Saturday afternoon the Blackbirds of Voorheesville entertain the Mechanicville Red Raiders in a Class C semifinal sectional game with the winner advancing to next week’s Super Bowl.
The two teams met in week five of the regular season with Voorheesville posting a 34-20 victory, but the second season rematch carries far greater importance and the Raiders will look to go back to back weekends with “payback” wins. Last Friday night Mechanicville avenged a defeat by Stillwater in the Indian Bowl, with a 22-14 quarterfinal victory over the Warriors.
Voorheesville made short work of Hoosick Falls in their quarterfinal contest advancing with a 29-6 win over the Panthers.
The top seeded Blackbirds are led by their senior quarterback Ryan Daly. The Voorheesville signal caller has thrown for over 1200 yards and 11 touchdowns, while gaining 400 yards on the ground with 6 more scores.
Daly’s favorite target when he goes top side is Ethan Richardson who has caught 22 balls for 515 yards and 4 touchdowns.
Senior halfback Dalton Esposito anchors the Blackbird ground game, rushing for 569 yards with 11 touchdowns.
Mechanicville, the #4 seed, boasts an explosive backfield with three players that can score from anywhere on the field. Senior fullback Marc DeBates with 864 yards and 11 TD’s, sophomore fullback Evan Chapman with 690 yards and 8 touchdowns, and sophomore quarterback Dan Motta with 478 yards and 6 scores have spearheaded the Mechanicville running game which has gained just under 2300 yards on the year.
When Motta goes to the air he’s thrown for nearly 500 yards and 7 touchdowns, finding his favorite target junior Keegan McHale 12 times for 344 yards and 4 scores.
Voorheesville comes in with a 7-1 mark, while the Raiders enter at 6-2.
Mechanicville must put pressure on Daly or the senior QB could replicate his first meeting with the Raiders when he completed 13 of 20 for 309 yards with three touchdowns.
Offensively the Raiders need to be turnover free and lean on their skilled and deep ground attack to chew up yardage and clock, keeping the football out of Daly’s hands.
Don’t be surprised if Mechanicville kicker freshman Jake LaFountain has something to say about the outcome in this one. LaFountain has shown a strong leg this season and the ability to put three points on the board from 40 yards in.
It should be a good one in Voorheesville Saturday and don’t be surprised if Mechanicville doubles down with another payback “W”.