Sentinel gridders again reach state Final Four

TICONDEROGA Ticonderoga High School moved within a step of the Class D state championship football game by crushing Fort Edward, 27-16, in quarterfinal play Nov. 10 in Clintonville. The Sentinels, now 9-2 on the season, played Haldane in the New York State Public High School Athletic Association Class D semifinals in Kingston yesterday afternoon. The winner will play for the state title Nov. 23 at the Carrier Dome in Syracuse. Steven Lenhart and an opportunistic defense led the way for Ticonderoga against Fort Edward. Lenhart ran for 285 yards and a touchdown, while the Sentinel defense forced five turnovers that led to four TDs. Krys Ross accounted for two of those turnovers with a pair of interceptions. Fort Edward jumped to an 8-0 lead and looked ready to take a commanding lead when Ross made the first of his interceptions at the Sentinel 21 to end the opening quarter. From there Ti drove 79 yards in nine plays for the tying score. Josh Huestis capped the drive, bulling into the end zone from a yard out to make it 8-6. Matt Streeter then passed to Jake Taylor for the two-point conversion and an 8-8 draw. Fort Edward again drove deep into Ti territory only to fumble at the 20, where Sentinel Shane Graser recovered. On the next play, Lenhart broke left and sprinted down the sideline for an 80-yard touchdown. The PAT failed, but Ti led at the intermission, 14-8. Another Fort Edward fumble early in the third period was recovered by Tis Jesse Clark at the Sentinel 17. Ti responded with an 83-yard, 14-play drive that was capped by Streeters 25-yard TD pass to Bryant Austin to give Ti a 20-8 advantage. See SENTINELS, page 17 Austin crossed the goal line dragging Fort Edward defenders. Fort Edward again drove into Ticonderoga territory and again fumbled. This time it was recovered by Austin at the 25 as the third quarter ended. Ticonderoga answered with another long drive 75 yards in 11 plays. Lenhart did most of the work, carrying seven times on the drive, before Streeter scored on a bootleg. Streeter booted the extra point and the Sentinels were ahead 27-8 with seven minutes to play. Fort Edward, held to 37 yards in the second half, capped the scoring with a 61-yard touchdown pass with two minutes to play. Huestis added 79 yards rushing for Ti, while Streeter hit 3-of-6 passes for 49 yards and a TD. Haldane, only 4-5 on the season, won the Section I championship and upset Eldred, 19-14 in the quarterfinal round. This is Ticonderogas second straight trip to the state Final Four. A year ago the Sentinels lost to eventual state champion Tuckahoe, 22-19, in the final minute. The other Class D semifinal pitted Walton of Section IV against Bolivar-Richburg of Section V. To many observers, the de facto Class D championship game was played Nov. 10 when top-ranked Onondaga lost to second-ranked Walton, 52-14, in quarterfinal action. Both teams were 10-0 entering the game. Walton has out-scored opponents, 601-42, on the season.

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