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Wednesday, December 4, 2013

 

First half deficit requires halftime inspiration

The last time the Maine-Endwell Spartans had trailed a game at halftime was in the very stadium they were playing in on Sunday.  In 2011 M-E trailed Burnt Hills at the half before making a comeback to win the first of three consecutive state titles.  In 2013, the Spartans trailed the Schalmont Sabres 14-0 at the break.  It was arguably the sloppiest half of M-E football all season.  Three fumbles, a handful of penalites, and an uphill battle in the second half.

But there's a reason this team had, to that point, won back-to-back titles.  They show no quit.  The halftime message was simple, essentially: "Go out there and play Spartan football."  That, they did.  The Spartans scored the next two touchdowns before giving up the go-ahead score with 1:28 left to play.  Kyle Gallagher and the M-E offense then covered 75 yards in 1:19 to score with 4 seconds left.  The drive was completed by a surprising two-point conversion toss from Gallagher to Darnell Woolfolk for the 22-21 win.

As exciting as the second half was for the M-E faithful, the first half was the opposite.  The change is due largely to the message at halftime.


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