For Delsea coach Sal Marchese, one of the best moments of the Crusaders' 41-12 victory over Northern Burlington in the South Jersey Group 3 title game came in the final two minutes.
Delsea (11-1) was running out the clock on its 10th sectional championship when Marchese inserted senior offensive lineman Cody Mayo into the game.
Mayo, a team captain, had been out since breaking his left ankle Sept. 21.
"That was special," Marchese said. "He's what Delsea football is all about: his work ethic, his leadership."
Mayo underwent surgery Sept. 26. He said he was told by his doctor last week that he could suit up for the title game but not participate.
"To me, it was big just to be in uniform with my teammates," Mayo said. "But then to get in, it was such a great feeling."
Mayo was in the game for the final three snaps. The last two were kneel-downs by quarterback Josh Awotunde.
But Mayo's first snap since Sept. 21 was a running play in which fullback Rob Hooks gained 5 yards.
"I went 200 percent on that play," Mayo said.