COLONIE: Fast start fuels Nisky win

Shaker caught a break early in the third quarter when Furey fumbled a handoff at Shaker's 20-yard line. Ryan Gifford picked up the loose ball and ran it back to Niskayuna's 18-yard line. After a pair of Ambrosio runs got Shaker to Niskayuna's 1-yard line, Gifford completed the short drive with his second touchdown of the game to pull the Blue Bison within seven points.

Peters " who completed 12 of 17 passes for 197 yards " drove Niskayuna deep into Shaker territory again with a 20-yard completion to Furey. Two plays later, Peters entered the end zone for the third time to give the Silver Warriors a 27-14 advantage.

"This is his second year running the offense, and he's doing a hell of a job for us," said coach Furey. "He's a very good quarterback, a heads-up kid and a great athlete."

Rahn gave Niskayuna great field position again early in the fourth quarter when he returned a punt to Shaker's 25-yard line. Two plays later, Josh Martin broke through for a 25-yard touchdown run that extended the Silver Warriors' lead to 33-14.

A facemask penalty against Niskayuna set up Shaker's third touchdown " a 15-yard pass from Gifford to Parker Armsby. The extra point attempt failed, though, leaving the Blue Bison with a 33-20 deficit.

Martin (15 carries, 124 yards) capped the scoring late in the fourth quarter with a 33-yard touchdown run. Rahn's extra point made the score 40-20.

The win gives Niskayuna renewed hope for a playoff berth, while Shaker must go back to the drawing board as it prepares for Thursday's showdown with LaSalle.

"I think the division is wide open, and any given week you have to watch out," said Bender. "We need to prepare for LaSalle, and that's what we're going to do.""

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