Late Fumble Return Gives Hudson Valley Northeast Football Conference Championship Jonah Chappell Named MVP

CONTACT: Steve Mullen (518) 629-8063
FOR RELEASE: Immediate, Saturday, November 13, 2004

Freshman linebacker Malcolm King (Silver Spring, MD/James Hubert Blake High School) picked up a fumble and ran 29 yards for the touchdown with 2:14 remaining in the game to give Hudson Valley Community College a 23-22 win over Erie Community College in the first-ever Northeast Football Conference Championship game played in Orchard Park.

The Vikings finish the season with an 8-3 record and will await a possible bowl bid early next week. It is the third conference championship in the last four years for Hudson Valley. Erie, which has shared the championship each of the last two years, finished the year with a 7-4 mark

Hudson Valley sophomore quarterback Jonah Chappell (Brownfield, ME/Fryeburg Academy) was named the game's Most Valuable Player. He complete 14-of-25 passes for 186 yards and two touchdowns.

Chappell found freshman wide receiver Rashad Howard (Newport News, VA/Heritage High School) with a 30-yard touchdown pass to give Hudson Valley a 7-0 lead midway through the first quarter.

On the ensuing possession, Erie marched 80 yards on 11 plays, and quarterback Adam Gaddie (Bronx/JFK High School) found Joel Gibbons (Batavia/Batavia High School) with a 23 yard touchdown strike with six second remaining in the opening quarter. The extra point was blocked so Hudson Valley went into the halftime locker room with a 7-6 advantage.

A safety gave Erie an 8-7 lead early in the third quarter, and then an eight-yard run by Duane Griffin (Cleveland, OH/Warrensville Heights high School) on the Kats next possession gave the home team a 14-7 lead. The two-point conversion attempt failed.

Hudson Valley responded with a 36-yard field goal by freshman kicker Bobby Collett (Middletown/Goshen High School) with 7:10 remaining in the third quarter to cut its deficit to 14-10.

Sophomore tight end Juan Chamba (Port Chester/Port Chester High School) caught a six-yard touchdown strike from Chappell, 2:30 into the fourth quarter, which gave the Vikings a 16-14 advantage. The extra point attempt was blocked.

After stopping Erie on its next possession, the Kats punt hit off the back of a Hudson Valley player to give Erie possession at the Hudson Valley nine yard line. Griffin punched it in on the next play. The two-point conversion gave Erie a 22-16 lead with 8:40 remaining.

Hudson Valley drove the ball to the Erie 30 yard line on its next possession, but turned the ball over on downs with 2:25 remaining.

Needing to run out the clock, Erie's running back was stripped on the first play from scrimmage by sophomore defensive end Jonal Saint-Dic (Elizabeth, NJ/Elizabeth High School), and King picked it up and ran down the left sideline for the go ahead score.

Hudson Valley outgained the Kats 350-223. Freshman running back Dane Samuels (Clarkstown/Clarkstown North High School) carried the ball 33 times for 121 yards to lead the Hudson Valley ground attack.

Giffin had 19 carries for 84 yards to lead Erie.

Sophomore linebackers Javon Sistrunk (New York/Progress High School) and Shonda Faulkner (Poughkeepsie/Poughkeepsie high School) had 11 and 10 tackles, respectively to lead the Hudson Valley defense.

Hudson Valley has won eight games in consecutive years for the first time in the 36-year history of the program.