Seton Hall Prep football team falls to Bergen Catholic in playoffs to end solid 6-3 season

WEST ORANGE – The Seton Hall Prep varsity football team, seeded third, lost to sixth-seeded Bergen Catholic, 49-20, in the quarterfinal round of the state Non-Public Group 4 playoffs on Friday, Nov. 13, at West Orange High School’s Joe Suriano Stadium on a cold and windy night.

The Pirates finished the season with a 6-3 record under first-year head coach Vito Campanile.

The game was billed as the Campanile Bowl in a matchup of opposing coaching brothers. Campanile’s brother, Nunzio Campanile, is the head coach for Bergen Catholic.

BC opened up a 21-0 lead after the first quarter. After BC scored to make it 21-0, the Pirates took over on their 33-yard line and drove 67 yards in nine plays, capped by senior quarterback Zach Keller’s 15-yard touchdown pass to senior tight end Rory Schlageter in the corner of the end zone. Senior kicker Edward Guiltinan kicked the extra point to cut it to 21-7 with 10:41 left in the second quarter.

The SHP defense stiffened as the Pirates took over on downs on the BC 30-yard line. On the first play, Keller hit Schlageter down the middle with a 30-yard TD pass to cut it to 21-13 with 9:04 left. The extra point fell short.

BC scored with 54 seconds left to take a 28-13 halftime lead. BC scored two touchdowns in the third quarter and one TD in the fourth for a 49-13 lead. After the BC fourth-quarter TD, SHP took over on its 29-yard line and drove 71 yards in five plays, capped by Keller’s 22-yard TD pass to Schlageter. Guiltinan added the final point of the season with 3:53 left.

Vito Campanile was proud of his team for a great season.

“I could not ask for a better group of players, coaches, and administrators,” he said after the game. “They really support how we are developing our football program.”

NOTE: The Pirates’ Super Essex Conference non-divisional home game against Caldwell on Nov. 25 has been cancelled. The game was originally scheduled for Oct. 2, but Caldwell requested a postponement to Nov. 25 due to injuries that caused a lack of players. But the game now has been called off.

SHP stats vs. BC

Passing: Keller, 14 of 28 for 179 yards, three TDs, one interception.

Rushing: Senior running back Dylan Badger, nine carries for 41 yards.

Receiving: Schlageter, seven catches for 109 yards, three TDs.

Defense: Senior linebacker Ben Mara, 18 tackles, 1/2 sack. Junior linebacker Paul Theobald, 12 tackles. Senior linebacker Cole Lumby, 10 tackles. Junior defensive end Robert Ramsthaler, seven tackles, 1 1/2 sacks.

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