Gridiron Ghosts: NHS vs. Forks returns on senior night edition of Friday night lights

Robert Jeffrey

Sun Sports Contributor

NORWICH – If one was to define what best represented Section IV football, the logical answer would be the Maine-Endwell Spartans or the Chenango Forks Blue Devils.

These two behemoths of programs have dominated Southern Tier football conversations for the better half of the last three decades.

Since 1993, the two programs have combined for a total of 23 Section IV titles, and a whopping 10 NYSPHSAA titles.

However, there remains a different narrative this year. With the Tornado only three weeks removed from defeating the Spartans of M-E, there lies a different leviathan on the horizon for the Tornado, an incredibly dominant opponent that the NHS team knows very well.

Flashback to week seven of the 2016 season for just one moment; the last time Norwich played Chenango Forks. The score? Try 34-0, in favor of the Blue Devils and the eventual Section IV Class B Champions as well as the New York State Class B runner-ups.

And when was the last time the Tornado upended the Blue Devils you might ask; 2011, by a final score of 20-7 at Ulrich Field. The last time before that? Let’s go back to 1999, to a time when less than half of both the CF and NHS 2017 teams were born. In that match-up, the Tornado beat Forks at their place by a score of 40-14, Norwich later claimed their second and last known Section IV title.

Back to the issue at hand, this Norwich team despite their 4-1 overall record and number 24 ranking in the NYS rankings, the NHS seniors have one last chance to play on their home turf. And while upsets are few and far between, especially in ‘David’ vs. ‘Goliath’ matches such as these, whereas the Blue Devils are 5-0 and hold the number two slot in the NYS Class B rankings. These Friday night lights hold a different meaning for this NHS team.

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