Who: Alden Bulldogs (10-0) vs. East Rochester/Gananda Bombers (9-1)
What: Class B football Far West Regional.
When: Today, 3 p.m.
Where: Robert Rich Sr. All High Stadium.
Tickets: $10 for three-game session.
Television (recorded): Time Warner Cable SportsChannel, 6:30 p.m. Sunday.
Buffalo News small school poll: Alden No. 1 (since final poll of 2010).
New York State Sportswriters Association Class B poll: Alden No. 1, ER/Gananda No. 6.
Alden in the regionals: 0-2. Lost to Hornell the last two years, including at All High in 2010 (21-14). Last year Alden lost, 20-14, in overtime at Sahlen’s Stadium in Rochester after holding a 14-6 lead with less than two minutes to play. Hornell scored with 1:37 left, tied it on a two-point conversion, sacked Alden on fourth down of its OT possession and scored on its first offensive play of OT.
ER/Gananda in the regionals: First appearance.
Coaches: Alden, Dick Diminuco, 34th season (241-70); ER/Gananda, Dennis Greco, 20th season (113-69).
Alden key players (and statistics): Jr. QB Brian Stoldt, 6-0, 180 (66-118, 878 yards, 11 TDs, 5 INTs; 60-188, 7 TDs rush); Sr. RB/DB Corey Barczykowski, 6-2, 195 (219-1,863 yards, 24 TDs; 11-76 rec.); Sr. WR/DB Matt Shields, 5-8, 150 (27-391, 4 TDs); Jr. RB/DB Ryan Richards, 5-7, 148 (30-290, 2 TDs); Jr. WR/DE Dylan Dussault, 6-3, 187 (11-204, 4 TDs; 24 tackles); Sr. WR/DB Alex Darrow, 6-1, 201 (11-119, 3 TDs); Sr. RB/DB Jake McNamara, 6-0, 183 (42 tackles); Sr. OL/DL Jason Bunk, 6-3, 281 (52 tackles, 2 sacks).
ER/Gananda key players (and statistics): Jr. QB Zach Hauser (6-11, 172 yards, 2 TDs, 1 INT last week); Sr. RB Chris Falu-Montes, 5-5, 155 (133 yards, 3 TDs on 26 carries last week); So. WR Andrew Fischer (3-75, 2 TDs last week); Sr. Sam Beckenbach (12 tackles last week). Eleven seniors, including three three-year seniors on the line, led a turnaround after Bombers went 3-5 last year.
How they got here: Alden overwhelmed Cinderella story Springville, 42-7, in Section VI final. ER/Gananda trailed just once (7-6) as it stayed a touchdown ahead of Livonia for most of its 48-34 victory in the Section V (Rochester area) final; it was the first championship in 27 years for ER/Gananda.
Pre-snap read: Alden is a clear favorite based on the state rankings, the last two seasons, its close calls with Hornell and this year’s domination of its schedule (closest win was 28-21 semifinal home victory over Depew). ER/Gananda may not have regional history, but they’ve got a coach who will coach an indoor football team (the Roc City Thunder) and ran for office this week (he’s five votes down in East Rochester town justice race in which the vote-tallying will stretch into next week) and they’ve had a female player hit the JV field in Jensine Falu-Montes. Bombers have scored at least 27 points each game; had surrendered an average of 11.25 points per game before Livonia scored 34 in final.
What’s next: The winner advances to the state semifinals next Saturday at 3 p.m. at Sahlen’s Stadium in Rochester. The opponent will be the winner of the Central Regional between state B poll No. 5 Cazenovia (9-1) of Section III (Syracuse area) and No. 1 Maine-Endwell (10-0) of Section IV (Binghamton area); that game is today at 11 a.m. at East Syracuse-Minoa.
At buffalonews.com: Live blog with play-by-play coverage; comment in the blog or via Twitter using the hashtag #preptalkscores. A PrepTalkTV video recap will follow.
— Keith McShea