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The road to a championship

HYDE PARK, NY — Nobody ever said the road to a football title would be an easy ride without a few bumps on the way.

On Sunday, October 29, the No. 1 ranked Bears of Tri-Valley and the Roscoe/Livingston Manor/Downsville Blue Devils, seeded No. 4, battled it out at FDR High School to see who would win the Section IX 8-man football semifinal game, thus determining which team would advance to the championship game at Dietz Stadium in Kingston, NY on Saturday, November 3.

Originally scheduled for Saturday, October 28, the playoff had to be postponed a day as a nasty Nor’easter blew into Hyde Park.

While by the end of the game, the Bears had trounced the Blue Devils 72-30, it wasn’t all bad for the combined team from Roscoe/Livingston Manor/Downsville as Roscoe’s Erick “B” Hill went over the 1,000-yard rushing mark for the season, as he rushed 15 times for 130 yards, giving him a total of 1,016 rushing yards for the 2018 gridiron year.

“‘B’ shares this honor with his teammates who helped to make the 1,000 rushing mark possible," said Blue Devils veteran coach Fred Ahart.

R/LM/D’s Peter Pagan scored on a 19-yard pass from QB Nikolas Breihof, who then added a couple of points on a 2-yard conversion run; Hill scored on a 15-yard run; Pagan posted a TD on a 26-yard pass from Hill, who then followed up with a 2-yard conversion; Hill scored again on a 47-yarder, and then closed out the Blue Devils (finished the season 4-4) scoring with a 2-point conversion run.

Blue Devils QB Nikolas was 3-for-10 passing, and had a 43-yard TD.

The Bears (7-1) clawed the opposition by an impressive 42-points: QB Keegan Striemer was 3-for-3 passing, 2 TDs including a 17-yard pass to Joe Schulte and a 75-yarder to Cody Shamro, a 6-yard TD, with 15 carries for a total of 238 yards; Alex Schultz was 6/111; Ethan Shaver 11/88 and a 2-yard TD; Drew Hartman posted 4-yard TD.

“Congratulations to seniors Nikolas Breihof, Ty Engle, Connor Gartland, Dylan Hefele and Erick ‘B’ Hill as they finished outstanding careers with Sunday’s Section IX playoff game… special recognition goes to offensive coordinator Mike Hill and defensive coordinator Jeff Loeffler, and to the younger players who all contributed greatly to a highly successful first season of eight-man football," said Ahart.

With the win, Tri-Valley was scheduled to meet the No. 2 ranked Bombers of Pine Plains in the inaugural Section IX Eight-Man Football Championship at Dietz Stadium.

Robert Dietz Memorial Stadium is named in memory of Robert H. Dietz (January 22, 1921 - March 29, 1945), a Kingston native who was killed in action during WWII and was posthumously awarded the Medal of Honor.

While serving as a staff sergeant in Company A, 38th Armored Infantry Battalion, 7th Armored Division, Dietz “single-handedly killed several German soldiers defending a bridge” into Kirchain Germany, and then “disabled demolition charges which had been placed under a second bridge.”

Dietz was slain in combat in the aftermath of these heroic actions, but his memory lives on at the local sports stadium.

 See also Sullivan Wests recent defeat.


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