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LIC Class II: Hills West to test Garden City defense

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Newsday's Gregg Sarra breaks down the Long Island Championship game in Class II between Garden City and Half Hollow Hills West, scheduled for noon on Sunday, Nov. 27, 2016, at Stony Brook University. Credit: Newsday

Film sessions have never lasted so long in Garden City. The Trojans have spent hours preparing for the Long Island Class II football championship game and meeting the three-headed monster that has become the Half Hollow Hills West offense.

“We’ve watched so much film and broken it down and we’re prepared,” Garden City coach Dave Ettinger said. “They have three very talented quarterbacks. It’s a pick-your-poison situation. They run three different systems with three different quarterbacks. It’s a lot to prepare for.”

Garden City (11-0) will meet Hills West (9-2) for the Long Island Class II title at Stony Brook University’s LaValle Stadium at noon Sunday.

The Trojans enter the game with one of Nassau’s stingiest defensive units, having allowed only 81 points. They’ve shut out four opponents behind the play of defensive back Chris Mixon, linebacker Matt DeSimpliciis and end Andrew DeSantis.

“We’ll play a disciplined defense and play our brand of football and be in the right spots,” Ettinger said. “We came through our playoffs in Nassau, which were very tough. But Hills West has a very talented and very big front, which will be a challenge.”

Garden City’s challenge will be to stop the running game behind senior quarterback Alexander Filacouris and sophomore quarterback/running back Deyvon Wright, who average more than 100 yards each per game. And when the Colts put the ball in the air, Filacouris will hand the offense over to sophomore Gerald Filardi, who’s thrown eight touchdown passes in the past two playoff wins.

“We have the luxury of playing three different guys who are all dynamic in their own way at the quarterback position,” Hills West coach Kyle Madden said. “Each one has their own skill set. And they’re all team guys, playing in an unselfish manner, to contribute and help the team win. It’s team first, like it should be.”

It is a contrast in offensive philosophy. The Garden City offense will rely on the hard running of Mixon, who has 22 touchdowns. The Trojans employ a two-quarterback system with junior Jack Bill, who had two touchdown runs in last week’s 42-14 Nassau II championship win over Carey. When Bill isn’t in the lineup, Ettinger turns to sophomore Colin Hart.

“Our guys are very similar,” Ettinger said. “They’re both very good players.”

Hills West beat West Islip, 38-20, to win the Suffolk II crown last week. Filardi completed five passes for 200 yards, including touchdown passes of 30, 59 and 88 yards. Wright rushed for 139 yards and two touchdowns on 18 carries and Filacouris gained 92 yards on 13 carries.

After four snaps, all three had lined up at quarterback.

“They’re pretty scary on film,” Ettinger said. “You have to look at who they beat to get here. They’re athletic and young. We’re telling our guys they have an incredible opportunity to win but it won’t be easy.”

Garden City has been to the LIC 14 times, more than any other school. The Trojans won their last crown in 2012. Hills West is making its second trip to the LIC, having won the Class III title in 2009.

GARDEN CITY roster

No.PlayerGradePos.

10Billy Rousakis12K

11Cole Dutton11WR/LB

12Tyler Wuchte11WR/DB

13Drew D’Angelo12RB/DB

14Colin Hart10QB/DB

15James Buckley11WR/DB

16Jack Bill11QB/DB

17Connor Maloney12QB/DE

18Kiernan Gunn12WR/DB

19Timmy Gormley12TE/LB

20Aidan Griffin11RB/DB

21Joey D’Errico12RB/DB

22Justin Coppola10RB/DB

23Phillip Puccio12WR/DB

24Trevor Yeboah-Kodie10RB/DB

25Jamie Atkinson*12RB/DB

26Brendan Colamussi12WR/DE

27Matthew DeSimpliciis11LB/WR

29Gianluca Bognanno11WR/DB

30Matthew Granville11RB/DB

31Daniel Boccafola10QB/DE

32Liam Muldoon11WR/DB

33Chris Mixon*12RB/DB

34TJ McEvoy12WR/LB

35Jack Gannon12OL/LB

37Liam Curtin11RB/DL

38Harry Blair12WR/DE/LS

40Thomas Riggers12WR/DE

41Jack Kavan12WR/DE

42Andrew DeSantis11RB/DE

43Joseph McDonagh11RB/LB

44Marc Ventre12RB/LB/P/K

45Brian Greene11WR/LB

47Max Lawson12WR/DL

48Kyle Cortese12OL/DL

50Ryan Walsh11OL/DL

51Dan Salsberg12OL/DL

52Colin Paskewitz12OL/DL

53Nick Bambino11OL/DL

54Matthew Flanagan11OL/LB

55Cole Sonner12OL/LB

56Sal Ingrassia11OL/DL

58Michael McAuley11OL/DE

60A.J. D’Angelo12OL/DL

61Stephen Slovensky12OL/DL

62Michael Liberopoulos11OL/DL

65Brandon Holloway12OL/DL

66Ryan Joudeh12OL/DL

70Erik Wortmann*12OL/DL

72Kieran Paskewitz11OL/DL

73Sean Rode11OL/DL

74Max Zebrowski12OL/DL

75Willie Eigl12OL/DL

76Sean Norton11OL/DL

77Chris Ciurcina*12OL/DL

79Justin Plunkett12OL/DL

80Steven Spirakis11TE/DE/K

81Mark DiPierro11WR/DL

82Pat Leggett11WR/DB

86Sean Leggett11WR/DB

88Jack Keenan*12FB/DL

Coach Dave Ettinger

HALF HOLLOW HILLS WEST roster

No.PlayerGradePos.

1Cameron Jordan*12WR/DB

2Cherrod White11WR/LB

3Deyvon Wright10RB/DB

4Jeff Terry11WR/DB

5Justin Brown9RB/DB

6Ahmaad Crowell*12OL/DL

7Tunde Alaketu12QB/DB

8James Lauria11TE/LB

9Brandon Day12RB/LB

10Jake Miller12WR/DB

11Gerald Filardi10QB/DB

12Josh Wiggins12WR/DB

13Luke Anderson11WR/DB

15Michael Smith10TE/LB

15Francesco Viti10K

17Matthew Frankel12TE/LB

19Brandon Francis11WR/DB

20Matthew Barone12K

21Joseph Sanfratello12QB/DB

22Alexander Filacouris*12RB/DB

23Omar Smith11WR/DB

24Christopher Passela11RB/DB

25Thomas Anatra12WR/DB

26Roque Torres12WR/DB

28Sal Rossi11WR/DB

32Nick Perry11WR/DB

33Jake Cetta10WR/LB

35Sam Mankin11WR/DB

35Sadiq Hinds10RB/DB

40Mike Carubia10WR/LB

44Jake Russo12TE/LB

45Joey Venezia9RB/LB

47Al-Shereef Khalek12RB/LB

51Matt Tomeo10RB/LB

55Robert Venezia11OL/DL

56Jimmy Regateiro11OL/DL

58Blaze Urato11RB/LB

60Mike Stone10OL/DL

61Cam Rimmer11OL/DL

62Thomas Travaglione12OL/DL

63Aaron Arav11OL/DL

63Christian Anderson10OL/DL

64Keith Slaughter11OL/DL

65Tyler Manley12OL/DL

66Brandon Manley10OL/DL

67Chris Freda11OL/DL

68Peter Adler11OL/DL

69Nicholas Votta11K/DL

72Kobe Williams11OL/DL

75James Wallace11OL/DL

77Tyler Elmore*12OL/DL

Coach Kyle Madden

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