It was Senior Night at Troy High on Friday night, with Averill Park High in town. Last year, at Averill Park, the Flying Horses escaped with a 14-13 verdict. However, it's a different team, a different coach, and a different philosophy. And that was enough.
However, if Troy has an Achilles' heel, it was exposed in their inability to contain Warrior QB's Tim Vermilya and Ryan Long, a pair of read-option QB's who shouldered most of the offensive load for Averill Park. Vermilya had the longest run of the game for the Warriors, 52 yards in the 1st quarter, on the opening possession. Unfortunately, the Warriors fumbled close to the goal, and Troy recovered in the end zone for a touchback. Troy's bend-but-don't-break defense had held, and would hold fast for most of the night. In all, Averill Park turned the ball over 6 times (2 fumbles, 2 interceptions, 2 on downs), and lost Vermilya for the night, if not the season, late in the 2nd quarter. I heard two different accounts. One fan said that he thought Vermilya might've been concussed, and was held out as a precaution. The parent of a Troy player, however, said Vermilya broke his arm. As of this writing, insufficient information had been reported to the local papers, so one can only speculate.
And, so, it was Long who directed the Averill Park offense in the 2nd half, and led them to their only score, as Antoneo Serrano-Cicero found the end zone late in the 3rd quarter. By then, however, the game had already been decided.
Senior running back Damani Soares ran for 131 yards and 3 touchdowns, and added a TD catch from John Germinerio for good measure. On Senior Night, the offense was spread around, as Germinerio, a junior, added a TD toss to Tavon Moore. On the first play of the 4th quarter, Dev Holmes put the game away with a 56 yard run. Randy Jefferson put the icing on the cake one possession later to make the final tally 51-7.
With the home portion of the schedule over, Troy finishes on the road in the Schenectady area with games against Mohonasen next week, and Niskayuna. If Troy can run the table, they assure themselves of a home playoff game in 3 weeks.