Only a first week loss kept the Blue Devil junior varsity football team from finishing the season with a perfect record. Huntington fell to West Islip and then ran off seven consecutive victories to post a 7-1 mark this fall.
Coached by Ronald Wilson and Andrew White, the Huntington High School JV was captained by Joey Zink, David Dje Bi, Timmy McDonald and John Genova.
The Blue Devils outscored their opponents, 272-67. “This very young team performed well in every aspect of the game,” Wilson said. “Throughout the course of the season, they developed and matured into outstanding athletes and great young men. Our team achieved success only by the extra achievements of each individual on the roster. Our team conquered because we all were able to play and enjoy this great game called football.”
The Huntington JV had many heroes, including running back/defensive back Kei Shan Miller, who caught seven passes for 74 yards and a touchdown and who rushed 25 times for 346 yards and another five touchdowns. The sophomore even returned 10 kicks for 407 yards and six touchdowns.
“Kei Shan’s a real warrior; a real competitor, who put the team on his back and led us to a successful season,” Wilson said. “His high football IQ, coupled with his elusiveness garnered him multiple game MVP awards this season.”
McDonald also starred in the Blue Devil backfield and excelled at linebacker on defense. Despite missing four games with injuries, the freshman rushed for 188 yards and four touchdowns, caught three passes for 63 yards and a touchdown and went two-for-four passing for 74 yards. Perhaps most impressive were his 25 solo tackles, including seven for a loss He caused a fumble, intercepted a pass and recorded a safety.
“Timmy is a multi-talented athlete who was relentless every time he stepped out on the field,” Wilson said. “Teams found it very hard to run on him because he’s able to cover the entire field. “Known as our ‘panther,’ he was just as good on offense as well.”
Zink did a nice job at quarterback, wide receiver and defensive back. The sophomore connected on nine of 15 passes for 197 yards and two touchdowns and three two-point conversions. He rushed nine times for 85 yards and a touchdown. Defensively, the teenager had 12 solo tackles, including four for a loss, two interceptions and 14 deflected passes.
“Joey Zink is a tireless and exceptional athlete who worked extremely hard as a first time quarterback,” Wilson said. “He’s tough and aggressive and made some intelligent decisions on the field.”
Dje Bi proved to be a workhorse, rushing 62 times for 797 yards, eight touchdowns and a pair of two point conversions He also recorded 14 tackles, including two for a loss and eight deflected passes.
“David Dje Bi worked extremely hard in the off-season and it paid big dividends,” Wilson said. He had the most yards and touchdowns this season. You just have to love this kid’s attitude. He’s always hard working and he never complains. He’s a coach’s dream.”
Freshman Tommy Kline, who starred at quarterback, wide receiver and defensive back was another standout for the Blue Devil JV.
Kline rushed for 86 yards and a touchdown; passed for 179 yards and two touchdowns; caught a pair of passes for 61 yards and had 22 tackles, including three for a loss, two interceptions and three pass deflections.
“What a talent,” Wilson said. “Tommy Kline is afraid of absolutely nothing. He played QB in one of our offensive schemes and did an awesome job. He was probably one of our best cover guys on defense. Either the ball was intercepted or knocked down. Either way, he made great plays on defense.”
Wilson said he’s expecting an almost entirely new cast of players next year with most of this year’s JV headed to the varsity ranks. “That’s the way it has been the last three or four years,” he said.