Monthly Archives: January 2001
Liverpool, New York, September 1, 2001
It was an Autumn like-evening in Liverpool, New York as the Syracuse Sting (0-3) hosted the New York Sharks (4-1). Game time temperature was 65 degrees but dropped down to 55 by the end of the game. It was the home opener for Syracuse who had started the season with 2 games on the road. One of those games was a loss to the Sharks 34-6. With the Sharks playing well this season, it looked like it could be an easy win for the downstater’s. It wasn’t.
The Sharks got on the board early. In the first quarter, they scored on a 3 yard touchdown lob from quarterback Jen Lueck to Val “Peanut” Monaco. New York went for the 2-point conversion and made it on a pitchout to running backKathy Holloman to give them an 8-0 lead.
Early in the second quarter, the Sharks struck again. With the ball just past midfield, New York ran a sweep to the left with Holloman. The Sting were able to penetrate through the Shark blockers to get to the runner. Holloman broke 2 tackles and reversed her field. Syracuse had over pursued and this left lots of running room for Holloman to run to her right. She broke 3 more tackles and with a nice block from a teammate downfield, completed a 46 yard touchdown run. Monaco came through and kicked the point after touchdown and pushed New York’s lead to 15-0.
It started to look like it was going to be another rout of the Sting, but Syracuse had other thoughts in mind. With a very enthusiastic home crowd, the Sting struck back quickly. With 11:07 left in the second quarter, Syracuse quarterback Kiki Seago threw an 86 yard touchdown pass to make the score 15-6. Syracuse then went for the 2 point conversion and made that to tighten the score 15-8.
On the ensuing kickoff, Syracuse kicked the ball between the Sharks’ blockers and the returners. The Sting were able to recover the ball deep in New York’s territory. Seago threw a 13 yard touchdown pass at 7:06 in the second quarter to make the score 15-14, in favor of the Sharks. Syracuse tried for the 2 point conversion but fumbled the ball away.
Syracuse was starting to look really tough as they were able to move the ball against the Sharks. The home field seemed to play a role as Syracuse made one big play after another with the crowd roaring with approval.
When the third quarter started, New York’s offense seemed to be sputtering, and Syracuse was continuing to move the ball against the usually vaunted Shark defense. The Sting had moved the ball into the Red Zone but New York was able to stop the Sting to make it 4th down and 1 yard to go from the 9 yard line at the 11:50 mark of the third quarter. Syracuse decided to go for the first down instead of trying for the go-ahead field goal. The Sharks made the Sting regret that move as they stopped quarterback Seago for a 1 yard loss.
With less than 4 minutes left in the game, New York had the ball as they clung to their 1 point lead, 15-14. The Sharks turned to their offensive line and running back Wanda Williams. Continually staying on the ground and pounding the ball up the middle, New York moved the ball and kept the clock running. Williams finally punched through for a 2 yard touchdown. The Sharks missed the extra point but it looked like the game was over with the score 21-14
After the kickoff, Syracuse was starting at their own 35 yard line with only 1:33 left in the game. With no timeouts left but with their fans still behind them in the chilly night air, the Sting marched down the field to the New York 15 yard line. But with only 9 seconds left, Shark safety Courtney Eaton intercepted a Seago pass to ice the game and give the Sharks a thrilling 21-14 victory.
The defense continued to play the bend, but don’t break philosophy, as they came up big when they had to. Anna “Tonka” Tate played defense very well and led the team with 11 tackles.
The Sharks stay on the road next week, as they fly down to Arizona to take on the Arizona Titans on September 8th. Then on September 16th, the Sharks come home to play the Syracuse Sting again at Kane Stadium in Secaucus, New Jersey.