Section II football swept its way through the quarterfinals, and its teams are now preparing for the state semifinals.
Four area teams — Class AA’s Troy, Class B’s Glens Falls, Class C’s Holy Trinity and Class D’s Cambridge — registered wins in the state quarterfinals, while Class A’s Burnt Hills-Ballston Lake received a bye in Week 11.
As the area’s five remaining football teams prepare for their semifinal games later this week at Middletown, here are 10 numbers to know.
That’s the last year in which Section II sent all five of its champions to the state semifinals. The teams that represented Section II, from Class AA to Class D, were Shenendehowa, Queensbury, Schalmont, Hoosick Falls and Cambridge/Salem. Three of those teams — Queensbury, Schalmont and Hoosick Falls — advanced to the state championship, but none of them won.
Cambridge’s 54-20 state quarterfinal win against Section VII’s Moriah was the most-lopsided win for a Section II team during Week 11. Cambridge got two touchdowns apiece from Colton Dean, Tommy English and Tyler Linendoll.
After Section X’s Ogdensburg Free Academy struck first against Holy Trinity, the Pride scored the game’s next four touchdowns. Holy Trinity led 27-6 before OFA scored a second time.
Glens Falls and Troy, which both won state championships last year, are tied for the longest active winning streak in the state. Section IV’s Newark Valley — a Class C program — had been tied with Glens Falls and Troy for the most consecutive wins, but Newark Valley lost Saturday to Section III’s Skaneateles.
Of the area’s five remaining teams, Holy Trinity’s defense has allowed the fewest points per game at 9.2. The Pride have put together four shutouts, and allowed 37.6 percent of its points during their Week 2 loss against Mechanicville.
Each of Section II’s remaining football teams has won at least six consecutive games this season. Cambridge has not lost since its Week 5 setback against Greenwich, and Holy Trinity has not lost since Week 2 against Mechanicville. Burnt Hills, Glens Falls and Troy are undefeated.
Holy Trinity sophomore quarterback Joe Tortello has averaged four touchdown passes per game in the Pride’s last six games. During that stretch, Tortello has thrown for five touchdowns once, four touchdowns four times and three touchdowns once. For the season, Tortello has thrown for an area-best 33 touchdowns.
Glens Falls played the closest state quarterfinal of Section II’s participants, winning 28-26 against Section X’s Gouverneur. Glens Falls trailed 12-0 in the second quarter and later stopped Gouverneur’s 2-point try in the game’s final minute.
Only Holy Trinity has not won a state tournament championship of Section II’s remaining teams this season. Troy has won three, Cambridge two, and Burnt Hills and Glens Falls each have claimed one title.
No Section II team has ever won back-to-back state tournament championships. Cambridge, Glens Falls and Troy have the chance this month to change that.