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Football: Burnt Hills hangs on for victory

Ruppel's three TDs lead Spartans past Shaker

— The Burnt Hills-Ballston Lake football team earned its second consecutive win over a Class AA team by beating Shaker 21-14 in Friday's rain-soaked interclass game.

The Spartans (1-1 league, 3-1 overall) took a 21-7 lead in the third quarter on a pair of Thomas Ruppel touchdowns. The Blue Bison (2-0 league, 3-1 overall) got one touchdown back on Chris Landers' 28-yard touchdown pass to Adrian Valentino in the fourth quarter, but they could get no closer.

Ruppel got BH-BL, the defending Section II Class A champions, on the board in a hurry with a 71-yard scoring run in the first quarter. Those were the only points of the first half, as the Spartans took a 7-0 advantage into the locker room at halftime.

Tyler Oppelt completed a scoring drive for Shaker early in the third quarter with an 11-yard touchdown run, but BH-BL went on a long series of its own with Ruppel capping it on a 10-yard scoring scamper. Ryan McDonnell added the extra point to put the Spartans ahead 14-7.

Ruppel's third touchdown came through the air as he caught a 20-yard scoring pass from McDonnell late in the third quarter. McDonnell's extra point kick was true, which gave the Spartans a 21-7 lead.

Ruppel finished with 116 yards on 11 carries, and he caught two passes for 29 yards to lead BH-BL. McDonnell threw for 84 yards, and tailback Vincent Dowdle rushed for 63 yards for the Spartans.

Shaker's offense moved the ball on BH-BL's defense, but it only reached the end zone twice. Landers led the way with 138 passing yards and 70 rushing yards, while tailback Ryan Griffin gained 66 yards on seven carries. Shaker finished with 310 net yards of offense.

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