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Lancaster Comes Up Short Against Aquinas; Finishes Season at 9-2

The Lancaster High School football team won the Section VI championship, largely because it was able to shut down Bennett’s big play weapons.

No such luck against Aquinas in the Far West Regionals.

The Little Irish and running back Caron Robinson were too talented for the Legends and Aquinas rolled to a 39-7 win over Lancaster in the Class AA regionals on Saturday at Clarence High School.

“Aquinas is obviously a very talented team but we just made too many mistakes tonight,” Lancaster coach Eric Rupp said. “They made us pay.”

A week ago, Bennett’s Djae Perry went 90 yards on his team’s first offensive snap but the Legends blanked the Tigers the rest of the way. Robinson followed suit, scoring on an 81-yard run in the game’s opening minute.

“I just followed my lead back, James Jones,” Robinson said. “He did a great job and then I just saw daylight and took off.”

And this time around, the big plays kept coming. Later in the quarter, Robinson burst 80 yards up the middle, setting up a five-yard TD run by Ruben Torres, who added another TD run in the second quarter for a 19-0 halftime lead.

On seven first-half carries, Robinson had 224 yards. On 33 offensive plays in the first half, Lancaster had 87 total yards.

The Little Irish pulled away in the second half on touchdown runs by Robinson (14 yards) and Torres (2 yards) and an 88-yard interception return for a score by Damon Montgomery.

Lancaster got on the board with 1:36 left on a 12-yard touchdown pass from Gianluca Fulciniti to Brian Martin.

“We were close a few times, we just couldn’t capitalize in the red zone,” Rupp said. “But my kids, I knew they were going to keep going until the very end.

The Little Irish advance to the state semifinals at 7 p.m. Saturday at Union-Endicott High School in Binghamton. Aquinas also got a little bit of payback as Lancaster ended the Little Irish’s season last year with a 9-0 win in the regionals.

“That wasn’t really our focus,” Robinson said. “This is a brotherhood and we want to stay together one more week.”

Robinson finished with 250 yards on 11 carries and Torres ran another 19 times for 100 yards. Ulysees Russell also had an interception for Aquinas.

Brandon Wingard ran for 49 yards and Tim Gardner ran for 29 for Lancaster.

Lancaster’s season ends at 9-2. The Legends are 32-4 in three seasons under Rupp.

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