For anyone wondering what kind of team the Roosevelt Presidents really are this year, you no longer have to wonder.  A convincing 34-6 home win against the Poughkeepsie Pioneers Friday night tells us all we need to know.

Rick Schultz, Townsquare Media

“I like the result,” said FDR Head Coach Brian Bellino. “I said before the season started, those first two games were going to be heck.  Going to Kingston and playing Poughkeepsie here.  So to start off 2-0 is real good for our program.”

Roosevelt scored first, midway through the first quarter, when senior running back Avery Strothers plunged in from 6 yards out.  From that point, the Presidents got to work shutting down a talented Poughkeepsie offense, spearheaded by outstanding man-to-man coverage from Christian Cappillino, Nick DiCarlo, Nick Amone, Justin Bocchino and Tim Morrell.

Along with their tenacious defense, the Presidents’ ball-control offense kept the game moving swiftly into the 2nd quarter.  Early in the 2nd, junior back Keymero King broke loose for a 24-yard touchdown, giving FDR a 14-0 lead.

“It was early in the game, so anything can happen,” said Presidents’ senior defensive end Jordan Jones, who plays both ways. “We knew we just had to keep going.”



Rick Schultz, Townsquare Media

Later in the quarter, junior quarterback Alex Marinelli ran it in from 5 yards out, extending FDR’s advantage to 21-0.  Poughkeepsie added to their troubles when standout receiver/linebacker Jovan Atkinson was ejected following an unsportsmanlike conduct penalty.

Rick Schultz, Townsquare Media

The Pioneers tallied their only score of the game on a picturesque touchdown pass from junior Troy Schoonmaker to senior Sanjay Ruparellia in the right corner of the end zone.  That cut the FDR lead to 21-6.  From that point on, it was all Roosevelt.

“I thought we let up the last four minutes of that first half,” said the energetic Bellino. “It almost got scary, actually.  Poughkeepsie was probably within a play of making it 21-14.”

While their stifling defense was shutting down Poughkeepsie’s high-powered offense, Roosevelt added a 21-yard touchdown from Marinelli to Jones, giving them a 27-6 lead.

“It felt great,” Jones said after his score. “After last game, we didn’t throw the ball at all, so just to throw the ball felt good.”

FDR tacked on another touchdown in the 4th, when senior Nick Amone ran it in from 15 yards out.

“I’m surprised we didn’t block well,” Bellino said, pointing out an area for improvement. “ Again, our running backs picked up hard yards and we mixed in some more passing than we did last week.”

The dominating win for Roosevelt over a strong Poughkeepsie club now has local fans paying attention.