Lafayette High School’s Nileaj Hills threw 142 yards and three touchdowns on Saturday morning, giving the Patriots an easy 26–8 win over host Jamaica High School.
The Bath Beach squad dominated Jamaica High School’s Storm with its high-powered offense and stout defense — simple, meat-and-potatoes tactics the Patriots’ coaching staff believe will land the gridiron squad in the championships.
“We’re a lunch pail team,” Lafayette coach Thomas Vitola said. “We come to work and we get everything done that we’re supposed to.”
Lafayette High School punched in early, driving 52 yards on 12 plays in the first nine minutes of the game on a methodical march toward the end zone.
Hills threw a slant to wide receiver Anthony Blake for a 14-yard touchdown, but the Storm raged back on its first possession when Tylik Lawrie grabbed a tipped pass from Jamaica High School quarterback Christopher Harris and scored on a 49-yard run down the right sideline.
Harris would run in the two-point conversion himself — putting the Storm ahead 8–7 — but the Patriots made sure the Queens team wouldn’t go any further.
Lafayette’s defense easily keyed on Harris’ favorite target — receiver Abdul Rahm Ibrahim — and put triple-coverage on the speedster, suffocating Jamaica’s offensive line for the rest of the game.
Saturday’s victory gave Lafayette High School, which lost in the semifinals last year, a perfect 3–0 record this season.
Hills dropped the word “championship” after the game — a dream his teammates share.
“We’re looking to win the championship and go undefeated,” said Lafayette High School tight end Christopher Woolbright, who ran a touchdown pass for 39 yards in the second quarter. “We want to leave our mark on this school.”