Mustangs to host Steelers in sectional opener
Top seeded Medina/Lyndonville will host B East Division foe Lackawanna in the quarterfinal round of the Section VI Class B playoffs at 7:30 p.m. Friday at Vets Park.
The contest, which will be the Mustangs first home sectional game in nearly 20 years, will be a rematch of a week two regular season encounter which saw Medina/Lyndonville score a 48-6 win at Lackawanna.
It will be the second ever sectional meeting between the teams as the Steelers bested the Mustangs 33-8 in that previous encounter in 1999 at Lackawanna. The Steelers hold a 5-3 lead in the overall series with the Mustangs.
The B East Division champion Mustangs, which last hosted a sectional game in 1997, bring a 6-1 regular season record into the contest while the Steelers are 4-3.
It’s been nearly 30 years in fact since the Mustangs last claimed a sectional win, a 14-7 victory over rival Albion in the 1988 championship game at then Rich Stadium (now New Era Stadium).
Quarterback Izaiah Rhim, who has completed 43 of 88 passes for 671 yards and 10 touchdowns, leads the Mustangs attack which also features versatile receiver Jalin Cooper (324 yards receiving with 6 touchdowns, 313 yards rushing with 6 TDs) along with running backs Jake Cotter (783 yards rushing, 7 TDs) and Eric Neace (359 yards rushing, 7 TDs).
Cooper, who has scored a total of 15 touchdowns, has 1,045 all purpose yards and Cotter 1,088. Cotter and Neace both have a total of 8 TDs.
Defensivley, Dawson Joy leads the Mustangs in tackles with 63 while Tyler Howard and Dustin Joy both have 53, Neace 50, Lucas Porter 43, Mason Lewis 39 and Johnny Salone 36. Neace also has 6 sacks, Howard 5 and Cotter 4.
Lackawanna has won 4 of its last 5 games after an 0-2 start to the season.
The victor will face the winner of the No. 5 Maryvale (6-1) vs. No. 4 Dunkirk (5-2) game in the semifinals.
The other quarterfinal round match ups have No. 7 Burgard (4-3) at No. 2 Cheektowaga (7-0) and No. 6 Alden (5-2) at No. 3 Olean (7-0).
Mustangs sectional playoff record
Finals: Medina 20 Silver Creek 14
Finals: Medina 26 Cassadaga Valley 7
Semifinals: Salamanca 29 Medina 7
Semifinals: Medina 18 Cheektowaga 6
Finals: Medina 14 Albion 7
Semifinals: Springville 33 Medina 0
Semifinals: Lackawanna 38 Medina 8
Semifinals: Southwestern 27 Medina 0
Semifinals: East Aurora 29 Medina 25
Quarterfinals: Pioneer 24 Medina 16
Quarterfinals: Alden 35 Medina 0
Quarterfinals: Bennett 42 Medina 6