By TIM KELLY
Ocean City turned in its third straight dominating football performance Friday night, drubbing Bridgeton 42-0 in a West Jersey Football League Independence Division game at Bridgeton.
The Red Raiders raised their record to 3-0 with the win, while the Bulldogs slipped to 0-2.
Ocean City is not only unbeaten but also unscored upon, racking up 126 points on the season. The Raiders rolled to their third straight shutout, thought to be the first time in program history that has happened to start a season.
“I’m obviously very excited about the win and how we’ve played so far,” Red Raider Head Coach Kevin Smith said. “The level of competition will jump up next week, so we have to be ready for it. But there’s a lot to be pleased about right now.”
Unlike last week, when the Raiders scored three TD’s on defense, the offense was in the spotlight this time.
Quarterback Joe Repetti was a standout. The 6-foot, 175-pounder lit up the scoreboard with four scoring passes to give him eight for the young season, and as Smith pointed out “with no interceptions.”
The junior signal caller hooked up with Jaden Rogers for TD’s of 28 and 14 yards on the Raiders’ first two possessions and added a third 12-yarder to Isaac Wilson later in the quarter.
Brandon McGonigle tacked on all three extra-point kicks – on the way to a 5-for-5 night.
Rogers’ TDs were his first as a varsity player.
“It was great to get him going on offense,” Smith said.
Sean Mazzitelli’s one-yard run in the third quarter was his first varsity score as well.
For the third straight week, the Raiders sprinted out to a lead of 35-0 or greater in the first half to invoke the running clock “mercy rule,” in which the game clock keeps moving for everything except injuries, scores and charged timeouts. It does not stop while officials are stepping off penalties, of which the Raiders were assessed more than 60 yards.
Repetti added his fourth scoring pass of the game late in the first half, a 19-yarder to Jake Schneider, who now has four TD pass receptions for the year.
The Raider defense clamped down on the Bulldogs, limiting them to an unofficial total of just seven yards of total offense for the half.
“Jake Inserra was all over the field at linebacker,” Smith said.
Tommy Oves kept the Raiders’ streak of at least one defensive score in each game going when he fell on a Bridgeton fumble in the end zone in the fourth quarter.
Ocean City wasted no time at the start of the game establishing its superiority over the Bulldogs, who list only 27 players on their roster. Repetti’s first strike to Rogers came in the first 30 seconds.
Then, after a Bridgeton 3-and-out (the Bulldogs would not earn a first down until the third quarter) Repetti led the Raiders on a 10-play, 51-yard drive. One of the big plays along the way was a reverse with Wilson handing off to a streaking Schneider for a 10-yard first down pickup.
On his scoring pass to Wilson, Repetti connected for a short gain, and Wilson made some sweet moves to elude two other would-be tacklers.
Ocean City will attempt to go 4-0 next Friday when Absegami invades Carey Stadium at 6 p.m.