Newspaper article The Record (Bergen County, NJ)

Ex-Ramapo Kicker Bids for Ru Job

Newspaper article The Record (Bergen County, NJ)

Ex-Ramapo Kicker Bids for Ru Job

Article excerpt

PISCATAWAY - The kick was straight, seemingly on its way to split the uprights.

But it wasn't quite long enough.

David Bonagura's 49-yard field goal attempt on the final play of the Rutgers football spring game at High Point Solutions Stadium hit the crossbar, and bounced back onto the field.

Still, it was a good-looking kick by the Ramapo High School grad, who is making a bid to win the placekicker job as a redshirt junior.

Bonagura connected on field goals of 32 and 38 yards but also missed wide right from 36 yards as he handled all the placekicking chores during the game.

Neither Bonagura nor anyone else has been penciled in as the No. 1 kicker, and similarly, nobody yet has stepped up and grabbed the job of starting quarterback.

Top candidates Chris Laviano and Hayden Rettig each threw one touchdown pass Saturday night in the Scarlet's 33-20 win over the White in the intrasquad game that concluded spring football.

The Scarlet team was composed mainly of starters and third- stringers, with the White squad manned by second-stringers and fourth-team members. Because of that disparity, Rutgers coach Chris Ash decided to spot the White team 17 points before the game started, although it proved not to be nearly enough. Both Laviano and Rettig played for the Scarlet team.

Laviano played the first and third quarters with the first team. Rettig played the second and fourth quarters, and the last play of the first period, with the starters.

Ash said that Bonagura "didn't start real well" during the spring, but "really picked it up in the second half" of spring ball.

"He's made a lot of progress," said Ash, who has indicated he might bring in a walk-on or a graduate transfer in the fall to compete with Bonagura.

"I thought I did well," said Bonagura, the only kicker in spring practice. "Obviously, those two kicks [I missed], I'd like to go back in time and change them. …

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