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December 09, 2016
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Storm surge

Sullivan West junior Andrew Stabbert extends the ball as he lunges towards the pylon for the first score of the game behind a 27-yard run in the first quarter. The Bulldogs led 13-0 before a one-hour storm hiatus factored in to change the game’s momentum, particularly in the second half as the Indians scored 21 unanswered points for the 27-19 key win which will bar Sullivan West from playoff contention.
Photos­­­ by Richard A. Ross

In what was to be a dramatic reversal of fortune, now it was the Indians that were controlling the line of scrimmage, moving the ball effectively and marshaling a defense that would lead to 21 unanswered points and the cathartic 27-19 come-from-behind win. The first blow was a 17-yard run by Fallsburg transfer Shakree Gibson. The PAT made it 19-13. The Westies took to the air and moved the chains, but Liberty sacked Shevak on a fourth and 16 at the Liberty 24. The Tribe exuded confidence, while the Bulldogs scrambled to regain their moxie. A four-yard TD run by Jackson with 11:48 to go in the fourth quarter tied the game and Grant Harman’s PAT gave the Indians the lead they would never relinquish. Liberty led 20-19 and those two missed Westie PAT’s now loomed large. The feisty Bulldogs marshaled an impressive drive, but with a fourth and one yard to go at the Liberty 31, Liberty stuffed a Shevak run and got the ball back on downs with 7:18 to go. The Westies moved the ball but could not sustain drives, and on a late punt attempt, the ball was fumbled and Liberty capitalized on the turnover with the dagger, a TD run by Stephen Johnson for the 26-19 edge. The PAT made it 27-19. Sullivan West had one final chance to even the score as they looked to traverse the field and add a two-point conversion to thrust the game into OT, but it was not to be. In the resumed downpour, Liberty now 2-2 (1-0 Class C Division II) evinced a muted celebration, while the dejected Bulldogs 1-3 (0-2 Class C Division II) were left to ponder their eviscerated playoff hopes. Sullivan West will travel to Highland for a non-league game, while Liberty hosts unbeaten Millbrook. Liberty could garner the one-seed with a win over Millbrook. A loss would render them as the likely two-seed. In other football action, all of the other locals fell. Tri-Valley (0-5) lost to Rondout Valley 69-14, Eldred (1-4) lost 28-21 to the Hackley School, Monticello 0-5 (0-3 Class A) fell to Wallkill 35-24 and dominant Chester pounded Roscoe/LM/Downsville 2-3 (1-1 Cass D) 64-0.