By Rob Potter
KINGSTON November 13, 2001 A Millbrook touchdown with less than 20 seconds left in the second quarter and another midway through the third quarter spelled trouble for Roscoe Sunday in the Section IX Class D championship game at Dietz Stadium in Kingston.
The second quarter touchdown a 15-yard double reverse by wideout Perry Owens gave Millbrook momentum and a 14-7 lead at halftime and the third quarter score a 54-yard run by halfback Scott Mauer boosted the Millbrook lead to 21-7.
Millbrook (10-0) never relinquised the lead following the Owens touchdown grab, posting a 35-15 victory over Roscoe (6-4). With the win, Millbrook moves on to the Class D regionals, where they will face Section I champion Dobbs Ferry.
They were big, Roscoe coach Fred Ahart said of those aforementioned Blazer touchdowns. That touchdown in the third quarter was really big and gave them some momentum.
Millbrook, the fourth-ranked Class D team in the latest New York State Sportswriters Association poll, kept that momentum rolling later in the third quarter. On a fourth-and-three play at the Roscoe 43-yard line, Blazer quarterback Quinn Shaw rolled left on a bootleg. After juking past a Blue Devil defender at the 30, Shaw raced to the endzone.
That gave Millbrook a 28-7 lead with just 1:27 remaining in the third quarter.
Roscoe, however, grabbed the momentum back less than two minutes into the fourth quarter.
After the Blue Devil defense recovered a fumble by Millbrook tailback Billy Martini, the offense took over at the Blazer 33. And the Roscoe offense wasted little time in scoring.
On a halfback option play, Brian Ballard threw a pass to Dave Eggleton at the goal line. Eggleton caught the ball amid three Millbrook defenders to cut the lead to 28-13. Ballard then ran for the two-point conversion, giving the Roscoe faithful reason to cheer as the Millbrook lead was down to 13 points.
After each team was forced to punt on its next possession, Millbrook added an insurance touchdown. John Hubbard capped a six-play drive with a dive into the endzone from a yard away.
Our defense really came to play, Millbrook coach Denny Riva said.
Indeed it did, as the Blazer defense limited Roscoes Thunder and Lightning combination of Brian Ryder and Ballard to 151 yards rushing on 30 carries. And the bulk of Ballards 129 yards came on a 65-yard touchdown run in the second quarter that tied the game at 7-7.
Riva also had praise for Roscoe.
Fred (Ahart) always has his team ready to play, Riva said. I told my team at the half that even though we had the lead, we were in for a tough second half. The scoreboard doesnt indicate how well the Roscoe defense played and the way their whole team competed.
Shaw, who finished the game with 124 total yards, was named the offensive MVP of the contest. Teammate Matt McGrath, a defensive end, was chosen as the defensive MVP.
In high school football, we stress playing good defense, Ahart said. We tell the guys that if we score two touchdowns and the conversions, we should win the game. We did that today, but to their credit, Millbrook scored those key touchdowns. They have a lot of weapons and are a fine football team.
Keith Buck, one of eight seniors on the Roscoe roster, noted that the Owens touchdown right before the half was an important play in the contest.
It hurt our confidence, said Buck, who lines up at both quarterback and guard on offense and also plays defensive end. We were down a touchdown and then they got the other one in the third quarter.
Overall, Buck noted, the Blue Devil season was a success.
The season was great, he said. We were over .500 and made it to this game. I didnt want it to end like this, though.