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Athletics News

Susan Wagner football team stays on winning path

By Joe D'Amodio

The Susan Wagner football team is turning back the clock.

The Falcons, 2-7 a year ago under then first-year coach Arthur Newcombe, are off to their best start since 1999 as they improved to 3-0 Saturday with a 20-0 PSAL City Conference decision over Brooklyn Tech at home.

"We just go day by day," said Newcombe, a former Falcon himself under legendary SW head coach Al Paturzo, whose big shoes Newcombe had to fill. "We have a bunch of good kids and a great staff. But literally we try to take it day by day."

The Falcons already surpassed last year's win total when they were 2-7.

Newcombe attributes the early season success to familiarity -- the players know him and he knows them -- and they both have a year under their belts now.

"It's really a good feeling when you come to work now," said Newcombe.

It helps, too, that the Falcons are winning.

Like Saturday's tough victory over Brooklyn Tech. SW did all of its scoring in the first half and its rugged defense took over in the second half.

Fullback Christian Browne's 6-yard TD reception from Joseph Thorpe gave the Falcons a 6-0 lead in the first quarter.

SW struck paydirt on its next drive when Thorpe connected with Derrick Edafe on an 8-yard TD pass to put the Island squad ahead, 12-0.

Thorpe's 29-yard scamper and Anthony Cuzzocrea's two-point PAT gave the Falcons a 20-0 lead in the second quarter.

Thorpe, a junior, finished 9 of 14 for 125 yards and two TD passes. He was picked off once.

Brooklyn Tech got the ball to start the second half and went on a monstrous drive that took the game into the fourth quarter.

Brooklyn Tech drove to the SW 1, but couldn't punch it over.

"The defense did a great job not letting them score," praised Newcombe. "The defensive coaches made all the right calls (when Tech got in the red zone)."

SW's win sets up a big showdown Friday night at 7 when the Falcons travel to Huguenot to face unbeaten Tottenville, which is also 3-0.

"It's always a big game when Susan Wagner plays Tottenville," said Newcombe, who was involved in plenty of those matchups when he played in the late 1990s. "This rivalry goes way back.

"But like I said, my kids don't like to look too far ahead. We are going to take it day by day this week and get ready."