New Paltz, Marlboro duel for Class B title
Dukes seek to avenge regular-season loss to Hugies in Class B championship game
It’s Marlboro vs. New Paltz. Round 2. And this is for all the marbles.
The five-time defending champion Dukes take on the Huguenots for the Section 9, Class B football championship at 7 p.m. Friday at Dietz Stadium.
Admission for Friday’s game, along with Saturday’s 7 p.m. Class AA title game between Newburgh Free Academy and Monroe-Woodbury at Dietz, is $8 for adults and $5 for students. Gold Cards will be honored, but not Section 9 Passes.
New Paltz is looking for its first title since defeating Marlboro for the B crown in 2010. After that, the Dukes began their current title reign.
The Hugies had not defeated the Dukes since then until four weeks ago, when New Paltz dominated Marlboro in a 34-7 triumph.
Mew Paltz won the battle on the line in a physical game. It had a 21-0 lead in the first 16 minutes as Kenny Verney scored on a 2-yard run, Jimmy Verney cashed in a Duke fumble with a 10-yard TD and Kumar Singh raced 46 yards for another score.
Marlboro was down 28-7 at halftime and tried to go to the air, but interceptions by Joe DiMarco and Kenny Verney kept it in check.
New Paltz coach Tom Tegeler knows full well (7-2) Marlboro and coach Rich Ward will be ready for the second time around.
“Coach Ward is not going to
let us walk in there and do what we did before, so it will be a different team and, hopefully, we’ll handle them,” Tegeler said. “I think we’re a good team, and I think it will be great game.”
Said Ward, “They are a formidable opponent. I think we’re definitely the underdog. They took it to us last time.”
Ward praised Tegeler and his team. “They’re wellcoached and have a very good program,” he said.
Marlboro has a history of capitalizing on mistakes, and, even though it’s a team with 11 starting sophomores, nothing has changed.
“You always have to play a clean game against Marlboro,” Jimmy Verney said. “They’re a great team. We’re going to have to work on some stuff, get tougher and just be better all around.”
Added Ward, “In the playoffs, everything gets magnified — penalties, turnovers, mistakes.”
Both teams were in fine form in their semifinal wins as the defenses took charge.
James I. O’Neill scored 63 points against the Dukes during the regular-season meeting, but Marlboro put the clamps on the Raiders for a 17-6 victory on Saturday.
The Dukes had taken a 14-0 lead in the first seven minutes. Sam Mongelli’s 50-yard pass play to John Perugino set up Billy Williamson’s 2-yard TD run.
Mongelli later sprinted 33 yards for the second touchdown. Mongelli kicked a 27yard field goal in the fourth quarter.
Tiquan Scott, who rushed for 380 yards and five TDs in that first meeting for O’Neill, was held in check.
“I think we have gotten better,” said Ward about his defense in the postseason.
New Paltz did much the same to Liberty and Roy Penn-Cosentino, holding him to 63 yards and no touchdowns in its 35-13 win on Saturday. He ran for 371 yards and six TDs the previous week against Red Hook. The Hugies held Liberty to one touchdown over the final 30 minutes.
The (7-1) Hugies took control in the final two minutes of the first half. Jimmy Verney recovered a fumble, then ran 95 yards for a touchdown on the next play. After the Indians went three-and-out, Verney found Christian Burda on a 42-yard screen play for a TD as time expired.
Verney led New Paltz, rushing for 181 yards and three touchdowns and passing for 109 yards and another score.
As always, Ward reminds his team to “enjoy the moment” of playing for a sectional championship, but the task is still at hand: Playing your best, executing and winning the day.
“It’s about laying it all out on the line and protecting the ball,” he said. ”It’s playing 48 tough minutes and thriving and surviving. You have to thrive over your opponent and somehow survive at the end.”
Marlboro’s John Perugino, in action against Red Hook earlier in the season, had a key 50-yard pass reception in the Dukes’ 17-6 win over James I. O’Neill in the Class B semifinals.
New Paltz’s quarterback Jimmy Verney skirts past Rondout’s defensive line.