Niagara Gazette — In a rock'em, sock'em tale of two halves, two of Western New York's finest football teams slugged it out Saturday afternoon in a memorable high school football game that easily surpassed the high expectations stapled to it.
Visiting St. Joe's, ranked second in Western New York according to the latest coach's poll, overcame an 11-point halftime deficit to outscore AA North-champion Lockport 23-7 the rest of the way and limped off with a hard-fought 30-25 victory on Senior Day at Max D. Lederer Field.
Two of the area's most productive, efficient and entertaining offenses and players racked up huge yards in an offensive showdown that featured three second-half lead changes and more than its share of big plays.
When the smoke cleared, Marauders senior tailback Ilo Noble finished with 213 yards on 22 carries with a touchdown and Lockport's Connolly Cup favorite, senior running back James Chambers, ran for a game-high 221 yards on 20 carries with three TDs.
The Lions (3-0 AA North, 4-2 overall) squandered promising leads of 10-0 early in the second quarter and 18-7 at the half as the Marauders regrouped at intermission under third-year head coach Dennis Gilbert.
“We made some adjustments defensively and got people into the right spots,” Gilbert said. “We just weren't focused in the first half, so we settled them down and tried to keep things simple the rest of the way.”
Early on, it was all blue and gold as the Chambers hit a hole and scampered 48 yards to pay dirt in the first quarter. Senior Kyle Few's extra point and 32-yard field goal moments later gave Lockport a 10-0 lead 10 seconds into the second quarter.
That fired up the Marauders, who picked up the pace and marched 80 yards on six plays to get on the scoreboard.