Playing in its second straight one-point game, Amherst's luck changed for the better Saturday with a 14-13 win over Starpoint in Class A. The Tigers dropped their opener, 7-6, to West Seneca East.
Starpoint had climbed within a point, scoring with 20 seconds left on a halfback option pass from Tom Mueller to Shane Canahai. But the extra-point kick to tie the game, attempted after a 5-yard penalty, went wide right.
Mueller gave Starpoint a 7-0 lead in the first quarter on a 1-yard run. Amherst answered with its own 1-yard TD run from Jeremy Justin to get within 7-6 at the half. Justin put Amherst ahead for good (14-7) when he returned the second-half kickoff a school-record 99 yards. Justin found a huge hole down the right side and outran the pursuit. The previous record of 92 yards was held since 1996 by Dan Tryon, a current varsity assistant.
"We realize there has to be a sense of urgency on every snap of the ball," said coach Rob Gross. "Every play can decide the outcome -- just like the kickoff return."
Cordell Freeman led the Tigers with 73 yards on 14 carries and a two-point conversion. LB Vinny DeRosa had 13 tackles and a fumble recovery. Defensive tackles Kevin Wild and Brian Monaco had 10 tackles each.
Sweet Home 21, Grand Island 0: The Panthers erupted for two touchdowns in the fourth quarter to beat the Vikings. Grand Island got inside Sweet Home's 20-yard line once, but the defense held. After a scoreless first half, Brett Vroman caught a 9-yard pass from Quentin Hudson for a 7-0 Panthers' lead at the half.
In the fourth, Hudson rushed for a 10-yard score and Allen Douglas (146 yards, 18 carries) added a 28-yard scoring run. Alex Dellebovi had a fumble recovery and joined Vroman with an interception. Joe Perlino recovered a fumble and Dominic Durno had a pair of sacks.
Hamburg 42, Williamsville South 0: The Bulldogs racked up 366 rushing yards with Dorian Myles (14 carries, 102 yards, two TDs), Matt Thomas (six carries, 104 yards, one TD) and Zach Shouldice (seven carries, 88 yards). Shouldice and Thomas also had interceptions on defense. Thomas fumbled his interception return into the end zone, where it was recovered by Andrew Mouw for a touchdown.
Williamsville East 35, Kenmore East 0: Dave Convertini (5 of 7, 132 yards) threw three touchdowns, two to John Quartironi (three catches, 101 yards), as the Flames scored all of their points in the first half. Kevin Moffitt scored on a 60-yard punt return, collected a sack, an interception and eight tackles and also had six carries for 51 yards. Mike Faracca had 10 tackles and a sack.
> Class AA
Jamestown 20, Lockport 14: Jamestown (2-0), which entered the fourth quarter trailing, 14-7, tied the game on a 20-yard TD reception by Aaron Connacher (who made all of Jamestown's six catches for 80 yards) from Nat Barone with eight minutes to play and took the lead on a 1-yard score by Mike Prinzi with 3:04 left.
The second TD of the game for Prinzi (23 carries, 113 yards) was set up by Jon Messina's interception at the Lockport 30-yard line. The Lions advanced to the Jamestown 45 on their final drive but turned the ball over on downs. Lockport quarterback Jon Maroney carried 20 times for 173 yards.
Lancaster 44, Clarence 7: The last two games between these schools were decided in overtime, but the Redskins erased all doubt in this one jumping out to a 21-0 lead. QB Tom Cybulski (11-22, 254 yards) found eight different receivers, including Garrett Sokolowski and John Durkin, for TDs. Durkin finished with four catches for 116 yards and on defense he had one of the secondary's five interceptions. Nick Kuzma, Stephan Owczarczak, Anthony Lepkowski and Brandon Kuehlewind also had pickoffs. Kevin Stoerr made all five PAT kicks. Durkin, Cybulski, Brad Murray and Dave Hulbert had rushing TDs for the Redskins, coming off a school-record 55-point outburst at home against Lockport.
> Class B
Newfane 21, Maryvale 12: Sophomore RB/CB Adam Burdick accounted for all three Panther TDs on the ground, and he also intercepted a pass in the end zone. Burdick finished with 192 yards on 34 attempts as Newfane evened its record. Danny Walker recovered two fumbles, forced a fumble and had nine tackles.
Southwestern 22, Eden 10: QB Chris Stoddard scored two rushing TDs and threw for another for the Trojans. Stoddard was 7 of 12 for 101 yards passing and added 108 more on the ground. Mike Jackson had 24 carries for 124 yards. Linebacker Steve Ford had an interception and nine tackles. Eden's Jason Teelak rushed for 83 yards before leaving with cramps in the third quarter.
> Class C
JFK 34, Cassadaga Valley 14: Tony Wojtusiak scored two touchdowns, including a recovered fumble in the end zone during a 20-point third quarter for the Bears (2-0). Wojtusiak caught a 5-yard TD pass from Cody Elliott, who later caught a 54-yard pass from Damien Crance (5 of 12, 124 yards, two TDs). Joe Duquette carried 26 times for 83 yards while Bryan Michalski had nine tackles.
> Class D
Chautauqua Lake 22, West Valley 14: The Thunderbirds tied the game on a 33-yard touchdown pass from Robert Peacock to Tony Dudley with 2:54 left to play, then won it on a Troy Mullholland 2-yard run with 35 seconds left.
Jess Salazar had 17 carries for 91 yards and a TD for West Valley.
Clymer 28, Forestville 6: Caleb Schenk carried 11 times for 74 yards, including fourth-quarter TDs of 4 and 3 yards which clinched the game. Monte Bailey ran for a 4-yard score and threw a 47-yard TD to Dan McCray.
Panama 43, Sherman 0: Joel Wiggers scored three TDs, including a 60-yard punt return, and rushed for 90 yards to lead the Panthers.