WAPPINGERS FALLS, N.Y. – The Mahopac football team made plenty of mistakes in Friday night’s game at Roy C. Ketcham, but still the Indians put themselves in a position to win, grabbing a 19-12 lead with 4:55 left.
But Mahopac couldn’t make it stand, as the Dutchess Indians got good field position, put their running game in high gear, and got the game-tying touchdown on a 16-yard run from Matt Warner with 1:27 on the clock. Ketcham sealed the victory with a two-point conversion on a run by quarterback Cody Marsala, giving the host a 20-19 win.
The game had not gone easily for Mahopac (1-1), which fumbled on its first two possessions—both of which were turned into touchdowns by Ketcham, who led 12-0 after one quarter.
Mahopac got on the scoreboard in the second, when Vin Bastone scored on a 15-yard run.
The Indians then took advantage of a Ketcham fumble, Bastone recovered, and rumbled 52 yards for a touchdown that put Mahopac up, 13-12, with 7:51 left in the half.
Midway through the fourth, the Indians added to their lead when sophomore quarterback Anthony DeMatteo found wide receiver Zack Esteves for a 75-yard touchdown on a third-and-15 play, giving the ‘Pac a 19-12 lead with 4:55 to play.
But Ketcham had all the time they needed, with Warner running up the middle, eventually scoring from 16 yards out, with 1:27 on the clock. Marsala’s two-point run gave the host the victory.
“It was a tough loss that night; we felt like we beat ourselves more than RCK beat us,” Indians coach Dom DeMatteo said. “Twice we gave them fumbles that led to touchdowns, but after that we played good defense. Up 19-12 we felt good, but we gave them a short field, and when it mattered most, they scored.
“We are a young team,” the coach added. “We made some critical mistakes, but they also showed tremendous character and perseverance and kept battling. To be up 19-12 late in that game definitely showed grit and ability. But we need to limit mistakes to be better. Vin (Bastone) had a very strong performance offensively, and was also very solid on defense, and our line also played well on both sides.”
Mahopac is scheduled to travel to John Jay (East Fishkill) Friday for a 7 p.m. kickoff. The Patriots are 1-1, with a win over Carmel and a loss to Arlington.
“For us to succeed, we need to limit mistakes,” DeMatteo said. “We can move the ball, and we can defend, but we can’t have big mistakes.”