- Over the past couple of seasons, the annual Le Roy/Caledonia-Mumford
(Byron-Bergen) rivalry had seemed to lose some of its luster with
both programs suffering through down seasons, at least by their standards.
Yet, as of Friday night, it is safe to say the rivalry is back in
After falling behind 18-7 late in the third quarter, the Oatkan Knights
rallied to score 12 fourth quarter points, the final six coming on
a throw from Cole Biggins to Reece Tresco with 10.8 seconds to play
from nine yards out on a second-and-goal as they shocked the Red Raiders
19-18 in front of a very large crowd at Hartwood Park.
"It's huge, we have a group of seniors this year that have really
taken on a leadership role and their goal this year, coming into this
game, was that they really wanted to win the Caledonia game,"
Le Roy head coach Brian Herdlein said. "Step one is achieved,
now we've got to move on to bigger and better things."
Biggins, a senior stepping in under center after sophomore starter
Jake Hill was injured midway through the second quarter, led his team
on an impressive, 20-play drive that took almost all of the final
10:17 off of the clock and he eventually found Tresco on a fade to
the back corner of the end zone for the game-winning score.
"It's hard to explain right now, it still doesn't feel real,"
Biggins said. "He called double fades and I just looked for the
matchup. I trusted Reece, so I just threw it up to him and he came
down with it."
"It started with the O-line, they gave Cole enough time to throw
the ball and he put it in a great position and I just wanted to give
my team a chance to win the game," Tresco added.
The final drive, after Le Roy held Cal-Mum/B-B to a three-and-out
in its only possession of the final quarter, was kept alive twice
on big plays - first, a Biggins to Gavin Luckey 18-yard strike on
a third-and-14 from the Oatkan Knights' 29-yard line, a play in which
Biggins eluded numerous Red Raiders as he rolled left. Four plays
later, on a fourth-and-five, Tresco faked the punt and delivered a
six-yard strike to sophomore Kyler LaCarte, who barreled his way to
the first down.
"We didn't pay attention to any of the stuff in the papers and
we had to come out with heart," Tresco said. "We've been
starting off slow the last couple of games so we had to start off
well in the first quarter and we stepped up our game this week."
Biggins also added a huge nine-yard scramble on a third-and-10 later
in the drive with the clock winding under a minute.
"We wanted to run down the clock, but at the same time, we had
a few guys with injuries and there were guys in different positions
so I had to use some timeouts that I didn't want to use," Herdlein
said of the final drive.
Biggins led Le Roy with 64 yards on the ground on eight carries, while
LaCarte added 42 tough yards on 13 carries, including the first score
of the game. In all, Le Roy ran 44 times for 196 yards, while it held
the ball for nearly 27 of the final 36 minutes of the game.
Biggins also went 9-of-14 for 73 yards through the air on the night.
"Cole Biggins was unbelievable tonight, I can't say enough about
him," Herdlein said. "He was absolutely huge. And he's a
smart kid, a smart football player and I said 'I'm going to put the
ball in his hands if Jake happened to go down, and it worked out well
Bryce Yockel had a big night for the Red Raiders as he finished with
208 yards on 22 carries and two long touchdown runs. However, outside
of the two long scoring strikes - of 69 and 67 yards - Yockel averaged
just over three yards per carry. The Red Raiders had just 43 yards
of offense from their other offensive weapons other than Yockel as
the Le Roy defense came to play from the opening whistle.
The teams traded punts early in the first quarter, but after a short
kick from Cal-Mum and a solid Gaven Cassidy return, Le Roy was in
business at the Red Raiders 34 with four minutes left in the opening
quarter. Four plays later, LaCarte took a handoff left, cut back right,
and lowered his shoulder into the end zone for a strong, 14-yard touchdown
to put Le Roy up 7-0 after the Tresco point after.
Cal-Mum/B-B then struck right back with one of its three big plays
on the night. On a first down, Yockel broke free through the middle
of the Oatkan Knights' defense and he went untouched from 69 yards
out to pull the Red Raiders to within 7-6 after the conversion passed
With Le Roy driving well on its next possession, Hill and LaCarte
mishandled a handoff exchange and the fumble was scooped up by the
Red Raiders' Josh Platt, who returned it 60 yards for the score with
just under 11 minutes remaining in the first half. The Yockel conversion
run failed and it was 12-7.
Le Roy would put together a nine-play drive on its next possession
before a punt and then would drive deep into Cal-Mum/B-B territory
later in the quarter after a Red Raiders' turnover but, once again,
came up empty.
The score stayed that way until late in the third with neither team
mustering up much offense before Yockel struck again. On virtually
the same play as the 69-yard run, this time the sophomore burst through
the middle again and outran the Oatkan Knights for 67 yards for what
looked like a back-breaking 18-7 advantage.
But Le Roy wasn't done. Aided by a Red Raiders' personal foul call
after TY Williams gained 15 yards on a reverse, the Oatkan Knights
struck right back and went five plays and scored when Biggins kept
the read-option and broke through the left side for a 31-yard touchdown
run to bring Le Roy back to within 18-13.
The Le Roy defense held Cal-Mum/BB to just one first down in the second
half and just seven for the game, while it has surrendered just 31
points in all through three regular season games.
"Our defense for three games now has been absolutely fantastic,"
Herdlein said. "It's kept us in games enough until our offense
gets going and they did it again tonight."
"This means a lot," added Biggins. "We always believed
in ourselves. Nobody really believed in us, but we did, and it just
fueled the fire for us."
Le Roy will look to remain unbeaten next week at Avon, while Cal-Mum/B-B
will try and bounce back at Dansville.
"Lets go 4-0," Tresco said.