BUENA VISTA TOWNSHIP - Kaiwan Lewis and Max Valles work well together.
It was apparent as the two easily carried St. Joseph coach Paul Sacco in celebration of Sacco's Cape-Atlantic League best 250th career win.
It was even more evident as Lewis and Valles tortured the St. Augustine Prep offense throughout Friday's game.
The future Division I defensive ends and the rest of the St. Joseph defense held the Prep to negative total yards of offense and beat the Prep 38-0.
"We knew what was at stake and we wanted to get it done for him," Lewis said. "We call him a legend around here.
"You can go to his history. He's won a whole lot of championships and that's the reason a lot of kids choose to come here and play at St. Joseph. They want to play for a great coach like that."
St. Joseph (4-0), No. 1 in The Press Elite 11, was pumped up for its coach.
Sacco, on the other hand, was less than ecstatic.
"It's just a number really," Sacco said. "I have to thank people going way, way back to 1983 basically when I started. Every class I've had has always been special to me.
"I ask each class to build each year and keep that foundation going. Once again we've got a good group of kids here that are building."
Prep quarterback Joe Gatto did all he could to avoid pressure from Valles late in the second quarter.
Unfortunately for Gatto and the Hermits, Valles wasn't the only future Division I player on the field.
Lewis, who actually played linebacker Friday, picked up right where Valles left off, sacking Gatto for a 9-yard loss.
"It feels good because I know if I mess up he's going to make the tackle," Valles said with a laugh.
The 6-foot-5, 225 pounder will play at the University of Virginia next season. Lewis, 6-foot-2, 237 pounds, will play at South Carolina.
But they aren't alone.
Defensive linemen Kevin Goldsmith, Roy Lucas and Mike Adams were each playing in the backfield for much of the game.
All three had multiple tackles for a loss as the Hermits finished with negative 10 yards of total offense and only two first downs, one coming on a roughing the kicker penalty.
Mike Vaccarella, Charles Cade, Delonce Hargrave and linebacker Corey Litton were also stellar.
The Wildcats led 15-0 at halftime but came out playing inspired football in the second half.
Eli Pogue scored on a 3-yard touchdown, his second of the game.
Anthony Giagunto found Darryl Smith for a 46-yard touchdown pass.
Kaheem Reynolds scored the Wildcats' third touchdown of the third quarter with a 61-yard run, capping off a five-play 99-yard drive to take a 38-0 lead.
St. Joseph's offense was just as balanced as its defense.
Reynolds led the way with 161 yards and a touchdown.
Pogue ran for 61 yards and two touchdowns. Smith ran for 60 yards on eight carries and caught three passes for another 79 yards.
"They're very good," Sacco said of his team. "A lot of people say they can't be as good as last year but we don't compare one year to another. I think this team plays so well together. They've got each other's back all the time."
Contact John O'Kane:
St. Joseph 7 8 23 0 - 38
St. Augustine Prep 0 0 0 0 - 0
SJ-Pease 15 run (Valles kick)
SJ-Pogue 1 run (conversion good)
SJ-Pogue 3 run (conversion good)
SJ-Smith 46 pass by Giagunto (conversion good) SJ-Reynolds 61 run (Valles kick)
TEAM STATS SJ SA
Rushing 326 -42
Passing 94 32
First downs 19 2
Penalties 3-35 2-15
Turnovers 1 1
Rushing-St. Joseph: Reynolds 15-161, Pogue 13-61, Smith 8-60, Pease 3-40, Todoro 2-9, Wright 1-2, Giagunto 1-(-7); St. Augustine Prep: Gatto 6-(-18), Barillo 11-(-16), Gerald 2-(-8).
Passing-St. Joseph: Giagunto 7-12-94-0; St. Augustine Prep: Gatto 7-13-32-0, Jablonski 0-4-0-0.
Receiving-St. Joseph: Smith 3-79, Valles 2-14, Thompson 1-11, Pease 1-(-10); St. Augustine Prep: Calattozzo 1-16, Barillo 3-10, Gerald 3-6.
Records- St. Joseph 4-0, St. Augustine Prep 2-3.