Newfield finishes successful football season of firsts with awards

Newfield finishes successful football season of firsts with awards

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Elijah Riley lunges for extra yards . File photo by Bill Landon

The Newfield football team continues to make history.

The Wolverines were named Suffolk County’s top team last Monday, earning the Rutgers Trophy at the Suffolk County Football Coaches Association banquet at the Hyatt Regency Hotel in Hauppauge. But that wasn’t the only award the team walked away with.

SNewfield senior defensive lineman Dylyn Ferrari sacks the Deer Park quarterback in the Wolverines' 54-6 Division II qualifying round win over Deer Park on Nov. 6. Photo by Bill Landon
SNewfield senior defensive lineman Dylyn Ferrari sacks the Deer Park quarterback in the Wolverines’ 54-6 Division II qualifying round win over Deer Park on Nov. 6. Photo by Bill Landon

To continue a season of firsts, as the school recorded a 12-0 record, including three shutouts, for the greatest season in Newfield’s 58-year history, senior halfback Elijah Riley became the first Newfield player to garner the 54th Carl A. Hansen Award, presented to Suffolk’s top player.

The 6-foot, 200-pound star rushed for 1,012 yards and scored a school-record 31 touchdowns. He finished with 1,934 all-purpose yards.

Riley also earned the school’s first Tom Cassese Award, presented to the top defensive back, after allowing only three pass receptions and recording three interceptions, two forced fumbles and 66 tackles, 45 of which were solo.

Defensive end Dylan Ferrari earned the fifth annual Rob Burnett Award, given to Suffolk’s top defensive player. Despite suffering a broken left thumb when he fell midway through the fourth quarter of a 31-7 win over North Babylon in the Suffolk County Division II semifinal, Ferrari played through the pain in the final two games of his high school career with a soft protective glove around his hand.

Ferrari finished the season with 71 tackles, including 32 solo tackles, and 18 for a loss of yards. The 6-foot, 1-inch, 236-point, two-way starter forced many botched throws and turnovers as a result. He also recorded a team-high 11 sacks and two forced fumbles.

Jelani Greene makes a diving catch. File photo by Bill Landon
Jelani Greene makes a diving catch for Newfield football. File photo by Bill Landon

Senior Jelani Greene recorded another first, winning the National Football Foundation Award, given to Suffolk’s top wide receiver.

Steven Hoynacky, a standout on special teams, was awarded the Tom Cutinella Memorial Scholarship Award, named in honor of the former Shoreham-Wading River player who died after an on-field collision in 2014.

Like Cutinella, the tight end and defensive end was not only a quality player on the team, but excelled in leadership, character and academics. He is treasurer of the school’s National Honor Society and maintains a 92 GPA.

Although not winning an award, Newfield’s record-breaking senior quarterback Ryan Klemm passed for 31 touchdowns this season.

The Wolverines set a Suffolk record for points scored in a season with 518. The team beat Half Hollow Hills West 58-34 to capture the Suffolk Division II title. A week later, the Wolverines earned the school’s second Long Island Class II championship with a 41-33 win over MacArthur. Newfield earned 27 first-place votes to earn the Rutgers Trophy, and totaled 120 points to edge runner-up Sayville, which had 19 first-place votes and 108 points. Shoreham-Wading River was third with 46 points.