South Football: A Season for the Ages
On October 26, Clarkstown South's football team's dream season came to an end. With a heartbreaking loss to Rye, the Vikings fell just short of reaching the section championship after completing an undefeated regular season and earning the top seed in the playoffs. Even after a rather disappointing end, as students and fans, we cannot let one loss represent the entire season. The 2018 Vikings football team was one of South's best ever, and we should never forget that.
The team posted impressive numbers in nearly all categories possible. Senior quarterback and captain Drew Tallevi threw for 1,434 yards and 21 touchdowns in just 127 attempts, averaging a touchdown once every six throws. In other words, any given time he dropped back to pass, there was a 16.5% chance the Vikings were going to score. To give a frame of reference, the highest single-season touchdown ratio in NFL history is 13.9%, set by Chicago Bears quarterback and Hall of Famer Sid Luckman, who last played over 65 years ago.
Drew's top receiving target quickly emerged in fellow senior captain R.J. Lamarre, who opened the season with a bang, a 61-yard touchdown on the first play from scrimmage against Tappan Zee. R.J. never looked back, totaling 621 yards and 7 touchdowns on 105 receptions, which would have given him the third-highest catch total in the NFL last year behind only Pro Bowler Jarvis Landry and future Hall of Famer Larry Fitzgerald. While this statistic is already impressive, it should be kept in mind that R.J. accomplished this feat in 9 games, compared to the 16-game NFL schedule.
The running game also put up astonishing numbers. Senior John Thom and junior Kyle Walker combined for 1,269 rushing yards (141 per game) and 19 touchdowns (2.1 per game). These stellar numbers included a 225-yard, three-touchdown game from Kyle against Yorktown and a 136-yard, three-touchdown effort from John in the Vikings' first matchup with Rye.
The defense may have been the team's greatest weapon of the year. The team racked up 169 individual tackles, led by senior linebacker and captain Mike Iodice's 35, and many more instances of group tackles, with Vikings swarming to the ballcarrier from all sides. In addition, the Vikings picked off opposing quarterbacks 16 times (1.7 per game) and registered 17 sacks (1.8 per game).
The 2018 football season was one for the ages for the Vikings, coming to a disappointing end in a game that I think, if it were played 10 times, they would have won 9 times out of 10. The same can be said for the Miracle on Ice, Super Bowl III, the 1983 and 1985 NCAA National Championships, and Buster Douglas knocking out Mike Tyson. We cannot let it take away from an incredible season.