PLEASANTVILLE - It took nearly half a game before the Holy Spirit High School football team could score on Friday night against upset-minded Pleasantville.
But Holy Spirit, No. 10 in The Press' Elite 11, finally got its offense on track on the soft, rain-soaked turf and beat the Greyhounds 32-6 in their Cape-Atlantic League National Conference season opener.
Spartans quarterback Joe Callahan threw touchdown passes to running back Anthony Sarao and tight end Zach Fabel.
Sophomore running back Nigel Jones, who had little running room in the first half, scored on runs of 3 and 5 yards in the second half.
"Pleasantville played a great first half," Holy Spirit coach Charlie Roman said. "We really had our hands full. Nigel was a bull tonight. It was tough for him to break a long one with the field conditions. Nigel can cut on a dime, but with this kind of field that wasn't possible."
Holy Spirit, which pounded Pleasantville 56-0 last year, finally broke up a 0-0 tie with 1 minute, 10 seconds left in the first half as Callahan fired a 26-yard TD pass to Sarao.
Jones ran 3 yards off right tackle early in the third quarter, and kicker Tommy Worthington's PAT made it 13-0. The Greyhounds fumbled a pitchout deep in their own end zone late in the quarter, and Holy Spirit defensive end Greg Goff pounced on it for a score.
Jones followed with a 5-yard TD off left guard in the fourth quarter, and Callahan's 20-yard toss over the middle to Fabel was the fifth Spartans touchdown.
Pleasantville got on the board with 44 seconds left as Antwan Dixon threw a 12-yard pass on fourth down to wide receiver Werner Hill-Sanders.
Dixon, who played wide receiver most of the game, caught four passes for 67 yards from quarterback Jacob Haines. Also for the Greyhounds, Dontaye Smith led with 12 tackles. Donald Drinkard had 10.
"I think the first half was more indicative of how we played," Pleasantville coach B.J. Burch said. "In the second half, they wore us down and capitalized on some of our mistakes."
E-mail Guy Gargan:
Holy Spirit 0 6 13 13 - 32
Pleasantville 0 0 0 6 - 6
HS-Sarao 26 pass from Callahan (kick failed)
HS-Jones 3 run (Worthington kick)
HS-Goff recovered fumble in Pleasantville end zone (kick failed)
HS-Jones 5 run (kick failed)
HS-Fabel 20 pass from Callahan (Worthington kick)
P-Hill-Sanders 12 pass from Dixon (run failed)
RECORDS-Holy Spirit 1-0; Pleasantville 0-1.