Covering High School Sports in America
Photo by Kevin Pataky

Arkeel Newsome, Ansonia

Usually high-scoring Madison (N.J.) needed a suffocating defense Saturday to edge Mountain Lakes 13-0 for its third consecutive North 2 Group II state football championship. The Dodgers completed a banner season with a 12-0 record and a 37-game winning streak.

Averaging 50.9 points in their first 11 victories, the Dodgers had to rely on the defensive prowess of senior linebacker and captain Matt McDonald, who set the pace with 12 tackles. Senior defensive end Nick Haboj ably assisted with eight tackles and two sacks.

Offensive standout Justin Goodwin did his share by scoring on a 44-yard run and passing for a 20-yard touchdown. The Rutgers University recruit finished with 16 carries for 138 yards. The second half was scoreless.

*Ansonia (Conn.) routed previously unbeaten North Branford 59-26 to notch the Class S state title and a state-record 18th overall championship. The Chargers finished the year with a 14-0 record and 18-game winning streak.

Junior star Arkeel Newsome led the way with 224 yards and three touchdowns, while sophomore quarterback JaiQuan McKnight passed for 181 yards and two touchdowns besides running for 100 yards and another touchdown. Senior Raeshaun Finney had 107 receiving yards and one touchdown.

For North Branford, senior Brandan Basil passed for 398 yards and four touchdowns, with senior Joe Delucia on the receiving end for 204 yards and three touchdowns.

*Will Francis passed to Caleb Spears for a 10-yard touchdown with six seconds left to give Harding Academy (Searcy, Ark.) the Class 3A state football crown with a 49-45 victory over Glen Rose (Malvern). Francis completed 35 of 48 passes for 499 yards and four touchdowns and also scored on a one-yard run to help the champs complete a 14-0 campaign.

Collin Hunter had a total offense of 289 yards and five touchdowns for Glen Rose.

*A crowd estimated at 36,000 watched Hoover (Ala.) blank Opelika 31-0 for the Class 6A state championship at Auburn, Ala. Hoover's Calen Campbell was named MVP after running for 193 yards and three touchdowns.

*Four-star offensive lineman Jimmy Byrne of St. Ignatius (Cleveland, Ohio) made a commitment to the University of Notre Dame on Saturday, according to the South Bend Tribune. The 6-4, 275-pounder said his second choice was Ohio State. CBS Sports recruiting analyst Tom Lemming said that Byrne will be Ohio's No. 1 offensive lineman next year.

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