It was vintage Dylan Laube. Westhampton’s record-breaking halfback may have saved his best performance for last.
The senior gained 227 yards on 25 carries and scored six touchdowns to lead Westhampton over Lawrence, 54-26, in the Long Island Class III championship game on Sunday before more than 3,000 at Stony Brook University’s LaValle Stadium.
Laube finished the season with a Long Island-record 47 touchdowns, breaking the mark of 45 set by North Babylon’s Jason Gwaltney in 2004, and tied the Long Island Championships record with his six TDs. He also ran for 2,680 yards, third highest in Long Island history behind Gwaltney (2,882) and Plainedge’s Davien Kuinlan (2,781).
“He’s awesome,” Lawrence coach Joe Martillotti said. “I told our guys not to tackle him high and get to his legs. And we didn’t do it.”
Westhampton (12-0), which made its first appearance in the Long Island Championships, recorded its first undefeated season.
Laube scored three first-half touchdowns as the Hurricanes built a 20-6 lead. His third touchdown run, a 22-yarder with 4:29 left in the half, was magical. He took a pitch right, slipped two tackles at the point of attack, shook off a hit at the 7-yard line and danced through another defender at the 4.
“When you think Dylan has nothing, he always has something,” Westhampton coach Bill Parry said. “He has great vision, and his timing on his cuts is uncanny. He makes people miss. He’s incredible, just a once-in-a-lifetime player.”
Westhampton opened the second half with a four-play, 52-yard drive, capped by Laube’s 11-yard run for a 27-6 lead. The touchdown, his fourth of the game, tied the Long Island season record.
The drive was keyed by Laube’s 28-yard run to the Golden Tornadoes’ 11. “He must have cut back three times on that run,” Parry said. “It was amazing.”
Laube pointed to the play of his line — center Jake Bennett, guards Kurt Mion and Edon Popi and tackles Lucas Villareale and Charles Fee — and fullback Liam McIntyre as the key to his success.
“I think Lawrence was a little surprised at our physical style of play and team speed,” said Laube, who is committed to play at New Hampshire. “We blasted them early. We have an outstanding line and the best fullback on Long Island.”
Lawrence (10-2) cut the lead to 27-12 on Chris Collier’s 5-yard run with 6:55 left in the third quarter, but Westhampton quarterback Clarke Lewis promptly got the Hurricanes back in the end zone, making the most of his only pass of the game. On second-and-12, Lewis hit Nolan Quinlan in stride all alone behind the secondary for a 64-yard touchdown and a 34-12 lead.
“The throw was perfect and I was wide open,” Quinlan said.
On the next possession, Laube electrified the crowd with a 69-yard touchdown run. He went over left tackle, stiff-armed a defender and was hit at the sideline but stunned the crowd by somehow keeping his balance.
“We have great pride in our protection of our quarterback and continuing to block downfield as Dylan makes his cutbacks,” Mion said. “We maintain blocks, because you never know where he’s going to run.”
Laube’s 5-yard score with 2:31 left made it 54-19 and gave him his sixth TD. Sayville’s Zach Sirico also scored six in a 78-61 win over Lawrence in 2011.
“Just can’t top this,” Parry said. “We executed our game plan. We stretched them to the outside and then we went inside. I couldn’t be happier with our guys.”