Dylan Marlborough has all the qualities required of a good quarterback. He has a strong arm, running ability and a good head on his shoulders.
It’s Marlborough’s football mind that his coach and teammates on the Greenport/Southold/Mattituck high school team rave about the most.
“Dylan’s great,” Tristin Ireland, a senior who plays running back and linebacker for the Porters, said. “Dylan has a vision of the field. He knows how to run the ball. He takes his time running the ball. He knows how to get the yards. He knows when to run out of bounds. He’s just got I.Q. that most football players this age don’t, and that gives us a big advantage.”
Last year Marlborough did not throw a single pass as a backup to Matt Drinkwater, who has since graduated. Marlborough prepared for his senior season and it has shown. He has played well in both of his first two varsity starts at quarterback, helping the Porters to wins over Wyandanch and Southampton/Ross. His play has been steady and a welcome boost at a position that is vital to a team’s success.
“He knows what everybody’s supposed to be doing, and he’s just playing a great game and exceeding our expectations,” said Porters coach Jack Martilotta.
Through two games, Marlborough has gone 17 of 31 passing for 210 yards, with two touchdown passes and two interceptions. He has spread the ball, making use of seven receivers.
“I feel like my arm strength has really developed over this past year and I feel like I’m doing a good job of rolling out of the pocket and creating second opportunities and I feel like it’s giving my teammates a lot of second chances, too, to make good plays,” he said.
Marlborough passed for 139 yards in a 51-12 rout of Southampton/Ross on Friday night, which was good enough, but he also ran the ball nine times for 76 yards and a touchdown to go with the two touchdown passes he threw to Ireland and Jake Skrezec (a 52-yarder).
Asked to assess his performance after the game, Marlborough was quick to bring up the one pass he threw that James Harding intercepted early in the third quarter. All in all, though, he really couldn’t complain.
“It was definitely a good game for me,” he said. “I had the interception, which I’m a little mad about, but it happens.”
In the second quarter, Marlborough used his legs to score, wiggling his way eight yards to the end zone for a 14-0 lead.
Over the two games, Marlborough is the team’s second-leading rusher with 92 yards.
“Marlborough, in the very beginning, just ran and ran,” Porters senior wide receiver/linebacker Dominick Panetta said. “Great decision-making by Marlborough. It was incredible. We all love Marlborough.”
Martilotta gave his quarterback a good review, too.
“He’s a new kid,” the coach said. “He had one pass to Dominick Panetta today that was absolutely beautiful. He ran well today, which is good to see. He’s making good decisions. If no one’s open, he’s running it. When he sees an opportunity, he’s throwing it, and that’s what we need a quarterback to do.”
After all the scoring concluded and his night’s work was done, Marlborough was substituted for by sophomore Sean Sepenoski in the fourth quarter.
Marlborough, who is listed on the roster at 6 feet 2 inches and 180 pounds, said the game was a confidence-booster for him and an improvement from his play the previous week.
“I’d say I played better tonight because tonight it led to the points,” he said. “It was a low-scoring game last week. It just felt like we couldn’t punch it in, but this week, a different story.”
Photo Caption: Greenport/Southold/Mattituck quarterback Dylan Marlborough has used his throwing arm, his legs and his football I.Q. to help the Porters win their first two games. (Credit: Garret Meade)