Garden City treated Friday night’s Nassau II championship game against Carey like a metronome. The Trojans never missed a beat on offense or defense in capturing a third straight county title and 35th consecutive victory.
Garden City dismantled the Seahawks efficiently and methodically in a 43-13 victory at Hofstra’s Shuart Stadium. The Trojans essentially were perfect in the first half, scoring on their first five possessions before taking a knee to run off the final minute before halftime. They didn’t allow Carey to gain a first down in the first half and brought a 30-0 lead into halftime.
“Right out of it, we had the pedal to the metal and they just weren’t going to stop us,” running back Trevor Yeboah-Kodie said. “Scoring 20 in the first quarter? That was a real momentum-shifter.”
Yeboah-Kodie and quarterback Colin Hart were the stars who shined brightest among Garden City’s constellation of them. Yeboah-Kodie gained 190 yards on 17 carries and scored on runs of 4 and 62 yards, both on plays in which he took the direct snap from center. Hart was 7-for-12 passing for 112 yards and two touchdowns and rushed for another score.
Those two — along with fellow seniors Justin Coppola and Dan Boccafola — have started on three county champions and will be going for a third straight Long Island Class II championship when Garden City (11-0) faces Suffolk II champ Lindenhurst at noon Friday at Stony Brook’s LaValle Stadium.
“This [third time] is my favorite,” Hart said. “It’s my last season. I am doing this with all my best friends. That’s the greatest feeling.”
Hart rushed eight times for 57 yards, including a 6-yard touchdown. He threaded the needle between three Carey defenders for a 23-yard TD pass to Joe Scattareggia — on fourth-and-16, no less — and rolled out on a 14-yarder to Boccafola. The latter came on Garden City’s first possession of the second half and made the score 37-0.
“It’s an amazing accomplishment by the seniors,” coach Dave Ettinger said. “A bunch of the seniors are three-year players and have been on three unbeaten teams. The result is one thing, but the time they invested during the week is unbelievable.”
Garden City went 81 yards on the game’s first possession and capped it with Yeboah-Kodie’s 4-yard score. Less than five minutes later, it was Hart scoring on a naked bootleg. The Trojans got the ball back with about a minute left and Yeboah-Kodie went 62 yards down the right sideline to score on the possession’s first snap.
The Trojans’ defense equaled the offense in impressiveness. When the third quarter ended 37-0 and Garden City began substituting liberally, it had held Carey (8-3) to an average of 2.4 yards on its 29 snaps. Coppola broke up three passes and Scattareggia two as the Seahawks managed only 17 yards passing.
Nick Giacolone had a 6-yard touchdown run and Riley DeMeo had an 81-yard kickoff return for a touchdown for the Seahawks.
It was Garden City’s 21st Nassau II championship and seventh in the past nine years. As Hart said: “Garden City football is work ethic and pride and tradition. Everybody wants to work hard and do well; that’s why I think we’re successful. Sure there’s talent, but it’s wanting to be here.”
Nevertheless, there is work to be done.
“I couldn’t be happier than I am right now,” Yeboah-Kodie said. “But at the same time, we definitely want to win the LIC again.”
NASSAU I at Hofstra, 12:30 p.m.
(1) Freeport vs. (3) Oceanside
NASSAU III at Hofstra, 4 p.m.
(1) Plainedge vs. (4) Wantagh
SUFFOLK I at Stony Brook University, noon
(1) Floyd vs. (2) Ward Melville
SUFFOLK III at Stony Brook University, 4 p.m.
(1) Westhampton vs. (2) Half Hollow Hills West
CHSFL AA at Mitchel Athletic Complex, 1:30 p.m.
(1) Kellenberg vs. (3) Xavier