Villapiano, Jensen, Kenney, Wowkanyn Make College Commitments

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Four more Shore Conference players have made their college commitments after strong senior seasons.

Rumson-Fair Haven quarterback Mike Villapiano, an All Shore Media second-team All-Conference selection who helped the Bulldogs win their first state sectional title this past fall, will do a post-grad year at Cheshire (Conn.) Academy. Former RFH star tight end Paul Michael Barrows played a season at Cheshire this past fall and earned a scholarship to the University of Rhode Island.

A dual threat as a runner and passer, Villapiano was 145-for-280 for 1,812 yards and 17 touchdowns passing, while also running for 675 yards and 9 touchdowns. He went over 100 yards rushing and ran for the game-winning touchdown in an upset of previously undefeated Matawan in the Central Jersey Group II championship game to cap a 9-3 season for Rumson.

ASM Defensive Player of the Year Will Wowkanyn of Brick Memorial will do a junior college season at Nassau (N.Y.) Community College after helping the Mustangs reach the Central Jersey Group IV final. Wowkanyn led the team with 64 tackles, 62 of them solo tackles, finished with a school single-season record 14 sacks and had 23 hits for a loss. Wowkanyn also had 6 forced fumbles, an interception, and three passes defensed.

Another standout defensive player, Lakewood’s Da’Quan Kenney, will also do a juco year. Kenney wrote in an email that he is headed to ASA Institute in Brooklyn, where former Freehold star wideout Brandon Brown has attended. Kenney received Division I interest from Minnesota and others but will head to ASA for at least one season. The 6-foot-3 1/2, 235-pound senior, who played linebacker and defensive end, finished with 123 tackles, 27 tackles for a loss, 8 sacks, 3 fumble recoveries and 2 forced fumbles to help lead a resurgent season for the Piners. Lakewood finished 3-7, ending a 33-game losing streak during the season. Kenney, who was an All-Class B South selection, also had an 80-yard interception return for a touchdown in a win over Central that snapped the losing streak.

Marlboro wide receiver/defensive back Nick Jensen wrote in an email that he will be continuing his career at Monmouth University as a preferred walk-on. Jensen, who is also an excellent student, helped the Mustangs have their best season in years and was an All-Class A North selection at wideout by the coaches. He looks to play strong safety at Monmouth and will play that position for Monmouth County in this summer’s U.S. Army All-Shore Gridiron Classic.

The 5-foot-11, 195-pounder had 54 tackles, 2 interceptions, 2 forced fumbles and 2 touchdowns as a senior.


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