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Sachem Loses rivalry game

Varsity vs Sachem East HS on 9/27/2014 5:30:00 PM
Posted Sunday, October 05, 2014 by Sachem Report

Sachem Loses rivalry game


In one of the more dramatic game endings for either program, Sachem East edged Sachem North, 35-33, in football rivalry action Saturday evening at Fred Fusaro Alumni Stadium.

Trailing 27-14 in the third quarter, Sachem East (3-0) scored 21 unanswered points to take a 35-27 lead with three minutes remaining in the game.

Sachem North’s Mike Licata scored on a 4-yard touchdown run as time expired to come within two points. He completed a two-point attempt pass to James Avanzato, who was one yard short of converting and tying the game.

Sachem East senior captain Ryan Leone had 22 carries for 227 yards and 3 touchdowns. He scored on carries of 1, 40 and 56 yards.

Sachem East’s resurgence started with a 70-yard kick return for a touchdown by Tyler Stensland at 3:03 of the third quarter. The score was 27-21 in Sachem North’s (1-2) favor.

A look at the ceremonial coin toss between Sachem East and Sachem North.

A look at the ceremonial coin toss between Sachem East and Sachem North.

“I saw an opening down the middle,” said Stensland, who also caught two receptions for 97 yards in the game. “We made an adjustment because they kept kicking it to the right, moved over a little bit, grabbed it and just ran.”

After Licata threw an interception early in the fourth, Sachem East’s Javan Abraham threw a 48-yard pass to Stensland to set up a 1-yard touchdown run by Leone with 6:36 remaining.

After another interception, Sachem East took over at its own 42 yard line and Leone scored on a monstrous 56-yard run to put Sachem East ahead for the first time in the game at 35-27.

“I saw a nice little hole, and broke for the sideline,” said Leone, who has rushed for more than 100 yards in East’s first three games this season. “I have a decent amount of speed, so I tried to make the most of it.”

Sachem North wasn’t done yet and charged down to the red zone and eventually to the four yard line. Licata, who was 12-for-23 and threw for 220 yards, 3 touchdowns and 3 interceptions and rushed for 2 touchdowns, hit Bragaglia with a 15-yard timely out-route on the sideline at the 10, and then Avanzato with a 6-yard pass to the 4. Licata’s touchdown as time expired was where it ended for Sachem North, however.

“Seeing the deficit on the board raised our intensity levels,” said Leone. “We knew this wasn’t just any other game. This was more than a game for us, for our coaches, for our team, and we realized we had to pick it up. Our lines, our backs, our defense, everybody understood this is our opportunity.”

Inside the Numbers

  • This marks just the second time since the district split in 2004 that Sachem East has beaten Sachem North in football. It’s been 10 seasons since the other win in 2005, the inaugural game between the two. Sachem North leads the series, 5-2.
  • This is the second time in program history that Sachem East has started a season 3-0. The other year was 2011.
  • Sachem East senior linebacker Connor Farrell had 11 tackles in the game and now owns the Sachem East career tackles record. He has 220. 
  • Sachem North’s Kevin Bragaglia had 7 receptions for 178 yards and 3 touchdowns. He also had 11 carries for 29 yards. The 178 yards are the second most in Sachem history for a single-game. The record is 181 set in 1978 by Neal Heaton.

Screen shot 2014-09-27 at 10.12.24 PM

Scoring Breakdown

  • SN: Licata to Bragaglia 68 pass, Gagliardi kick
  • SE: Abraham 9 run, kick good
  • SN: Licata 14 run, Gagliardi missed kick
  • SN: Licata to Bragaglia 23 pass, Gagliardi kick
  • SE: Leone 40 run, kick good
  • SN: Licata to Bragaglia 34 pass, Gagliardi kick
  • SE: Stensland 70 return, kick good
  • SE: Leone 1 run, kick good
  • SE: Leone 56 run, kick good
  • SN: Licata 4 run, missed 2-pt conversion

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