November 4, 2013 | 11 views
VSC snaps playoff drought
Eagles in postseason for first time since 1993
Valley Stream Central is headed to the Nassau County football playoffs for the first time in 20 years after beating Uniondale, 35-21, last Saturday at Firemen’s Field in the regular-season finale to clinch the No. 8 seed in Conference I.
The Eagles, who scored at least one touchdown in every quarter and forced three turnovers, doused head coach Frank Chimienti with a cooler full of water as the final seconds ticked off the clock. The win leapfrogged them over Plainview in the race for the conference’s last playoff berth.
“It’s been a long time since we made the playoffs and it feels really good,” said senior Boljan Castillo, who scored four of Central’s five touchdowns and had nine tackles on defense. “We work hard and play hard,” he added. “Uniondale kept coming, but we never lost focus.”
The Eagles (3-5) will travel to face top-seeded Farmingdale (8-0) in the opening round of the playoffs this Friday at 6:30 p.m.
“I’m so thrilled for the kids,” said Chimienti, who is assisted by Frank Alesia, Andrew Kroell and Joe Delgais. “Twenty years is a long time,” he continued. “I’ve been here for the last five, and we’ve had our struggles in Conference I going up against Farmingdale, Freeport, Massapequa, East Meadow, and everyone else. They’re all tremendous programs, and it’s nice to say we’re in the playoffs with them.”
After stopping the Knights short of a first down on a fourth-and-4 attempt from inside its own 10-yard line with five minutes to go, Central, leading 28-21, drove 92 yards on six plays and sealed the deal with Castillo’s 1-yard touchdown plunge with 2:38 remaining. Castillo, who carried 19 times on the day for 191 yards, broke a 49-yard run on the previous play. “It’s all about teamwork,” he said. “The line did a great job blocking.”