Saturday, November 19, 2016

Next stop: Syracuse: Troy vs. New Rochelle, 11/19/16

When you think of New Rochelle, you probably don't envision high school football. No, there are visions of The Dick Van Dyke Show in the 60's, since Rob Petrie (Van Dyke) commuted from New Rochelle to his job in New York.

Six years ago, the Hugenots of New Rochelle High played Troy High in a Class AA state semi-final game, won by Troy. The two schools met again tonight at Dietz Stadium in Kingston to determine who would advance to next week's title game in Syracuse.

Troy took the opening kickoff and marched down the field, leading to a Joey Ward touchdown. New Rochelle came back and tied it at 7 all right at the end of the first quarter. In the second quarter, Troy's Dev Holmes ran it in from 11 yards as Troy cashed in on an interception by Joe Casale to retake the lead at 14-7. Late in the period, after another interception, this one by Robert Talham, Ward scored his second touchdown of the game. However, this time, Jordan Audi's extra point failed, and Troy took a 20-7 lead into the break.

In the 3rd, New Rochelle's defense took over, and held Troy at bay. As the period closed, Jordan Forrest put the Hugenots within six points with a touchdown catch, which would also be the final scoring play of the evening. Troy's defense stiffened in the final stanza, collecting three quarterback sacks on New Rochelle's final drive to seal the game. With under a minute to go, and Troy in victory formation, QB John Germinerio took a knee, but New Rochelle's defense, desperate for some kind of miracle spark, went for the ball. However, the game officials opted to let the clock run out, rather than access a penalty on New Rochelle. Troy advances with a hard fought 20-14 victory.

Germinerio wasn't perfect, didn't throw a lot of passes, and was sacked 4 times, with one interception. Troy's defense, on the other hand, forced three turnovers, all on interceptions, and nearly a fourth on a strip sack by James Kelley in the the fourth quarter, but New Rochelle recovered the fumble, prolonging the inevitable.

And, so, Troy will spend next Saturday in the Carrier Dome in Syracuse, facing off against Victor Central High, located near the Canadian border. Victor defeated Christian Brothers Academy of Syracuse, 42-13, to advance to the title game. Troy will be one of three Section II teams playing in Syracuse next weekend. Cambridge will play the Class D title game on Friday, and Glens Falls, after blowing away Pleasantville, will be in the Class B title game as the opening act on Saturday.

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