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Sunday, Nov. 2, 2014: Arlington, Pittsford score semifinal upsets

   Leading off today: We're going with a rather abbreviated roundup of Saturday football results so that I can spend more time Sunday getting state tournament brackets for football, boys soccer and girls soccer moving along.

   Chief among the key results would be two games that changed the look of the Class AA's top 10.

   Third-ranked New Rochelle seemingly held its destiny in its own hands vs. Arlington -- tied at 20, in possession of the ball 46 yards from the goal line and 28 seconds remaining. The worst-case scenario would have appeared to be a regulation tie and a trip to overtime on the Huguenots' home field.

   Suddenly, though, the real worst-case scenario materialized. Bailey Faldetta intercepted a pass and returned it 56 yards deep into New Ro territory. Two plays later, Chris O'Neil kicked a field goal for a 23-20 win.

   "Our goal here was to shock the state," Faldetta told The Journal News. "New Rochelle's a big team. We wanted to come here and show the state what we can do. Now we're going to the section championship and we're going to win the sectional championship."

   To do that, the Admirals will have to avenge their only loss of the season, a 21-7 setback to John Jay East Fishkill in the 2014 opener. Saturday's final will be the first all-Dutchess Section 1 football championship in the state-playoff era.

   For precedent in avenging regular-season losses, Arlington needs only to look at Pittsford. The Panthers, not even certain as late as 4:30 p.m. on Friday that they would be playing in the Section 5 semifinals, atoned for a 41-34 regular-season loss by beating No. 9 Rush-Henrietta 42-28.

   Josh Mack ran 34 times for 342 yards and four touchdowns in cold, rainy weather to advance the Panthers to the final vs. Victor. Pittsford finished with 536 yards of offense and no turnovers.

   "Usually, I don't like the cold, but I don't know, maybe it was my day," Mack told the Democrat and Chronicle.

   R-H found itself preparing for two opponents for much of the week as Aquinas' eligibility case played out first in a Section 5 meeting room and then State Supreme Court. The final decision was rendered less than 24 hours before the opening kickoff.

   "That's an excuse that none of the players and none of the coaches will use," Royal Comets coach Joe Montesano said. "We prepared really well. Unfortunately tonight, Pittsford was better. For whatever reason, we weren't up to par. That falls back on me."

   More Class AA: You don't see many 7-0 scores in football anymore, but you have to like Liverpool's chances whenever there's a shutout involved this year. The Warriors blanked an opponent for the fourth time this year and prevailed on Jaydakis Scott's 7-yard TD run with 7:17 to play.

   Liverpool recovered a botched punt snap at the B'ville 9 early in the first quarter only to be stopped on downs, setting the defensive tone for the remainder of the game.

   "That's been the style all year," Liverpool QB Ricky Sisto told "Shut them down on defense. Offense -- move the ball when we can."


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       The game was halted for almost 30 minutes after the conversion kick that followed Scott's TD. Bees defenders Sam Gosson and Sam Mahar collided on the PAT attempt and were treated on the field for an extended time before both were taken away in ambulances to be checked at an area hospital. Baldwinsville AD Chris Campolieta said both were examined and released.

       Liverpool is ranked 20th and Baldwinsville 21st in the state this week.

       Queensbury responds in time: With Queensbury down 20-14, Tyrell Adams scored on a 10-yard run and Brett Rodriguez added a 2-point conversion run to get the No. 1 Spartans moving to a 35-20 win over unranked Scotia-Glenville in Section 2 Class A.

       Rodriguez did not even start the day in uniform as Queensbury hoped to rest a shoulder that was injured in the quarterfinals. In what local media suggested was a Willis Reed-esque moment, Rodriguez finished with 61 yards rushing, mostly in the team's 21-point fourth quarter, and also played linebacker.

       More late drama: Connor Coleman's first field goal of the season, a 29-yard attempt, gave Newark Valley a 17-14 win vs. Lansing in the Section 4 Class C semifinals.

       Quarterback Vinnie Darpino had scored on a 1-yard keeper to cap off a 14-play, 81-yard drive, and Coleman kicked the extra point with :31.7 left to force the overtime.

       Lansing opened the OT with a penalty and Nick Schermerhorn picked off a pass on the next play to set the stage for Coleman, who was 0-for-2 on field goals through the first eight games.

       Scoreboard: The Week 9 list of scores from around the state has been posted. Also, you can check out how a state-ranked teams fared.

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