Catholic Football Grudge Match

Rivals Holy Trinity and St. Anthony’s face off in the CHSFL title game

For years, this high school rivalry was all yap and no bite. Holy Trinity talked a good game. But when it actually came time to face St. Anthony’s on the football field, the Titans couldn’t deliver.

Just take the last time these teams met. Holy Trinity blustered. And then the Friars busted the Titans in the chops. St. Anthony’s rolled to a 62-13 win. That was Week 3 of the 2008 season. St. Anthony’s leads the all-time series with the Titans 25-8 dating to 1974 and has won the last 15 meetings. Holy Trinity last beat the Friars, 28-13, in 1992.

That’s a lifetime—literally—for these players.

The rivalry picks up again Saturday, Nov. 21 at 7 p.m. at Mitchel Athletic Complex in Hempstead. It’s the most important game these teams have ever played. That’s because Holy Trinity and St. Anthony’s meet for the first time with the CHSFL Class AAA championship on the line.

For Holy Trinity, it’s the culmination of a dream season. The Titans are 10-0 and led by Anthony Brunetti. The senior running back / linebacker has one game remaining in his remarkable high school career. Brunetti has 2,254 yards—the sixth-highest total in Long Island history—on 291 carries and 26 touchdowns this season.

All Brunetti did was carry the ball 44 times for 232 yards and three touchdowns to power the Titans past defending champ Iona Prep, 27-18, in the semifinals. He’s motivated after an injury-plagued 2008.

So is his chief competitor for the Friars. St. Anthony’s senior quarterback Tom Schreiber went down in the quarterfinals of the playoffs a year ago as the Friars failed to win the league title for the first time in eight seasons.

Schreiber is back in a big way for the 9-1 Friars. He helped St. Anthony’s run past Holy Cross, 28-7, in the semis, breaking touchdown runs of 57 and 44 yards.

The stage is set for an epic grudge match. No more talking. Victory here brings more than bragging rights. It delivers a championship.

jason molinet

Jason Molinet spent three years at Patch.com as regional editor and was a reporter at Newsday for a decade. He is a four-time Press Club of Long Island award winner. Molinet celebrates his Cuban heritage, reads Ernest Hemingway and roots for the Miami Heat.