spent much of his week reminding his
Christian Brothers Academy
football team about the capabilities of Guilderland, and not
to underestimate the Dutchmen because of their 1-2 record.
finally got the message Saturday afternoon -- only after
taking a physical pounding and trailing by 13 points in the
With a loss
staring his team in the face, Burke watched his squad rally
to pull within a point with 1:16 left. Then it was decision
time for the Brothers: kick the extra point to potentially
force overtime or go for a two-point conversion and the lead.
During a timeout, Burke's players voted for
one scenario. The call was flanker reverse pass. Cameron Wynn
took a pitch from quarterback
and slapped the ball into the belly of wide receiver
heading right. Luizzi spotted senior wide receiver
and calmly arched a shot put-looking toss over the Dutchmen
defense for a two-point conversion.
"My teammates make
fun of me and say, 'Pete, you stink throwing the ball.' When
coach called it, I was thinking, 'Oh no," Luizzi said. "When
I came around the line, I saw Torey and we made the
connection. I knew he was coming down with it."
"I saw (the
defender's) hand go up and thought it might get tipped. It
landed right in my chest," Williams said.
"Pete and Torey
are two veteran players. Once we called it, I had a really
good feeling it was going to get done," Cillis said.
feeling something entirely different than CBA. It was the
sting of a second painful loss after building a
"We're the best 1-3 team in Section II,"
Dan Penna lamented.
Luizzi provided the Brothers (4-0, 3-0) the
opportunity to go for the victory when he hauled in a pass
from Cillis at the 10 and faked out Guilderland's
to score on a 16-yard touchdown pass. After Burke called a
timeout to discuss what to do on the conversion, it didn't
take long at all to know CBA was going for the win.
"He knows we have
confidence in ourselves, and he has confidence in us,"
Williams said. "It makes us feel good, knowing we can
"Pete had a big
day catching, and throwing it as softly as he did,"
"We had to dig
down deep to get this one. It is a great feeling to come back
like that," Luizzi said.
The Dutchmen (1-3,
1-3) used a perfect run-pass mix in the opening half to
outgain CBA 216-60 -- yet only led 19-12 despite scoring on
time-consuming drives covering 68, 64 and 73 yards. "They
came out today and smacked us right in the mouth. We took a
little bit of time to get off of the mat," Burke said.
"Fortunately for us, it happened with about four minutes
touchdown for the Brothers in the first half came on a
64-yard punt return by Luizzi. It appeared the senior stepped
out of bounds near his team's bench at the 50, but the
whistle never blew.
"They were busting
on me when I came back to the sidelines, saying, 'I think
your foot was out of bounds.' I said, 'I don't care. If the
refs didn't see it, I went to the end zone," Luizzi said.
CBA trailed 25-12
early in the fourth quarter when the Dutchmen had a 12-play
drive stall out at midfield. After a punt, the Brothers
needed just six plays to drive 82 yards, with Wynn capping
the march on a 10-yard touchdown run with 6:25 left.
successfully recovered an onsides kick by CBA and failed to
gain a first down. Lining up to punt from the Brothers' 48,
Guilderland instead attempted a pass that fell incomplete.
CBA required eight plays to reach the end zone
again, including a 10-yard pass to Luizzi, a 15-yard scramble
by Cillis and a 10-yard reception by
"We only had one
more chance or we were going to be 3-1. We didn't want that,"