Vikings’ Slide Continues With 16-6 Loss To Warriors
By Vaughan Nembard
The South Shore High School varsity football team find themselves winless four games into the 2001 season.
Despite very good defensive unit, the Vikings went down to an equally strong Curtis High School (Staten Island) squad. The Vikings fought hard but were unable to gain much ground, but came up on the short as they were defeated by the Warriors 16-6, in last Saturday’s home game.
The game’s 22 points were all scored in the first half and started early when Curtis notched six points with its first possession. This came on a one yard run by Damon McCaig, who as linebacker on a previous play ran 17 yards to set up the five-play, 37-yard drive. Coming off the touchdown, the Warriors posted two more extra points to taken an 8-0 lead.
Later in the quarter, the Vikings set up their own scoring drive. The game was tight as both teams showed taut defenses, limiting each other’s ball movement. The Vikings, however, found the end zone of the slick mud filled gridiron, as confident head coach Tommy Salvato decided to go for a first down on a fourth and 3 play.
Senior quarterback Patrick Chedda set the wheels in motion and delivered a perfect TD pass and an equally perfect catch by Richard Cammock to cut the Warriors’ lead to 8-6 with less than 4 minutes to go in the half. The Vikings’ score was set up on the previous 26-yard pass play from Chedda to Cammock that set up the scoring drive.
On the ensuing kickoff, Curtis’ Calvin Johnson ran 85 yards on the kickoff return all the way to the end zone. Johnson showed tremendous speed as he eluded would be Viking tacklers. The TD gave the Warriors a 14-6 lead, which was increased when McCaig barreled his way into the end zone for the two-point conversion, extending the lead to 16-6, going in to the half.
The second half saw a more determined Vikings’ squad increase the pressure on the Warriors. It was so intense that the game became a punting contest.
On offense the Vikings tried option plays, lateral screens, rushes and passes, but all were unsuccessful. Defensively, captain Brian Holness, kept his team together as they forced a number of Curtis miscues resulting in turnovers, but the Vikings offense could not take advantage of the errors.
The loss left Vikings 0-4 on the season.
"We played hard, but not good enough to win" Coach Salvato said of his team’s performance in post game remarks . Salvato added that he was confident his team will bounce back and begin salvaging the season before its too late.
"We will be OK," he said.
Coach Fred Olivera of the Warriors had high praise for South Shore admitting, "We were fortunate."
The Vikings will try for their first win this Saturday at home versus Tilden High School.