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August 19, 20132012 In Review: The Knights were 8-2, losing to Lakeland in the North Jersey Section 1 Group 3 playoffs. They scored 267 points for a 26.7 average, while allowing 173 for a 17.3 average. Wins included Caldwell, West Orange, and Barringer, while their other loss was to River Dell.
Departures: T/DT Michael Realbuto - Franklin & Marshall, WR/CB Nour Aly - Wagner, C/DE Christian Russo - Ithaca
Offense: West Essex runs the Wing-T and returns five starters and one who played. Returning at quarterback is senior Matt Thies (6-foot-2, 195), who passed for 1,100 yards and ten touchdowns. At one halfback, senior Joe Scaglia (5-foot-10, 185) returns and the other halfback will have seniors Peter Norton (5-foot-10, 195) and Billy Galese (5-foot-10, 190) each getting carries. Fullback will have both senior Jason Russo (5-foot-8, 180) and junior Marc McDonald (6-foot-1, 225).
Senior Kevin Fox (6-foot-0, 185) will be the split end and senior Alex Wojtowicz (5-foot-11, 190) will play tight end. Seeing time at split end will be junior Jon Agolia (5-foot-11, 180) and making a push senior John Filipow (5-foot-10, 165).
Three starters return to the line. Back are senior tackle Mark Dignazio (6-foot-2, 240), senior guard John Zapparrata (5-foot-10, 195), and junior guard Roberto LoCascio (5-foot-10, 210). The center will be senior Robert O'Neill (5-foot-9, 215). The other tackle is open, with seniors Matt Dignazio (6-foot-0, 200) and Adam Farkas (5-foot-10, 230) in the running, along with others.
Defense: The Knights run a 4-3 and return five starters and another who started some games. Mark Dignazio returns at nose guard and the tackle will have Farkas, senior Tony Lipari (6-foot-1, 230), and O'Neill competing. Rotating at the two ends will be Matt Dignazio, McDonald, Zapparrata, and junior Jared Ponzio (5-foot-10, 250).
At linebacker, LoCascio returns in the middle, while Russo started some games on the strong side. The weak side linebacker will be either Wojtowicz or junior Dominic Magliaro (5-foot-8, 170).
The secondary has three starters back in Scaglia at free safety, Norton at strong safety, and Galese at strong safety. The other cornerback is open, with juniors Luke Magliaro (5-foot-9, 170) and Michael Panzarino (5-foot-8, 155) in the running.
Special Teams: The kicker will be senior Cameron Boeckel and Dominic Magliaro returns as the punter. The return men will be Galese, Dominic Magliaro, and Scaglia.
Thursday, 9/12, River Dell at home, 7:30PM
Saturday, 9/21, at West Orange, 7PM
Friday, 9/27, Caldwell at home, 7:30PM
Friday, 10/4, at Orange, 7PM
Friday, 10/11, Belleville at home, 7:30PM
Friday, 10/18, at Millburn, 7PM
Friday, 10/25, at West Side, 7PM
Friday, 11/1, Irvington at home, 7:30PM
Friday, 11/8, Barringer at home, 7:30PM
Question Marks: Developing both lines and making the players realize every game and practice is crucial.
Recruiting: Thies has interest from Penn, Cornell, and Monmouth. Norton has interest from Cornell and Scaglia has interest from Monmouth. Mark Ignazio is D2/D3, with interest from Bloomsburg and Rowan. Galese could go football and lacrosse. Russo is D3. Fox may go the baseball route.
In the junior class, LoCascio committed to Villanova for lacrosse. McDonald has 1-AA potential. The Magliaro twins may play baseball and Panzarino may wrestle. The others need good years.
Coach's Comments: "We have some guys with returning experience and that's important. We were young last year and towards the end, they improved. We have a lot of skill players returning. The line will be young and somewhat inexperienced, but they're working hard. On defense, the back seven will be very experienced and the line will be young." - Head Coach Chris Benacquista
New Jersey NEWS