Thursday, October 9, 2008

Week six: a look ahead

Watervliet quarterback Chris Hughes (left) and wide receiver Tom Ebenhoch (right) travel to Fonda on Saturday to take on a high-powered, pass-first Braves team. Both teams are tied at 4-1 in the Class C South Division. (JS Carras - The Recrd)

Lou DiNovo (left), Marquis Terrell (center) and Tyler Washington (right) all play a big role in the La Salle secondary, which gets a big test from Schenectady on Friday night. The winner of the game is assured the Liberty Division title and a No. 1 seed in the Class AA playoffs. (JS Carras - The Record)

Class C
Chatham (5-0, 5-0)

at Tamarac (4-1, 4-1),
Friday, 7 p.m.

About Chatham:
The Panthers edged out Fonda-Fultonville last week, 20-19, and earned a No. 13 ranking from the New York State Sportswriters Association. Running back Josh Keyes is averaging 11.8 yards per carry and has scored eight touchdowns.
About Tamarac: The Bengals have three shutouts through five games. Rayne Russell blocked two punts in last week’s 16-0 shutout of Hoosic Valley and Phil Arnold scored on a 65-yard fumble recovery. Senior quarterback and free safety David Fox is the area’s most prolific field goal kicker, having booted five three-point tries.
Notable: Both teams have allowed only 47 points, although Chatham has outscored the Bengals by 78 points. Tamarac is one of three teams in the South Division with a 4-1 record and could create a tie for first place with a victory.

Class AA
Columbia (1-2, 2-3)

at Shaker (1-2, 1-4),
Friday, 7 p.m.

About Columbia:
The Blue Devils took a first quarter lead over Schenectady last week, but could not hold on for the victory. Running back Jim Madden has rushed for 609 yards on 100 carries and has scored six touchdowns.
About Shaker: The Blue Bison could not slow Marquis Terrell and his La Salle teammates last week in a 40-7 loss. Luke Walsh is one of the top kickers in Section II with 21 points scored.
Notable: The fourth and final playoff spot from the Liberty Division likely goes to the winner of this game, with a probable matchup against Saratoga Springs in the first round. Neither team qualified for the playoffs in 2007 but Shaker has the most recent postseason victory, having defeated CBA in a first round game in 2005. Columbia’s last playoff win came in 2002, a first round victory over La Salle

Class A
Bishop Maginn (3-0, 5-0)
at Troy (3-0, 5-0)
Saturday, 1:30 p.m.

About Bishop Maginn:
The Griffins put possibly the most athletic team in Class A on the field week after week. Bunduka Kargbo, Tymear Mallory, Mitchell Dickson, Josh Panasik, Isaiah Oliver and James Torres are all capable of making game breaking plays from at anytime from anywhere on the field.
About Troy: The Horses face their toughest competition yet in the last two weeks of the regular season with Maginn on Saturday and Lansingburgh next Friday night. Senior running back Fred Fitch has had his way with opposing defenses rushing for 647 yards and 11 touchdowns.
Notable: The Golden Griffins have played the role of cardiac kids to perfection through the first five weeks of the season. They have pulled out wins in the fourth quarter against Amsterdam (week 1, 27-13) and Gloversville (week 2, 14-7) and beat Southeast Division rival Lansingburgh on its first possession in overtime last week. On the other hand Troy’s closest game was a 27-point margin in a 40-13 week 1 win over Queensbury.

Class D
Warrensburg (2-1, 3-2)

at Rensselaer (4-0, 5-0)
Friday, 7

About Warrensburg: The Burgers opened up with a lopsided loss to Fort Edward but rebounded with three consecutive victories. They fell to Lake George (a Class C school playing at the D level) last week but have wrapped up the two seed in the North with three games remaining.
About Rensselaer: The Rams have surrendered an average of nine points a game while scoring 38 on offense. Mico De Los Santos-Perez has developed into a deep threat with nine catches for 302 yards, an average of 33.6 yards a reception. Junior running back Jasheem Hamilton has scored 13 touchdowns in five games.
Notable: This is a preview of the Class D sectional semifinals. A look back at the two school’s common opponent gives the advantage to the Rams. Rensselaer beat Fort Edward 47-14 in week four while the Burgers lost to the Forts 44-8 in week one. Neither team will want to give too much away in terms of schemes and game plans with a playoff date three weeks away.


Class AA
Team League, Overall Last Week
1. Schenectady 3-0, 5-0 1
The Patriots, ranked No. 11 in the state, look to Marc Thompson for offense. He scored two second quarter touchdowns in Schenectady’s come-from-behind victory over Columbia.
2. Saratoga Springs 5-0, 5-0 2
The Blue Streaks face Monroe-Woodbury of Section IX tonight – Crusaders are ranked No. 5 in the state, while Saratoga comes in at No. 17.
3. La Salle 3-0, 4-1 3
The Cadets were ranked No.21 in New York in the poll released this week. La Salle has not lost a game to a Section II opponent since 2006.
4. Ballston Spa 3-1, 4-1 4
Nick Tubolino scored two touchdowns and kicked four extra points in the Scotties’ 46-0 thumping of CBA last week.
5. Shenendehowa 3-1, 3-2 -
Suhyab Banks ran for two of his four touchdowns in the third quarter last week against Bethlehem, breaking a halftime tie and giving the Plainsmen an Empire Division victory.

Class A
Team League, Overall Last week
1. Burnt Hills 3-0, 5-0 1
The Spartans defense surrendered its first points since week two but once again dominated in every fashion in a 48-7 victory over Glens Falls last week. The No. 4 ranked Class A team in the state has scored 248 points while surrendering just 14 in five weeks of play, the best differential in the section.
2. Troy 3-0, 5-0 2
Fred Fitch ran for a pair of scores in the Horses 41-7 win over Averill Park last week. Fitch has 11 rushing touchdowns and 647 total yards. The Horses host undefeated Bishop Maginn Saturday with first place in the Southeast Division on the line.
3. Bishop Maginn 3-0, 5-0 3
The Griffins remain unbeaten thanks to a 22-16 overtime victory over Lansingburgh last week. Bunduka Kargbo’s six yard quarterback keeper put Maginn over the top. There’s no rest for the Griffins as they travel to Troy for a match up of the top two teams in the Southeast Division.
4. Lansingburgh 2-0, 3-2 4
The Knights shot themselves in the foot last week turning the ball over five times in their 22-16 overtime loss to Bishop Maginn. The good news for the Knights is even with all those turnovers they were able to play even with the No. 19 ranked team in the state for 48 minutes. Running back Marcus Hepp ran for 144 yards and a touchdown, his 14th of the season.
5. Gloversville 2-1, 3-2 5
The Huskies have put together back-to-back wins against Queensbury and South Glens Falls after their lopsided loss to Burnt Hills. Tonight’s match up with Amsterdam is for second place in the Northwest Division.

Class B
Team League, Overall Last Week
1. Cohoes 3-0, 5-0 1
The Tigers scored an impressive triple-overtime victory in Ravena. Steve Weaver led the rushing attack with 211 yards and two touchdowns and also made a game-changing sack in the second overtime.
2. Schalmont 3-0, 4-1 2
Vinny Gallo is one of the top rushers in Section II, having plunged into the endzone a dozen times. He’s rushed for at least 127 yards in all five games this season.
3. Hudson Falls 1-1, 4-1 4
Joe McMurry entered Section II’s top ten in career rushing yards with last week’s 252-yard performance against Cambridge. He now has run for 3,685 yards in his career.
4. Ravena 2-1, 3-2 3
The Indians went toe-to-toe with Cohoes until the third overtime and should be a formidable opponent in Class B come playoff time. Quarterback Keith Hoyt is a threat on the ground and through the air.
5. Broadalbin-Perth 1-1, 2-3 5
The Patriots beat rival Johnstown last week and try to stop Hudson Falls’ Joe McMurry tomorrow in a key West Division contest.

Class C
Team League, Overall Last week
1. Schuylerville 4-0, 5-0 1
Austin Bateman ran for 68 yards and threw for 84 in the Black Horses 44-6 rout of Mechanicville last week. Schuylerville is ranked No. 8 in the state and is in position for the top spot come playoffs.
2. Chatham 5-0, 5-0 3
The Panthers held on for a 20-19 victory over Fonda-Fultonville last week to remain unbeaten at the top of the Class C South Division. Josh Keyes ran for two touchdowns and has 590 total yards through five weeks.
3. Fonda-Fultonville 4-1, 4-1 2
The Braves dropped their first game of the season 20-19 to Chatham last week. Josh Nethaway threw for 202 yards and three touchdowns but tossed his first two interceptions of the year.
4. Watervliet 4-1, 4-1 4
The Cannoneers scored four first quarter touchdowns en route to a 42-12 win over Coxsackie last week. Quarterback Chris Hughes scored on runs of 74 and 71 yards and threw touchdown passes of 37 and 53 yards.
5. Tamarac 4-1, 4-1 5
David Fox got the Bengals back on track in a 16-0 win over Hoosic Valley. Fox threw for 113 yards and a touchdown, ran for 62 yards and kicked two extra points. The Bengals host undefeated Chatham tonight.

Class D
Team League, Overall Last Week
1. Rensselaer 4-0, 5-0 1
The Rams wrapped up the South Division title next week and play three weeks of crossover games before the Section II playoffs begin. Running back/linebacker Jasheem Hamilton has scored at least two touchdowns in every game.
2. Lake George 0-0, 5-0 2
Caleb Meroski is averaging nearly 12 yards per carry and while the Warriors cannot qualify for the playoffs, Lake George is having a year to remember.
3. Canajoharie 2-2, 3-2 5
The Cougars tied Bishop Gibbons for the final playoff spot and were also tied with the Golden Knights with 14.5 divisional quarter points. A head-to-head victory over the Knights punched Canjo’s playoff ticket.
4. Fort Edward 3-0, 3-2 -
The North Division champion Flying Forts get a playoff tuneup from Bishop Gibbons’ do-it-all back Derrick Pitts this weekend.
5. Bishop Gibbons 2-2, 3-2 -
An 80-yard kick return by Spa Catholic’s Danny O’Rourke in the first quarter last Saturday cost the Knights a quarter point and a playoff berth in this otherwise outstanding season in Schenectady.

-- Compiled by Will Montgomery and Ryan Kircher

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