New Providence Football Stunned by Bernards, 14-7
Friday, October 11, 2013 • 11:37pm
NEW PROVIDENCE, NJ – The Pioneers varsity football team saw their undefeated season come to a dramatic end on Friday night, losing to Bernards, 14-7, at Lieder Field.
New Providence was six yards from tying the game in the final minute before the Minutemen stuffed the Pioneers on four straight plays leading to their defeat.
“The bottom line is that we knew we needed to play a cleaner football game against better teams,” New Providence head coach Joe Carollo said. “That’s on us as coaches. We will get them there. They will get there. We make no excuses. We played hard. Someone had to lose, unfortunately it was us.”
Bernards controlled the clock throughout the first half, however the Minutemen were held scoreless until quarterback Tyler Baum hit Jordan Tantieff with a 47-yard pass down the right sideline to break the scoreless tie.
The score remained 7-0 until late in the third when Bernards running back Robert Schaufler pounded the ball up the middle for a 6-yard score.
After NP gave the ball away via a fumble and Bernards missed a field goal, the Pioneers embarked on an 18-play, seven minute drive that ended with C.J. Kliesch scoring on a 7-yard run to cut the deficit in half.
New Providence responded with their first 3-and-out defensive stand, giving the Pioneer offense the ball on the Minutemen 37-yard line and 2:35 left in the game.
After Quarterback Jack Harvey hit Joseph Ciarroca on 29-yard screen pass to set up 1st and Goal from the eight, the Pioneers were stopped on four straight plays to preserve the Bernards win.
“It doesn’t matter about skill,” Bernards defensive captain Will Kenny said. “Its about the power of the teammates. At first we did [think momentum was lost]. We just knew it was life or death. We’ve been training for it.”
The defeat drops the Pioneers to 4-1 on the year and now a virtual-game back of Bernards (4-1) for the division crown.
“We don’t have a lot to be upset about,” Carollo said. “We’re going to grow and keep getting better. That’s the way it is right now. It’s a tough loss, but we’re going to get better and keep working.”
New Providence returns to action on Friday when they visit Bound Brook. Kick-off is scheduled for 7 p.m.