By TOM WILLIAMS
Steinert (5-5) at Middle Township (6-4) – 2016 records
Kickoff: 6 p.m. on Thursday
Place: Memorial Field, Cape May Court House
Coaches: Frank Riggitano is 71-82 in his 17th season as Middle’s head coach. He is Middle’s all-time win leader and 22nd among active South Jersey coaches. Riggitano is one of very few New Jersey high school principals who are also head coaches. Dan Caruso of Gateway is 45-48 starting his 10th season. He was named Mercer County Coach of the Year in 2015.
Why so early: Middle was scheduled to play Pitman and Steinert was scheduled to play West Windsor-Plainsboro North again this season. Both schools dropped varsity football. The two teams were matched up to fulfill a complete schedule but could not find a compatible date in September, October or November. Hence, the earliest start by a Cape-Atlantic League public school in a long time.
Steinert Preview: Steinert (Hamilton East) boasts one of the best running backs in the West Jersey Football League in senior Jordan Morrison (6-1, 196), below, who has committed to UConn. Playing mostly quarterback for the Spartans last year, Morrison ran for 799 yards and scored 20 touchdowns. He also played some wide receiver a year ago and is a very good safety. He will be the focus of opposing defenses all season. Senior tackles Jarrod Conti (5-10, 230) and Michael Davies (6-2, 249) and two-way junior lineman Tim Toomer (6-1, 230) anchor the Steinert line.
History: The schools are playing for the first time in football.
Live Radio: Brian Cunniff and Scott Wahl will have all the play-by-play on 98.7-The Coast. Matt Ulmer will stream live video here on CoastSportsToday.
Next Up: Middle Township will play Spartans again next week when they travel to Holy Spirit on Sept. 8 for an important United Division game. It will be Spirit’s season opener. Steinert will host Northern Burlington on Sept. 9.