Hello from what should be an eventful day of football -- after an eventful night of football.
Check out our Friday Night Live post, which features tons of details from NT's win over Riverside. The high school home page has my story on that game as well as the roundup that include's East big win at Cheektowaga.
The day gets off to an early kickoff with a 10 a.m. top 10 small school battle between Grover Cleveland and Cleveland Hill at Riverside -- which is being referred to as the "Cleveland Bowl."
10:48 a.m. We've got a long day ahead of us, so forgive us if we weren't here for kickoff. Grover Cleveland has a 14-0 lead.
I would have been here sooner but for some difficulties parking -- the good news is that a lot of people are at this game; the bad news is the lot next to the field was full and the offstreet parking was not easy. While driving around I heard an announcement of Grover's Chris Holland running in for a touchdown -- I had a glimpse of the scoreboard, too -- 7:21 left in the second quarter. That was a 23-yard run and the two-point conversion pass was no good.
As I walked into the press box, another touchdown for Grover with 2:51 left in the first half. Junior Devonte Whitsett scored on a 30-yard run. On the conversion run, Whitsett zig-zagged up the middle in tight quarters and reached across the goal line to break the plane.
10:58 a.m. It is now halftime with Grover Cleveland leading Cleveland Hill, 14-0.
Yet another impressive performance by the Buffalo Public Schools. I thought Cleveland Hill would be the favorite in this game. In the action I've seen, Grover's defense has been tough up the middle and quick to the outside, while Holland is one of the top offensive weapons in Western New York.
11:18 a.m. The second half has begun -- Grover is kicking off to Cleve Hill.
11:26 a.m. Great start of the second half for Grover. Cleve Hill went for it on fourth-and-1 at the Grover 23, but junior Tom Butler was all over the handoff and practically tackled Cleve Hill junior Brandon Davis right after he took the ball from junior quarterback Daryl Spencer.
Here's the replay:
11:36 a.m. Cleveland Hill got the ball back after a Grover punt, made a big fourth down play of their own this time, and they are on the board with a TOUCHDOWN.
Davis ran to the left on first-and-goal and had a big hole and an easy run to the end zone on a 3-yard run with 48.2 seconds left in the third. Jonathan Thomas, a sophomore, runs up the middle for the two-point conversion. The score was set up by a big play on fourth-and-13 from the Grover 30, where Spencer rolled left hit wide open junior Marquel McCarly on the left side for the first down at the Grover 8. Grover's lead is 14-8 over Cleveland Hill.
11:39 a.m. At the end of the third quarter, Grover Cleveland leads Cleveland Hill, 14-8. Grover faces second-and-11 at its 22.
11:43 a.m. Time for a major kicking myself session. I did not have the iPhone going and Chris Holland just ran for an outstanding, 67-yard TOUCHDOWN.
He ran to the right side, found some space, then accelerated down the right sideline while fending off a few tacklers while he did it. Wow. Hating that I missed that one. Tough to type and watch and do video at the same time, but ugh.
Grover's Whitsett is stopped short on the conversion run. With 10:48 left in the game, Grover leads Cleve Hill, 20-8.
11:54 a.m. We've still got a game here. Cleve Hill gets a great drive finished with a 14-yard TOUCHDOWN run by McCarly, followed by a two-point conversion run by Spencer in which he took a pitch and went airborne while taking a hit to get in the end zone on the right side. With 6:20 left in the game, Grover Cleveland leads Cleve Hill, 20-16.
12:01 p.m. We are in for quite a finish. Grover just had a pass go through the fingers of Ronnie Ashton, which looked like it would become not only a first down on third-and-42 (yes, that's right), but probably more. Grover punts and Cleve Hill takes over at its 38 with 4:26 left in the game.
12:05 p.m. Huge sack by junior Maurice Cheatom, who gets to Spencer on fourth-and-6 from the Cleve Hill 42 and Grover takes over at the CH 33 with 2:02 left. On the previous play, Cleve Hill was lining up for a fourth-and-1, but took too much time and was flagged for delay of game, a huge misstep.
12:12 p.m. Last chance for Cleve Hill, which takes over at its 25 with 1:40 to go after stopping Grover on fourth-and-3. Senior Zachary Sheisley is in at quarterback for Spencer, who was hurt when Cheatom sacked him on the last series. Tough stuff for Cleve Hill, which has no timeouts.
12:16 p.m. The final shot ends with an interception by Grover senior Keyon Miller. The Presidents take over at the Cleve Hill 40 with 1:05 left.
12:19 p.m. We have a FINAL SCORE: Grover Cleveland 20, Cleveland Hill 16.
Yet another big win for the city. I'm heading down to the field for interviews and I'll be back from Canisius for their game with Cathedral Prep.
1:53 p.m. We're settled in at Canisius' Stransky Complex and found a seat in the press box thanks to some kind folks from the Cathedral Prep stat crew. They have a radio crew here as well.
I stopped by All High Stadium and caught what I figured I'd catch: Clarence scoring on its opening drive. It leads, 6-0, after a 4-yard run by Michael Gelz with 9:58 left in the first quarter.
Here's the play:
It's our first taste of football weather this season, windy and getting a little nip in the air. There aren't too many fans here for either side at the moment.
2:11 p.m. Great first opening possession for Canisius, which drives 79 yards in 6:40 for a TOUCHDOWN.
The score came on a rifle of a pass by senior Travis Eman to senior Theo Russell on the left side of the end zone, a 9-yard play on second-and-4. Senior Alec Curtis -- a new addition to the Crusaders -- adds the extra point and Canisius has a 7-0 lead with 5:15 left in the first quarter.
2:14 p.m. Cathedral Prep comes right back. Anthony Jordan runs for a 77-yard TOUCHDOWN, bursting into the secondary and just outrunning the Crusaders to the end zone. Noah Ackerman adds the extra point and we're tied at 7-7 with 4:19 left in the first.
2:23 p.m. We are at the END OF THE FIRST QUARTER with Canisius and Cathedral Prep tied at 7-7.
UPDATES: Clarence's lead over Bennett is 20-6 at half. ... Niagara Falls and Jamestown are scoreless with about four minutes left in the first quarter, thanks to a text from Sal Constantino.
2:37 p.m. Cathedral Prep calls a timeout with 4:46 left in the second quarter; Canisius has third-and-goal at the Cathedral Prep 5.
2:41 p.m. Canisius' drive came up empty after a field goal attempt of 22 yards fizzled with a bad snap. Cathedral Prep calls a timeout with 3:19 left in the second quarter facing a third-and-4 at its 15.
Cathedral Prep had a 56-yard field goal attempt by senior Noah Ackerman with 0.4 seconds left come up well short. After the missed field goal by Canisius, Cathedral Prep had a drive fizzle and got a great punt bounce from its own 5. Canisius' next drive ended with a Travis Eman fumble with 1:05 left in the half -- he was fighting for extra yards but Michael Amendola's hit popped the ball loose. Cathedral Prep took over at the Canisius 49 with 1:05 left in the half but the drive ended with their missed long field goal attempt; if it would have been good it would have been the longest in Prep history.
UPDATES: Sean Bruso texts in with St. Francis up, 15-8, with 6:30 left in the first half; Kenmore West up, 14-7, over Williamsville North in the second quarter; and Lockport up, 21-0, on Hutch-Tech in the first half. ... From Matt Mariacher at All High: Clarence 35, Bennett 6. ... From Constantino at Niagara Falls: Jamestown leads Niagara Falls, 14-0, at halftime. Interesting development there.
St. Joe's golf coach/assistant hoops coach Jack Herlan reports that Joe's and Frannies are 21-21 late in the second quarter.
3:08 p.m. Make that 28-21 St. Francis over St. Joe's after another Herlan update, and we're kicking off with the third quarter, Cathedral Prep to receive.
3:17 p.m. Canisius starts the second half like it did the first, with another long, impressive scoring drive. Eman hits Russell again for a 19-yard TOUCHDOWN pass, lofting a pretty ball to the left side for Russell, who had plenty of separation from his defender. Canisius' low extra point is blocked and Canisius leads Cathedral Prep, 13-7, with 7:39 left in the third quarter.
3:25 p.m. Cathedral Prep has taken the lead, 14-13, on a 21-yard pass from Damion Terry to Kimani Smith, who did a great job to make a catch on the right side and keep a foot inbounds. The extra point made the difference as Ackerman put it up and good with 3:58 left in the third quarter.
3:28 p.m. And Canisius strikes back so fast I didn't get the video and I'm not happy about it.
Eman keeps it up the middle, makes some tacklers miss, then uses his speed to burst through the secondary and no one can catch him. An 80-yard TOUCHDOWN. Great run by Eman. A two-point conversion pass is incomplete and Canisius leads Cathedral Prep, 19-14 with 3:45 left in the third.
UPDATE from St. Joe's: St. Francis leads, 35-21, at halftime. ... Jamestown is up, 24-0, after three quarters at Niagara Falls.
3:41 p.m. At the END OF THE THIRD QUARTER, Canisius leads Cathedral Prep, 19-14.
The Ramblers just converted a key third-and-4 as Terry hit Luke Trucilla over the middle. Prep has a first down at the Canisius 38 on a possession that began with a muffed punt by Canisius.
3:47 p.m. Cathedral Prep takes a 20-19 lead on a TOUCHDOWN from Terry to junior Michael Amendola on a very clutch play, a 3-yard score on fourth-and-2 at the Canisius 3 that gives Cathedral Prep a 20-19 lead with 9:32 left in the game. Prep goes for two but the pass is incomplete.
3:54 p.m. An injury timeout here with Canisius driving; it has a first down at the Cathedral Prep 31 with 6:51 to play.
3:59 p.m. Canisius regains the lead with a clutch drive and a 17-yard TOUCHDOWN from Eman to Denzel Benton -- a great bootleg play by Eman. Eman hits Russell on the two-point conversion pass and Canisius leads Cathedral Prep, 27-20, with 5:18 left.
4:09 p.m. UPDATE: Jamestown with a big win at Niagara Falls, 24-0.
4:11 p.m. A FIELD GOAL of 22 yards by Curtis put Canisius up, 30-20, on Cathedral Prep with 1:14 left.
UPDATE: St. Francis leads St. Joe's, 49-21, with 3:15 left in third.
4:16 p.m. Cathedral Prep appeared to have a kickoff return for a touchdown, but it was called back on a holding penalty (to the outrage of Prep people in the press box)
4:17 p.m. We have a FINAL SCORE: Canisius 30, Cathedral Prep 20.
I'm off to run around and do interviews ...
4:39 p.m. HUGE win for Canisius. Canisius people are already talking about being No. 1 -- a few turned to the press box and were waving No. 1 fingers up at me. Good stuff. They definitely have a case after a win like this. If there wasn't a two-time defending state champion who I have considered to be the best team in the entire state in Western New York, it would be an easy answer. I'll spend the rest of the weekend mulling it over. :-)
I'm off to All High to catch whatever I can from Amherst-Lafayette, do some writing and some video blabbering.
5:39 p.m. We're back in the All High press box -- where we were about 22 hours ago.
Amherst has a 12-0 lead on Lafayette at halftime thanks to two second-quarter touchdowns by senior Cameron Mathews.
Here's his first touchdown, coming right at me moments after I arrived.
Mathews added another score with 37.3 seconds left in the first half.
6:05 p.m. Amherst's lead is up to 18-0 after a 7-yard run by Keon Colvin with 7:06 left in the third quarter.
6:24 p.m. Amherst now up, 26-0, after Matt Gallineau scooped up a fumble and returned it about 40 yards for a score with 2:40 left in the third. Tigers add a two-pointer on a run by Brandon Borden.
6:40 p.m. The final at St. Joe's was a big win for St. Francis, 49-21.
Some more FINAL SCORES: Kenmore West 54, Williamsville North 22 ... Lockport 42, Hutch-Tech 0 ... Clarence 42, Bennett 6 ... Grand Island 28, Starpoint 21 ... Williamsville East 27, Kenmore East 13 ... Burgard 26, JFK 3 ... Depew 46, South Park 15 ... Cardinal O'Hara 27, Bishop Timon-St. Jude 14 ... Sweet Home 26, Lake Shore 0.
6:50 p.m. And another one: Amherst beats Lafayette, 26-0.
Our scoreboard is being updated and will have tonight's results as well.
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The Week Four wrapup from PrepTalkTV is up and it is making a statement. (That's what we call a tease.)
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As always, we want to hear from you about what you've seen tonight. Let us know what you thought of the teams, players -- even the hot dogs -- in the comments section below.
taggedCleveland Hill | Grover Cleveland | High school football