Port's best defensive effort of this season, coupled with two long touchdown runs by Jason Ham, resulted in a stunning upset win over Carey 14-6. The win lifted Port to a 3-1 record and possible playoff consideration. The Vikings have four games remaining. All four games are crucial. The Vikings' last game of the season against New Hyde Park (4-0) will probably be the decisive game for both teams. That game will be played at Port on Nov. 7.
Frank Zaccherio and Anarag Vij combined efforts to stop Carey's All-County Andy Oleski short of the goal line on fourth and one. Others in photo: Steve Osario and Spencer Bodner.
This Saturday, Pride-in-Port Day, the Vikings' opponents will be Valley Stream Central (1-3). Game time is 2 p.m. Based on pre-season seedings and results of games against common opponents, (Port won 10-6, VSC won 28-10), the game could be considered a toss-up. The "Homecoming Game" last year drew over 800 Viking supporters. It's anticipated that an equal amount or more will be on hand to see the game and enjoy the halftime ceremonies, which will feature special recognition for Port's newest Hall of Fame members. Honored this year will be Todd Higgins '91, Rose Marie D'Agostino Van Der Kar '49, Paul Hirsch '49, Diane McLoughin '87, Susanne Murray Masi '83, and Port's very own, Bill Navin.
Port and Carey battled in the trenches for the first half of last Saturday's football game. Neither of the two All-County runningbacks, Port's Jason Ham or Carey's Andy Olesko, were able to gain much yardage. The defensive play by both teams was outstanding. Port was forced to kick four times and Carey punted five times. Sophomore Spencer Bodner kept Port out of trouble several times with booming kicks from deep in his own territory. Sr. linebacker Tom Love made a key interception that stopped Carey's deepest penetration on Port's 18 yard line. As the half ended, neither team was able to put a score on the board.
At the start of the second half, Carey tried to pull off a surprise on-side kick, only to have it go out of bounds before going the required 10 yards. As a result, Port took possession on Carey's 40 yardline. On the second running play from scrimmage, Ham scampered 36 yards down the right side for Port's first score. George Dembala added the PAT to give Port a 7-0 lead. Carey started a touchdown drive late in the third quarter from their own 25. The long sustained drive included four first downs on 13 consecutive running plays. The drive was nearly halted on Port's 32 when Port's defense held on a fourth and 10, but a penalty nullified the play and Carey capitalized on the second chance. Oleski finally bolted over from the one-year line for the Carey touchdown. The two-point conversion run by Carey's QB was stopped cold by Bodner. Score at this point, Port 7 - Carey 6.
Jason Ham took the ensuing kick-off on his own 20, weaved, spun his way loose and outraced the defenders for an 80-yard return TD. Dembala again converted on the extra point attempt and Port moved out to a 14-6 lead.
Not to be outdone, Carey's Oleski took the ball on the first play from scrimmage after the kick-off and broke loose. He was on his way to a touchdown until Port's Charlie Perry caught up with him and knocked him out of bounds on Port's 9. In three plays, Carey worked the ball to the one-yard line. Here, Port's defense, led by Anarag Vij and Frank Zaccherio stopped Oleski short of the goal line. With several minutes still remaining, Port managed some wiggle room and Bodner punted the ball to mid-field. Carey's last possession consisted of several passes but, Port's defense held tight. After a couple of good runs by Ham and a first down run by QB Shkuda Port was able to run out the clock.