THE GRIDIRON 15 - 2010
By Dick Engelhardt
Following good scrimmages and the 25-6 opening day victory over the Indians of Passaic in their inaugural Big North Conference (BNC) Division II game (Division II would later be named the Liberty Division), Fair Lawn fans were singing the 1959 Frank Sinatra classic “High Hopes” that won the Academy Award for Best Original Song in the film “A Hole in The Head.” Stan Myles’ CUTTERS had many good players back, including the entire offensive line, and expected a great season! They would face their 1956-58 and 1990- 2008 Northern Bergen Interscholastic League (NBIL) foe, the NORSEMEN of Northern Valley/Demarest, next. Fair Lawn had gone 13-9 (.591) over NV/Demarest and they and their fans expected a victory in this BNC crossover game. The 40-0 shutout at the hands of the NORSEMEN was a first class shock. John Fass and Marco Balletti, who would broadcast the Fair Lawn-Clifton game on WGHT Radio (1500 AM) http://www.ghtradio.com/ and had Fair Lawn, rated #4 in their top 10 listening area teams, wondered on the air what happened.
Next, our CUTTERS were tied at 14 at the half against the BULLDOGS of Passaic County Technical Institute before falling 34-14 to the eventual BNC Liberty Division champs who would go 5-0 in Division play. Then came the 49-7 shellacking by Bergen Catholic. To his credit, BC Coach Nunzio Campanile put his JV in for the 2nd half. The Campanile family is well connected to Fair Lawn! Nunzio’s Dad, Mike, was a highly successful junior football coach for many years with the Fair Lawn Football Association where all the boys played. Sons Anthony, Nick and Vito coached at Fair Lawn High under Greg Tanzer. Anthony and Nick played for Fair Lawn after Mike’s stint as head coach of Paramus Catholic ended. The Campanile family joins the Graff and Guy families and others who have been heavily involved in football in Fair Lawn over the years. Some parochial parents were upset by the excellent New York Times article in which Clifton Coach Ron Anello was quoted about the injustice of the public schools having to play parochial behemoths but Anello, whose FIGHTING MUSTANGS’ playoff hopes were dashed by a 48-13 loss to the IRONMEN of Don Bosco, was right. The New Jersey State Interscholastic Athletic Association (NJSIAA) has indicated it will look at this again. They could start by adding the GREEN WAVE of Delbarton, the MARAUDERS of St. Peter’s Prep and the PIRATES of Seton Hall Prep to the BNC Division I (United). With 8 teams, this would be a super parochial conference and its teams could fill out their schedules with 2 games against out of State powerhouses like Don Bosco likes to do, and NJ teams willing to play them. The IRONMEN have already scheduled the DIABLOS of Mission Viejo, California, the alma mater of NY Jets QB Mark Sanchez, as their 2011 home opener.
Losses to the FIGHTING MUSTANGS of Clifton and the SPARTANS of Paramus were followed by wins over the GHOSTS of Paterson Eastside and the KNIGHTS of Paterson JFK. In State Consolation action, the VIKINGS of Vernon came from behind to beat our CUTTERS 41-22. Fair Lawn is 7-4 (.636) in Consolation Game action since these games began in 1998.
Our CUTTERS finished the season 3-7 (.300) bringing their 1943-2010 record to 314-290-14 (.520) and Coach Stan Myles’ 2007 through 2010 record to 20-21 (.488). The BNC Division II (Liberty) final standings were: Passaic County Technical Institute 5-0 (1.000), Clifton 4-1 (.800), Fair Lawn 3-2 (.600) and Eastside, JFK and Passaic 1-4 (.200).
The Eastside game, the last regularly scheduled home game, was poignant as seniors soon to end their participation in the football program were honored and introduced. We said goodbye and wished the best to: Alex Callons, James Choe, Kevin Guy, Kevin Flynn, Max Jacobs, Davon Johnson, Kyle McGowen, Matt Paisley, Matt Peligretto, Dave Pinuel, Adam Polisi, Junior Roberts, Kelvin Rosario, Tim Schrettner, Steven Sherlock, Eric Simeonoglu, Sertoc Tarcan, Anthony Tozzi, Bryan Turton, Sam Vovsi and Brendan Walis. The turnout of over 50 players plus some 35 freshman was great this year and next season many good players return augmented by freshmen moving up. I can hardly wait! This edition of THE GRIDIRON closes out 2010. After the league all-star designations are known I’ll put out the FAIR LAWN HIGH SCHOOL FOOTBALL 2010 page and look forward to next year. Until then, GO CUTTERS GO!!!