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Sports Archives — The Altamont Enterprise, November 13, 2008

Young Guilderland football team loses only one game in two years

By Jordan J. Michael

GUILDERLAND –– The Farnsworth Modified football team had a dramatic end to the 2008 season. It hadn’t lost a game in ages.

The team, made up of seventh and eighth-graders, lost its last game to Amsterdam, 24-20. The Dutchmen had a shot at two straight undefeated seasons, but ended up with a 13-1 record.

“The players really wanted another unbeaten season. They’ve played amazingly well over the past two seasons,” said Head Coach Marty Curro. “The league we play in is very competitive. These kids are serious about football and I’m glad that they won so many games. Hard work pays off.”

Amsterdam was an undefeated team and had a 12-to-0 lead on Farnsworth. The Dutchmen came back to lead, 20-18, but lost the game in the final minutes.

“We weren’t used to being down in a game, but we did a great job coming back,” Curro said. “The Rams had the ball with a few minutes left and their quarterback threw up a long bomb. The receiver caught it for a touchdown and that was it. Best game I’ve ever seen.”

Curro, in his 19th season as coach, attributes the team’s success to one-on-one time with the players and systematic running of practices.

“Modified football is an experimental game and I need to teach these kids properly,” said Curro. “I get personal with every player and find a good place for them in the lineup, a place where their skills would fit best.”

Tanner Brandt, Steven Jill, and Steve Polsinelli have had a huge impact on Farnsworth. “Brandt is a real character. He’s a linebacker and a running back that has scored most of our points. He made a large amount of tackles too,” Curro said.

“Jill is easily the best linebacker to play on this team,” said Curro. “Polsinelli runs the ball exceptionally well and makes big plays.” Further credit goes to a solid offensive line and helpful coaching assistants.

Modified football is a stepping-stone for future endeavors in sports. Some players stop playing football when arriving to high school.

“Maybe half of these kids will go on to play varsity,” Curro said. “High school is a totally different world, but there has to be a carryover of personnel. Some players go on to compete in other sports, or find new hobbies. My goal is to teach discipline and good sportsmanship.”

Farnsworth had undefeated seasons in 2002 and 2003. Players from that team had great success on the varsity team as juniors and seniors in 2007.

“I want these kids to continuing playing football for Guilderland so we can keep a solid system,” said Curro. “Seeing some of my former players in the Class AA playoffs last year made me proud.” 

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