Week 7 Harvard Cup Recap: Sparks in playoff hunt

Posted on October 26, 2009 by Rich Kozak

Week 7 of the Harvard Cup’s regular season only witnessed one game that could be considered an upset, while the league’s top two teams stayed true to form.  With two weeks left in the regular season, only Burgard and Riverside seem to have solidified a spot at the playoff table.  South Park, McKinley, Grover, Lafayette, and even Hutch-Tech have a mathematical shot at qualifying for the top four spots.

Last week’s Intense Milk Harvard Cup Radio “Game of the Week” between the South Park Sparks and the Lafayette Mighty Violets was anything but intense for three quarters of play.  Finally, midway through the fourth quarter, the elusive Alex Woodfork was able to materialize an end around reverse play 46-yards to give South Park a lead.

Perhaps even more thrilling was the South Park’s two point conversion play.  Lined up in the “Wildcat” formation, Robert Malave drove left; pulled up just before the line of scrimmage and found quarterback Shane Schafer in the end zone for the two point conversion and the 8-0 final over the Mighty Violets.

The Sparks dominated the time of possession in holding the pigskin for over 35 minutes. Alvin McDowell, Paul Bates, and the tenacious Hakeem Wilson led a Sparks defense that did not let the Mighty Violets cross the midfield stripe.

Coach Tim Delaney remarked, “I am so proud of these kids right now.  This is the first time since 2004 that the school has won two games in a row and or current win total is more than the ‘06, ’07, ’08 season’s total.”

South Park four-year veteran Terell Potter says confidently, “It’s an awesome feeling, knowing that we can play with these teams and win games.”

His sentiments are echoed by teammate McDowell when asked about the turn around in the team’s fortunes, “Coach said that we needed to wipe the slate clean and start the second half of the season like it was a new season and that’s what we have done, now it’s time to focus on Grover.”

Delaney concluded, “The players are beginning to understand how to win and believe that they can.”

On Friday night, the defending champion Riverside Frontiers didn’t display their usual offensive swagger, but really didn’t need to in a pedestrian 14-2 victory over an overmatched McKinley team.  The red-hot combination of quarterback David Drayton and receiver Donnie Bender teamed up once again for a twenty yard touchdown pass.  Tremaine Alls tacked on a 3-yard touchdown run in the second quarter for all the points the Frontiers would need on the evening.

Alls put on a clinic in rushing for 100 yards on only six carries as Riverside won for the sixth consecutive game after its season opening loss to Burgard,13-12.

The Burgard Blue Bulldogs stayed perfect on the season with a resounding 27-0 victory over a tattered Grover Cleveland Presidents side.  Head Coach Jason Kolb proved very democratic in his coaching style as nine different Bulldogs running backs bit the Presidents to the tune of 339 combined rushing yards.

Shamari Cheney led the ‘Dogs with 171 yards and two touchdowns and Amir Shanks chipped in with two more scores and 108 yards rushing.  He also picked up a two point conversion and a kicked extra point on the afternoon.

The Bulldogs’ defense notched its third straight shutout behind the efforts of William White, who led Burgard with a baker’s dozen tackles, and a fumble recovery for good measure.

The final game on the Harvard Cup’s weekend slate was an unthinkable Hutch-Tech loss to Bennett, 22-16.  Even though the Tigers have practiced hard like every other team in Western New York and deserve the victory, the “coaching staff” at Bennett did not see fit to inform ANY media outlet in the area about the details of the game.  As a result, some fantastic young athletes’ achievements will never be known.

Bennett coaches, your game finished by 12:05 PM on Saturday afternoon, shame on you.

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1 Comment on Week 7 Harvard Cup Recap: Sparks in playoff hunt

  1. Shane


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