DANSVILLE — There were plenty of reasons to celebrate in Dansville on Friday night as it was Labor Day Weekend, the Balloon Festival was in town and finally the Dansville varsity football team opened thei 2018 season with a win at home as they held off Dundee in the final seconds for a hard-fought 18-14 victory.
With weather that was more conducive to baseball rather than football, Dansville wasted no time in getting on the scoreboard in front of the hometown fans. The Mustangs received the opening kick-off & brought it out to their own 29 yard line where they put together a nice 71 yard drive that consumed 4:30 and culminated in a score. Things didn't start well in the drive as the horses were flagged for Illegal Procedure on the first play. It wouldn't be the last time either team saw the yellow flag as the game was riddled with opening night miscues.
Mustang quarterback Dylan Race connected with Austin Simpson for a 15 yard pass play that netted a first down. Race helped himself with a nice run for a first down at the Dundee 20. Moments later the senior quarterback went airborne to Brody Stone on an 18 yard pass play in the left corner of the end zone for a touchdown. The 2-point conversion failed at Dansville let 6-0 with 9:25 remaining in the first period.
The "flag" would haunt Dundee on the very next play as Austin Brace's 80 yard kick-off return for a TD was nullified by a penalty back the Scots' 34 yard line. The Mustang defense actually aided in the Dundee score with a couple of penalties which would eventually set up a Preston Cratsley bootleg of 11 yards for the game-tying touchdown with 11:09 left early in the 2nd quarter. Kenneth Empson Jr.'s run on the conversion put the maroon & white in front 8-6.
The Mustangs went up top and moved the ball downfield on clutch pass completions to Brody Stone and Austin Simpson that put the home team in the red zone, at least for the moment. Then it seemed like Dansville "threw it into reverse” as a couple of flags moved the Mustangs back to the Scots' 40 yard line. With 5:51 left Dylan Race scrambled for some time and threw on the run finding Austin Simpson in the crease as he slipped behind the linebackers, made the grab and took it in from 40 yards out for the score making it a 12-8 game at the half.
The Scots took the 2nd half kick-off and fumbled the ball away on the opening drive as Trevor Shotwell recovered for Dansville near midfield. That defensive momentum fueled a Mustang drive of 54 yards that saw Dylan Race connect with Brody Stone again. This time it was a 9 yard pass play that extended the red & black's lead to 18-8 with 3:11 showing on the third quarter timer.
Dundee came right back on a big play when Preston Cratsley hooked up with Austin Brace on a 79 yard scoring strike that made it anybody's ballgame at 18-14. Coach Sheldon Gibson's team was right back in it! (Side note on Sheldon Gibson: he roomed with a guy at Ithaca College for four years by the name of Neil Weidman, who's name should be somewhat familiar to Dansville sports buffs).
Dansville took possession and drove downfield eating up some precious time and real estate only to see a Mustang pass get picked off in the end zone by Brian Kreidler with an inadvertent whistle blowing as the cornerback attempted to run the interception back. Following one of many long discussions, the ball was awarded to Dundee on their own 20 yard line. Dansville would scoop up a Scottsmen fumble to stop a drive, and then the Mustangs would drive and take more time off the precious clock, only to see the Dundee "D" step up and stop Dansville on the 13 yard line.
Dundee took over with 3 minutes left in the game and marched it downfield and converted a key 3rd down turning it into a first & goal at the Dansville 8 yard line with :18 seconds remaining. The next running play got about half the yardage, but while Dundee was trying to line-up for a quick snap, the ball squirted free and time expired giving the Mustangs a magical moment and a hard-earned 18-14 triumph.
Dylan Race threw for 211 yards and 3 touchdowns while going 11 for 18 with one interception. Race also ran for 35 yards while picking up a fumble recovery as well. Austin Simpson had 2 receptions for 76 yards and a touchdown. Brody Stone had 6 catches for 76 yards and a touchdown. Trevor Shotwell rushed for 71 yards and Tanner Dettman ran for 46 yards in the victory.
On a defensive note John Wilkinson, Shane Crandall who each had 7 tackles. Trevor Shotwell added 6 for the Mustangs who head to Bath on Saturday night for a 7 o'clock kick-off.
Coach Rich Welch said, “One of the things we really have to work on is alleviating penalties. We had too many penalties at crucial times in that game when we could have been putting up points on the board."
Wayland-Cohocton 28, Cal-Mum / Byron-Bergen 14
COHOCTON — ”Talk is cheap" and "put your money where your mouth is" are a couple of heralded cliches of our day and age. Both of which would be appropriate in describing the pre-season hype over a very underrated Wayland-Cohocton football team. There's been a lot of talk around saying they look like they're going to have a good season.
Now answer me this, how can you predict such a thing with tough teams like Leroy, Avon, Cal-Mum/Byron Bergen, Livonia and Letchworth/ Warsaw on your slate? These are some pretty good football teams year-in and year-out. Well, I guess rookie head coach Darren Knapp's club did the "put up or shut up" routine on Friday night as they opened their season at the Elsie Tripp Sports Complex against CM/BB.
The Golden Eagles proved "talk IS cheap" and they "put up" to "shut up" those who might have written them off in Livingston County Division II. The maroon & gold defeated Cal-Mum / Byron-Bergen by a convincing count of 28-14 to open the season with a huge W.
The game's first play resulted in a CM/BB touchdown when Ryan Carpino took the opening kick-off coast-to-coast for a 6-0 Raider lead. The Golden Eagles showed what they were made of as the home team put together a 55 yard drive that culminated in a Ryan Damboise two-yard touchdown run that knotted the game at 6-6 mid-way in the first period.
After Way-Co's defense showed some muscle stopping the visitors on a three and out, they took over the football and put together another scoring drive. On this one Keeghan Savior would do the honors with a 22 yard touchdown run putting Way-Co in front for good. Sophomore running back Caleb Hanggi barrelled in for the 2-point conversion making it 14-6 at the end of one quarter.
In the second period a short punt resulted in a shortened field for Wayland-Cohocton. The Eagles methodically marched the pigskin downfield and Caleb Hanggi went in from the 2 yard line making it 20-6. Now it was the Raiders turn to gather some momentum as Bryce Yockel scored from 20 yards out and the conversion was good making it anybody's ballgame at the half with Way-Co clinging to a 20-14 advantage.
Defense was the name of the game in the second half as the only score belonged to Wayland-Cohocton late in the game to seal it. Once again the Golden Eagles took advantage of a poor punt and took over the football at at their own 40 yard line. Way-Co worked the clock and gained some ground en route to Connor Englert's 4-yard keeper for a score.
Caleb Hanggi's conversion gave the Golden Eagles something to celebrate as coach Darren Knapp's club "brought home the bacon" along with a well-deserved 28-14 in the opening game of the 2018 campaign.
Ryan Damboise had 21 carries for 80 yards and a touchdown. Connor Englert had six carries for 46 yards and a touchdown, going 5-of-11 for 56 yards passing. Caleb Hanggi had 8 rushes for 27 yards with a TD and two conversions. Keeghan Savior - 3 carries for 25 yards 1 td
Damboise and 10 tackles, one sack and one forced fumble defensively. Derek Cheasman added three tackles with an INT, and Caleb Hanggi had 7 tackles with a fumble recovery.
Wayland-Cohocton hosts Avon on Friday night.