POINT BORO —The Point Boro football team is trying to capture its third straight Class B South championship.
The second year head coach Matt Cilento returns many players from a team that finished 8-2 just a year ago. A former defensive coordinator for the Panthers, Cilento puts a lot of his attention toward the team’s defense.
“One good thing about being the head coach and the defensive coordinator, it still gives me a lot of influence and, still gives me that energy to coach these kids and be around them,” Cilento said. “They are playing well, they are playing fast, pretty good recognition with the formation and strengths and they are picking up quickly.”
The defense looked solid throughout the preseason, even shutting out Toms River North’s first offense, 13-0, in the first half of the Panther’s second scrimmage on Tuesday, Aug. 22.
The thing that stands out when discussing the Point Boro football team is its versatility on both the defensive and offensive side of the ball.
The Panthers consist of a talented veteran class with 11 seniors that features an offensive one-two punch in quarterback James Fara and running back Tanner Gordon. Last season, the pair built a reputation with the use of the triple option.
Fara is coming off his first season as the team’s starting quarterback. The senior captain made a statement in his inaugural campaign after throwing for 472 yards and five touchdowns. Fara proved his running game was his biggest threat last year after collecting 1,293 yards and 19 touchdowns.
Fara is looking to add to his credentials this season and feels strongly about having the right guys behind him to help him get there.
“We return our whole backfield, so we have more play choices now because we did all the plays last year that we already had,” Fara said. “We got right into that right away because we were familiar with it, so now we are putting in new plays and it is easier to catch up because we have a back-up back.”
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