Knights tame Lions 33-0 in Round 1
Brandon Klinkbeil runs for 4 TDs as the Knights best Wellsville in Section 5 C quarterfinal action



LeRoy - The seniors on the LeRoy varsity football squad took to the field on Friday evening, October 24th, in what was to be their last game on the home Hartwood Park turf. Solid play was needed from the seniors and underclassmen as well to prevent this from being the last game of the 2003 season. The Lions of Wellsville had made the long travel from near the PA border to do battle with the Knights. The evening was very cold and still and the visitors were hoping to heat matters up as they did two weeks prior. In Week 6 these two teams met on Wellsville's home field with the Knights needing some stellar last minute defense to preserve an 18-16 win over the raging Lions. In that contest, Wellsville was able to control the ball with their offense converting short passes, tough inside running, and effective QB scrambling. Such was not the case in the rematch. The Knights put extensive pressure on Lions QB Brad Joyce all evening long, limiting Brad and his running back brother Don to just 20 yards net on 18 carries between the siblings. The LeRoy defense was strong, RB Mike Farabella carried the rushing load with 117 yards, and QB Brandon Klinkbeil shone brightly in his Hartwood finale, scoring 4 rushing TDs. At "Knights" end the scoreboard read 33-0 in favor of the 2-time defending Class C champions.

LeRoy won the toss and deferred their choice to the 2nd half. Kicker Ryan Duthe kicked a long and angled ball to the Lions that was covered excellently by senior Jake Whiting. First-and-10 Lions at their 26. After some stellar early sticks by the LeRoy D, Wellsville converted a beautiful pass and long run, each 22 yards in length, to gather a first down in LeRoy territory at the Knights' 37. The defense led by Steve Angora, Jason Spencer, and Ian Christiansen rose to the early challenge of the pumped up Lions and pushed the visitors back to midfield to force a punt. The Wellsville kick was a beauty giving the Knights their first drive start from the 9.

The LeRoy offense established the run early with excellent push from the linemen and tough running by backs Mike Farabella and Andrew Fox. The sophomore Farabella and junior Fox alternated possessions throughout the drive, gaining yardage and chewing up the clock. QB Brandon Klinkbeil was masterful as always in pulling the visitors offsides with his emphatic signal calling. With 2:30 remaining in the first quarter, Farabella dashed 27 yards on a 2nd-and-6 from the Wellsville 29 to set up the first score of the night, a 1-yard TD plunge by Klinkbeil two plays later. The PAT kick was no good to make it 6-0 LeRoy. The 91-yard, 14-play drive took 5:23 off the clock and established the early notion that Coach Brian Moran's black helmeted squad was ready for the postseason.

The Lions started at their 30 after the ensuing kickoff. An 8-yard pass and a 5-yard run put the visitors at their 43 with some much needed momentum. The "mo" was cut off quickly by LB Ryan Duthe who was seemingly all over the field in the contest and laying the lumber on the Wellsville backs. Wellsville punted and the LeRoy offense took over at their 40 with the 2nd quarter just under way. More Farabella and Fox rushhing and Klinkbeil drawing the Lions into the neutral zone. Also getting into the offense was senior Tim Judge whose recent return to the Knights after a preseason injury has paid dividends. Klinkbeil dashed 11 yards on a keeper to bring the Knights down to the Lions' 37. Four plays later the drive stayed alive as Fox bulled his way for a first down to the 27 on a 4th down rush. Klinkbeil then hooked up nicely with all-purpose Jake Whiting in the flats on a timely 21-yard pass to move the chains to the Wellsville 6. The call was a shorter version of the 67-yard hookup that Klinkbeil and Whiting executed for a TD in the Week 6 win over these same Lions. Klink finished the drive at the 4:47 mark of the 2nd quarter with a one-yard plunge. The PAT run was stopped short and the Knights were up 12-0.

More of the same on the kickoff. Duthe booted a beauty down field and great coverage was provided, this time by special-team star Zac Condidorio. Zac and tough inside LB Tim Dieffenbacher led the LeRoy D with 5 tackles each in the contest. Matters turned very sour for the Lions when on first down QB Brad Joyce was picked off by Duthe who timed his theft of the Joyce pass to perfection. DE Dan Panek provided the pressure to help force the errant toss. The Knights went to work with Tim Judge picking up 7 yards on 2 carries and Farabella notching 8 yards on 2 carries. Andrew Fox covered the final yard to put the locals up 19-0 after the successful Duthe PAT.

Wellsville started at their 36 and desperately needed some success on offense to get back into the contest. Ian "Gator" Christiansen would have none of that. Ian sacked QB Joyce on back-to-back plays, each time within moments of the snap reaching Joyce's hands. The half drew to a close and it was obvious that the Knights were in total control of the contest, unlike the scenario down in Wellsville.

The Knights used their deferred choice to receive the ball at the start of the 2nd half. Inexplicably, the Lions squibbed the kickoff that was immediately covered by Duthe at the LeRoy 43. Offensive coordinator Chris Cappotelli called for Farabella to run the ball and the super soph responded with runs of 9, 18, and 5 yards. Judge picked up some solid rushing yards as well and suddenly LeRoy was at the Wellsville 5. QB Klinkbeil finished off the 9-play scoring drive by covering those 5 final yards around right end. Three and a half minutes into the 2nd half the score was 26-zip Knights after the Duthe PAT.

Like the offense, the LeRoy defense did not show any sign of letdown as Condidorio and Klinkbeil provided the excellent kickoff coverage of the Wellsville return. Wellsvile QB Brad Joyce was the target of choice and Dieffenbacher, Whiting, Spencer, and Klink had him in the cross-hairs as they prevented him from scrambling and establishing any passing game. The Lions would punt again after no success moving the ball.

The Knights took over at the Wellsville 43, excellent field position. WR Slade Fitch picked up 12 yards on a seldomly called reverse to earn a first at the 31. Tim Judge picked up 22 yards on back-to-back carries to give LeRoy a first-and-goal at the 9. Wellsvile kicked it up a notch on defense and the Knights were hit with a 15-yard penalty. A Klinkbeil toss toward the end zone on 4th-and-goal from the 19 was picked off at the one-yard by the Wellsville defender. Knocking the ball down would have given the Lions a first down at the 19, now they were backed up to their own one. Three plays mustered 7 yards out to the 8. The Wellsville coaches decided to go for it on 4th-and-3 from the 8 and the rushing play was stuffed by a half dozen LeRoy defenders at the 9. Four plays later, Klinkbeil garnered his 4th TD of the night on a 4th down scamper from the 4. Duthe split the uprights for the 33-0 final score with 25 seconds remaining in the 3rd quarter.

The 4th quarter was void of scoring but not void of stellar play by the Knights. Ryan Duthe was a one-man wrecking ball, John Zinni showed excellent form at QB, Matt Forti played brilliant defense as did Aaron Scott, Mike Pacer was heads up on a nice interception, and sophomore Boo Hinett pulled in a pass from Zinni and rambled 23 yards. All in all, it was a great last night at Hartwood Park for the Knights. LeRoy has not lost on their home field since the 1998 season.

With the win the Route 5 Final Four is intact. The mighty Red Raiders of Cal-Mum (#1 in the New York C poll) will take on the Avon Braves in the first Class C semifinal on Saturday, November 1st (5 pm at St. John Fisher). The Knights will play in the other semi at 7:30 pm against the G-R powerhouse Pembroke Dragons. The Dragons have size, speed, and valuable sectional experience from last season so look for a very close and tough contest. Good luck to all of the Route 5 juggernauts.


Mike Farabella 17-117 yds
Tim Judge 8-47
Andrew Fox 12-46, TD
Brandon Klinkbeil 8-26, 4 TDs
Slade Fitch 1-12
John Zinni 2-8

Brandon Klinkbeil 1 of 2 for 21 yds
Reception by Jake Whiting

John Zinni 1 of 3 for 23 yds
Reception by Boo Hinett

Zac Condidorio - 5 (3 solo)
Tim Dieffenbacher - 5
Jake Whiting - 4 (3 solo), sack
Andrew Fox - 4
Ryan Duthe - 4, INT
Ian Christiansen - 3, 2 sacks

Jason Spencer & Aaron Scott - each had a sack
Mike Pacer - INT

Total Yardage
LeRoy - 310 yards (266 rush/44 pass)
Wellsville - 99 yards (30 rush/69 pass)


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RB Mike Farabella picks up great blocking on way to this 27-yd pickup

QB Brandon Klinkbeil scores the first of his 4 TDs on this one-yard plunge

Klinkbeil hits receiver Jake Whiting for a 21-yard gain (commentary by Bill Fox Sr.)

DE Dan Panek causes a hurried pass to be picked off by LB Ryan Duthe

DL Ian Christiansen gets the defense fired up with these back-to-back sacks

RB Tim Judge picks up a nice gain off the right side behind great blocking

Klinkbeil picks up TD #3 on this focused run over the Wellsville goal line

WR Slade Fitch runs hard to pick up 12 yards on this reverse call

Textbook blocking allows Judge to run free once again off the right side

Klinkbeil scampers around end and just inside the pylon for his 4th score

The Wellsville QB puts his receiver in peril as LB Duthe unloads

DL Matt Forti is not fooled on this Wellsville end-around

Junior QB John Zinni throws a dart to wideout Boo Hinett for 23 yards

DL Aaron Scott slips through the line for a sack of the Wellsville QB


SCORING SUMMARY - Wellsville @ LeRoy II - Friday, October 24 , 2003
1st Quarter
Brandon Klinkbeil - 1 yd run Kick failed
LR 6 Wells 0
2nd Quarter
Brandon Klinkbeil - 1 yd run Run failed LR 12 Wells 0
Andrew Fox - 1 yd run Duthe kick LR 19 Wells 0
3rd Quarter
Brandon Klinkbeil - 5 yd run Duthe kick
LR 26 Wells 0
Brandon Klinkbeil - 4 yd run Duthe kick
LR 33 Wells 0
4th Quarter
No scoring