FM Football Caps Off Historic Season at the Dome

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Julianna Hall

Hornets’ pre-game huddle at the Dome.

The FM Hornets football team finished their illustrious season with a 9-2 record, after falling to the West Genesee Wildcats in the Sectional Championships at the JMA Wireless Dome on Friday. A season that started with two shutout wins for the Hornets, who went 48-0 against Auburn and 49-0 against Watertown built momentum for this experienced team, as they would go on a 7-0 run to start the season.

The Hornets entered the post-season as the number one seed in the Section 3 Class A championships. After defeating East Syracuse Minoa in the quarterfinal round with a final score of 55-28, and New Hartford in the semifinals with a score of 40-14, the Hornets advanced to the Sectional Championship for the first time in 21 years. 

A large, electric, student section, a fast-paced Hornet defense, and a tenacious offense fought to keep FM’s Section 3 title hopes alive, but ultimately the third-seeded West Genesee Wildcats outperformed the favorite for the championship to win their first sectional title in 11 years with a score of 23-0, effectively ending FM’s historic season.

When the two teams faced earlier in the fall, it was a Hornet victory; however, it was the closest any team had played FM in the regular season, the game ending with a score of 29-20. Since the loss to the Hornets, West Genesee had gone 7-0, led by senior quarterback Vicent Firenze, and continued that momentum to stop the chance of FM’s typical long-run scores in this anticipated matchup in the Dome.

FM was led in scoring throughout the season by senior running back TJ Conley, who rushed for over 2,200 yards on the season and received for 138, scoring 30 touchdowns. Second in scoring to Conley was senior running back George LaCombe, who ran for almost 650 yards, and received for over 100 yards, scoring 12 touchdowns. 

This FM team was composed of 22 senior players. The Hornets will look to the leadership of sophomore Jack Hearn next year, who picked up some playoff experience as the starting quarterback in this Sectional Final. Sophomore running backs Colin Clark and Alek Madissoo, and junior lineman Jackson Schwab will be other players to watch next season, as the Hornets hope to avenge this heartbreaking loss in next season’s sectional final.