Lakeland pulls one out of the fire against West Milford

WEST MILFORD – It was a new trophy, but an old feeling for Lakeland.

The Lancers celebrated with a shiny new silver cup, the Suburban Trends Cup, after downing rival West Milford 14-6 on a crisp Friday night among the trees.

It is the Lancers third straight win in the series which is North Jersey’s version of the Backyard Brawl pitting the two neighboring schools. Each of the previous four games had been decided by seven points or less.

“We knew this was the game we wanted,” said Lakeland senior lineman Vinny Anderson. “This would be our turnaround game and I am happy. We are looking to celebrate this one.”

Lakeland coach Joe Purcella said a new trophy was made after the old one which dated back to 1997 was damaged, accidentally on purpose.

“The rumor is it fell in a fire pit…a few times,” said a smiling Purcella. “At least that’s the rumor.”

What It Means

For Lakeland it’s a chance for a new start. Lakeland is 1-3 after losing to Sparta, Ramsey and Passaic Valley. It will take some doing, but the Lancers aren’t out of the playoff hunt.

“We have a long road ahead of us, but we’re coming back,” said Anderson. “It’s a good feeling beating these guys.”

West Milford fell to 0-4, but played hard from start to finish. The Highlanders used three different quarterbacks Friday including freshman Aydin Deane, who recently moved from Idaho. Deane showed good poise in the pocket and threw a 41-yard TD pass to Marcus Morgan in the fourth quarter.

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