MAMARONECK, N.Y. – Rye Neck knows it's a brand-new season Saturday when it takes the field against Dobbs Ferry in a Section 1 Class C Football Championship semifinal.
The second-seeded Panthers and third-seeded Eagles kick off at 1:30 p.m., with the winner advancing to the championship game Sunday at 4:30 at Mahopac High School. The Bronxville-Woodlands winner will be the opponent.
Rye Neck comes into the game undefeated and unscored on in six games. The Panthers swarming defense is prepared for a steady dose of Dobbs Ferry fullback Tim Soave, who bulled his way to 170 yards against Bronxville in week seven.
“They have good running backs and a good offensive line, so we will have to be aggressive on defense and gang tackle,” senior linebacker Alex Anderson said. “The first guy has to get in, stand him (Soave) up so we can come in and clean up.
“If we continue to not allow any points, we are going to win the game.”
Rye Neck will present a diversified offense at Dobbs Ferry. Halfbacks Jakob Calvini and Ryan Morningstar have had big years, and fullbacks Pedro Cueto and Dom Brescia balance out the offense.
“We feel we have a good amount of weapons on offense,” Anderson said. “All of our running backs are good, and they all run hard.”
Not only is the team prepared, but the Rye Neck student body is psyched. Anderson said the buzz around school is that many of his peers will be in attendance,
“Playing Dobbs Ferry at home is much better,” Anderson said. “This is exciting. It seems like Rye-Harrison to me.”