Newspaper article The Record (Bergen County, NJ)

Familiar Face Not Good Sight for St. Joseph

Newspaper article The Record (Bergen County, NJ)

Familiar Face Not Good Sight for St. Joseph

Article excerpt

PLYMOUTH MEETING, Pa. -- A bad week for St. Joseph ended with a humbling defeat at the hands of an old foe.

St. Joseph's Prep (Pa.), led by former Paramus Catholic head coach Gabe Infante, outplayed the Green Knights in all phases to claim a 28-5 win Saturday afternoon.

Infante's Hawks blocked a punt to set up an early touchdown, put up a pair of goal-line stands and dominated the line of scrimmage from start to finish.

"They just kicked our [tail] in every aspect of the game," said Green Knights coach Augie Hoffmann. "Hats off to them, they beat us up."

Infante, 42, received a long line of well-wishers on the field after the contest. His team has become a Pennsylvania state power, winning the past two Class AAAA Pennsylvania Interscholastic Athletic Association championships, and has won games against schools from Louisiana, Texas, Maryland, Ohio and Illinois.

But until Saturday, Infante had never beaten a North Jersey non- public power, not even the two years he was at Paramus Catholic where he went 5-5 each season. Since he's been with the Hawks, he was 0-4, including a 55-21 loss to Don Bosco last month.

"I was O-fer at Paramus Catholic when I was there, and I was O- fer here and I just won't quit," Infante said. "I tell our guys we will keep playing them and eventually it will happen."

The Green Knights entered Saturday with a chance to pull away from their Big North United rivals. Paramus Catholic beat Don Boscoon Friday night and Bergen Catholic downed DePaul, but is without standout quarterback Jarrett Guarantano for the foreseeable future. Although the Hawks aren't a league foe, they would have given the Green Knights valuable power points in the Non-Public Group 4 standings.

But the Green Knights (4-2) never found their stride. They had a punt blocked on their second possession leading to a touchdown run by the Hawks' D'Andre Swift. Swift would score again early in the second quarter on a 32-yard run to make it 14-0.

It was the type of physical performance North Jersey fans expect from St. Joseph, just not the school from Philadelphia. The Hawks outrushed the Green Knights, 228-51.

"I have such a respect for those programs having worked up there, maybe the last couple of years I've psyched out my own kids," Infante said. …

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