Hillsborough has been to three four state title games, and three of them involved Rick Mantz.
An offensive and defensive lineman for the Raiders, he kicked the game-winning field goal in overtime that delivered the Raiders their first state championship in 1980, a 10-7 sudden death overtime win at Giants Stadium over New Jersey’s top-ranked team, Madison Central.
By 1992, he was the head coach, and in 1996, the Raiders were back in another final. That one they lost to Middletown North up at the Meadowlands, but in 2000, they were back in a title game, where they knocked off the No. 4 team in the state, Sayreville, 16-13.
Mantz wasn’t on Hillsborough’s 1974 playoff team, which lost in Atlantic City’s Boardwalk Hall to Middlesex, but he remembers that game, too.
We caught up with the Hillsborough High School Hall of Famer this week, to talk about those championship games, as the Raiders get set to host North Brunswick Friday night for the Central Jersey Group 5 title, their first ever final to be played at home, at Noonan Field.
Click below to listen to Rick Mantz talk with Central Jersey Sports Radio’s Mike Pavlichko: