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Warriors beat state-ranked Rensselear

LAKE GEORGE Such a gridiron showdown happens only several times in a decade for area high school teams. Friday night, Lake George and Rensselaer both renowned for their potent, multi-talented offensive attacks were battling it out for supremacy. When the dust had settled after Friday nights contest of the unbeatens, the Lake George Warriors (7-0) had made a statement. The Warriors bested a Rensselaer (6-1) squad that was ranked twelfth in the state with last minute heroics and a tenacious running onslaught. It was one of the best games I have ever been involved in, Lake George Head Football Coach Jeff Bennett said Sunday. these kids worked so hard all week. The game was close, with the scoring lead changing hands providing thrills to the last seconds of the game. With less than two minutes left in the fourth quarter a 15-14 Lake George lead was erased by a Rensselaer touchdown. Now down 15-22, the Warriors got the ball back with only 1:30 left on the clock. This team has so much character, Bennett said. They displayed real mental toughness in the last drive. The Warriors drove deep into Rensselaer territory, but was temporarily stalled by the blazing-fast Rensselaer defense. With 22 seconds left in the game, the Warrior offense faced a make-or-break 4th and 11 on the Rensselaer 23-yard-line, with regional superiority at stake. The Warriors ran a hook-and-ladder play with Joe Robertson receiving the DeWaard pass and lateraling the ball to runningback Caleb Meroski for the touchdown. Bennett said that the intuitive nature of his quarterback, J.D. DeWaard impressed him. He knew what the play was before I called it, Bennett said. Everyone expected to score. The Warriors showed even more mental strength by controlling their emotions and scoring on the go-ahead conversion with a Jake Nelson run for the final points in the 23-22 victory. Then soon after the final kickoff to Rensselaer, DeWaard sealed the win by tackling their running back on the 3-yard line. The sideline went crazy, as the players on the field swamped Nelson. Meroski punished the Rensselaer linebackers all night, repeatedly dealing blows to would-be tacklers. Behind sound line-play, Meroski rushed for 206 yards on 27 carries scoring two touchdowns. He just ran hard all night, Bennett said. Jake Nelson rushed for 53 yards on 11 carries, scoring one touchdown. This coming week Lake George will be hosting a Bishop Gibbons squad with intangibles that concern Coach Bennett. Their receivers are extremely quick and they have a good quarterback, Bennett said. On Monday we will stop enjoying this one and start getting ready for Bishop Gibbons.

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