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Sports Archives The Altamont Enterprise, November 1, 2007
Dutchmen sail to Super Bowl
By Tim Matteson
GUILDERLAND - The Guilderland football team is sailing into uncharted waters and making history along the way.
The Flying Dutchmen has set a course for a new land and will reach it on Friday night as the Guilderland football team will play in its first ever Section II Super Bowl.
Guilderland clinched the spot with a 21-7 win over Ballston Spa in the Class AA semifinals played at Guilderland on a dark, rainy night.
The Dutchmen will play this Friday night against LaSalle Institute of Troy, the winners of the Liberty Division. The game will be held at Colonie High School at 7 p.m.
"This is the first time Guilderland has ever been to the Super Bowl," said Drew Smith, Guilderland's very excited senior quarterback. "I'm so happy to get there. And I couldn't think of a better way to get there than beating Ballston Spa. They have a great coach and are a great program. We play each other with great respect and pride. They are a great bunch of kids. We have mutual respect."
The win revenged a 32-27 loss the Dutch suffered during the regular season, their only loss of the season.
"Going to the Super Bowl is unbelievable," Smith added. "We want to show our Dutchmen pride. Our motto is" 'The pride is back.'"
Smith has been a big part of why the pride is back for Guilderland football. On Friday, the win was just as much for his play on defense as on offense.
The Dutchmen scored touchdowns on their first two possessions. Ballston Spa cut the lead in half with a touchdown in the second quarter and was driving to get another score late in the half.
Smith had been standing on the sidelines when Ballston Spa had the ball in the first half, but as he watched the Scotties move the ball down the field just before halftime, he put himself into the game.
The Scotties got the ball down to the Guilderland 23-yard line when Eric Marciano picked up four yards on a run. On the next play, Smith subbed in on defense and it was at the right time.
Marciano took a pitch from quarterback Mark Seager and rolled right. Instead of looking to run, Marciano threw the ball toward the end zone. Smith leaped in the air and intercepted the pass landing in the end zone and ending the Scotties' threat, preserving the lead going into the intermission.
"The play of the game was Drew's interception at the end of the first half," said senior linebacker and tight end Paul Malamood.
"That really shifted the momentum," added classmate and fellow linebacker Pete Stanish.
The second half was all about defense, as the rain came down in sheets and the field became sloppy, which played right into Guilderland's strong run defense.
They also made adjustments to the Ballston Spa option offense.
"On the option, we had to trust that the outside guys were going to do their job," said Guilderland Coach Dan Penna. "And they did. They had trust in each other and they stepped up in the second half."
"I can never say enough about Pete and Paul and the defense," Smith said of Stanish and Malamood. "They are out there making things happen."
The Dutchmen defense held Ballston Spa scoreless in the second half and really did not give up many yards as it bottled up the Scotties' running attack.
Smith ended the Scotties last best scoring chance with an interception with about three minutes left in the contest.
"Our best complete game"
By then, Smith had scored his second touchdown of the game early in the fourth quarter to help seal the win.
Guilderland started a drive late in the third quarter at the Ballston Spa 44-yard line.
Smith lost two yards on a run, but junior fullback Jason Lawrence made up 10 of those yards on third down to set up a fourth down. Coach Penna sent the punting unit out onto the field and looked like he was giving the ball back to the Scotties.
But the ball was directly snapped to the up-back Tony Denn and he ran for three yards and gave the Dutchmen a big first down.
The Dutch continued to move the ball and 12 plays later Smith ran from three yards out on a bootleg after reversing field.
E.J. Genzano kicked the extra point, and the Dutch led, 21-7, with 8:31 left in the game.
"The fake punt was a great call by Coach Penna," Smith said. "When he called us off the field, I was upset because I wanted to go for it. But then, after the punt, I was like, 'Good call.'"
Senior running back Paul Booker scored, capping Guilderland's first possession of the game with a touchdown.
The Dutch used 14 plays and took most of the first quarter to put seven points on the board. Guilderland moved the ball with running and passing as the Dutchmen put together one of their best drives of the season.
Booker scored from one yard out and Genzano kicked the extra point to make it 7-0 in favor of the Dutch.
After forcing Ballston Spa to punt, Guilderland got the ball back and added to its lead.
The Dutchmen started at their own 35-yard line and moved the ball up the field.
Smith capped the drive with a 13-yard run into the end zone for a touchdown. Genzano's kick made it 14-0 with 10:15 left in the second quarter.
Booker finished the game with 81 yards rushing on 19 carries through the sloppy conditions. Smith ran for 57 yards on 12 carries. Smith passed for 49 yards, completing four of nine passes.
"It was our best complete game as a team this season," Malamood said.
"It was a great way to do it," Stanish added.
Having a second chance at Ballston Spa was something the Dutchmen were happy to have.
"Since we beat Schenectady [in the quarterfinals] we were thinking about this game," Malamood said. "We didn't need any motivation. Playing Ballston Spa was the only motivation we needed."
"The kids deserve this," Penna said. "We've matured as the season went on. We've made great improvements from game to game."
With its first trip to the Super Bowl comes the toughest contest for the Dutchmen this season. LaSalle has just one loss, to an out-of-section team, and beat Shenendehowa, 42-14, in its Class AA semifinal game.
"LaSalle's got a great team," Malamood said. "We'll have to have a great week of practice."
"We'll be facing one of the strongest and most physical teams in the section," Penna said. "They have two great offensive players in [running back Marquis] Terrell and [quarterback Jared] Henkel. They have a good offensive line. I've seen them on film and it looks like they take control of the line of scrimmage. They have some beef up there."
The Dutchmen will be prepared and ready to play their best on Friday night.
But this version of the Guilderland Dutchmen has accomplished so much more than any other in school history. The program has had only two winning seasons in the last couple of decades.
"We've worked so hard to maintain our focus and not looking at what we've accomplished," Penna said. "This hasn't really hit me yet. I don't know how to react."
"Pete, Drew, and I, we've been playing together since Pop Warner," Malamood said. "And we are finally here. We've been working up for this since we were 10."
"It feels like we've been waiting for this forever," Stanish said. "This is a great way to do it."
The Dutch lose a heartbreaker in quadruple overtime
By Tim Matteson
GUILDERLAND - It took four overtimes on Monday for one of the better soccer seasons to end for the Guilderland boys' varsity.
It was four excruciating extra periods that Guilderland played with one more player than Niskayuna, yet the Dutch still could not get the game-winning goal. Niskayuna got the goal with 1:20 left in the fourth overtime frame to knock the Dutchmen out of the Class AA Section II tournament. The final score was 3-2.
The Silver Warriors did it with 10 players on the field instead of the starting 11.
"They made most of their opportunities," said Guilderland Coach Mike Kinnally. "Any time you win with 10 players, you deserve to win."
Jake Johnson scored the game-winning goal after receiving a nice pass over the top of the Guilderland defense. The Dutchmen did not respond in time and Johnson put a shot into the low corner to ice the game and eliminate the Suburban Council's number-two seeded team.
But it was not how the Dutch played late in the game that sealed their fate; it was how they played early.
"I didn't feel from the start that we were playing our best," Kinnally said. "You play a team like this and you end up in a situation like this.
"In the final third, we had some opportunities," the coach added. "But we didn't really get a good start. We played quickly in the second half but there was some intangible missing. We gave up two goals - one off a corner [kick] and the other off a mental lapse."
Even though the first half went by with no one scoring, Niskayuna looked like it was the higher-seeded team. The Warriors dominated stretches of play and had Guilderland's players on their heels.
The stellar play of sophomore goalie Devin Bailey kept the Dutchmen in the contest.
The Dutch picked up their play in the second half, but fell behind as Johnson scored his first goal of the contest just nine minutes into the second stanza.
Bailey came out to play a ball but ran into one of his own players. Johnson got to the ball and was able to kick it into the upper corner of the goal to give the Silver Warriors the lead.
That goal seemed to wake up the Dutchmen and they finally got on the board with 19 minutes left in regulation play.
Junior midfielder Ryan Ashbaugh scored after receiving a great pass through the defense and into the penalty area from Rory Nunamacher. Ashbaugh took the pass and finished a shot to even up the game.
Niskayuna took the lead a few minutes later.
Seth Berggren scored off an assist from James Belcastro to put the Dutchmen behind again.
Guilderland got the equalizer with 9:46 left in the half.
Senior Zakary DuGuay took a free kick in the Niskayuna half of the field. He fired a shot toward the goal.
Junior midfielder Patrick Quinn went up in the air and the ball went off his head and then quickly bounced off Ashbaugh's head for a goal to tie the game.
Regulation play would end in a 2-2 tie and force an overtime to decide the victor.
Guilderland dominated the first overtime session and frustrated the Niskayuna players.
After Tyler Gansfuss missed a shot wide, he let go with an F-bomb that the official did not like. He gave Gansfuss a red card, ejecting him from the contest and forcing the Silver Warriors to play short-handed the rest of the contest.
Guilderland tried to take advantage in the second 10-minute overtime period but could not get the winning goal.
Quinn missed a header and senior forward Frank Campagnano put a couple of good shots on goal. Those shots were stopped by Niskayuna goalie, Luke Citriniti.
The third overtime - the first five-minute extra session - was pretty uneventful and a fourth overtime was needed. Both teams went out for another five-minute period.
Three minutes and 40 seconds later, Johnson scored the winning goal and the Silver Warriors were able to celebrate the victory.
Guilderland took 17 shots in the contest to Niskayuna's eight. Bailey made seven saves for the Dutchmen and Citriniti also made seven for Niskayuna.
At the beginning of the year, Coach Kinnally thought, he might be in the position Niskayuna was in for its contest on Monday.
"I didn't enter this year thinking we would be the favorite at all," he said. "I thought possibly we would knock a few people off. This was a heck of a game for the second round of the sectionals. This is a game that could be in the final four. For the number-two seed, that is a heck of a draw."
"Feel for the seniors"
Kinnally said that he feels sorry for the seniors who have given to the program. There were five seniors on the team this season: Campagnano, DuGuay, defender Justin Sedefian, defender Karl Mohr, and goalie Scott Vincent.
"I didn't want Frank, Karl, Justin, and Zak to go out like this," Kinnally said. "I hope they understand the great things they did this year."
They accomplished a lot in what Kinnally proclaimed was a rebuilding year for his varsity team.
"I look at the [state] rankings and we were 19th before this game," Kinnally said. "It would be nice to finish in the top 20. We've won more games every year. I was more concerned this year about giving up goals. This is the first time we've given up three goals all year."
The Dutchmen won 15 games this year, with a pretty young team. There will also be a few players coming up from a junior-varsity team that finished with a 14-3 record.
But the soccer team is a test of attrition, and Guilderland found that out Monday.
"I always say that this is the longest shortest season," Kinnally said. "It's two months long and I'm exhausted, almost emotionless. It's hard to imagine that it's over, especially looking back to training camp in August. I really feel for the seniors."
Dutch golfers are co-champs of the Gold Division
By Tim Matteson
GUILDERLAND - It was a pretty good year on the links for the Guilderland golf team this fall.
The Dutchmen were co-champions of the Gold Division of the Suburban Council.
"We were co-champions with Bethlehem," Guilderland Coach Andy Ryan said. "Shen was the best in the larger-enrollment division. They are thinking about going to two divisions. So this could be the last year with three champions."
Guilderland split its two matches with Bethlehem this season as the Dutchmen went on to finish with an 11-3 record.
The Dutchmen finished second at the Suburban Council tournament in late September. They finished behind Shenendehowa by five strokes.
Jon Bass was the medalist at the event.
"It was the highlight of the season," Ryan said.
The Dutchmen finished tied for third at the Class A Section II meet earlier this month. Shen won the competition and Albany Academy finished second.
"It was an outstanding year," Ryan said. "Finishing second in the Suburban Council and third in the section, I'm happy with that.
"Good chemistry and depth"
Eight kids qualified to compete at the sectional meet, but only six are allowed to compete from one team.
The team was led by seniors Bass and Mike Duncan. Duncan qualified for the state meet after qualifying at the A-B-C-D qualifier held at Orchard Creek Golf Course last week.
Duncan shot a 72 on the first day and a 77 on the second day for a combined score of 149 or plus-seven. He finished fifth behind winner Justin Dietz of Shen, who finished with a total score of 136.
The state meet will be held in the spring.
Junior Derek MacLoud also competed at the state qualifier but lost in a playoff to advance to the second day of the two-round tournament.
Seniors Mike Tate and Marc Spenziero were also big contributors to the team. Junior Chris Levy rounds out the six sectional competitors for the Dutchmen.
Joe Cimmino and Brian Linehan both decided to play on the golf team this year after playing other sports during the fall. Cimmino had played football and Linehan had played soccer at Guilderland.
"They were first-year players as seniors," Ryan said. "They were good to add to the team. They added depth to the team. We had good chemistry and depth."
Though the Dutch had a lot of seniors as their top players, Ryan has a couple of younger players who will contribute more next year.
"We have some players that did well toward the end of the year," Ryan said. "Tyler Warchol, a freshman, really shot well at the end of the year. It looks like he has a bright future."
The junior varsity team won the Suburban Council and will provide Ryan with some talented players next year.
"They won the Suburban Council JV tournament," Ryan said. "They are some good young players. We should be strong for the next couple of years. We'll have to rebuild a little bit because we lose such a good class. Hopefully, we'll still be very competitive."
Ryan is looking to continue the success the golf team has had over the past several years, including a Section II championship in the fall of 2003.
"We've been in the top three or four the past seven years," Ryan said. "The kids this year were great. They are a good bunch of guys. They are a talented group and played a lot together. They worked on their games and played a lot during the summer. I'm really going to miss them."
DeLuise smashes the record for goals - with 19
GUILDERLAND - Jackie DeLuise of Guilderland High School set the girls' soccer team record for goals in a season.
DeLuise finished her senior campaign with 19 goals. The last tally came on Friday in a 2-1 loss in a Class AA Section II first-round contest.
DeLuise broke the record when she scored two goals in a 3-2 overtime loss to Columbia on Oct. 16.
Leah Pranis, a 1997 graduate, set the previous record of 14 goals in 1996.
DeLuise set the record on a head ball with an assist from Danielle Tetreault. With one second left in the game, she scored her 16th goal with on a breakaway to tie the contest and force overtime.
On Oct. 18, DeLuise scored two more goals to add to her total in a 3-0 overtime win over Ballston Spa on Senior Night.
DeLuise finished her career with 35 goals to tie with Pranis for second place on the all-time scoring list at Guilderland.
Tasha Fluery, a 1990 graduate, holds the career scoring mark with 37 goals.
All the players were coached by Barb Newton who is in her 22nd year at the helm of the Lady Dutch soccer program.
A solid season ends in victory for Voorheesville
By Tim Matteson
VOORHEESVILLE - The rains finally ended, but that didn't stop some members of the Voorheesville football team from taking one more dip in the mud.
The Blackbirds had just wrapped up the season, winning a crossover game against Hoosick Falls, 7-6, in a contest that was played mostly in the rain and mud. Though the rain ended midway through the fourth quarter, the mud stayed and numerous Blackbirds were, well, happier than pigs in slop. After the victory, they ran, jumped, and slid in the mud that covered the middle of the field.
The Blackbirds were playing in a crossover game after a tough 28-21 loss last week to Cambridge in the Class C Section II quarterfinals.
"You always worry about a letdown in these games," said Voorheesville Coach Joseph Sapienza. "Sometimes teams do not come ready to play."
The Blackbirds came ready to play but the weather affected what both teams could do on offense, resulting in a low-scoring affair.
Senior fullback Adam Duncan scored the lone touchdown for Voorheesville with 42 seconds left in the first quarter. He plunged into the end zone from one yard out to cap a nice scoring drive for the Blackbirds.
Lee Fenner, a junior goalie on the soccer team, kicked the extra point to give the Blackbirds the lead.
It ended up being the winning point.
Hoosick Falls had scored early in the fourth quarter as Dan Okerman ran from five yards out to cap a long drive that started from its own 16-yard line.
The Panthers went for the two-point conversion to try to take the lead.
Okerman got the ball again on a handoff but was stopped in the middle of the line by a flock of Blackbirds.
Voorheesville held on to the lead with 11:04 left to play.
The Blackbirds were able to hang on even after a fumbled snap gave the Panthers the ball at the Voorheesville 44-yard line.
Hoosick Falls marched down to the 19, but the Blackbird defense held and forced a punt. The Panthers never got the ball back.
"I was really impressed with how both teams executed in the conditions," Sapienza said. "We made the plays we had to on defense and offense. We stopped that two-point conversion. That was the game there."
Senior running back Pat Jones finished the game with 177 yards on 27 carries.
Okerman ran for 127 yards on 24 carries.
The win was a good way for a talented group of seniors to end their football careers at Voorheesville. It is a group, Sapienza said, that the dirtiest thing they might have ever have done was sliding in the mud.
"As I told the kids," the coach said, "I never had a problem with anything this year. This group will take care of themselves."
The Blackbirds caught a tough break with some injuries late in the year, and a loss to Coxsackie-Athens without Duncan and Jones and a couple of other contributors, knocked them down to the number-four seed from the South Division of Class C.
"I said in the pre-season that an injury would devastate us," Sapienza said.
Eleven seniors will graduate from the team, and many have a chance to continue to play in college if they want, Sapienza said.
"A large group of them could go on to play college football," Sapienza said. "Realistically, a handful of guys are capable, and there will be another handful of guys that are capable and won't play and decide to hang it up after this. They are all good students and good citizens as well."
The seniors on the team are Jimmy Carroll, Evan Christner, Jay Conde, Brad Donaldson, Duncan, Sean Fitzmaurice, Dan Flynn, Jones, Chris Massaroni, Jordan Murphy, and Brendan O'Keefe.
"This is a good group of 11 kids who are totally dedicated to it and dedicated to each other," Sapienza said. "I think that, with this group, they will be disappointed when they come out Monday and are not coming out for football practice. It means that much to them."
As some of the seniors get ready for college, Sapienza will start to get ready for next fall.
"We relied on some sophomores this year," he said. "We had a few young guys that had the opportunity to have key roles and did a good job. It will then be their time to step up and be guys that will show us the way."
Young team finishes third in section
By Tim Matteson
VOORHEESVIILLE - The season came to an end recently for the Voorheesville golf team, but not before the team achieved some big accomplishments.
"We really did a super job," said Voorheesville Coach Tom Gladd. "Especially for a real young team."
The Blackbirds finished third in the Colonial Council and third at the Class C-D Section II meet early in October.
"It's the second time since I've been here that I've taken a full team," Gladd said. "And this is the first time we placed."
John Malfetano, R.J. Cave, Landon Church, and Michael Young all qualified for the sectional meet after reaching the required scores.
Malfetano finished third in the sectional meet and qualified for the Class A-B-C-D state qualifier. He missed the cut after shooting a score of 81 on the first day of the two-round meet.
"It's the best I've ever had anyone do ever since I've been a coach for 12 years at Voorheesville and Coxsackie-Athens. He's improved every year," Gladd said.
Malfetano finished fourth at the Colonial Council meet and was named to the league all-star first team.
Cave, a freshman, finished ninth at the league meet and was named a second-team all-star.
"We had seven kids get varsity letters," Gladd said. "We went above our age and inexperience. The season we had was really fantastic. It was really a lot of fun and exciting."
Without any seniors, the Blackbirds will return their whole team for next year.
"Everyone is looking to get out on the course," Gladd said. "We have everyone coming back. Everyone got better. I'm proud of everything the kids did."
Bulldogs win WAC tournament in fine style
By Tim Matteson
BERNE - It was another great season on the links for the Berne-Knox-Westerlo golf team.
The Bulldogs finished the season with a 17-3 record and were second in the Western Athletic Conference. But the highlight of the season for BKW was winning the WAC tournament in pretty dramatic fashion.
"We went into it with a good year," said BKW Coach Don Dennis. "But there were five teams and any one of them could have won."
The tournament was held at the Fox Run course in Mayfield, which favored the host team, Dennis said. But the Bulldogs ended up winning by three strokes.
"The first five golfers were in and we were tied with Fonda," Dennis said. "But Josh Rebeor was still out. He came in with an 86 and that broke the tie and we won the championship. All the kids played well. It was a good way to wrap up the year."
BKW ended the season with a fourth-place finish at the Class C-D sectionals earlier this month.
"It wasn't our day," Dennis said. "We practiced hard and had a non-league meet at Ravena to get used to their course [the site for the sectional match]. We did not putt well."
Dennis was also hoping that junior David Sikule would qualify for the A-B-C-D state qualifier meet.
"He missed it by one shot," Dennis said. "It was a tough day for him. But he has the desire to be there."
The season could have been a little bit better.
"With any luck, we could have been 20-0," Dennis said. "We had a couple of tough breaks. But that's golf."
Sikule was the Bulldogs' number-one player all season. He finished with a 38-2 match record and was the medalist at the WAC championship.
Sikule shot a 78 and was also named the most valuable player in the league.
Senior Jon Clark had a good year, mostly playing in the number-two spot.
"He's been with me for six years," Dennis said. "He is a captain and is always reliable. His low was a 42 and he shot an 89 at the WAC tournament."
Paolo Audino played in the number-three slot for most of the season, though it took him awhile to get going.
"He's going to be a three-sport star," Dennis said of the sophomore. "He got off to a slow start because he plays a lot of basketball and baseball. He came on at the end and his season low was a 38. He shot an 82 at the WAC tournament. He has great potential, especially if he plays a little more."
Sophomore Sean Flanigan has made great strides this past season, Dennis said.
"He improved his game," Dennis said. "He worked hard this summer. He's always at the course. If there's no snow on the ground, he's playing. He shot in the 40's and had an 82 at the WAC tournament."
Rebeor, a sophomore, got off to a slow start this season, Dennis said. But he came up with a big round at the WAC championships and just barely missed qualifying for sectionals.
"To make sectionals, you need to shoot five scores," Dennis said. "He missed the last one by one shot. He needed a 45 and shot a 46.
"In the last match at the WAC tournament, which is a 28-hole event," Dennis said, "He went 2-0 on two nine [holes]. He shot 43 twice and was the hero of the WAC."
Freshman Ethan Sharp played mostly on the modified-junior varsity team. But did play some on the varsity and played in between the three and six spots.
"He has a great future," Dennis said. "He has a lot of potential."
Sophomore Tim McIntyre is another golfer Dennis sees as having a bright future.
"He is steadily improving," Dennis said. "He filled in some for Jon Clark and did well."
Lance Durham provided some inspiration for the Bulldogs this season.
He won the Dick Gray Athlete of the Year Award in the WAC.
"He was in a wheelchair," Dennis said. "He had scoliosis. But he came back and made the baseball team this year. The whole season he was a great inspiration to all his teammates. He's gone through a lot."
Though the Bulldogs accomplished a lot of things this year, Dennis sees an even better future for his team.
This is the first time since 2002 Dennis had enough sectional qualifiers to field a team at the C-D meet. Four golfers from a school need to qualify to be scored as a team.
Dennis had a feeder team that will provide him with experienced kids in the future.
"There were 12 to 15 kids on what we called our minor-league team," Dennis said, making a baseball reference. "We had kids in seventh-, eighth-, and ninth-grades who were are not ready for varsity."
The minor-league team, coached by Jeff Teats, played a match against Voorheesville.
"We lost," Dennis said, "but it was a great experience for the kids."
The Bulldogs took in a clinic at Blackhead Mountain and also got extra practice time at the Helderberg True Value, which has a driving range behind it.
BKW held its matches at the Cobleskill Country Club and the minor-league team played its match at the Ironworks Golf Course in Duanesburg.
"We have a great team coming back next year," Dennis said. "They are a great bunch of kids."
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