Oct 12, 2013 Phil Blackwell Uncategorized
Combine a heart-stopping comeback with the resolve to make it through two extra periods, and it produced, for the Jordan-Elbridge football team, a defining victory in the 2013 season.
The Eagles, shut out until the fourth quarter of Friday night’s game at Canastota, erased a double-digit deficit and, in double overtime, went on to beat the Raiders 18-12.
With that win, J-E improved to 3-3 on the season, quite an improvement from the one win it attained a season ago, and a tribute to the hard work put in by first-year head coach Tim Hawkins and his young core of players.
Part of what they had learned was not to get too discouraged if things didn’t go well early. At Canastota, that was certainly the case as the Raiders battled its way to a 12-0 halftime lead.
Matt Russitano got it started, going 15 yards for a touchdown in the first quarter. Canastota doubled the margin in the second period when Anthony Sicilia, from the Eagles’ 13-yard line, found Ryan Zophy in the end zone.
And it stayed 12-0 deep into the fourth quarter, J-E unable to move the ball much, but staying patient and waiting for opportunities that, midway through the fourth quarter, finally started to emerge.
Brad McMahon capped off the Eagles’ first scoring drive with a 12-yard TD run, only to see the extra point missed, which kept it at 12-6. Then J-E got the ball back and, as time ran low, drove to Canastota’s one-yard line before Sam Robles drove in for the tying score.
With a chance to go in front, J-E saw the extra point blocked, and so it was 12-12 as regulation ended. In overtime, each team gets a possession on the opponent’s 20-yard line, but in the first extra period the Eagles and Raiders were both unable to score.
Once more, J-E’s defense stepped up in the second OT, making the stop. Getting the ball back, the Eagles could win with any points – and got it on second down when Robles, from 18 yards out, put in the winning touchdown.
As that was going on, Bishop Ludden was going up against undefeated, state Class C no. 18-ranked Watertown IHC, unable to contain the Cavaliers in a 34-13 defeat as its record fell to 2-4.
The Gaelic Knights hoped that IHC was looking ahead to next week’s Class C North championship showdown with General Brown, but that did not prove the case as the Cavaliers got on the board in the first quarter with Cole Carpenter’s one-yard TD pass to Nick Koelmel.
Briefly, Ludden tied it, 7-7, when Conlan McGuire moved his team to IHC’s eight-yard line and found Cameron Beauford in the end zone, Travis Cote adding the extra point, but the Cavaliers would take control with 21 unanswered points in the next two periods.
Koelmel struck the decisive blows. After catching his second short TD pass from Carpenter, he received a punt at his own 30-yard line late in the half and zoomed back 70 yards for his third score of the night, which made it 21-7 at the break.
IHC tacked on two more touchdowns in the second half, Carpenter throwing a five-yard pass to Mike Marra and Jordan Trudeau scoring on a two-yard run. Ludden’s last points came on Anthony Pecoriello’s 18-yard scoring run in the fourth quarter.
The Gaelic Knights finish its regular season hosting Port Byron/Union Springs next Friday at 7 p.m, while J-E is also home, taking on Skaneateles, whose hold on the Class C West regular-season title ended on Friday with a 24-21 defeat to Syracuse’s Institute of Technology Central.