HADDON TOWNSHIP — Byron Spellman and Samir Garrison each put on a thrilling show Saturday morning.

Spellman, a senior, scored three touchdowns and had 165 all-purpose yards. Garrison, a freshman, rushed for a team-leading 221 yards with two touchdowns.

Their performances led the Buena Regional High School football team to a 42-7 victory over Haddon Township in a West Jersey Football League interdivisional game at Marvin L. Roberts Memorial Field.

Spellman and Garrison both play running back and defensive back for the Chiefs (1-1).

“The team needed me to show up, and I showed up today,” said Spellman, 17, of Buena Vista Township. “I couldn’t do it without the front line. Everyone was doing what they were supposed to be doing.”

Last season, Buena lost to eventual champion Penns Grove in the South Jersey Group I semifinals. The Chiefs had won 11 consecutive games before that, dating to 2017.

The Chiefs are aiming for that same success this season but suffered a 35-0 season-opening loss last week to Gateway Regional.

“We just needed to be humbled,” Buena coach Jon Caputo said. “We thought we were good, and what you did the year before doesn’t mean anything the next year. The Gateway game was, hopefully, the best thing for us.”

Caputo added that his team had its best week of practice in preparation for the Hawks (1-1). So, he said, he “wasn’t surprised with the effort” that earned Buena its first win of the season.

“My mindset was to do better than we did last week.” said Garrison, 14, of Buena Vista Township. “We needed go win as a team and fix the mistakes from last week. We can build off this and hopefully get more wins going forward.”

Spellman scored on a 46-yard touchdown run on Buena’s first drive of the game. On the next possession, he caught a 26-yard TD pass from senior quarterback Luke Santiago.

Garrison then broke free for a 75-yard scoring run that gave Buena a 21-0 lead in the first quarter. He capped the scoring with a 70-yard TD run in the third quarter.

“It feels good to come out and play my part as much as I could,” Garrison said, “and to give everything 100% and give as much as I can to the team.”

The Hawks scored their lone touchdown late in the second quarter, a 27-yard pass from Aiden Donlon to Luke Dayton.

Spellman returned the ensuing kickoff 66 yards for a touchdown that gave Buena a 35-7 lead. Spellman also had an interception in the third quarter.

“We have to practice harder than everyone else now,” Spellman said, “and just work hard and get better each week.”

Shayron Smithbey had 84 rushing yards, including a 25-yard score in the second quarter. Cael Aretz made all six of his extra-point attempts.

Buena will play at United Division rival Middle Township (2-0) at 6 p.m. Friday. The Chiefs have won their last five meetings with the Panthers.

“We are going to focus on the next step,” Caputo said. “That’s all our mentality is, regardless of the score or what happened the day or snap before.

“Hopefully, that’ll keep us going in the right direction.”

Haddon Township 0 7 0 0— 7

Buena Regional 21 14 7 0— 42


BR— Spellman 46 run (Aretz kick)

BR— Spellman 26 pass from Santiago (Aretz)

BR— Garrison 75 run (Aretz kick)


BR— Smithbey 25 run (Aretz kick)

HT— Dayton 27 pass from (Ciko kick)

BR— Spellman 66 kickoff return (Aretz kick)


BR— Garrison 70 run (Aretz kick)

Records: Buena 1-1; Haddon Twp. 1-1.

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