pulled off a stunning opening-day victory Friday, shocking Freeport 14-12 in a football game that served to spoil the grand-opening of Freeport's new turf field.
Placed at the bottom of the pre-season division rankings, Plainview jumped out to a 14-0 halftime lead and then held off Freeport in the final minutes of the game. The victory was among Plainview's biggest upsets in decades, observers said.
Leading 14-12 with less than two minutes to play, Plainview stopped a 2-point conversion that would have tied the game, then gathered in an on-side kick to secure the victory.
Freeport turned out a big crowd to celebrate the grand opening of their new turf field. Little did hey know that Hawks were about to put a damper on their festivities.
What follows is School Board 's first-hand report of the triumph:
Plainview-Old Bethpage families cheered loud and proud from the visiting bleachers. I sat next to our new Superintendent, (Dr. Lewis is a resident of Freeport and was introduced to the crowd during the opening ceremonies) Plainview JFK Principal and Interim Athletic Director Thomas Howard were also at the game.
From the opening drive you could see that this game wasn't going to be the blow-out the home team crowd had expected. Plainview was able to move the ball while Freeport struggled to even get a first down. POB took a commanding 14-0 lead into the locker room at the half. We dominated in the trenches, establishing a solid running game on offense and our defense completely shut down the Freeport offense.
In the second half Freeport made some adjustments on offense and injuries (hopefully nothing serious) slowed down our offense. In the 4th quarter Freeport drove down field and scored a touchdown, but the Hawks blocked the extra point, making the score 14-6. Freeport successfully converted an on-side kick and then drove down field, with a first down inside the 10 yard line, as the clock was ticking down.
Plainview made a valiant goal line stand but could not keep Freeport out of the end zone. With under 2 minutes to play, and Freeport without a time out, it all came down to stopping the 2 point conversion.
You could feel the tension and excitement in the crowd. The home team was on the verge of an amazing comeback, and the POB fans where on the edge off our seats. Could we pull it off, did we have enough left in the tank for one last big play? Yes! The POB defense dug down deep, found the energy and heart to bust the play, and hang on to the lead.
Freeport attempted another on-side kick, but this time POB fell on the ball and secure the victory.
As the POB players and families left the field the stunned Freeport crowd could not believe what had just happened.
The underdog POB Hawks had come into their new turf field and outplayed them. As we were leaving the game a former player from Freeport's undefeated 2004 team said to Dr Lewis and I, "You can't take anything for granted. You have to go out their and play your hardest. Tonight POB did, And you beat us. You guys can play!"
It was a tribute to the hard work and dedication of the POB players and the coaching staff. Way to go Hawks! Let's get a big crowd down next week for our home game opener against Hicksville.
With special thanks to Plainview parent Joy Weiser for her excellent photos of the action.