TODAY'S PAPER
Few Clouds 32° Good Evening
Few Clouds 32° Good Evening
SportsHigh School

Bethpage, Wantagh renew rivalry in Nassau Conference III

Bethpage players T. J. Hart, Matt Groom and Mark Rossini during a

Bethpage players T. J. Hart, Matt Groom and Mark Rossini during a game against Lynbrook at Bethpage High School on Saturday, Sept. 9, 2017. Photo Credit: Richard T. Slattery

The football teams at Bethpage and Wantagh both have soaked in the rich tradition of winning. The teams have met 14 times since 2001, with each winning seven of those contests.

Bethpage travels to Wantagh for a pivotal Nassau Conference III game Saturday at 2 p.m.

Wantagh, the defending Long Island Class III champion, cruised to a 42-7 win in its opener over Division. And Bethpage overcame five turnovers to gut out a 16-7 win over Lynbrook.

“These are neighboring communities that play for bragging rights and I love the rivalry thing,” said Wantagh coach Keith Sachs. “Bethpage put us on the map in 1998 when we finally beat them. They were the standard. It gave our program instant credibility.”

It is personal when it comes to Wantagh and Bethpage.

Now it’s Wantagh that’s set the new standard. The Warriors beat Bethpage, 21-7, last year.

“It was easily our toughest game,” Sachs said. “They come to play.”

Bethpage had a 48-game winning streak from 1993-1997 against Nassau opponents. The streak ended in a 7-6 overtime loss to Wantagh in the Nassau Conference III semifinal in 1998.

In 2004, Wantagh beat Bethpage on Homecoming Day, 28-0, the Golden Eagles’ first home loss in 16 years — a span of 60 games.

There is an opportunity for Bethpage to gain some payback Friday. Wantagh and Garden City currently own Long Island’s longest win streaks at 13 games.

Hempstead at Farmingdale, Friday, 6:30 p.m. Farmingdale (1-0) has been in the Nassau Conference I final in 13 of the last 18 years, winning eight titles. Dalers coach Buddy Krumenacker won his 250th game as a head coach last week. He is a former coach at Hempstead, where he garnered 77 of those wins. To beat Hempstead (1-0), the Dalers will have to stop star halfback Dashawn Meadors.

Floyd at Connetquot, Friday, 7 p.m. Floyd’s defense is led by middle linebacker Danny Torres and he’ll have to figure out a way to slow down Connetquot (2-0) and its strong-armed quarterback Dylan McDermott and the versatile George Wichelns. Floyd (1-0) relies on halfback Nick Silva, who runs with conviction behind a formidable offensive line.

Lawrence at Roosevelt, Saturday, 2 p.m. Lawrence (1-0) was 35-1 from 2012-2014 but has lost to Roosevelt (1-0) in the last four meetings. The Lawrence defense will have their hands full with junior halfback Kevon Hall, who rushed for 269 yards and four scores last week. Lawrence moved Christian Fredericks to quarterback this season to jumpstart the offense.

Westhampton at Half Hollow Hills West, Saturday, 1 p.m. This could be a wild offensive game. Both teams boast speedy playmakers. Westhampton’s Dylan Laube ran for 262 yards and four scores in a 42-38 comeback win over Bellport to give coach Bill Parry the 100th win of his career. Top-seeded Hills West has halfback Deyvon Wright and quarterback Gerald Filardi looking for a breakout performance this week after getting past Comsewogue last week.

GREGG SARRA

Farmingdale

Longwood

Miller Place

Oceanside

Massapequa

Carey

Wantagh

Lawrence

Centereach

Hills West

BOB HERZOG

Farmingdale

Lindenhurst

Miller Place

Oceanside

Massapequa

Carey

Wantagh

Lawrence

Centereach

Hills West

ANDY SLAWSON

Farmingdale

Lindenhurst

Miller Place

Oceanside

Massapequa

Carey

Wantagh

Lawrence

Centereach

Westhampton

More high schools

Sorry to interrupt...

Your first 5 are free

Access to Newsday is free for Optimum customers.

Please enjoy 5 complimentary views to articles, photos, and videos during the next 30 days.

LOGIN SUBSCRIBE