SYRACUSE, NY (WUTR/WFXV/WPNY) — The latest New York State Sportswriter’s Association football rankings were released on Wednesday, September 20 and over all five classes, seven local teams made the lists. The polls consider games played through Monday, September 18.
Only two local schools made it in the large-school polls, and both are regulars to the state polls. In Class A, that school is Whitesboro, whose 2-1 record is good enough to occupy the 17th spot in the rankings. Their only loss came to Section II’s Shaker, but since coming back from the Albany area, the Warriors — led by Dartmouth commit Kyle Meier — have scored 48 and 41 points in wins over East Syracuse Minoa and Proctor. Whitesboro looks to avenge their loss to defending sectional champion West Genesee on Friday, September 22 when they travel to face the Wildcats.
The other regular in the large-school polls — Class B’s New Hartford — has been rolling over teams since the season began, and their performance has earned them the 22nd spot in the Class B poll. Led by senior Cole Raux — who has already racked up over 600 yards in just three games — the Spartans have not scored less than 47 points in any game this season, pinning 62 on defending Class B champion Homer on Thursday, September 14. New Hartford will look to make it four in a row when they welcome Central Valley to Don Edick Field on Friday, September 22.
In Class C, the Adirondack Wildcats narrowly knocked off Canastota on Friday, September 15 to move to 3-0 and into fourth in Wednesday afternoon’s polls. After a 36-6 blowout of Class B Camden on Friday, September 1, the Wildcats have won their games against Bishop Ludden and Canastota by a total of 15 points. Adirondack will have their next three games in Boonville, starting on Saturday, September 23 when they host Class B undefeated — and honorable mention — Syracuse ITC.
Just like last year, the Mount Markham Mustangs find themselves in the early Class D polls. This year, they find themselves in sixth. Unlike last year, though, they find themselves all alone on those polls after a 3-0 start and poll regular Dolgeville sliding to an 0-2 start. The Mustangs have proven that the number-six ranking is well deserved, scoring 128 points in three shutouts. Mount Markham still has the defending sectional champion Blue Devils (week Eight), the sectional runner-up Beaver River (Week Five) and fellow undefeated Sandy Creek (Week Seven) still coming up, but on Friday, September 22, they will look to remain undefeated when they host winless Cato-Meridian.
The eight-man division has the most local representation, with four teams making the list. The top of all of those is the Frankfort-Schuyler Maroon Knights, who earned the fourth spot on the eight-man polls. Last season’s sectional runners-up are led by a two-pronged rushing attack in juniors Lionell Coulthurst (265 yards, 3 touchdowns on 18 attempts) and Martino Rocco (186 yards, one touchdown on 30 attempts) en route to a shutout of Cooperstown and a narrow victory against West Canada Valley. The Knights will travel to New York Mills on Saturday, September 23 before an unscheduled week off, as Week Four opponent Clinton has folded their football program for the season.
Another team off to a 3-0 start is the Sauquoit Valley Red Hawks, whose performance thus far has put them at number seven in the polls. The Red Hawks have run out to a 2-0 start with an 18-12 victory over Waterville on Friday, September 8. They also pulled off an impressive 38-6 win over Class D Unadilla Valley of Section IV. The Red Hawks have been off since their win over Waterville, but will host Cooperstown on Saturday, September 23.
A mainstay on the eight-man polls since they began is West Canada Valley, and this year is no different, as a 2-1 start have put them in a tie with Section V’s Bolivar-Richburg in the tenth and final spot. Their only blemish this season was a four-point loss to Frankfort-Schuyler on September 16. Senior quarterback Sean Burdick has been on a tear in the first three games, throwing for over 600 yards and seven touchdowns. Burdick has also rushed for another 300 yards and eight touchdowns for West Canada Valley. They will have the week off before hosting Waterville on Saturday, September 30.