Falcons run into buzz saw versus No. 1 in NY Class A
By David Yarger
Niagara-Wheatfield's football team has had a stellar season, but on Friday night, the Falcons ran into the best of the best - the West Seneca West Indians.
The Indians, the reigning New York State Class A Champions and No. 1 ranked Class A team in NYS, ran over the Falcons on its homecoming game, 42-0.
The Indians put its stamp on the game early, as the defense caused a turnover on downs. Then, offensively, on a third down play, WSW quarterback Maurice Robertson threw a 72-yard touchdown pass to give the Indians a 7-0 lead.
The Falcons couldn't get anything rolling on offense, as the team turned the ball over five times.
On defense, Jake DeWolf and Nick Stott caught interceptions, but the turnovers were for none, as the Falcons couldn't muster any points.
At halftime, the Falcons trailed, 28-0.
Maurice Robertson added his second rushing touchdown of the game during the second half, and John Speyer also scored for the Indians. The Indians put in reserves late and ran away with a 42-0 victory. The win also clinched the Indians the Class A1 division title.
On a bright note for the Falcons, senior Noah Mixon had five receptions for 47 yards.
"Noah had a great game," Falcons coach Russ Nixon said. "We've seen that a lot out of him that he's sure handed a lot of the times and tonight he definitely had a great game."
Despite the loss, Nixon took a few positives from the game.
"I thought our defense - obviously 42 points you look at and go 'geez' - but the first quarter and the third quarter I think we gave up seven or 14 points and those are usually the two toughest quarters to get yourself going," Nixon said.
Offensively, the Falcons were stopped by a stellar WSW defense, but Nixon was quick to point out how crucial the five turnovers were, especially with two of them leading to good field position for the Indians. Three of the five Falcons turnovers were turned into touchdowns by the Indians offense.
Nixon credited the Indians and said they're an athletic team and can cover sideline to sideline. Also, he felt the Falcons had chances to score but just didn't capitalize.
Of playing the No. 1 team in New York, Nixon said, "You definitely see where you've gotta move the stick to make a run deep in the playoff in October. We're gonna watch the film and take whatever we can from this."
With the team now sitting with a 3-2 record in Class A1 (4-2 overall), a playoff spot just became a little tougher to clinch and the likelihood of the spot could possibly come down to tiebreakers.
The Falcons have one more regular season game left: senior day versus Grand Island. Nixon said the team just needs to get back on a winning track.
"Like these guys talked about already; bounce back, refocus and get ourselves ready to play another good team, at home," he said.
Prior to the 2 p.m. kickoff at Terry Harvey Field, Niagara-Wheatfield will honor 23 senior football players and seven senior cheerleaders at 1 p.m.