on Friday in Dix Hills. Credit: Dawn McCormick

Joseph Filardi looked very comfortable in the Half Hollow Hills West backfield — too comfortable for an East Islip defense that failed to pressure the junior quarterback and allowed him to pick apart the secondary.

Filardi shredded East Islip for 531 yards passing and seven touchdowns — both of which were school records — in a 48-33 win Friday in a pivotal Suffolk Division III football game in Dix Hills.

His final toss was a 15-yard fade over the top to wide receiver Jesse Brooks with 2:41 left that sealed the win. Brooks had eight catches for 173 yards.

“I felt like all my pre-snap reads were right on and our receivers made some nice catches,” Filardi said. “We have great receivers and wanted to turn this into a seven-on-seven type of game where it was just an all-out passing attack. We wanted to eliminate the line play because East Islip is very good up front.”

Filardi completed 28 of 42 passes to five receivers. He repeatedly fired over the middle to find his receivers on crossing routes and went over the top of the defense for touchdowns of 60 yards to Michael Redd and 80 yards to Brooks. But it was his connection with Anthony Raio, who caught touchdown passes of 2, 56, 31 and 33 yards, that keyed this win. The two have been teammates since their days playing youth football for the Hills Pride in the Suffolk County Police Athletic League.

“We won the 9U championship that year,” Filardi said with a laugh. “We definitely have that special connection.”

Raio had 10 catches for 192 yards. “This was a big win at home against a great opponent,” he said. “Our timing was really good today and I loved getting the ball in the open field. I thought this was a big test for our offensive line. And the quick-hit design of the passing game was perfect.”

The teams traded touchdowns in the first quarter before Raio caught a 56-yard scoring strike for a 14-7 lead on the first play of the second quarter.

The turning point came on East Islip’s next possession. Quarterback Thomas Costarelli drove the offense 51 yards in seven plays to the Colts’ 28. On third-and-3, Costarelli was sacked for a 13-yard loss and fumbled on his way down. Mason Reese recovered for the Colts.

“That was a big defensive stop because it allowed us to extend the lead and go up two touchdowns,’ Half Hollow Hills West coach Gerald Filardi said.

Two plays after Reese’s recovery, Filardi hit Redd in stride for a 60-yard scoring strike and a 21-7 lead with 57 seconds left in the half. Redd had four receptions for 111 yards.

“He sees the field so well,” Filardi said of his 16-year-old son. “He has worked very hard at improving his overall game at quarterback and it shows.”

East Islip (1-1) chased the two-touchdown deficit the entire second half. Halfback Ryan Parker had three short touchdown runs as East Islip punished the Hills West front with 352 rushing yards. Every time East Islip drew closer, though, Filardi pushed them further away.

“I worked on my speed in the offseason,” Filardi said. “I’m seeing the field better this year. And when you have the best group of receivers on Long Island, it’s a lot easier.”

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