Tuesday, August 16, 2005

PRESS RELEASE POST GAME Saturday August 13, 2005

For Immediate Release :

    Saturday Night, Albany's Bleecker Stadium was the backdrop for yet another fantastic gridiron performance in the storied annals of the belegured historic facility, when  the clash of the semi-pro unbeatens took over the field. The defending national champion Central NY Express from Syracuse and the NYAFL, at 6 -0, came to Albany to take on the hometown Empire Football League powerhouse Albany Metro Mallers in a non league clash of the inter league titans. Albany entered the game at 5 - 0, and unscored upon while   CNY had given up a mere 6 points on the season. When the smoke cleared after four quarters, only one team came out with their unbeaten string intact, The Metro Mallers. Although the winning streak remained intact, the Albany defense which was bent but never broken in their earlier games finally gave way to the opponents endzone, as the Express came away with 2 scores in their 28 -14 defeat at the hands of the Albany team.

    Following the Opening Kickoff, by newly acquired Albany Placekicker Vinnie Cirincione, which stunned the Express as the kick sailed high overhead and out of the endzone, The CNY started their back-up QB, Richard Dykes, normally a Wide Receiver, as regular starter Chris Breshnahan was late in arriving in Albany. After engineering a first down the CNY Signal caller was victimized by the Maller defense as Jarris Jones, Gabe Young, and Greg Woodward combined on the blitz to force Dykes into a fumble which Woodward recovered. The Metro Mallers Quarterback Scott Lawson wasted no time, in striking as he hit Collis
Martin with a 10 yard pass in the endzone, putting Albany on top 7-0 after Cirincione made the conversion.

    The Express' second posession nearly ended the same as the first, as Dykes again under intense pressure, coughed the pigskin up, however he dodged a bullet as the play was ruled dead with an Albany offsides penalty. Before play resumed, Breshnahan, a former New England Patriot Draft Pick, arrived on the scene. Breshnahan obviously not warmed up
went 3 and out and the Express had to punt. As the Express defense exerted itself on the Metro Mallers, possessions exchanged for the remainder of the quarter, when the Express again had to punt at the :31 second mark, Albany return specialist, Farrid Baaklini, worked his magic.  Breshnian, also the Express punter, shanked a 16 yard punt which landed bouncing at the 37 yard line, near the side line. Seeing a lane and all defenders with their backs toward him Baaklini went unnoticed as he beelined down the sideline, fielded the bouncing ball and returned it to the 30 yard line. With just 24 seconds left on the clock, Scott Lawson again caught the Express by surprise, as the Syracuse squad anticipated Albany killing the clock to end the quarter. Lawson connected for 37 yards with  Maceo Clinton  for Albany's second score, and a 14-0 lead after the opening quarter.

    Again, Vinnie Cirincione's leg pinned the express inside the 20 on the kickoff and again the Defenses took over. After exchanging possessions Albany's QB Lawson, was caught by surprise and was stripped of the ball near mid-field on a scramble. Following a 15 yard penalty the Express got the ball at the Metro Maller 30. Following a loss of yardage on first down, Express tailback Chris Beebe exploded through the center of the line, into daylight and headed for the Endzone. As Beebe approached, Maller D-back Gabe Young caught him from behind and slapped the ball out of his grasp as he crossed the 1 yard line. Although Farid
Baaklini fell on the loose ball in the endzone, the back judge ruled it a touchdown, and the Express were on the board with six.
    After the Albany offense failed to move downfield, Albany Punter Jason Bradwell, fought off intense pressure nailing a 42 yard boot and Albany was aided by a CNY illegal blocking penalty, which forced the Syracuse team back to their own 24 yard line from which to start a
drive. Again under intense pressure, Breshnahan threw downfield across the middle, and Baaklini stepped in front of Richard Dykes, for the pick. The speedy defender then reversed field and took off down the left sideline into the endzone  giving Albany a 21-6 lead into the intermission.

    Coming back after the break, the tone of the game was more of the same, offenses from both teams trying to get the ground game on track, the Express on the back of Tailback Chris Beebe, and Albany on the legs of Jadel Whitfield, and Sylvester Cooperwood. But neither defense would break early in the half. With 4:51 left in the period, Lawson hit Matt
Holmes on the short screen and the EFL Veteran took it 23 yards for the score, putting Albany up 28-6 going into the final period.
    As the teams battled it out, it took yet another miscue to  keep the  crowd  on the edge of their seats when at the 8:10  mark, a bad snap to punter Jason Bradwell, resulted in CNY getting field posession at the Albany 40 yard line to mount yet another assault. Breshnahan
connected with wide receiver Ryshaud Porch with a 27 yard fly giving the Express a first and ten at the Albany 13 yard line. Two plays later, Central shortened the Albany lead to 28-14 with just 6:59 on the clock as Breshnahan connected with  Richard Dykes across the middle from 13 yards out, and Chris Beebe completed the two point conversion.

    With just under 7 minutes left the Express showed why they were the national champions in 2004, as they kept trying to come back. The Express Defense prevented the Albany running backs from getting first down yardage to be able to kill the clock. regaining posession of the ball by stopping both Jadel Whitfield and Sylvester Cooperwood from moving the chains following a third & fourth down and 1 yard to go at mid field.
     CNY took over on downs, and Breshnahan connected downfield with Dykes on a slant, and the receiver broke free down the right side. A great open field tackle by Albany defensive captain Jeff Turman saved a touchdown, but Syracuse had a 1st and goal from the two. Breshnahan handed off to Beebe, who finished the evening with 104 yard rushing. and Beebe went up the middle gaining 1 and three quarter yards an was met by the un breaking Albany D, in the form of Greg Woodward, Tony DiChairo, and Sean Hardy. With the ball resting  inches from the goal line, Breshnahan stepped in under center and barked the signals, failing to see Maller Free Safety Damon Walker shoot the gap on the blitz trapping Breshnian, forcing a fumble which the Quarterback managed to recover but was sacked for a loss of  9 yards.  As the clock ran down, Breshnahan completed a 1 yard pass into the flat to Ryshaud Porch who was immediately smothered by Maller Cornerback Gabe Young. The veteran QB had one more down to work with, but his fourth down pass came under the intense rush of the Maller Line that it sailed high out of the endzone. Following a single snap of the ball, by Albany Center Drez Morris, the ballgame was over. Albany holds on to a 28-14 win.

    This game will be broadcast in tape delay on Albany Time Warner Cable Channel 18, this Thursday evening at 7pm and on Schenectady Cable Channel 18 Saturday at midnight.

    The Metro Mallers are right back in the thick of the Empire Football League battle this coming Saturday Night as they travel the Thruway south to Monroe,  NY to take on their EFL Co-Leaders the also undefeated Orange County Bulldogs. Kick off at 7:30 pm.

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