Nov 28, 2010 Phil Blackwell Uncategorized
Now the fall season is done.
It ended with five teams – three from Section V, two from Section I – crowned as state champions. It was one in the latter group that put an end to the lone remaining Section III entry with a chance at the big prize.
General Brown took the field Sunday at high noon in the Carrier Dome, having gone further than any Frontier League team had gone before. But the “reward” for the 12-0 Lions was a 12-0 opponent in Bronxville, whose massive front line proved far too big – and far too good.
The first half settled matters. All GB could get was three first downs and 38 total yards, to the Broncos’ 13 first downs and 232 yards. During that time, Bronxville scored five times – three touchdowns, two field goals – and it was 27-0, and practically settled.
Fighting to the end, GB would get touchdowns from Devin Tyler and Nick Klucasek, but the Broncos still won 34-14. It capped quite a remarkable autumn for Bronxville, who nabbed state championships in girls cross country and girls soccer before crushing the Lions’ dreams.
Still, there’s great admiration for what the boys from Dexter did. It somehow made a smooth transition from Steve Fisher’s long, legendary coaching tenure to Tom Frears, put up mind-boggling point totals in the sectional playoffs, then fought past Chenango Forks and Fredonia just to make the finals. One wonders if the right team, and right circumstances, will arise to give GB a similar chance again.
Of the five state finals in the Dome, only one of them was a true classic – the Class AA battle between Rush-Henrietta and Troy. Though called the Flying Horse, Troy was brilliant on the ground in this game, amassing 420 rushing yards, 224 of them from Jordan Canzeri. And they still lost.
Rush trailed, 28-26, in the fourth quarter, but the remarkable Ashton Broyld, who sank Baldwinsville a week ago, saved his best work for the homestretch, leading two scoring drives and even getting a key sack on the defensive side. That made Broyld, who ran for 196 yards and threw for 94, the game MVP – and it made the Royal Comets, by a 40-28, the state champs for the first time.
Every other champion proved familiar. Tuckahoe dominated in Class D, proving too fast and too strong for Caledonia-Mumford in a 27-0 shutout on Friday afternoon. Right after that, Rochester Aquinas went to the top for a record fifth time in Class A, holding off Harrison 24-13 in a game that was in some doubt until super back Mike Messina ran 50 yards for the clinching score with 2:08 left.
To wrap it up Sunday night, Hornell made it back-to-back state championships in Class B, dominating Schalmont in a 50-20 decision where it had 28 unanswered points in the first half to settle things. Only Caledonia-Mumford (1993-95) and Onondaga (2001-03) have pulled off the three-peat at the state level, which is what the Red Raiders will aspire to when we start all over again in 2011.
Until then, there’s the winter season to consider, and the spring, too. Just a few days to breathe, and then it’s time to hit the gymnasiums of Central New York as more championship pursuits begin.