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Delsea falls in Group 3 state final to Old Tappan

Old Tappan's Aidan Heaney rushes against Delsea in the NJSIAA Group 3 state final at Rutgers University's SHI Stadium in Piscataway, New Jersey on Saturday, December 3, 2022. Ryan Fuhs/D2 Sports Network

PISCATAWAY (N.J.) - The Delsea Regional High School football team fell to Old Tappan, 24-14, in the inaugural NJSIAA Group 3 state final at SHI Stadium.

The Crusaders finished the season with a 12-1 record.

The Golden Knights scored 10 unanswered points in the fourth quarter to become the first North Jersey program to secure a public state title.

Nico Ottomanelli connected on a 46-yard field goal with 6:51 left in regulation to establish a 17-14 lead. Evan Brooks reeled in a 30-yard touchdown pass on fourth down from Alex Orecchio to heighten the advantage to 10 points with 4:32 left to play.

Brooks finished with three receptions for 72 yards and a touchdown. The senior also added a tackle for loss on defense.

Aidan Heaney accumulated 98 rushing yards for Old Tappan. Rochester commit Jack Diggins recorded a game-high 13 tackles and Luca Saracino contributed 2.5 tackles for loss.

Jared Schoppe powered the Crusaders' offense with 90 rushing yards and a touchdown. Junior Wayne Adair added 36 yards and a score on the ground. Adair also contributed 11 tackles on defense.

Austin Boos engined Delsea's defensive unit with 2.5 tackles for loss, two forced fumbles and a sack. Joel Anderson added two tackles for loss, a sack and a forced fumble for the Crusaders.

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