PLATTSBURGH — After reeling off four consecutive Empire Football League (EFL) wins, the Plattsburgh North Stars are set to tackle one of their toughest road tests of the season tonight.
The North Stars (4-0), led by second-year coach Scott Aguglia, travel to Watertown to take on the Red and Black (2-2, 1-2) at the Alex Duffy Fairgrounds.
The two organizations share a storied history, and Aguglia expects a hard-fought challenge.
“In Watertown, records go out the window,” Aguglia said. “They have a great following, and we expect a lot of spectators. The whole town gets involved, and it’s a different environment than what the guys are used to seeing.”
Plattsburgh is led on offense by quarterback Harry Rascoe.
The signal-caller has completed 38-of-62 pass attempts for 727 yards and 14 touchdowns.
Rascoe’s primary target is Dexter Geohagan, who made six interceptions and 92 tackles as a defensive back at Moorhead State University from 2010 to 2012.
Geohagan has grabbed 13 of Rascoe’s 38 completions for 275 yards and seven touchdowns.
Andrew Price (170 yards and three touchdowns) and Brett Boyer (87 yards and two touchdowns) have also made significant contributions at wide receiver.
Josh Nephew is the team’s leading rusher, totaling 146 yards and one touchdown.
The North Stars’ offense is scorching opponents, averaging 50.3 points per game.
“We’re going to continue doing what we’ve been doing — try to be balanced,” Aguglia said. “It wouldn’t make sense for us to change now. If it’s not broke, don’t fix it.”
On the defensive side of the football, Plattsburgh has suffocated its opponents, allowing 25 points in all.
Co-captain B.J. Godfrey leads the team in total tackles with 22, while Jason Remillard (18), Craig Livsey (16) and Cody Kirlew (15) have all combined for 49 on the season.
Brandon St. John has collected two interceptions, scoring a 30-yard touchdown in the team’s last game against Syracuse July 27.
Former Peru and Alfred University standout Alec Currier, Jamil McCray and Remillard have each been credited with an interception.
“Coach (Dave) Hackett has done a great job getting guys ready,” Aguglia said. “We expect Watertown to run the ball off tackle. We’re ready for that. They have a pretty good receiver in Edgar Givens, too. We have a good scouting report, and we feel prepared.”
The North Stars are in sole possession of first place in the EFL standings with five games remaining on their regular season schedule.
Plattsburgh will host home games Aug. 17 vs. Vermont and Sept. 21 in a rematch with Watertown.
“This game is absolutely huge,” Aguglia said. “There are playoff implications on the line. We can’t falter (tonight) because it could come back to bite us. We need to take care of business week-to-week and maintain our lead in the standings.”
Note: Plattsburgh’s non-league game against Maine June 29 has been billed as an exhibition, according to Aguglia. With Montreal unable to field a team, the North Stars were credited with a forfeit victory Aug. 3, brining their record to 4-0 overall and in league play.