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Schuylerville football wins state semifinal

Schuylerville football wins state semifinal

Horses hold off Port Jervis 8-7
Schuylerville football wins state semifinal
Port Jervis quarterback Brett Fuller is sacked by Schuylerville’s Tyler Bowen and Evan Jeffords.
Photographer: Peter R. Barber

MIDDLETOWN — Amid Schuylerville's post-game celebration, Carson Patrick said he wasn't sure if it counted as a blocked field goal.

It most certainly did.

Liam Tomasi banged the ball off Patrick's shoulder on a 40-yard field goal try in the final seconds, and the Black Horses held on to beat Port Jervis 8-7 Saturday in a Class B state semifinal game at Middletown High School.

"I didn't even see it coming," said Patrick, a sophomore linebacker. "I went up the middle and it hit me in the shoulder pad. I knew right there we were going to the Dome. It's awesome."

Schuylerville (11-1) will bring a 10-game winning streak to Syracuse a week from Sunday for a noon title game against Chenango Forks (Section IV, 12-0) at the Carrier Dome in Syracuse.

"It was heart," said Schuylerville senior wide receiver and defensive end Evan Jeffords, who scored his team's lone touchdown. "We wanted it bad. We wanted to get to the Dome."

Schuylerville answered a Port Jervis (Section IX, 9-3) touchdown in the second quarter and Jacob Vanderhoof''s 2-point conversion run pushed the Black Horses ahead. The defenses took over from there in a physical game that included a late drive and chance by the Raiders to go ahead..

"I am so excited for the team," said Jeffords, who was named Schuylerville's standout offensive player after making three receptions for 77 yards. "I am excited for everybody."

Schuylerville quarterback Owen Sherman found Jeffords down the right sideline with a 42-yard touchdown pass with 40.6 seconds left in the second quarter before Vanderhoof ran for a 2-point conversion to push the Section II champions ahead.

"Coach [John Bowen] asked me if I could outrun their guy," Jeffords said. "I tried my best to catch it and get into the end zone. Owen threw a beautiful ball."

"We knew they were selling out on the run," Sherman said. "We went with a fake toss, and he [Jeffords] made a heck of a catch."

Schuylerville's two drives before that did not end well. Sam McGarrahan was hit for a yard loss on a fourth-and-one from the Port Jervis 7 early in the second quarter, and Sherman had a pass intercepted by Richard Cruz after that to set up the Raiders' touchdown.

That came on a 60-yarsh dash by Nico Rodriguez on the first play after Cruz's pick, and Tomasi's extra point made it 7-0 with 2:54 left.

Jeffords' TD catch capped a seven-play 69-yard sequence that included a 2-yard run by Vanderhoof on a fourth-and-one that pushed the ball to the Port Jervis 45.

Port Jervis drove from its 35 to the Schuylerville 23 to set the stage for Tomasi's field goal try with 32.9 seconds left. On the second play of the drive, Freddy Blue beat the Schuylerville defense and juggled and dropped a long pass that likely would have resulted in a touchdown.

Chenango Forks defeated Western New York Maritime/Health Science (Section VI, 10-2) in Saturday's other state semifinal 41-20.

Schuylerville's last state tournament appearance in 2015 included a 35-0 semifinal win over Westlake and a 22-19 title-game loss to Cazenovia. Schuylerville's lone loss this season came against 2018 state champion Glens Falls in Week 2.

Port Jervis 0 7 0 0 — 7

Schuylerville 0 8 0 0 — 8

PJ — Rodriguez 60 run (Tomasi kick)

S — Jeffords 42 pass from Sherman (Vanderhoof run)

Reach Gazette Sportswriter Jim Schiltz at 518-395-3143, [email protected] or @jim_schiltz on Twitter.

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