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Brody Levin's late TD pass gives Mainland rain-soaked win

Brody Levin's late TD pass gives Mainland rain-soaked win

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LINWOOD — The Mainland Regional High School football team, led by backup quarterback Brody Levin, wrote a dramatic ending to an otherwise sloppy, rain-soaked game with visiting Pleasantville on Friday.

Levin, wide receiver Noah Torres and kicker Brady Panas combined to deliver a fourth-quarter touchdown and extra point that gave Mainland a 7-6 win.

Levin, who only switched to quarterback after an injury, fired a 4-yard touchdown strike to Torres, who caught it deep in the end zone to make it 6-6 with 4 minutes, 41 seconds remaining in the game. Torres, the holder on the crucial extra point, made a good hold after a low snap, and Panas booted a low liner that went through the uprights for the winning point.

“This is a team that never gives up, no matter what,” Mainland coach Chuck Smith said. “Brody came in at quarterback when we needed him. We’re fortunate to have him. Noah got open and Brody found him in the end zone. That Noah pulled the big play by putting the ball on the holder on the extra point, and Panas made it. I give all the credit to all our boys. It’s great to pull out a game at home. We love to play at home.”

Mainland freshman quarterback Jake Meyers left the game with an injury in the third quarter and was replaced by Levin, a slot back and defensive back.

Pleasantville was leading 6-0 but was pinned near its own end zone with under seven minutes left, and a short punt got only to the Greyhounds’ 23-yard line. Levin passed 17 yards to Nick Wagner to the 6-yard line. Running back Dennis Moreno got two yards to the 4, and the TD pass to Torres came with 4 minutes, 41 seconds left.

“I was taking over for Jake, and he’s a great quarterback and a good friend,” said Levin, a 17-year-old senior from Somers Point. “I saw Noah in the end zone waving his arms and got it to him. It was a big game. If you’re a football player, this is the kind of thing you dream about.”

Pleasantville had two more possessions but couldn’t move the ball. The Greyhounds’ final drive ended when Mustangs cornerback Joe Sheeran intercepted a pass.

In the third quarter, a Mainland snap went over the punter’s head, and Pleasantville took over at the Mustangs’ 7-yard line. Running back Zahir Washington got 5 yards on first down, and then bulled his way up the middle for a 2-yard score. A run for two points failed when the snap was fumbled.

“It was a tough game, and it was mostly defensive,” Pleasantville coach Javier Garcia said. “The mud and the rain really affected our passing game. It was hard for everyone to play in these conditions.”

Note: Mainland running back Ja’briel Mace was out with an injury. Smith didn’t know when Mace and Meyers might return to action.

Pleasantville 0 0 6 0 — 6

Mainland Regional 0 0 0 7 — 7

THIRD QUARTER

P—Washington 2 run (run failed)

FOURTH QUARTER

M—Torres 4 pass from Levin (Panas kick)

Records-Pleasantville 1-2, Mainland 2-1.

Contact: 609-272-7210

GGargan@pressofac.com

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Staff Writer

I’ve been at The Press since January of 1983. I cover all sports in general, but mostly lifeguard racing, and high school field hockey, football, swimming, basketball, crew, baseball and softball.

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