My game story on White Plains ending a 20-year drought and returning to the Section 1 final:
EAST FISHKILL — As John Jay-East Fishkill’s team and fans wandered off in stunned disbelief, Chris Jordan found himself dealing with a certain shocked silence, too. The White Plains senior struggled to put the night into words. How to explain something he never saw coming?
Jordan and the Tigers expected a physical struggle in their Class AA semifinal Saturday night. Instead, whether it was an early fourth-and-short stop or Jordan’s second half running, White Plains was the team in control at the point of attack. The Tigers beat John Jay 33-6, dominating up front to book the program’s first berth in a sectional final since 1993.
White Plains (7-1) will play the same team it lost to 20 years ago, North Rockland, at noon on Saturday at Mahopac High School.
“I really thought we were going to pass on them a lot, so I’m shocked,” Jordan said. “We ran all over them.”
Jordan rushed 29 times for 154 yards and two touchdowns. Quarterback Cameron Crabbe added another 39 yards and two scores on the ground. The senior also went 10 for 19 for 187 yards and threw a 20-yard touchdown to Matt Berube as the Tigers outgained John Jay 407-164.
They drove on the game’s opening possession but were stopped on downs at the 10. The Patriots (7-2) quickly faced a fourth-and-short from their 19, but White Plains’ defense stuffed them inches short. Crabbe scored to give the Tigers a 7-0 lead and they steamrolled from there.
“We needed six inches and I thought we’d be able to get it,” John Jay coach Tom O’Hare said. “It was obviously a gamble. If we got it, no one’s talking about it. We didn’t get it, so it’s obviously something you look back at.”
White Plains used its past as motivation all season; the program’s 2012 struggles made this year’s accomplishments that much sweeter.
“To be 1-7 last year and come back and be 7-1 and get to a sectional final, it’s unbelievable,” coach Skip Stevens said.
This win will likely cost the Tigers their annual Turkey Bowl against Stepinac. State rules only permit teams to play a 10th game if it is a sectional final.
“You want to play in that game, but I think I’ll trade it for a section championship,” Crabbe said.
Here’s Stevens, Jordan and Crabbe discussing White Plains’ win: