Another season, another chance for Sachem and William Floyd to play in the Suffolk County Division I final. Both teams will meet for the third straight season on Sunday for all the marbles, and another county title.
Sachem, who has lost the last two title games to the Colonials, is going for the seventh county title in school history.
With the help of senior Dalton Crossan, and a handful of supporting players, including many who have stepped up their games when six players were lost with season-ending injuries, this team has been built for a championship run all year.
The key to Sunday's championship for Sachem is to minimize turnovers, keep the ball away from Floyd's Stacey Bedell on special teams, and stop Bedell enough to slow down their entire offense.
Floyd will have its hands full too. Sachem's offense is tops in Suffolk County again this season and Crossan has proven himself as the favorite in the Hansen Award running. Stopping the best player on Long Island, perhaps New York, is no easy task.
"We’ve learned a lot of lessons the last two years," said Sachem coach Dave Falco. "It’s a great rivalry. I don’t think there are any secrets between us. This is something we’ve been thinking about all year."
Sachem had its final walk-through on Saturday evening and players gathered for pizza in the cafeteria at North. Players were focused and put in possibly their best week of practice all season.
"We're better than the first time we played them," Falco said earlier this week. "We had a lot of injuries and new guys moving around. We were still feeling ourselves out offensively. We're focused now."
How they got there? Sachem beat Pat-Med and Sachem East in the quarterfinals and semifinals, respectively. It's only regular season loss was to Floyd during Week 6. Floyd enters the championship game having squeaked out a victory over Longwood in the Suffolk semis. It pounded Lindenhurst in the quarterfinals after losing in Week 8 of the regular season against Bay Shore.
How to follow the game? Sachem Patch will be LIVE blogging the game starting with pre-game analysis at 3:30 p.m. We'll also be LIVE tweeting from @SachemPatch around the same time. Check the site for complete post-game analysis all night long.
Match: No. 1 Sachem (9-1) vs. No. 4 William Floyd (8-2)
Location/date/time: Stony Brook University, Sunday, November 20 at 4 p.m.
Next up: The winner will play Nassau's East Meadow in the Class I Long Island championship next Saturday. Sachem's only appearance in a football LIC came in 1995 against Lawrence, now a Division III school.