Nassau HS football playoff preview

Postseason to begin this Saturday

Posted

All Nassau County High School sporting events last week were postponed in the aftermath of Hurricane Sandy, including 16 first-round football playoff games that were rescheduled for Saturday, Nov. 10 at 1:30 p.m.

The semifinals and county championship games at Hofstra will follow on subsequent weekends, and the Long Island championships are projected to take place Nov. 30-Dec. 2, marking just the second time in 17 years they won’t be held on Thanksgiving weekend.

The following is a breakdown of the opening round matchups in Nassau.

Conference I

Farmingdale (1) vs. Plainview-JFK (8): Farmingdale (7-1) earned the No. 1 seed with a 21-14 victory over Massapequa in the regular-season finale. The Dalers are led by running back Curtis Jenkins, and the Hawks (4-4) by running back Ryan Schenck.

Oceanside (2) vs. Syosset (7): The Sailors (7-1) seek a third straight trip to the semifinals. They defeated the Braves (4-4) in Week 4, 22-0, behind quarterback Tom Capone’s 20-for-27, 238-yard performance, and 11 tackles and an interception from Vasilli Grigorakos.

Baldwin (3) vs. Uniondale (6): The Bruins (6-2) are hot and shouldn’t have much trouble advancing. They beat the Knights (5-3) handily in the season opener, and the backfield combination of Jovaun Tomlinson and Treyvon Mask will prove a handful.

East Meadow (4) vs. Massapequa (5): The Jets (6-2) fell to the Chiefs (5-3) at home in Week 7, 38-29, despite four rushing touchdowns from Billy Andrle. It’s the most interesting first-round game in Nassau and should come down to the wire.

Conference II

Garden City (1) vs. Bellmore-JFK (8): The Trojans (7-1) are coming off a rare loss but remain serious contenders. They’ll try to use the same formula they did in 2011 when they beat the Cougars (3-5) in the opening round.

MacArthur (2) vs. Elmont (7): The Generals (7-1) have won six straight, including a 24-6 victory over the Spartans (4-4) in Week 6. They’ve got offensive balance, with running back Tom Kelleher and quarterback Gerard Cunningham, and title hopes.

Wantagh (3) vs. Mepham (6): The Warriors (6-2) made a statement in the regular-season finale, crushing Long Beach by 34. They beat the Pirates (4-4) by 18 in Week 3, but the visitors have won three in a row.

Carey (4) vs. Long Beach (5): Here we go again. It’s the third playoff meeting in four years between the Seahawks (6-2) and Marines (5-3), with Carey winning the previous two. Long Beach took a Week 2 battle but has lost three straight. 

Conference III

Lawrence (1) vs. Bethpage (8): Can the Golden Tornadoes (8-0) be stopped? They’ve not only lit up the scoreboard, averaging 49.2 points per game, but their defense is a force. The Golden Eagles (3-5) were no match in Week 3, falling by 21.

Glen Cove (2) vs. Hewlett (7): Upset alert — the Bulldogs (4-4) held a 19-point lead over the Big Red (7-1) late in the third quarter of their Week 5 matchup before the hosts rallied to take a thrilling 20-19 decision.

Plainedge (3) vs. Lynbrook (6): Upset alert — the Owls (4-4) knocked off the Red Devils (6-2) in the regular-season finale, 17-14, and are playing their best football of the year. The offenses are led by Danny Kelly and Gianfranco Soriente, respectively.

V.S. South (4) vs. Manhasset (5): The Falcons (5-3) have won four straight and will host their first playoff game in more than a decade. They blanked the Indians (4-4), 19-0, during the streak and allowed only three touchdowns in four games.

Conference IV

Seaford (1) vs. Mineola (8): In search of their fifth county title in six years, the Vikings (8-0) will be tested down the road but is a prohibitive favorite to get past the improved Mustangs (5-3) behind quarterback Pete Adorno.

West Hempstead (2) vs. Clarke (7): It’s the Rams against the Rams. Explosive West Hempstead (7-1), led by rushers Tayvon Hall and Enrique McFarlane, has a four-game winning streak and topped Clarke (4-4) by 12 in their Week 2 meeting.

Roosevelt (3) vs. Island Trees (6): The Rough Riders (6-2) have a tough road to repeat, but the talent to do so. Johnnie Akins ran for 293 yards and two touchdowns in a 35-14 win over the Bulldogs (4-4) in Week 4.

V.S North (4) vs. Locust Valley (5): The Spartans (4-4) had an up-and-down regular season but can be dangerous if they limit turnovers. Billy Patsos has 16 touchdowns, while the Falcons (5-3) feature running backs Matt Vezza and Louie Jokinsky.