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On This Day In History | 1995

November 11, 2010

In a 34-54 loss to Bayport-Blue Point, sophomore Derek Kenney and senior Marc Vega delivered two of the finest performances in Long Island football history.  Kenney obliterated the Long Island record for passing yards in a single game with 466, 62 yards more than William Floyd’s John Murphy threw for in 1985.  Kenny also came a paltry 13 yards shy of the New York State record set by Warwick Valley’s Geoff Green earlier that ’95 season.  Not to be outdone, Marc Vega, in his final game for the Bears, caught 16 of Kenney’s 32 completions to tie the New York State Record set by Demetrius Dotson of Curtis High School on Staten Island.  The milestone is still tops on Long Island to this day.  Vega also compiled 276 receiving yards which remains the 3rd highest total in Long Island history.  While the Bears fell to the Phantoms, thereby vacating a trip to the playoffs, they would have their revenge almost exactly 2 years later, defeating Bayport 27-7 in a reversal of fortunes for both schools.

Ground-Air Battle

They call it “Do or Die.” Win, you’re in. Lose, you’re out. Gone. Later. History. Bye-bye.

So, when Stony Brook met Bayport-Blue Point yesterday, it did so needing to beat the Phantoms to earn a postseason football berth in Division IV.

Guess what?

All Stony Brook sophomore quarterback Derek Kenney did was go 32-for-63 for – get this – a Long Island-record 466 yards. And three touchdowns. Which broke the single-game passing record of 404 yards, set by John Murphy of Floyd in 1985. Kenney came 13 yards short Warwick Valley’s Geoff Green, who set the record earlier this season by throwing for 479 yards against Cornwall in a Section IX game.

All of which got Kenney and Stony Brook, a team that entered the game in second place in the division with a 6-1 record, this: A 54-34 loss.

Oh, and dismissal from the playoffs.

Why? Because Bayport, too, needed to win to earn a postseason berth, entering the game at 5-2 and in fifth place in Division IV. And all Bayport junior running back Matt Frenz did was rush 28 times for a school-record 334 yards and five touchdowns – including three in the second half, as the Phantoms came back from a 21-20 halftime deficit.

Which meant Bayport (6-2) rallied from fifth place to fourth in the standings, earning itself a first-round game next week at Harborfields (8-0). Stony Brook (6-2) finished fifth, missing the final berth.

“We had a good season,” Kenney said. “But I don’t go for moral victories. I wanted to win. We came so far and one game decided it – and that’s frustrating. But we couldn’t stop him.” He nodded in the direction of Frenz. “He had a great game.”

“Wow,” Frenz, who has 1,817 yards and 20 touchdowns, said when told how many yards he gained. “I didn’t know that. Their quarterback had such a great game. But all I knew is this might be my last game this season. I didn’t want it to end here.”

A year ago, Bayport needed to beat Babylon on the final weekend of the regular season – and have Harborfields lose to Mercy. Frenz, then a sophomore, rushed for 256 yards and six touchdowns. Bayport won, 52-30. But Harborfields beat Mercy, then won the Long Island Class IV Championship.

“That hurt,” Bayport coach Bob Jackolski said. “They wanted to make the playoffs. They did everything they could to get in. Then to just miss? It made them want it pretty bad this season.”

Bayport stopped Stony Brook on its first possession, forcing David Blore to punt into a gusting wind from his own 30-yard line. The punt went three yards. And on the first play from scrimmage, Frenz, a 5-9, 175-pound junior, took a handoff – and went 33 yards for a touchdown. All as his teammates cheered, “We’re going to the playoffs!”

But not so fast. Yes, Adam Seitz broke off a 51-yard run for a touchdown on the next possession. And, after a 2-yard second-quarter touchdown pass from Kenney to Marc Vega trimmed it to 14-7, Bayport stormed back – Frenz taking a handoff to the left, slipping two tackles, cutting back against the grain for a 90-yard TD. Which made it 20-7 Bayport.

But Jake Kenney scored on a 1-yard run with 1:04 left in the half and Mike Evers fumbled the ensuing kickoff, Kevin McCrain recovering it and going 32 yards to make it 21-20 Stony Brook.

The second half was a whirlwind. The Bayport line – Matt Cinelli, Ryan Humann, Travis Harrison, Nick Camerano and Bent Ritland – opened holes, Frenz found them and made things happen. Kenney made things happen, too, finding Vega 16 times for 276 yards – Vega tying the single-game state record for receptions set by Demetrius Dotson of Curtis of Staten Island in 1994.

A 46-yard touchdown run by Frenz. An interception of Kenney by Dan Henn – and a 3-yard touchdown run by Frenz. A 15-yard touchdown pass from Kenney to Scott Mayback to cut the Bayport lead to 34-28. A 27-yard touchdown run by Frenz. A 28-yard touchdown pass by Bayport quarterback Bob Haas, followed by a 1-yard touchdown run by Tom Barry. A 65-yard TD pass by Kenney to make it 54-34 with 3:12 left. A loss for Stony Brook, a win for Bayport.

“This was the two best players in our league going at it,” said Stony Brook coach Barry Giller, whose team was 1-5-2 last season. “Unfortunately, they stopped us when they had to and we didn’t stop them. It’s unbelievable. What can you do?”

~ John Valenti, Newsday



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