2008 Chenango Forks Varsity Football

Game 9 vs Waverly
Waverly wins overtime thriller 14-13.
Ends CF's 2008 season and record run of seven straight Section 4 titles.

Articles courtesy of the
Binghamton Press  & Sayre Evening Sun

to Game 8 - Windsor

to the 2008 team page


Forks' football season ends early
Waverly halts Devils' Section 4 title streak

By Kevin Stevens
Binghamton Press & Sun-Bulletin

Kevin Gorman's 1-yard rush for an overtime touchdown and subsequent two-point conversion decided Waverly's 14-13 victory Saturday over Chenango Forks in a Section Class B football semifinal.
Three scoreless quarters gave way to fourth-quarter touchdowns five minutes apart, each followed by failure to convert for an additional point or two.
Forks fullback Shane Baron dashed 20 yards for a TD on the first play of overtime, and Dan Grady's PAT kick put the hosts ahead by 13-6.
But the Wolverines' response -- five plays for Gorman's score, and the decisive two-point run -- denied the Blue Devils (7-2) further opportunity to chase down an eighth consecutive sectional championship.
Five Waverly players had a hand in the guests' 280-yard rushing total, with Brett Sewalt's team-best 127 yards including a 50-yard burst for the first points of the game.
"It feels amazing. It's a once-in-a-lifetime chance," Sewalt said.
"Forks is such a great team, they had such a great dynasty," said Gorman. "It's so great to come in here and beat them. It just feels awesome."
Baron rushed 15 times for 109 yards for Chenango Forks, which had a football season end short of the state semifinal round for the first time since 2000.
Overtime commenced upon completion of a nine-play Wolverines drive that went 72 yards before Brian Sewalt was tackled by Mike Jeske as regulation time expired after a 13-yard gain to Forks' 8-yard line.
Forks took possession first in overtime, the football placed at Waverly's 20-yard line.
On first down, Baron bounced outside toward the Blue Devils' sideline and zoomed across the goal line. Grady's kick was on the mark and Forks apparently had a leg up on a title-game berth.
"We were obviously very happy, but we knew we had to play defense," Blue Devils coach David Hogan said of sideline reaction to Baron's TD. "We hadn't stopped them in a while, they were moving the ball pretty good."
Waverly (6-3) took over and proceeded to pick up 12 yards on a Brian Sewalt carry to the 8-yard line. Two plays netted 3 yards before Brian Sewalt took a short toss to the right and gained 3 yards to the 1. The Wolverines took timeout to discuss fourth-and-1 strategy.
The play call had Gorman powering his 5-foot-11, 210-pound frame between the tackles -- as he did successfully. Then, opting for a make-or-break two-pointer, it was once again Gorman inside to secure the program's greatest football triumph in recent memory.
"We just said, this is our season," Gorman said. "If we get in, we go on; if we don't, we're done. I had to just put my head down and keep plowing through there so we could keep our season going."
Of the early overtime deficit, Waverly coach Jason Miller said: "From a coach's perspective, it's not a real good feeling to be in that position. The kids just bore down and got it done."
Chenango Forks twice denied Waverly on fourth-down opportunities deep in the Blue Devils' territory after halftime.
With 2:39 left in the third quarter, Waverly having driven 60 yards to the 4-yard line, Gorman was stopped at the 1-yard line. A three-and-out Forks possession resulted in a punt that gave Waverly the football 38 yards from the goal line.
Three plays into the final quarter, quarterback Logan Walker was swarmed by defenders after a 1-yard, fourth-down pickup to the Devils' 16-yard line, 3 yards short of his aim.
The game's first points were the doing of Brett Sewalt, who took a third-and-2 handoff from midfield, was provided running room inside, got to the second level, used the slightest of cuts to sidestep a defender and found freedom in the secondary.
"The line just blocked everyone, I got down to the 'backers, there was just one guy and I just ran around him," Sewalt said.
On the two-point attempt, Walker appeared to look to pass before darting outside to the right -- only to be dragged down from behind by Jesse Villella, who wasn't about to lose his firm grasp of jersey No. 4.
The teams then exchanged punts, the latter leaving Forks in possession at the Wolverines' 42-yard line with 4:14 remaining.
A first-down bit of gadgetry -- two handoffs, then a throw -- brought a 10-yard pass play from D.J. Smith to Dan Grady, and on the next play Grady made a splendid leaping reception between defenders for an 8-yard gain to the 24.
Baron then went 19 yards up the middle, and on second down got low to the ground and churned his legs to tie the game at 6. Grady's PAT kick was judged to have strayed outside the left upright.
In a first half that was something less than artistically played, Forks' deepest penetration came on a 16 play, 60-yard drive that ended with an incomplete pass from the Wolverines' 29 5:33 before halftime.
Two critical miscues impeded progress on that march, one a fumbled snap that transformed second-and-1 into third-and-5, and the second a holding penalty on a second-and-6 play from the guests' 20-yard line.
With about four minutes to play in the opening quarter, Forks was flagged for roughing the punter with Waverly facing fourth-and-13 from its 30-yard line.
Of his message to the players in the wake of defeat, Hogan said, "Just that we saw the effort. The effort wasn't lacking, that's for sure. We don't feel any less of them than we did before we stepped on the field. We're still very proud of their effort, proud of what they accomplished this year."

Waverly advances

By Gifford Wolcott
Sayre Morning Times

Chenango Forks, N.Y. -The Waverly Wolverines took their 2008 edition of the "cardiac  kids" on the road to face Chenango Forks for the second time this season, and in a rare chance at a "do over" the Wolverines took the defending seven-time Section IV champions into overtime before claiming a one-point, play-off victory, 14-13.
The Wolverines played with gritty determination for four quarters and beyond. In a defensive struggle Waverly and Forks battled to a 6-6 tie at the end of regulation play.
The low score was not a true indicator of the events as both teams made serious advances only to be turned away by stiff-backed defenders not willing to surrender any points.
Wolverine defenders, including Henry Petry, Greg Kipling, Brett and Brian Sewalt, Zack McCutcheon, Kevin Gorman, along with hard-nosed Chris Nocchi, attacked Forks ball carriers all afternoon. As they have all year the Wolverines never wavered nor got flustered. They just went out and won.
It took three quarters of accumulating bruises before anyone crossed the goal-line in this contest. After a scoreless first two quarters in which Waverly had only four possessions, two punts, a fumble and the half, the Wolverines offense would come to life in the second half.
Midway through the third quarter Waverly put together a nine-play drive, including nice runs by Brett Sewalt, and a pass completion from Logan Walker to Josh Lawrence, to push the ball to the Forks five-yard line. With 3:04 left in the third and facing a fourth-and-goal from the five, the Wolverines turned to Gorman, who produced four brutal yards, but no points.
Forks took over on its one-yard line where the Waverly defense, and possibly the crowd, began to tip things ever so slightly Waverly's way. The Wolverine defense smothered Forks ball carriers and forced the Blue Devils to punt out of their end zone.
Waverly began its next drive inside Chenango territory at the 38-yard line. In a drive that spanned the third and fourth quarters, the Wolverines again surged toward the end zone. The drive stalled at the 16-yard line and Waverly turned it over on downs with 10:51 to play in the game.
Waverly gained some respect on its next defensive stand, allowing just sevens yards and, to the great joy of Waverly fans, stuffed Forks runners to force a punt. Chenango's Dan Grady had a nice punt, forcing Waverly back into Wolverines' territory at the 41-yard line. A nine-yard run by Kipling and a run by Brian Sewalt gave the Wolverines a third-and-one from mid-field. With 7:43 left in the game Brett Sewalt shook free and outran the Forks secondary to score the first points of a very tight ball game. Walker would keep the ball but be stopped short on the two-point play, leaving Waverly with a slim lead and a little hope at 6-0.
The tide turned again as Chenango Forks players and their fans would have their say. Forks made use of the wind advantage. Unable to move the ball, Forks' Grady punted a 47-yard effort that pinned Waverly deep.
With the possession starting at the Wolverines' 13-yard line Waverly's Brett Sewalt took a beat-down on three runs that produced seven yards before brother Brian would punt into the same wind.
Forks set up shop at the Waverly 42-yard line, and everybody in the place knew what was going to happen next. With 2:43 left in the game Chenango running back Shane Baron pierced the Waverly defense and sent the stadium into a frenzy.
The Blue Devils of Chenango Forks were now an extra point away from another sectional final appearance.
There is no word yet for what happened on the extra point attempt. Not many moments produce such a wild swing of emotions as this particular kick. In the span of seconds wild momentum changed sides of the field. The kick was wide and the game was tied at six.
Waverly would finish regulation play with the ball and confidently on the move with tremendous support from the crowd. Time ran out on the late Wolverine rally. With the game in a tie a rare, second flip of the nickel ensued.
Waverly would win the flip and wisely choose to play defense and defend the scoreboard end of the field. On the very first play of overtime, (first down from the Waverly 20-yard line), Forks' Baron raced around the Waverly defense and into the end zone for six points and a 12-6 Forks lead. With the wind and a chance to atone for his earlier miss, Grady split the uprights with the point after, giving Forks a 13-6 lead.
With both crowds wanting to be part of this epic, Waverly would have its shot from the Forks 20. The best way to describe the end is story book. Waverly and its crowd sensed a chance to become what Forks and their fans were so proud of.
Waverly, with runs by Kipling and Brian Sewalt for some really tough yards, confidently and without uncertainty drove to the one-yard line. From there it was Kevin Gorman who would plow the final yard to give Waverly six points, but not the lead, as Forks still had that at 13-12.
After all they'd been through as a team and a staff, the season had come down to a single play. Every screaming spectator, player and coach knew what was next. With the place gone wild, Waverly's Gorman, and the line, willed their way into the end zone for the final two points of the game. Waverly had the win 14-13 and half of the place went bonkers.

After the game Gorman gave credit to the line Sam Bowman, Dillion Fiske, Petry, Trevor Bauman, Stu Benson, Tyler Bowman and of course Nocchi.
Asked if the last carry was a thrill and he was glad to still have another week to play, Gorman responded, "I don't want the season to end. I just love playing football, I don't want to go play basketball any time soon."
Waverly head coach Jason Miller was pleased with the team's performance, especially the leadership of the upper class.

Knowing full well what a big step the program had just taken Forks was not only the seven-time defending Section IV Class B champ, the Devils were also ranked seventh in the state in the latest New York State Sports Writers Association poll Miller summed up the day and season saying, "the kids were confident in what they wanted to do."

Miller also praised the leadership of team members. "It's nice to see it come out at a time when you really, really need it."

01 02 03 04 OT   Tot
Chenango Forks 0 0 0 6 7 - 13
Waverly 0 0 0 6 8 - 14
  • W - Brett Sewalt 50 run (run failed)
  • CF - Shane Baron 5 run (kick failed)
  • CF - Baron 20 run (Dan Grady kick)
  • W - Kevin Gorman 1 run (Gorman run)


Waverly CF
First Downs 15 12
Rushes-Yards 52-280 47-223
Passing Yards 14 30
Comp-Att-Int 2-4-0 3-6-0
Total Offense 56-294 53-253
Punts-Ave yards 3-28 2-38.5
Fumbles-Lost 1-1 1-0
Penalties-Yards 3-15 7-67


Waverly rushing

  • Brett Sewalt 18-127, 1 TD
  • Brian Sewalt 13-89
  • Logan Walker 7-27
  • Gorman 8-20, 1 TD
  • Greg Kipling 6-17

Chenango Forks rushing

  • Baron 15-109, 2 TDs
  • Ryan Freije 13-59
  • Tim Zdimal 7-38
  • Tyler Lusht 4-12
  • Rickey Bronson 1-5
  • D.J. Smith 7-0

Waverly passing

  • Walker 2-3-0, 14 yds
  • Clint Deskin 0-1-0, 0 yds

Chenango Forks passing

  • Smith 3-5-0, 30 yds
  • Bronson 0-1-0, 0 yds

Waverly receiving

  • Josh Lawrence 1-11
  • Zack McCutcheon 1-3

Chenango Forks receiving

  • Grady 2-18
  • Zdimal 1-12

Preview Article: 

Staff Reports
Binghamton Press & Sun-Bulletin

Seven-time defending sectional champion Chenango Forks (7-1) will be home at 2 p.m. Saturday to take on Waverly (5-3). The teams opened the season Sept. 6 on the same field, with the Blue Devils coming away with a 7-0 victory.

Forks has four victories this season over teams that have advanced to the playoffs. Combined score in those games: Forks 35, Opponents 12.

Waverly has won three straight and five of the last six. Six of eight Wolverines opponents have been held to 14 or fewer points. Kevin Gorman leads the Wolverines with 115.3 rushing yards per game.

Staff Reports
Elmira Star-Gazette

Waverly (5-3, 3-1 Division 4) at Chenango Forks (7-1, 3-1 Division 3), 2 p.m. Saturday: Waverly lost a close one to Forks in the season opener for both teams, 7-0. Ryan Freije's 14-yard run in the second quarter provided the game's only scoring as the Wolverines were limited to 75 yards in total offense.

Waverly back Kevin Gorman ranks fourth among Section 4 runners with 922 yards on 145 carries. His 15 touchdowns, all rushing, put him third in the section.

Shane Baron leads Chenango Forks in rushing with 450 yards. The Blue Devils have not allowed more than 20 points in any game this season and have held five opponents to single digits.


Post-game Article:    

Fifth Quarter:
Published Tuesday mornings

Binghamton Press & Sun-Bulletin staff reports -

Waverly football win a 'defining moment'

Waverly put to an end Chenango Forks' string of 13 consecutive Section 4 playoff victories -- and a five-game losing streak against Forks -- with Saturday's 14-13 overtime triumph on the Blue Devils' field.
We talked about it before the game: This is our defining moment, this is the seniors' defining moment," Wolverines coach Jason Miller said. "This will be their legacy. Now, we have a different goal, we have to finish this deal off.
"But, it's huge. This will go down in the history of this program. We've never done anything like this in our program, never-- never. This is the biggest moment in our program, especially the way we won it."
That is, once the players realized just how the overtime period works.
Forks jumped ahead by 13-6 when Shane Baron rushed 20 yards on first down and Dan Grady added the PAT kick.
"We calmed the kids down. I don't even know if they realized that we got the ball-- we haven't been on an overtime situation since I've been back at Waverly, five years," Miller said.
"We had to explain to them what the process was."
Kevin Gorman answered Baron's score with a 1-yard rush through the middle, and added the decisive two-point run.
"I just don't want the season to end," Gorman said. "I love playing football, I don't want to go play basketball any time soon."
The Wolverines, winless four seasons ago, won three games in 2005, six in '06, eight last season, and now have a crack at a first-time state playoff berth. They'll oppose Windsor in the Class B title game at 1 p.m. Saturday at Union-Endicott.
"It's been a steady climb," Miller said. "The kids have really bought what we're selling. I have a great staff, and we've gotten better every year."


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