By Ted Waddell
KINGSTON November 18, 2003 The Tri-Valley Bears hopes of becoming the long-shot champs of New York State Class C high school football came to a crashing halt on Saturday afternoon at Dietz Memorial Stadium in Kingston with a crushing 42-0 loss to the Eagles of Dobbs Ferry in a state quarterfinal game.
Section I Champion Dobbs Ferry (11-0) took to the field with an awesome display of coordinated practice routines, while Section IX Champion T-V (7-4) showed up just in the nick of time, taking to the field fully dressed for the gridiron battle.
If the Bears arrival was designed to quell butterflies and rattle the opposition, it didnt work.
At 3:15 in the opening frame, Dobbs Ferrys Kevin Farrington scored the first TD on a 15-yard quarterback keeper on the road to blanking the Bears. The PAT kick was good, giving the Eagles a 7-0 lead.
In what proved to be pivotal moments of play, the Eagles scored four touchdowns within a span of nine minutes in the second quarter a period of time that will burn forever in the collective memories of both football teams.
Six seconds into the second quarter, Rich Burke scored and the PAT kick again cleared the uprights, putting Dobbs Ferry up 14-0.
At 7:02, a pitch by T-V quarterback Joe Garigliano disappeared into never never land, and the Eagles recovered the ball in the end zone for a touchdown.
The extra-point kick was good, and Dobbs Ferry was well on its way to victory with a commanding 21-0 lead over a disheartened T-V squad.
On the onsides kickoff, the Bears got one of their few lucky breaks of the day when they recovered their own fumble.
But Burke scored his second TD of the game at 5:13 in the second quarter. A successful PAT kick put the Eagles up 28-0.
About a minute later, Garigliano coughed up the ball, giving Dobbs Ferry possession.
And the Eagles capitalized on their good fortune by scoring a TD, as Anthony Tompkins crossed into paydirt at 2:42. In the wake of another successful PAT kick, the Eagles now had a 35-0 lead.
With 31 seconds left until intermission, George Kalaba picked off a Garigliano pass to end T-Vs final possession of the first half.
At 6:04 in the third quarter, Kalaba racked up the last TD of the game for Dobbs Ferry.
Once again, the PAT kick sailed through the uprights to give the Eagles a 42-0 win. The team is now on its way to the Class C East Semi-Finals, which will be held on Saturday, November 22 at Dietz Stadium.
With approximately a minute remaining on the game clock, Garigliano launched a series of passes, hoping to put the Bears on the scoreboard.
But Eagle defender Danny Juvan added insult to injury with an interception that put out T-Vs lights for the season.
Dobbs Ferry then elected to run out the clock, thus ending the lopsided gridiron battle.
With the dominating victory over T-V, the Eagles, who last year captured the Class D state championship, have won 23 consecutive games.
They came onto the field as the states second-ranked Class C team.
T-V, which went 2-7 last season, managed a meager two first downs in the first quarter against a team that has outgunned its opponents 315-28, allowing no team to score more than eight points in a game.
Theres a reason why Dobbs Ferry has won 23 games in a row, T-V Coach Dave Viglione said. They have an outstanding program, are big and they are fast . . . plus they are very well-coached and disciplined.
We started out playing hard and moved the ball a little bit against a tough defense, he added. But football is a game of emotion, and they got up on us and started to click and roll.
Viglione said his team never gave up, trying to stage a comeback and playing hard right up until the end, which is all I can ask of them.
We lost to a better football team, and theres no shame in that, he said.
After the teams gathered at midfield for the ritual handshakes and the presentation of trophies, Viglione thanked the seniors for their leadership.
Youre the ones who helped restart the Tri-Valley football tradition, he said.
The coach also had a few words for next years Bears.
Remember how it feels to be beaten 42-0 in a state playoff game, Viglione said. The only way to overcome that is to work harder. Games are won in practice, but championships are won in the off-season in the weight room and running sprints. Remember this feeling, and it will motivate you next year.