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Phillipsburg football captures 3rd straight division title with win over Hillsborough

Phillipsburg 28, Hillsborough 7 – Rapid Recap

After last-second wins the last two weeks, Phillipsburg High School’s football team returned home with an emphatic victory over Hillsborough, 28-7, to move to 6-0 on the season and clinch a third straight Mid-State 38 Delaware Division title.

The Stateliners, ranked fourth by lehighvalleylive, got off to a hot start, scoring on the third play of the game as Ben Ries rolled out on a play-action pass and found Ray Poremba for a 42-yard touchdown.

Phillipsburg’s ground game did the bulk of the work from there, as junior Matt Quetel wore out the Hillsborough defense with tough running.

Turning point: The Raiders struggled on offense throughout the first half, earning less than 110 yards in the opening two quarters. After the break, however, Hillsborough put together the longest drive of the game and threatened to narrow Phillipsburg’s lead.

On the opening drive of the third quarter, a roughing the punter and two long runs from Sean Levonaitis put Hillsborough inside the Phillipsburg 30. The Stateliners put the clamps down defensively and came up with two sacks, including one by Robert Martin on fourth-and-long.

The sack ensured that, while Hillsborough drained 10 minutes off the clock, it came up with no points.

Top performers: Quetel was once again the workhorse for Phillipsburg’s offense, rushing for 182 yards on 19 carries. Quetel’s physicality broke down the Raiders defense as the junior fought for yards after contact for four quarters.

Isaiah Craighead added a 12-yard touchdown in the first quarter to put the Stateliners up 14-0. Poremba finished the night with four receptions for 70 yards.

Ben Ries added 117 yards passing, going 9-for-14 through the air.

On defense, Martin and Bobby Coury provided two drive-ending sacks for a unit that hounded dual-threat quarterback Tom Ramsey most of the game.

What it means: The Stateliners stay unbeaten and add another division title to their trophy case, but have much bigger goals for a season that has started so well.

Phillipsburg travels to North Hunterdon next week.

Desmond Boyle may be reached at Follow him on Twitter @DesJBoyle. Find Lehigh Valley high school sports on Facebook.

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