ROSELLE – Friday night’s Batavia versus Lake Park Upstate Eight football crossover matchup wasn’t easy for either team.
Playing through a rainstorm during most of the first quarter and less than adequate field conditions made it difficult to gain an advantage, but Batavia found a way to keep its head above water on the scoreboard and protect its unbeaten streak.
The Bulldogs used a strong second-half ground performance to get past Lake Park, 33-29, and improved their record to a playoff-qualifying 5-0. Batavia has won its past 14 regular-season games.
“I’m very proud of our effort,” Batavia coach Dennis Piron said. “We dealt with a little bit of adversity with the weather conditions, but we battled through it, and our offensive line took control of the game, allowing our offense to make plays.”
Lake Park jumped on the Bulldogs by taking a 6-0 lead during its first drive of the contest, but Batavia responded with a 65-yard drive that ended in Micah Coffey’s 28-yard touchdown pass to Zach Strittmatter with 7:02 left in the first quarter.
The Bulldogs pushed their lead to 14-6 after Coffey found Strittmatter again for a 13-yard touchdown pass ending a 49-yard drive with 1:38 left in the first quarter. Lake Park tied the game at 14 with a 66-yard drive and a two-point conversion, but Batavia reclaimed the advantage, 20-14, just before halftime when Coffey found Strittmatter yet again for a 13-yard score.
“We got first downs when it mattered, and we made the right adjustments when it mattered,” Piron said. “We fought hard to get this win.”
The Bulldogs opened the second half with a 65-yard drive ending in a 12-yard touchdown run from Anthony Thielk to move ahead 26-14, but Lake Park converted two fourth downs to close within 26-21.
A 15-yard interception return for a touchdown gave the the Lancers a 29-26 lead.
Batavia extended its perfect season thanks to a scoring drive that was capped when Thielk powered in a 2-yard toucdown run to end an 80-yard drive with 10:19 left in the game.
“Getting that fifth win guarantees us a winning season and that’s great,” Piron said. “We’ve got a great group of guys and a great coaching staff here, and I couldn’t be more proud of our efforts so far this season.”
Batavia 33, Lake Park 29
Batavia 14 6 6 7 – 33 Lake Park 6 8 15 0 – 29
HOW THEY SCORED
LP-Teglia 57 yard pass from Gehant (Lott kick failed) 10:13 B-Strittmatter 28 yard pass from Coffey (Albrecht kick) 7:02 B-Strittmatter 13 yard pass from Coffey (Albrecht kick) 1:38Second quarter
LP-Teglia 6 yard pass from Gehart (Castaldo run) 9:59 B-Strittmatter 13 yard pass from Coffey (Albrecht kick blocked) 0:55Third quarter
B-Thielk 12 yard run (2-pt. conversion failed) 9:45 LP-Filip 9 yard pass from Gehant (Lott kick) 3:31 LP-Shenault 15 yard interception (Gehant run) 2:24Fourth quarter
B-Thielk 2 yard run (Albrecht kick) 10:19
RUSHING – Batavia: Scaccia 19-112, Moffatt 1-4, Thielk 15-81 Miller 2-14 Coffey 1-6 Totals: 38-217. Lake Park: Evans 10-67, Thomson 5-7, Gehant 6-12, Filip 1-13, Teglia 1-5 Totals: 23-104PASSING – Batavia: Coffey 13-21-1-156. Lake Park: Gehant 9-26-1-140RECEIVING – Batavia: Strittmatter 7-93, Scaccia 2-11, Moffatt 3-21 Toth 1-31 Dudek 3-9, Totals: 13-156 Lake Park: Teglia 6-107, Filip 3-33 Totals: 9-140 TOTAL YARDS – Batavia 373, Lake Park 244