The second-seed in South Jersey Group 1, South Hunterdon found itself down 6-0 at the half to visiting seventh-seed Salem, but wasn’t panicked.
There were some mistakes they felt they could clean up, and some big plays they needed to make.
In the second half, they did both, en route to a 16-6 win over the Rams, who fell to 2-8 on the season.
South Hunterdon, meanwhile, improved to 9-1 – their only loss a Week Zero home defeat to Ewing – and got its first playoff win since 1994. It puts them in next week’s South 1 semifinals – again at home – against third-seed Glassboro, a 28-0 home winner over sixth-seed Keyport Friday night.
Ryan Manfready scored twice in the second half. His first touchdown gave South a 7-6 lead it would only build upon. Momentum swung when Manfready recovered the ensuing kickoff, even though the Eagles wouldn’t cash in.
South Hunterdon held with just over ten minutes left when a Salem field goal attempt missed. They eventually recorded a safety, and Manfready’s second touchdown provided the final score.
Click below to hear Mike Pavlichko talk about South Hunterdon’s playoff win with Eagles’ head coach Toby Jefferies: