Inspired by my list of the Glens Falls area's all-time greatest high school football games , we move up to the great (and very good) games of the 1970s...
Ah, the 1970s... the disco era began as Vietnam ended, the gas crisis hit with long lines at the fuel pumps, Nixon resigned in shame... the Cowboys and Steelers, Vikings and Raiders dominated the NFL... guys wore their hair longer and longer -- take a look at some of the pictures in The Post-Star's football tabs of the era (we started publishing the annual football preview tab in 1974), and you'll see what I mean...
And there were a whole bunch of great games played in the '70s, which saw Section II championship games at the end of the decade, the end of eight-man ball in the area after 1975, and the formation of the enormous Northern-Adirondack League out of the Northern Conference/Tri-County League and Adirondack League... Bernard "Putt" LaMay stepped down at Glens Falls, and Paul Bricoccoli stepped in... John Millett fielded powerhouses at Whitehall... Saratoga Springs played in the new Foothills Council, while Glens Falls, Whitehall, Lake George, St. Mary's and Granville had some great teams, as did Greenwich and Cambridge, and even South Glens Falls was good.
Some very notable names played in the 1970s: Before he was Hacksaw Jim Duggan, he was "Moose" Duggan on the Glens Falls offensive and defensive lines in the early '70s... current Cambridge coach Doug Luke played for the orange and black in the early '70s, too... current Sports Illustrated writer Tim Layden was a Whitehall quarterback... there were other great players, like South High's Scott O'Donnell, Fort Edward/Hudson Falls' Joe Sandora, Whitehall's Matt and Mark Therrien, Glens Falls' Jim Town and Bruce Parsons and Saratoga's Mickey Walczak...
On to the games:
Corinth 40, Ticonderoga 33, Oct. 2, 1970 at Corinth: Dave VanDenburg’s 5-yard TD pass to Don Savage with two minutes to play pulled the Tomahawks back from a 33-32 deficit, and snapped Corinth’s 18-game losing streak that dated back to 1967. In a game that saw the lead change hands four times, Corinth pulled within one point on John Stevens’ 60-yard run in the fourth quarter. VanDenburg passed for three TDs in the game and Frank Kobor scored on an 85-yard kickoff return for the Tomahawks.
Granville 13, Ticonderoga 12, Oct. 10, 1970 at Ticonderoga: Granville’s Peter Hammond sprinted 60 yards on a hook-and-lateral and John Jurnak booted the winning extra point with 10 seconds remaining as the undefeated Golden Horde pulled out a thrilling Northern Conference win over Ticonderoga. Trailing 12-6 in the final minute of play, QB Ed Reed had tossed a short pass to Dave Juckett, who pitched the ball to Hammond while being hit by Ti defenders, and Hammond ran to paydirt. Granville had scored on a 30-yard double-reverse pass from Tony Hughes to John Mach just before halftime for a 6-6 tie.
Salem 36, Warrensburg 32, Oct. 10, 1970 at Salem: Salem continued its march to an undefeated Adirondack Eight-Man League season with a come-from-behind win over tough Warrensburg. The Burgers held leads of 12-0 in the first quarter and 24-6 in the third, and still led 32-20 in the fourth. Following Warrensburg’s final TD, Rick Langlois returned the ensuing kickoff 60 yards to pull the Generals within 32-26. Then Dave Sargent fell on a Burger fumble, leading to Langlois’ third TD pass to Mitch Barber, a 40-yarder with less than four minutes remaining in the game. Langlois’ two-point conversion run gave Salem the lead, 34-32, and Gary Langlois added the final two points on a safety. Dave Monroe scored three times for Warrensburg.
Cambridge 40, Hoosick Falls 34, Oct. 31, 1970 at Cambridge: In an era of low scoring, this Halloween shootout stands out as an offensive explosion for its time. Doug Luke fired a 40-yard TD pass to Clark McLenithan in the fourth quarter to bring the Indians back from a 34-32 deficit. Cambridge had battled back from a 22-8 second quarter deficit to within 28-24 at halftime, and McLenithan’s 20-yard scoring pass to Luke gave the Indians a 32-28 lead in the third. Luke, the future Cambridge head coach, had also returned the opening kickoff 80 yards for a TD.
*Honorable Mention* Whitehall 22, Granville 22, Nov. 6, 1971 at Whitehall: Trailing 22-14, Whitehall came back to tie on a controversial fourth-quarter two-point conversion pass, spoiling Granville’s perfect season. A bad Granville punt was recovered at the Horde’s 15, and the Maroon’s Marty Gordon scored from 2 yards out. Mike Smith’s two-point conversion pass to Dan Grady was at first ruled incomplete, then complete. The Horde had the ball twice after that, but stalled at the Whitehall 37 both times. Granville’s Pete Hammond had scored on runs of 75 and 47 yards to pull the Horde into a 14-14 tie in the third quarter, then Kevin Manchester hit Bob Burdick with an 11-yard scoring pass and Hammond added the conversion for a 22-14 lead. Whitehall capitalized on two Granville turnovers for a 14-0 first-half lead.
Ballston Spa 30, Queensbury 22, Nov. 6, 1971 at Queensbury: Dom Zappone ran 12 yards for the go-ahead TD as the Scotties pulled out a non-league win late in the fourth quarter. Trailing 22-6 in the fourth quarter, Queensbury rallied on short TD runs by Steve Jabaut and Doug Harder, with the two-point conversions to tie the score 22-22.
Corinth 14, St. Mary’s (Glens Falls) 12, Sept. 29, 1972 at Corinth: The Tomahawks pulled out a nail-biter with less than two minutes to play. Dan Donovan connected with Joe Collura on a 15-yard TD pass on fourth down to tie the score at 12-12, then Donovan picked up a bad PAT snap, scrambled and passed to John Montgomery for the go-ahead conversion. Montgomery had set up the winning score with a big punt return to the Kerry Blues’ 31.
Glens Falls 24, South Glens Falls 21, Sept. 30, 1972 at Glens Falls: Steve Kvinlaug booted a 35-yard field goal with six seconds remaining to lift the Indians to the victory in the inaugural Foothills Council game for both teams. Glens Falls had rallied from a 21-7 halftime deficit, pulling into a tie before Kvinlaug redeemed himself from two fourth-quarter missed field-goal attempts. Willie Steans scored from 14 yards out in the third quarter and Steve Cassidy recovered Steans’ fumble in the end zone early in the fourth to pull the Indians even with South High. Glens Falls set up Kvinlaug’s field-goal tries on future pro wrestler Jim Duggan’s blocked punt and Tim Reed’s interception, but he missed both. Kvinlaug’s game-winner was set up by two clutch passes from Bob Westcott to 6-foot-6 end Jim Town. The Bulldogs were led by Tim Bahr, who rushed for two touchdowns.
Hoosick Falls 8, St. Peter’s 6, Oct. 28, 1972 at Hoosick Falls: In a battle of unbeaten teams for the Tri-County League title, the Panthers held on to win a hard-hitting slugfest. Trailing 8-0 late in the fourth quarter, the Saints’ Mike Ebert connected with Mike Corning on a 19-yard touchdown pass with 2:46 remaining. However, Ebert was stopped inches short of the goal line on the two-point conversion attempt to preserve Hoosick Falls’ win under first-year head coach Ken Baker.
Whitehall 23, St. Mary’s (GF) 20, Oct. 6, 1973 at Whitehall: The Maroon took the lead seconds before halftime, as future Sports Illustrated writer Tim Layden hit Mark Nichols with a 10-yard TD pass and kicked the PAT for a 15-14 edge. In the second half, Marty Gordon’s tackle in the end zone gave Whitehall a safety and Bob Shovah’s short TD run pushed the Maroon lead to 23-14, before the Kerry Blues’ Joe Puzzouli scored his second TD of the day with 1:15 left.
Glens Falls 15, Hudson Falls 8, Oct. 6, 1973 at Glens Falls: In another hard-hitting Jug Game, the Indians had to hold on in the final seconds to preserve their victory. Trailing 8-7, Tom Herbold had scored the go-ahead TD on a 3-yard run and Steve Cassidy added the conversion late in the third quarter. With time running out in the fourth, the Tigers drove from their own 20 to the Glens Falls 5, but on fourth-and-goal, Tom Underwood’s pass to the end zone was knocked down with 20 seconds remaining.
Glens Falls 28, Saratoga Springs 22, Oct. 13, 1973 at Saratoga Springs: The Indians rallied to score with 4:04 to play to pull out a key Foothills Council win over Saratoga, in which all but one TD was scored in the second half. Nick Tessino scored his second TD on a 2-yard run to give Glens Falls the lead for good in a back-and-forth game. The Blue Streaks had taken a 22-21 lead with 8:48 left on Jack Meinhardt’s 1-yard QB sneak and two-point conversion toss to Kevin Cummings. Meinhardt had connected with Cummings on two earlier TDs, including a 73-yard bomb.
St. Mary's (GF) 10, Corinth 6, Oct. 13, 1973 at East Field: Positioned at the St. Mary's 4-yard line with 40 seconds remaining, Corinth QB Bill Densmore was picked off by the Kerry Blues' Mike Greco in the end zone, preserving St. Mary's Northern Conference win. Densmore had connected with split end Porker Clements on a 62-yard touchdown pass play earlier in the fourth quarter to cut the Kerries' lead. St. Mary's had opened a 10-0 third-quarter lead on a safety, a touchdown by Tony Girard and a two-point conversion.
Warrensburg 28, Lake George 20, Oct. 27, 1973 at Warrensburg: The Burgers captured the Adirondack Eight-Man League championship by pulling out a thriller over Lake George with less than a minute to play. Pete Redfield caught a 15-yard TD pass from Terry Kollman at the boundary line to snap a 20-20 tie, and caught the ensuing conversion pass. Warrensburg had pulled into a tie on the first play of the fourth quarter as Kollman scored from a yard out. The Warriors, who had gone undefeated the previous three seasons, had taken a 20-14 lead on a pair of Tony Cocca scoring passes to Dexter Jenkins. The Burgers had beaten Lake George 18-6 earlier in the season.
Hudson Falls 22, Saratoga Springs 14, Oct. 12, 1974, at Saratoga Springs: The Tigers turned a fumbled punt into the go-ahead points as Hudson Falls beat Saratoga. In the third quarter, Kevin Irish recovered Sean O’Hara’s fumble at the Blue Streaks’ 29, and on fourth and goal, T.R. Yole — who had also returned a kickoff 90 yards for a TD — dove over from the 3-yard line for a 19-14 lead. The Tigers’ Dave Brumagen kicked a 41-yard field goal for the final margin. Kevin Mulligan scored both Saratoga TDs, including one on a blocked punt return.
Whitehall 20, Granville 19, Nov. 9, 1974 at Granville: A classic battle in this longtime rivalry came down to one final knockdown of a two-point conversion pass by Whitehall’s Clint Currier. Trailing 20-13, the Golden Horde got a fumble recovery from Gary Belemjian at the Whitehall 26 with five minutes remaining. A few plays later, Jim Prehoda lofted a 15-yard TD pass to Don Waite in the right corner of the end zone to pull Granville within one, 20-19. The Horde faked the PAT, but Andy Resetar’s pass attempt was knocked down by Currier, and the Maroon were able to run out the clock. Freshman Matt Therrien scored all three TDs for Whitehall, including a 59-yard bomb from Jim Martucci to take a 14-13 halftime lead.
Glens Falls 21, Johnstown 20, Nov. 9, 1974 at Glens Falls: QB Bruce Parsons bulled in from the 1-yard line and kicked the go-ahead extra point with less than a minute to play to lift Glens Falls to the come-from-behind win over Johnstown. Trailing 14-0, Parsons started the Indians’ rally with a 36-yard TD run in the third quarter, then Tom Herbold ran 6 yards for a score in the fourth to pull Glens Falls within 20-14. On a day of great games, Queensbury pulled out a 12-8 victory over St. Mary’s at East Field, as Bill Hillis scored on a 1-yard plunge with less than four minutes remaining in their Northern Conference clash. Also, Gloversville won the Foothills Council title by holding on for an 18-14 win over Hudson Falls, sealing the win when Mike Vietri picked off Tiger QB Terry Gorton’s last-ditch pass for the end zone.
Fort Edward 22, Granville 19, Sept. 27, 1975 at Fort Edward: A wild first quarter that saw four touchdowns scored gave way to a defensive struggle, then a dramatic finish. The Flying Forts took the lead for good as Paul Lewza bulled over from the 1-yard line with less than four minutes to play. Granville had taken a 19-14 lead in the second quarter when John Pacyna scooped up a fumble at the Fort Edward 3 and ran in for the touchdown. George Conley had given the Forts a 14-13 lead with a short TD run late in the back-and-forth opening quarter. The two early Fort Edward TDs were set up by passes of 54 and 51 yards from Joe Sandora to his brother, Lee Sandora. The Golden Horde scored on long runs by Bill Hammond and Jim Prehoda.
Glens Falls 23, Gloversville 21, Oct. 4, 1975 at Glens Falls: In a game that saw the lead change hands five times, the Indians’ Dan Solomon returned an interception 7 yards for the go-ahead touchdown in the fourth quarter, lifting Glens Falls to the win.
Greenwich 8, Saratoga Catholic 0, Oct. 11, 1975 at Greenwich: A 16-yard fumble return by the Witches’ Scott Austin set up the only TD of the game, a 4-yard scoring toss from Mike Mesick to Brandon Smith with less than a minute to play. Greenwich, which had the ball for only nine offensive plays in the second half, collected five Saints turnovers.
Glens Falls 19, Hudson Falls 16, Oct. 25, 1975 at Glens Falls: Glens Falls was making a habit of fourth-quarter comebacks in 1975. The Indians had come from behind to beat Gloversville (23-21), Linton (14-8) and South Glens Falls (21-14) in the previous three weeks. In this Jug Game, QB Bruce Parsons scored two fourth-quarter TDs as Glens Falls pulled out another dramatic win. Parsons’ winning TD came on a 5-yard run in the closing minutes, capping a 10-play, 41-yard drive that included a pass from Parsons to Lou Schmitt on fourth and 12 to keep it alive. Hudson Falls had opened leads of 13-0 and 16-6 behind QB Terry Gorton and RB Dave Brumagen.
Queensbury 14, Granville 7, Nov. 1, 1975 at Granville: In a battle for first place in the Northern Division of the Northern Conference, Queensbury held on for a hard-fought win. The Spartans’ TDs came on a Jeff Wagoner pass to Jeff Jenkins and a Bill Hillis run in the middle two quarters. Queensbury’s Bob Morris picked off two Granville passes in the fourth quarter to preserve the win.
*Honorable Mention* Hudson Falls 20, South Glens Falls 18, Nov. 1, 1975 at Hudson Falls: The final three minutes of this game were pretty wild. Trailing 14-12, South Glens Falls pulled ahead when sophomore QB Scott O’Donnell connected with Jerry Kral on a 37-yard TD pass on fourth down with 1:37 remaining, capping a 70-yard drive. Now the Tigers were down 18-14, but scrambling senior QB Terry Gorton piloted a 74-yard scoring drive. On a trick play from the South High 34, fullback Scott Palmer threw an option pass back to Gorton, who ran the ball down to the 2. Gorton fumbled when hit, but guard Gordie Single, who was trailing the play, scooped up the loose ball and ran it in for the winning TD with six seconds left. Advancing a teammate’s fumble was not against the rules in 1975.
South Glens Falls 12, Saratoga Springs 7, Nov. 8, 1975 at Saratoga Springs: South High sophomore Scott O’Donnell made a diving, one-handed interception in the end zone to thwart Saratoga’s comeback bid with less than one minute to play. O’Donnell had recovered a fumble earlier in the fourth quarter, and had also blasted a 61-yard punt after chasing down a bad snap in the first quarter to rescue the Bulldogs. Dave Dewey scored both South High TDs, the second one late in the third quarter.
St. Mary’s (GF) 10, Granville 8, Oct. 23, 1976 at East Field: The Kerry Blues pulled out a narrow escape as Bob Stevenson kicked a 28-yard field goal with 43 seconds remaining for the win.
Saratoga Springs 20, Queensbury 16, Oct. 23, 1976 at Saratoga Springs: The Blue Streaks got a 75-yard TD pass from Tom Peterson to Willy Doherty with 3:50 remaining to pull out a second-half rally over Queensbury.
South Glens Falls 28, Saratoga Springs 24, Nov. 6, 1976 at South Glens Falls: A see-saw Foothills Council battle saw the teams trade leads back and forth five times, until South High took the lead for good with less than six minutes remaining. Scott O’Donnell’s punt return to the Saratoga 30 set up Don Baldwin’s short TD run on fourth and goal for the go-ahead score. The Blue Streaks had one last chance, but QB Tom Peterson was sacked by Joe Allen at the Bulldogs’ 27. While South High was powered by the running of Baldwin and Fred Valastro, who had a 55-yard TD run, Saratoga’s stellar tailback Mickey Walczak rushed for 179 yards and a TD as he topped 1,100 yards for the season. Peterson scored twice for the Streaks.
Fort Edward 28, Hadley-Luzerne 26, Sept. 17, 1977 at Hadley-Luzerne: Fort Edward rallied from a 20-0 halftime deficit in the season opener, taking a 28-20 lead on Carl Bates’ 10-yard TD run and two-point conversion in the fourth quarter. Luzerne’s Jerry Woodward returned the ensuing kickoff 80 yards for a TD, but the tying two-point conversion failed. The Eagles, winless the previous season, won their first 11-man football game the following week, 12-6 over rival Corinth.
Hudson Falls 28, Watervliet 24, Sept. 24, 1977 at Hudson Falls: The Tigers’ Joe Sandora connected with Rob Barber on a 24-yard TD pass late in the fourth quarter to pull out a non-league victory. Watervliet had rallied for a 24-22 lead in the third quarter before Sandora, who passed for 218 yards and three TDs, led Hudson Falls’ comeback.
Whitehall 3, St. Mary’s (GF) 0, Oct. 8, 1977 at East Field: Unbeaten Whitehall, ranked 10th in the state among small schools, survived a scare from the Kerry Blues as Francis Martucci atoned for two earlier misses by booting a 25-yard field goal with 5:11 remaining in the game. The Maroon, who had also fumbled at St. Mary’s goal line early in the game, set up their winning FG by blocking a quick kick, which Whitehall recovered at the Kerries’ 5-yard line.
Hudson Falls 23, Queensbury 21, Oct. 22, 1977 at Hudson Falls: Entertaining game saw five lead changes and Hudson Falls come back three times, the last a 10-yard TD pass from Joe Sandora to Dave Pacyna with 49 seconds remaining. The Spartans had taken a 21-17 lead early in the fourth quarter on Mike Tisinger’s 12-yard TD run. Queensbury’s attempt to put the game away ended when Sandora intercepted a Jeff Wagoner pass in the end zone with 2:40 remaining, starting the Tigers’ final desperate scoring drive.
Glens Falls 21, Hudson Falls 20, Oct. 29, 1977 at Hudson Falls: Another back-and-forth game was wrapped up late in the third quarter, as the Indians drove 84 yards to John Bristol’s 1-yard QB keeper, and Charlie Berkowitz’s PAT proved the difference in the Jug Game win for Glens Falls. The Tigers had rallied from a 14-0 first-quarter deficit to lead 20-14 in the third, including a pair of TD passes from Joe Sandora to Rob Barber.
Saratoga Springs 8, Glens Falls 6, Nov. 4, 1977 at Saratoga Springs: The Blue Streaks captured the Foothills Council title by holding off Glens Falls down the stretch. After allowing a first-quarter TD by Rory Beagle and two-point conversion run by Mickey Walczak, the Indians fumbled the ball twice in their own territory but held on defense, including a fumble recovery by Mark Westcott at the Glens Falls 1-yard line. The Indians’ John Kelleher scored from 2 yards out to pull Glens Falls within 8-6 early in the fourth quarter, but John Bristol’s two-point conversion pass was batted down. Walczak, the Blue Streaks’ star tailback who went on to play at West Virginia, was held in check by the Indians, but he pinned them deep in their own end late in the game with a coffin-corner punt under pressure.
* No. 5 Greatest Game * -- Hudson Falls 30, South Glens Falls 28, Nov. 5, 1977 at Hudson Falls. This hard-fought game wasn’t even over when time expired. The Tigers, led by senior QB Joe Sandora, opened a 30-22 lead on Rob Barber’s 35-yard field goal with 1:20 left. However, South High senior QB Scott O’Donnell drove the Bulldogs 60 yards in 10 plays in 80 seconds. With no time remaining, O’Donnell scored from the 2-yard line — and tossed the ball into the air, resulting in a 15-yard celebration penalty. Attempting the two-point conversion from the 18, O’Donnell escaped the rush and fired a pass to Jerry Powers, who was pushed out of bounds at the 1-yard line to end the game.
Greenwich 14, Whitehall 0, Oct. 21, 1978 at Greenwich: The Witches pulled off a stunner by snapping Whitehall’s 21-game unbeaten streak (20-0-1), handing the Railroaders their first loss in three seasons. Greenwich’s defense collected three interceptions as the Witches held a 7-0 lead for most of the game. In the final minute, Lyle Niles sacked Whitehall QB Mark Egan in the end zone, forcing a fumble that the Witches’ Mike Pemrick recovered for final score. The same afternoon, Cambridge remained undefeated by pulling out a 7-6 win over Salem, getting a 1-yard TD from Jeff Potter and the extra point from Tom Luke with 20 seconds remaining.
Glens Falls 29, South Glens Falls 26, Oct. 21, 1978 at Glens Falls: The Indians rallied from a 14-0 first-quarter deficit, opening a 29-20 lead by the fourth quarter behind the rushing of John Kelleher, Tom Lacomb and Tony Williamson. South High closed within three points on Chris Backus’ second TD run of the day, then got the ball back on the Glens Falls 40. The Bulldogs drove to the 5-yard line, but on fourth down, QB Tom Carpenter was halted by the Indians’ Mike Smith at the 3 with 33 seconds to play.
Glens Falls 35, Hudson Falls 25, Oct. 28, 1978 at Hudson Falls: Senior QB John Kelleher rushed for three TDs and passed for another as Glens Falls rallied past Hudson Falls in an exciting Jug Game. Hudson Falls had led 19-7 at halftime, but the visiting Indians turned a pair of Tiger turnovers into TDs in a 21-point third-quarter explosion that put Glens Falls up 28-19. The Indians sealed the win with a fourth-quarter TD run by Tom Lacomb for a 35-19 lead.
Gloversville 19, Queensbury 18, Nov. 4, 1978 at Gloversville: In a back-and-forth battle for the Foothills Council title, Queensbury led 18-13 in the fourth quarter, but the Huskies took the lead on Greg Schell’s 1-yard TD plunge with 2:35 to play. The Spartans drove to the Gloversville 20, but on fourth-and-four with 54 seconds left, Bob Glendening’s 37-yard field goal attempt was just wide left.
*Honorable Mention* Greenwich 20, Cambridge 14, Nov. 11, 1978, Northern Conference Super Bowl at Granville: Greenwich held on for the win despite having a punt blocked deep in its own end with one minute to play. The Witches had taken a 20-14 lead with six minutes left, after Robin McMurray blocked Tom Luke’s punt and Dave Brown fell on the ball in the end zone, overcoming a 14-12 deficit. With one minute remaining, the Indians’ Chris McLenithan blocked Kim Jordan’s punt, which Cambridge recovered at the Witches’ 17. Luke drove the Indians to the Greenwich 3-yard line, but his pass was knocked down at the goal line by Jordan, then Brown sealed the Witches’ win by sacking Luke on third and goal as time expired.
Voorheesville 20, Whitehall 18, Nov. 18, 1978, Class C sectional championship at Saratoga Springs: In the first Section II Class C championship game, Voorheesville sophomore QB Greg Picard connected with Greg Gleason on a 61-yard TD pass play with 1:19 remaining to lift the Blackbirds to victory. Mark Egan had staked Whitehall to an 18-7 lead in the third quarter on a 57-yard scoring pass to Joe Diekel, their second TD connection of the game. However, Picard rallied Voorheesville for two TDs in the fourth quarter.
Queensbury 13, Glens Falls 12, Oct. 13, 1979 at Glens Falls: A spirited fourth-quarter rally by Glens Falls nearly gave the Indians an upset of Queensbury. Mike Kelleher reeled in an 18-yard TD pass from P.J. Bernard with 36 seconds remaining to pull Glens Falls within one point. However, Bennett Steans, who had scored earlier, was stacked up at the 2-yard line on the conversion attempt to halt the comeback. Bob Glendening passed for both Queensbury TDs.
Whitehall 0, Lake George 0, Oct. 13, 1979 at Lake George: In a classic Northern-Adirondack League slugfest, Lake George nearly scored the only points of the game when the Warriors’ Charlie Dier hit Whitehall QB Mark Egan, forcing a fumble that Mark Bombard returned 59 yards for an apparent touchdown with 47 seconds left in the first half. However, a clipping penalty brought the play back. Then, Egan nearly returned the second-half kickoff for a TD, but John O’Leary tripped him at midfield. The game ended in a scoreless tie.
Hoosick Falls 15, Granville 14, Oct. 20, 1979 at Granville: The Golden Horde missed a last-second field goal as they dropped a key Northern-Adirondack League loss to Hoosick Falls. Granville had driven from its own 30 to the Panthers’ 8-yard line in the final two minutes to set up the potential game-winner. Hoosick Falls had taken a one-point lead late in the fourth quarter on Chris Breese’s 10-yard QB sneak and Matt Fauler’s two-point conversion run.
Queensbury 22, Saratoga Springs 22, Nov. 3, 1979 at Queensbury: Queensbury captured its first Foothills Council title in a back-and-forth game that ended in a tie, with time running out on Saratoga at the Queensbury 35. The Spartans had held a 15-14 halftime lead and led 22-14 in the fourth quarter, but the Blue Streaks tied the score with 6:37 left on B.J. Naughton’s 28-yard TD pass to Ray Waldron and Tim Kennedy’s two-point conversion. Queensbury had a shot at breaking the tie, but Dave Celeste broke up Bob Glendening’s pass in the end zone on fourth-and-2 from the Saratoga 33. Glendening and Naughton both passed for two TDs in the game.
* Honorable Mention * -- Saratoga Catholic 14, Hoosick Falls 14, Nov. 8, 1979 at East Side Rec: In one of the most shocking outcomes of the 1970s, the winless Saints held on for a tie against a powerful Hoosick Falls team that came into the game with a 7-1 record. Spa Catholic had not won a varsity game since 1976 and was 0-8 coming into the non-league regular-season finale. With 1:42 remaining in the game, the Saints' Steve Gregorek scooped up an incomplete lateral pass by Panthers QB Chris Breese and returned it 70 yards for a TD. Dave Friedman booted the ensuing extra point, pulling Spa Catholic into an unlikely 14-14 tie. Still the Saints had to hang on, as Hoosick Falls drove to the Spa Catholic 15 with 26 seconds left, thanks to a 45-yard screen pass from Breese to Steve Schwartz with a 15-yard roughing-the-passer penalty tacked on. With eight seconds remaining, halfback Ed Reinfurt's option pass was picked off in the end zone by Spa Catholic's Mike Meslar to preserve the Saints' amazing tie. Meslar had earlier recovered two Hoosick Falls fumbles. The Panthers gained 455 total yards in the game, but suffered four turnovers. Both of Spa Catholic's TDs came on fumble returns -- Gregorek's third-quarter fumble at the Hoosick Falls 5-yard line was recovered and run in for a score by teammate Bill Mevec and a 7-6 lead. Reinfurt gave the Panthers a 14-7 lead with a 72-yard TD run midway through the fourth quarter. The tie knocked Hoosick Falls out of the running for a berth in the Section II Class C championship game.
Corinth 25, Lake George 16, Nov. 17, 1979, Class C sectional championship at Glens Falls: Corinth captured its first Section II football title as Andy Kelley and Tom Gould each scored a pair of touchdowns. Gould’s 25-yard interception return with 20 seconds left in the first half gave the Tomahawks a 12-8 halftime lead and turned the momentum in their favor. Kelley and Gould added TDs in the fourth quarter to put the game away, holding Lake George to a safety and John O’Leary’s second TD pass of the the game in the final minute.