Nutley HS football team holds off Bloomfield in season opener

Photos Courtesy of Jerry Simon. Nutley junior Gennaro Longobardi breaks free in the win over Bloomfield.
Nutley senior quarterback Justin Lucia looks to pass during the season opener against Bloomfield.

NUTLEY – The Nutley High School football team kicked off its 100th season with a hard-fought 15-8 win over Bloomfield on Saturday, Sept. 7, at Tangorra Field.

Junior Johnny Coppola scored on a 12-yard run, followed by senior Justin Lucia’s extra point in the first quarter for a 7-0 lead.

After Bloomfield answered with a touchdown to take an 8-7 lead later in the first quarter, the Raiders went ahead for good on senior Dan Jennings’ 50-yard touchdown from Lucia,  who thens scored on the two-point conversion run in the second quarter.

The Raiders ran for 178 yards, led bysenior Dante Contella, who rushed for 78 yards on 18 carries. Coppola finished with 39 rushing yards on six carries; Lucia had 49 yards on 10 carries.

Lucia passed for 96 yards. Senior Chris Kruse had two catches for 43 yards.

The Raider defense was led by seniors Matt Jaworski, Brandon Martins, and DiAntonio, junior Nick Polewka and Coppola.

The Raiders will host Montclair on Saturday, Sept. 14 at 1 p.m. Montclair lost to West Orange, 29-6, at Rutgers on Sept. 7 in the season opener.