Wildcats Look To Make Section 10 Football History
BY DAVE SHEA
The current Wildcats have made Gouverneur Central Football history in their refuse-to-lose methodical march to the New York State Class C Championship Game.
On Friday at 6 p.m. at the Carrier Dome in Syracuse Coach Sean Devlin's 11-0 team will look to make Section 10 history by become the first section team to win a state title when it matches up with defending state champion Susquehanna Valley (12-0) of Section 4.
The Wildcats will also be part of a memorable day in the history of North Country High School Football which will be represented in three classes. Moriah of Section 7 will play for the Class D title at noon against Clymer/Sherman/Panama of Section 6 and Carthage of the Frontier League and Section 3 will meet Cornwall of Section 9 for the Class A crown at 3 p.m.
"This is really cool to have three teams from our area in the finals," said Coach Devlin during a practice session on OFA's turf field on Tuesday.
"We are playing the defending state champion and I guess we are the underdog. But we will go down there and just see what we could do."
And the Wildcats will undoubtedly be accompanied by a legion of fans to the Carrier Dome.
"The support of the community has been great. They have done everything possible for us," said quarterback Caleb Farr who is the trigger man for Gouverneur's three-prong rushing attack which Coach Devlin calls a "hybrid spread power running formation."
"When we came back on Saturday (after a 14-11 win over Valhalla at Middletown) there were people in the streets everywhere rooting for us."
Against Valhalla The Wildcats' rushing attack produced a state of the art running balance with 248 yards. Quarterback Caleb Farr gained 92 yards on 21 keepers and Cayden Stowell (19-82) and Mitchell Tyler (15-68) delivered 82 and 68 yards picking their holes and outside lanes expertly. Joe Cummings added six yards and made a seal-the-deal defensive play with an interception with 1:29 to play to stop a deep Valhalla threat.
"I think the key to our running attack is communication between the blockers and the backs," says defensive tackle Dan Hall.
"We started the season with three new starters in the line we had to learn a lot but we got it done. And now everything is working so well."
"We able to control the ball and limit their possessions. But when they went up 11-0 I thought we might be in trouble," said Coach Devlin.
"But our defense just said no way. Our defense was been absolutely incredible."
The Wildcats' defense, coordinated by Coach Justin Young, will look to pass one more formidable test facing defending state champion Susquehanna Valley (12-0) of Section 4 which won its 25th straight game with two fourth quarter touchdowns to outscore Southwestern 35-28 in the semi-finals.
SV also features a hybrid running attack led by Logan Haskell, who plays tailback and quarterback, who figured all five touchdowns in the win over Southwester including the 7-yard go-ahead pass to tight end Patrick Cooper with 4:58 remaining. Cooper also caught a Haskell pass for the two-point conversion.
Haskell rushed for 185 rushing yards on 37 carries and 148 passing yards with eight completions in 12 attempts.
"They are definitely dynamic on offense. It should be a great game," said Devlin.