Fourth down? No problem for the Cold Spring Harbor football team.
“We have so many weapons offensively that it doesn’t matter the down or distance,” wide receiver Thomas Milana said. “We have the mentality that we’re going to score.”
Cold Spring Harbor scored two touchdowns in fourth-and-long situations in Friday night’s 42-20 win over Shoreham-Wading River in the Long Island Class IV championship game at Stony Brook’s LaValle Stadium, but that was nothing new for the offense.
Coach Jon Mendreski said that in Nassau IV, teams tend to push the envelope on fourth down more often than not. That’s been his team’s strategy all season, and he said he wasn’t going to deviate from it.
So it wasn’t surprising when Aidan Adomaites broke left in a slant toward the middle of the field on fourth-and-goal from the 7-yard line on the final play of the first half.
Adomaites jumped, caught the pass and flipped in midair when he was hammered by Dominic Visintin and Jake Meeker, but the wideout hung on for the TD. Milana’s kick gave Cold Spring Harbor the lead for good at 21-14.
“I just squeezed it and it happened,” said Adomaites, who added that he couldn’t even describe the play.
Ray Costa summed it up. “Anyone that ever sees him knows that he’s a big threat on offense,” the quarterback said. “He’s made some great catches, but I’ve never seen anything like that my entire life.”
Adomaites was the first option on the route, according to Mendreski.
“That’s who we were looking for,” he said. “He’s 6-4, 210 pounds. We’re looking for the big boy, and he made a big-boy catch. That’s a ‘man’ catch.”
Danny Striano rushed for three second-half touchdowns to seal the game.
On Cold Spring Harbor’s first drive of the game, Milana took a step inside and ran a corner route on fourth-and-8 from the 12-yard line. He broke free of the secondary and made a wide-open reception in the end zone for the game’s first score.
As the team’s placekicker, Milana said he doesn’t mind getting overlooked in field-goal situations. Actually, he prefers it.
“I don’t mind it at all,” he said. “After the touchdowns, it’s great to kick the extra points. I’d much rather do that than get three points on the field goal.”
And to see Adomaites make it count with his circus catch?
Said Milana: “I couldn’t believe he caught it.”