Seniors ready for North-South Classic
Quarterback Jaheem Woods of Neptune led his football squad to its first sectional championship in 24 years last fall and also guided the Scarlet Fliers' basketball team to the Group 3 final last March by exhibiting the same leadership skills at guard that he'd displayed all fall on the gridiron.
The two-sport star will be back on the football field Monday to head up a talented South defensive secondary at the 34th New Jersey North-South All-Star Football Classic at 7 p.m. at Kean University's Alumni Field in Union.
Woods, who'll continue his football career at Stony Brook, is one of eight standouts who helped his team win an NJSIAA sectional championship in 2012, and will now attempt to complete his high school career on a winning note. The split is even with four sectional champions coming from the South and four from the North.
Woods completed 79 of 149 passes for 1,391 yards and 15 touchdowns, rushed for 1,282 yards and 15 TDs and was outstanding in the secondary for Neptune. His Scarlet Fliers defeated Steinert, 47-28, in the Central Jersey, Group 3 final for the program's first title since 1988.
Also representing the South Monday are Asbury Park defensive lineman Ra'zahn Howard, Matawan DB Larry Alston and Piscataway running back Tevin Shaw. Piscataway won the North Jersey, Section 2, Group 4 title, Asbury Park claimed Central Jersey, Group 1 and Matawan won Central Jersey, Group 2.
The four North representatives from sectional winners are defensive lineman Dominic Valeriani of West Essex (North Jersey, Section 1, Group 2), punter/kicker Nate Philipson of Cedar Grove (NJ, Section 2, Group 1), defensive lineman Ben Anderson of Madison (NJ,S2, G2) and linebacker Michael Klimek of Cranford (NJ,S2,G3). Klimek's Cranford squad beat Parsippany Hills, 27-0, last December at Kean's Alumni Field.
Rosters for 34th New Jersey, North-South, All-Star Football Classic
QB: Gabe DiMasi, Montclair Kimberley; Spencer Perez, Hoboken.
RB: Anthony Byers, Scotch Plains-Fanwood; Elijah Hughes, Elizabeth;
Matt Del Mauro, Nutley; Lance Smith, West Orange.
WR: Keith Foster, Weequahic; Nate Ortiz, St. Anthony; Najee Williams,
East Orange; Jason Fuerhing, Lakeland; Mike Tenned, Butler.
OL: Ryan Van Cleft, Cresskill; Dan Cano, Montclair; Nazir Barnett,
Union; A.J. Pravada, Seton Hall; Dion Dawkins, Rahway; Armando Ramos,
Belleville; Dillon Minnaker, Ramsey; Luke Leshinsky, Livingston;
Anthony Manganiello, Gov. Livingston; Lenny Smith, River Dell.
K: Diamo Streaser, Glen Rock; Nate Philipson, Cedar Grove.
DL: Ben Anderson, Madison; Mike Walsh, Belvidere; Chad Mavety, Sparta;
Jeremy Rokosky, Bernards; Scott Wiggins, Roselle; Dominic Valeriani,
West Essex; Chad Lewis, Plainfield; Gordy DuFresne, Hillside.
LB: Tyler Condit, Caldwell; Dave Barletta, New Providence; Dennis
Benesko, Delbarton; Michael Klimek, Cranford; Joshua Johnson, Passaic
Tech; Mike Donnarumma, Saddle Brook.
DB: Steven Le, Union City; Ronald Robinson, St. Peter's Prep; Marcus
Parker, Hackensack; Malcolm Robinson, Bayonne; Mohammad Ramadan,
Clifton; Eric Reynoso, Ridgefield Park; Doug Norkett, Ramapo.
QB: Manny Cortez, Pennsauken; Adam Riese, Steinert.
RB: Alquann Jones, Millville; Tevin Shaw, Piscataway; Greg Jones,
Colonia; John Sieczdowski, Manalapan.
WR: Anthony Nyers, Woodbridge; Vance Matthews, Lower Cape May; Tyheem
Crawford, Red Bank; Alex Walter, Haddonfield; William Johnson, Winslow
OL: Grant Duffield, Toms River North; Gary Dietrich, Shore; Nick
Zataviski, Delran; Sean Place, Manasquan; Matt Diaz, Edison; Jake
Fernandez, Lacey; Matt Ford, Wall; Dave Kozak, Cinnaminson; Sean
K: Mike Burke, Williamstown.
DL: Brian Keller, Triton; Tayson Hayward, Penns Grove; Gavin Riley,
Toms River East; Jack Eisenstadt, Rumson; Ra'Zahn Howard, Asbury Park;
Chris Staton, Franklin; Ian McGeary, North Brunswick; Dylan Salva,
Bishop Ahr; Tanner Thexton, Sommerville.
LB: Tom Winters, Brick; Michael Tenpenny, Iselin-Kennedy; Manny
McClain, Highland Park; Dimietrie Christodoylaksi, Jackson; Dan
Valles, Carteret; Mike Wagner, Colts Neck.
DB: Jevon Tyree, South Brunswick; Mark Clements, Oakcrest; Larry
Alston, Matawan; Darryl Smith, St. Joseph's (Hamm.); Joe Johnson,
Manchester Township; Jaheem Woods, Neptune; Alonzo Sadler, Palmyra.
Mike Kinney covers football for MSG Varsity. Follow him on Twitter: @MikeKinneyHS