Last night the Homer Varsity Football team lost 27-34 after a close head to head game against the South Jefferson Spartans.
"It was a great high school game," said Homer head coach Gary Podsiedlik. "It was a very physical game. They knew what we were doing and we knew what they were doing and it all came down to just let the best man win, and tonight it was them unfortunately."
At kickoff, the Trojans started the game on defense. Soon after the Trojans began their first drive on offense, in the very second play of the game, Homer senior Garrett Mead was able to come out with a fumble, giving the Trojans offense great field position, starting at the Spartans 45-yard line.
After that, the Trojans turned on first gear, with them relying on their running game. As Junior Andrew VanPatten led the Homer's running game with a total of 96 rushing yards.
VanPatten soon rushed into the end zone after a 3-yard run for the first Touchdown of the game. The Trojans decided to go for two on this one, with senior quarterback, Dylan Yacavone running towards the right corner to make it 8-0.
However, South Jefferson were quick to answer back with a Touchdown of their own to make it 8-6.
From then on, it was an ongoing battle between both teams for the rest of the first half of the game.
The Trojans were able to obtain a 21-12 lead by the end of the first half, with junior Luke Pallone rushing in to the end zone by the end of the first quarter and then Yacavone hitting senior Matt McUmber for a 15-yard Touchdown.
Coming into the second half of the game, the Trojans were quick to get another Touchdown to make it 27-12, with VanPaten rushing in 5-yards into the end zone.
VanPaten finished the game with a total of 2 rushing touchdowns.
With the Trojans having a comfortable lead, South Jefferson tried to make a comeback with them quickly relying on their rushing game in the second half after seeing that the Trojans were having trouble stopping it.
The Spartans then went on to score three rushing touchdowns in a row, giving them a 34-27 lead.
The Spartans defense were also being more aggressive and barely allowed the Trojans to get a first down.
"This team made us earn every yard," said coach Podsiedlik. "We did a pretty good job in the first half, but against us their defense was really physical and they had patience. They gave up a few Touchdowns in the first half and then they out toughed us on the second half; not by a lot, but they were handling us in the line of scrimmage. That really frustrated our kids, because they were just able to get a first down. We had opportunities to score more points, but it didn't happen."
"The big thing about senior night, is a night to say thank you to the families of the seniors because we hope that we have a lot of more football to play with these seniors," added coach Podsiedlik. "It gives kids a chance to walk out in the field with their parents, brothers, sisters, grandparents, etc. and say 'thank you for all of your support and letting me be a part of this great game through my High School career.' It's a tough one for them this year, losing on their last game on the field."
The Trojans are now 3-3 overall and will be looking to get a road win at Solvay this upcoming Friday October 18th. Game kicks off at 6:30 p.m.
Here is a photo gallery of last night's game (All photos were taken by Ross Cohen/Cortland Voice):