By Ted Waddell
ELDRED November 2, 2004 To Frank Kean, the veteran coach of the Eldred Yellowjackets football team, it must have seemed as if his team had left their proverbial stingers in the locker room, as they got pounded 40-14 by the Chester Hambletonians in Saturdays Section IX Class D gridiron battle.
Chester (8-1, 4-1 Class D) scored the first touchdown of the game at 8:33 in the first quarter when a quarterback sneak by Bryan VanDemark gave the Hambletonians a 6-0 lead.
A couple of minutes later, Eldred QB Nick McCormick took it around the left side for a TD. The PAT kick cleared the uprights, and the Yellowjackets were up by a point at 7-6.
But not for long.
At 2:24, VanDemark connected with Joe Tetz for a TD.
Early in the third quarter, Eldreds Jonathan Counts intercepted a Chester pass to give the Yellowjackets a first down on the Hambletonians 25-yard line.
Moments later, at the 7:24 mark, Eldred running back Kyle Schneider spun across the goal line. The PAT was good, but the Yellowjackets still trailed by 26-14 margin.
Both teams yielded on fourth and short yardage on their next possessions and interceptions by both the Hambletonians and Yellowjackets fired up the crowd of spirited spectators.
As the game clocked ticked away in what would become Eldreds final game of the season, the Hambletonians rolled to a 40-14 victory.
At the 15-second mark in the game, the Yellowjackets recovered a Chester fumble, but after making a few yards, ran out of time.
I think it was an excellent game and both sides battled right down to the bitter end, Chester Coach Ronald Stover said.
Franks done an excellent job with them, he added, referring, of course to the Eldred coach.
I thought we came out pumped up, but when we got down we couldnt get back up, Kean said. They are a real good team, and their three long plays killed us and broke our backs.
Eldred, which finishes its season with an overall record of 5-4 and a 3-2 record in Class D play, is losing seven seniors to graduation: Kyle Bosch, Brian Daboul, Taylor Diuguid, Tim Hallock, Corey Proscia, Kyle Ranne and Kyle Schneider.
Im proud of my seniors and the whole team
they are a class act, Kean said.
Schneider gained 158 yards on 12 carries, including a TD. Coming into the game, the senior running back had racked up a total of 1,318 yards this season.
Eldreds Jonathan Counts rushed nine times for 44 yards and McCormick was completed 9-of-21 passes for 53 yards and an interception.
With the win, Chester is headed to Dietz Stadium in Kingston this Friday to battle Millbrook in the Section IX Class D title game. Chester defeated Millbrook in last years Class D championship.