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The Telegram
  • FOOTBALL: No playoffs for Magicians

  • The combined Notre Dame/Rome Catholic football squad is heading to the Section III playoffs. Herkimer’s Magicians are not.



    The Jugglers, one year removed from competing in Class D, capped a regular season that began with back-to-back losses with a 28-20 victory on the road Friday and claimed second place in Class C East.

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  • NOTRE DAME/ROME CATHOLIC 28, HERKIMER 20
    The combined Notre Dame/Rome Catholic football squad is heading to the Section III playoffs. Herkimer’s Magicians are not.
    The Jugglers, one year removed from competing in Class D, capped a regular season that began with back-to-back losses with a 28-20 victory on the road Friday and claimed second place in Class C East. The teams had been tied in the race for the league’s second playoff spot behind undefeated Ilion.
    Notre Dame led 20-6 at one point in the first half but Herkimer fought back to tie the game with a pair of touchdown passes by junior quarterback Sean Crandall. Crandall threw a 16-yard pass to Gio Aceto and ran 18 yards for another first down on a drive that started in the middle of the second quarter. Aceto picked up a first down on four-and-one to keep the ball moving and Crandall threw a 14-yard touchdown pass to Matt Ervin on the right sideline on the next play.
    The Magicians trailed by a touchdown at halftime but got a fumble recovery from Jason Orcutt and took possession near midfied early in the third quarter. Facing fourth down at the Notre Dame 37, Herkimer was penalized for a false start and moved back five yards. Crandall tucked the ball away and ran for the first down then threw an 11-yard pass to Ervin for another. Another 18-yard run by Crandall set up first-and-goal at the 8. A bad snap on third down backed the Magicians up to the 5 with one more crack at the end zone. Crandall lined up in the shotgun looking to throw and faced heavy pressure from the Jugglers. The quarterback backtracked all the way to the 30-yard line before eluding a diving sack attempt and stepping back toward the line of scrimmage. Crandall bought enough time for Ted Borek to get open in the end zone and threw a strike to the junior tight end on the left side of the end zone. Borek put his kick through the uprights and drew Herkimer even at 20  with 4:21 left in the third quarter.
    The tie would be short-lived. Vince Sorce ran 49 yards for a touchdown on the fourth play following the change of possession and the Jugglers went back on top. Colin Pastorella ran a sneak on the conversion and added two points for a 28-20 lead.
    The Magicians threatened to tie the game again in the fourth quarter but were undermined by a turnover. Jimmy Timian recovered a Notre Dame fumble at the Herkimer 36 and Crandall ran 26 yards into Notre Dame territory on the next play. An 11-yard run by Crandall gave Herkimer another first down with more than two minutes left on the clock but two short runs and an incomplete pass left the Magicians facing fourth down at the 25 when they called a timeout with 1:13 left to play. Herkimer had struggled with the center-to-quarterback exchange throughout the damp, cold evening and another bad snap ended up in the hands of Juggler Colin Hulser.
    Page 2 of 2 - Pastorella kneeled twice and ran the final minute off the clock.
    Herkimer scored first to end of a wild series of events at the start of the game. The Magicians fumbled away the opening kickoff but forced the Jugglers into a three-and-out. Notre Dame lined up to punt on fourth down but a bad snap foiled the play and the Magicians took possession at the Jugglers’ 45. Crandall then ran for a touchdown on Herkimer’s first offensive play from scrimmage.
    Sorce ran 40 yards for the first Notre Dame touchdown and Hulser ran in the conversion for an 8-6 lead. Touchdown runs of 70 yards by Sorce and 47 by Hulser in the second quarter upped the Jugglers’ lead to 20-6.
    Crandall ran for 193 yards on 22 carries and went over 1,000 yards for the season. He also completed eight passes for 101 more yards. Defensively, Crandall and Ryan Fahy each had nine tackles and Wesley Bunce had six tackles, an interception and a fumble recovery.
    Playing without top receiver Mike Gaglianese, Notre Dame ran for 437 yards with 206 coming from Sorce and 186 from Hulser.
    Schedules for Section III’s playoffs and crossovers will be set at a meeting Sunday.
    NOTRE DAME/ROME CATHOLIC JUGGLERS 28, HERKIMER MAGICIANS 20
    Notre Dame    8  12    8    0 — 28
    Herkimer    6    7    7    0 — 20
    First Quarter
    HERKIMER — Sean Crandall 45 run (kick failed), 10:16.
    NOTRE DAME — Vinny Sorce 40 run (Colin Hulser run), 8:10.
    Second Quarter
    NOTRE DAME — Sorce 70 run (pass failed), 9:09.
    NOTRE DAME — Hulser 47 run (pass failed), 7:14.
    HERKIMER — Matt Ervin 14 pass from Crandall (Ted Borek kick), 2:21.
    Third Quarter
    HERKIMER — T.Borek 5 pass from Crandaall (T.Borek kick), 4:21.
    NOTRE DAME — Sorce 49 run (Colin Pastorella run), 2:57.
    Records — Notre Dame 4-3, 4-1 C East; Herkimer 4-3, 3-2 C East.
    Compiled From Times Staff Reports
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