SENECA-WAUZEKA-STEUBEN -Everyone knew this was going to be a tough Ridge and Valley Conference game. After all, the Seneca-Wauzeka-Steuben football team knocked the Ithaca Bulldogs out of contention for the conference championship last year in the second to last game of the regular season.
On the road, playing at Ithaca’s homecoming on a Saturday, the Blue-Gold’s beat the Bulldogs 14-6 on their way to being undefeated in conference play and winning the conference championship.
Maybe Ithaca had revenge on their minds. And, if they didn’t, they got it anyway. When it was over the score was Ithaca-24 SWS-14.
After a scoreless first quarter, Ithaca took the lead in the second quarter on two touchdowns and the subsequent successful two-point conversions. It was 16-0 at halftime.
The Bulldogs first score came on a seven-yard run by Jed Scallon. The other Ithaca score of the first half was a 23-yard pass play from Bulldog quarterback Parker Hisel to Chase Keller.
Ithaca struck again in the third quarter scoring a touchdown on a 23-yard run by Scallon-again the two-point conversion was good. The Bulldogs led 24-0.
SWS came back in the fourth quarter but it was too little, too late. SWS quarterback Carter Lomas scored on one-yard run, but the two-point conversion failed, making the score Ithaca-24 SWS-6.
The final score of the game came on a 25-yard pass play from Lomas to sophomore Ashton Swanson. With the two-point conversion the score was Ithaca-24 SWS-14.
For the game, Ithaca had 24 first downs and SWS had 11. The Bulldogs rushed for 324 yards on 58 carries, while the Blue-Golds gained 171 yards rushing on 35 carries.
Ithaca quarterback Parker Hisel was 6-13 passing for 56 yards and one touchdown, while SWS quarterback Carter Lomas was 2-7 passing for 37 yards with one touchdown and one interception.
Both teams turned the ball over twice on fumbles. Both teams were penalized six times Ithaca for a total of 35 yards and SWS for a total of 40 yards.
Scallon led Ithaca in rushing–gaining 205 yards on 38 carries, while Hunter Aspenson led SWS gaining 110 yards on 12 carries.
SWS head coach Justin Goodrich seemed to take the loss in stride.
“As a team, we played much better in the second half,” Goodrich said later. “There were times when we had momentum on our side and we just couldn’t take advantage and put points on the board. We fought very hard to get back into the game, but we just couldn’t overcome Ithaca’s large lead.”Things won’t get easier for SWS this Friday, when the must travel to DeSoto to face the Pirates. Game time is 7 p.m.