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TEAMS HOPING LIGHTNING DOESN'T STRIKE TWICE

The extended forecast for this weekend's football games is cloudy with highs between 55 and 65 degrees. The playing conditions last Friday weren't nearly as inviting.

A severe lightning storm rolled through Western New York in the early evening, forcing the suspension or postponement of 11 games.

Eight of the games were completed the next day, and three were deemed official even though time still remained. Officials in Western New York have the discretion to stop games for safety reasons. Whether a game will be resumed at a later date or called at the point of the suspension is up to administrators from both schools.

Veteran official Bob Marafino was part of the officiating crew for the Sweet Home-LaSalle contest. The Panthers were leading, 42-14, with 6:12 remaining in the fourth quarter when officials called the game because of lightning.

"We decide that the weather conditions are such that we should not be out in the field," he said. "That's as far as we go, and then it's up to the administration. We can wait a reasonable amount of time and see if the storm passes. We can't say that a game is over."

Administrators later decided that the score would stand. Similar decisions were also reached at Lancaster where West Seneca East won, 8-7, and at Lake Shore with Jamestown up, 42-12.

Blowing the whistle in Fredonia

Here's the scenario: In the middle of the third quarter, Fredonia is on the Iroquois 10-yard line and is attempting a field goal. The kick is blocked. Just as an Iroquois defender is about to pick it up and run the other way, an inadvertent whistle blows the play dead.

"The ref thinks it's a PAT and he blows the whistle," said Iroquois coach Pat Aroune. "I said, 'you thought it was a PAT' and he said, 'yes.' I'm bitter about it, very bitter."

On the next play, Fredonia went for a touchdown and scored. It made the two-point PAT and went on to a 20-12 Division V victory.

Countdown to Connolly Cup

Paul Paddock of Cattaraugus, who has nine touchdowns in three games, is among the players cited this week by the Connolly Cup Committee.

Others are: Mike Mikulaski (Kenmore West), Sean Ryan (St. Joe's), Ike Morrison (Randolph), Mike Cappella (Springville), Corey Itson (Jamestown), Adam John (Walsh), Paco O'Connor (St. Mary's), Ed Nelson (Panama), Kyma Dickinson (Lackawanna) and Joe Kusmierski (Tonawanda).

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