EASTCHESTER, N.Y. – The Tuckahoe High School football team is no stranger to success in the state tournament.
The Tigers won state championships in 2006 and 2010. At noon Friday, they will try to capture another state title as they travel to Syracuse to face Section 6 champion Randolph for the Class D state title.
“It’s amazing, man,” quarterback Shyheim Nixon said after the Tigers’ semifinal win. “I can’t wait. We’re just trying to play in the (Carrier) Dome and just take it back to Tuckahoe.”
Tuckahoe has had an up-and-down season. The Tigers opened the year with four straight wins, including a dominating performance against last year’s Class C state champion Dobbs Ferry. Tuckahoe then tied with winless Haldane and lost two straight games.
But the Tigers hit their stride and have not lost since a 47-13 embarrassment at Woodlands in week seven. Tuckahoe has outscored opponents, 128-36, in the last four games.
Tuckahoe’s most recent win was among the most impressive as it and Section 2 champion Rensselaer battled back and forth and fought for every yard. After the Rams shut down the Tigers in the first half, Tuckahoe buckled down, showed its resolve and pulled out a 14-12 win.
“You’ve got to play with your heart. You’ve got to play with the feeling that every play can be your last,” running back Nick Reisman said. “This could be our last day on the football field.”
Tuckahoe wore bright orange pants in the section championship game against Haldane a few weeks ago to remind themselves of their goal: to get to Syracuse, home of the Orange.