When Kevin Cutinella lunged into the end zone to complete a 46-yard scoring run early in the first quarter Friday night, his first thought wasn't that he had jump-started his Shoreham-Wading River team or that he had scored his first varsity touchdown. His first thought was of his brother Tom, who died last Oct. 1 after a collision with an opposing player during a game against Glenn.
"I did think of him," said Kevin Cutinella, a junior. "I said, 'Thank you.' It was like he was my lead blocker."
Cutinella's run, on a play known as "belly down," sparked a dominant first half as defending Long Island Class IV champion Shoreham-Wading River cruised past host Mercy, 35-0, in a Suffolk IV game. It was the Wildcats' 13th consecutive victory.
"Unimaginable" was how Cutinella described the touchdown, the first of four the Wildcats scored before halftime.
Senior Chris Rosati scored the other three as Shoreham-Wading River went ahead 28-0 and mostly used its reserves in the second half. Rosati gained 118 yards on eight carries, including scoring runs of 62, 24 and 2 yards, all in the first half. Cutinella carried five times for 75 yards, 61 of them in the first half.
Both of them found plenty of room behind a veteran line led by tight end Ethan Wiederkehr, who also batted down two passes from his defensive end spot.
"I knew we had a great line. I had a feeling we'd come out flying," said Rosati, who also excelled on defense from his safety spot.
Rosati turned in a spectacular play on his 62-yard jaunt that provided a 21-0 second quarter. He started on a sweep to the right, admittedly "missed the hole," then reversed his field. After a superb block by quarterback Jason Curran, who scored the Wildcats' other touchdown on an 8-yard run, Rosati circled back around left end, eluded a couple of tacklers and raced down the left sideline for the score.
"We won't have breakaways like that every time," Wiederkehr said. "But we have most of our line back and we're confident that if we have to, we can wear teams out in the fourth quarter."
On Friday night, the Wildcats didn't wait that long.