The euphoira following OFAs 25-20 win over Massena, on Friday night, was quickly put aside on Monday as the OFA football team began an extremely important week of practice.
The come-from-behind win, from a 20-7 deficit, over a very talented and previously undefeated Massena club earned the 4-0 Devils the right to host 4-0 Potsdam (7 p.m. start) for the Northern Athletic Conference lead with just two weeks remaining in the conference schedule.
The Sandstoners have bulldozed their way to four straight wins with a dominant offense and defense and have risen to a number five ranking in this weeks NYS Class C Poll where OFA earned Honorable Mention.
Potsdam is an outstanding senior oriented football team. Offensively their top back Oden Robertson is very explosive and their quarterback Will Coleman is the total package, said OFA Coach Matt Tessmer.
Averaging 8.5 yards per carry with 10 TDs Robertson, who heads a very deep running back corps, has gained 576 yards to stand second in the NAC to Massenas JP Reagan at 739. Coleman has mixed the passes very efficiently completing 14 of 23 passes for seven touchdowns and no interceptions.
Freshman quarterback Joey Dalton has led OFA to two straight come-from-behind wins and completed 15 of 26 passes for 175 yards and three touchdowns against Massena.
Two TDs went to Nick Sweeney and the third, with just 59 seconds to play, went to Jon Rogers. Rogers also set up the winning TD with a leaping fourth down reception and also caught a go-ahead touchdown pass late in the fourth quarter against Tupper Lake.
For their efforts, Dalton was honored as the Offensive Player of the Week by the OFA coaching staff while Rogers received the Hard Worker of the Week award. Joey Dalton showed a lot of poise and really led the team and Jon Rogers has really been making big plays for us, said Coach Tessmer.
Dalton (28x47-473-2 6 TDs) and the currently injured Josh Liebstein (23x37-2-280 5 TDs) have combined to produce 753 yards and 11 TDs as the NACs number one passing offense.
An offense which features the NACs second leading receiver in Jon Tayler with 17 catches for 192 yards and Sweeney who is tied for third with 12 catches for 114 yards and NAC high five touchdown receptions.
The Defensive Player of the Week Award went to linebacker Taylor Richardson for producing two second half turnovers. He intercepted a pass caused by a delivery sack on quarterback Rory Corcoran and with 39 seconds remaining he recovered a fumble after Nolan Rufa stripped the ball from a Massena receiver.
Center Zach Barr earned to right serve as the Week Five Captain after leading the offensive line to a forceful second half blocking for fullback Jordan McCormick (24-81) and providing protection for Dalton.
Zach Barr had his best game of the season working against a very good lineman and Taylor Richardson came up with very important turnovers, said Tessmer.
Joe Loffler produced a team-high eight tackles with a sack against Massena. Will Pearson had a sack, McCormick had six tackles and Nolan Rufa had three of his seven tackles behind the line of scrimmage.