MAMARONECK, N.Y. ‒ The Rye Neck Panthers may be the most underappreciated football team in Westchester Class C football, with most of the attention going to state champion Dobbs Ferry and unbeaten Woodlands.
But unbeaten Rye Neck (4-0) is the only local team yet to allow a single point coming off a tight 8-0 victory over Albertus Magnus. The Panthers host Hastings (1-4) Saturday at 1:30 p.m., hoping to remain perfect.
The Panthers run, run, run the ball and have averaged more than 320 yards per game, with juniors Ryan Morningstar and Jakob Calvini leading the ground game.
Calvini, Raff Mestanza and Matt Brennan lead a defense that is quick and tough against the run. But the Panthers' defense has not faced an offense as good as Hastings' and will have to be quick to the ball to keep its shutout streak alive.
Hastings has improved over the last three weeks despite losing to Woodlands (5-0) and Dobbs Ferry (4-1), the two top-ranked teams in Class C. Quarterback Rob Hevia leads a good running and passing game that features running back Devin Nunez and receivers Alex Brizer and Joe Goldbloom. Mike Inciofane, Jesse Greenwald and Chris Minozzi lead the defense.
Rye Neck faces its toughest test in a well-coached and improving Hastings team, but should continue its winning ways with a good effort.