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Beware Of The Dog

Footballers off to a ferocious start

This past winter, the Roslyn High School boys’ varsity basketball team enjoyed a terrific season, playing into the final game of the Nassau County championship.

Now, the football team is following suit, with the Bulldogs off to their best start in decades. On Sept. 28, Roslyn capped off the Homecoming 2013 Weekend with a thrilling, 22-14 come-from-behind win over Long Island Lutheran.

The Bulldogs battled back from 14-7 third-quarter deficit to score 15 unanswered points in the final frame for the win. Linebacker Alex Epprecht sparked the rally with a game-saving tackle on a key fourth-and-one play, one that set up a 51-yard drive by the offense to take the lead.

The big score came on a 27-yard touchdown pass from Adam Combs to Isaiah Hunter. For Combs, the play capped a stellar day where he went 5 for 9 in passing for 89 yards and three touchdowns. Hunter had two receptions, both for touchdowns also. Assisting in the second half onslaught was Thomas Davis, who ran for 116 yards while also having two key receptions. Chris Snipes pitched in with 110 yards rushing, while Epprecht, excelling on both offense and defense, scored on a 26-yard strike from Combs. In addition, Epprecht had a Dick Butkus-type game on defense, making one interception and recovering two fumbles.

The homecoming win was just a prelude to an even more dramatic win last Saturday, as Roslyn topped Friends Academy, 22-18 in a thrilling away-game triumph. In the third quarter, Roslyn was trailing 18-8 when Alex Epprecht made a key interception that turned the game around. That was followed by a 30-yard touchdown pass from Combs to Isaiah Hunter.

Even though it was only the third quarter, Roslyn elected for a risky onside kick. Again, Epprecht was the star, recovering the ball and setting up the winning drive. But the winning touchdown didn’t come easy. Faced with a fourth and 18, Roslyn executed a daring play. Combs completed a pass to Hunter, who promptly lateraled the ball to Thomas Davis, who in turn, scampered 30 yards unscathed into the end zone. The play was so shocking that no other scoring took place and the Bulldogs came home with yet another remarkable win.

The Bulldogs warmed up for their latest theatrics with a 19-6 win over archrival Jericho. For this triumph, Roslyn came through with a well-balanced attack. Chris Snipes had 112 yards rushing with two touchdowns, while Combs went 6 for 11 in his aerial attack, totaling 91 yards and one touchdown, a 50-yard bomb to his favorite target, Isaiah Hunter. Snipes also starred on defense, having a Lawrence Taylor-type game with two sacks and one fumble recovery. Both Richard Woytysiak and Arman Nikofekr also stripped Jericho runners for their own fumble recoveries.

The Bulldogs started their winning streak in mid-September with a convincing 42-20 away win over Great Neck South. Thomas Davis was the star of this game, totaling 308 yards of total offense. That included a 67-yard punt return for a touchdown, a 70-yard touchdown gallop and a 19-yard touchdown reception from Adam Combs. Step aside, Johnny Manziel!

Isaiah Hunter scored on a touchdown pass from Combs, while Alex Epprecht added his own touchdown run, as did Combs. Chris Snipers had 133 yards rushing to compliment Davis’s 149 yards on the ground. Combs, meanwhile, was his usual pinpoint self, hitting for 5 of 6 passes for two touchdowns. The defense was paced with interceptions by both Hunter and Jeremy Kaplan.

The Bulldogs strong start should come as no surprise, as they ended the 2012 campaign in a flourish with big wins over Great Neck North and St. Dominic’s. Davis, Hunter and Epprecht starred for last year’s team as did quarterback Paul Rogofsky. Now, Adam Combs is carrying on Rogofsky’s example of excellence and Roslyn, a powerhouse in basketball, is now bidding to do the same on the gridiron.