The Ithaca High football team hopes the road will be the cure as the winless Little Red plays its first away game of the season Friday night at Corning, which is also in search of victory No. 1. Game time is 7 p.m.
First-year coach Kelly Gordon’s Ithaca team is coming off a 22-6 loss to Horseheads in the Division I opener last week, a game in which the home team was held to 2 rushing yards and four first downs. Senior quarterback Naeem Clark completed all 16 of his pass attempts for 157 yards and the lone Ithaca score, a 40-yard pass to Dominique Stevenson in the first quarter.
The Blue Raiders scored 16 points in the second half on a safety — when a bad Ithaca punt snap sailed out of the end zone — and Evan Stiles touchdown runs of 18 and 3 yards.
A victory would snap an eight-game losing streak; Ithaca’s last win was a 48-35 home victory over Johnson City in Week 3 last season.
Elsewhere in the area Friday night: Lansing (1-1) travels around Cayuga Lake to take on rival Trumansburg (0-2) in the annual “Battle for the Paddle;” Groton (2-0) entertains Odessa-Montour (0-2); Moravia (1-1) travels to Watkins Glen (1-1); Candor (1-1) hosts two-time defending Class D champion Tioga (2-0); and Elmira Notre Dame (1-1), coming off a 40-32 defeat of T-burg, travels to high-scoring Spencer-Van Etten (2-0).
On Saturday, the area schedule includes Dryden (2-0) at defending Class C champion Chenango Forks (1-1), and Greene (2-0) at Newark Valley (2-0) in the only area matchup featuring two undefeated teams.
Friday night’s game in Trumansburg will feature a Lansing squad coming off its first victory, a 22-21 squeaker over Chenango Valley. In that one, quarterback Elijah Burns hit Tyler Winslow from 41 yards out with 1:46 to play, and then holder Jared Strait took the snap and hit Ben Rourke for the winning 2-point conversion. Winslow led the Bobcats with 62 rushing yards on 14 attempts; Burns was 16-40 rushing.
T-burg fell to Elmira Notre Dame, 40-32, in a slugfest that featured nine touchdowns and nine successful 2-point conversions. The loss was doubly painful for the Blue Raiders as senior quarterback Colin Fellows left the game in the third quarter with a sprained ankle.
Trumansburg coach John Dunlap said Thursday that Fellows should be available for the “Paddle” game, but he hasn’t determined whether Fellows or classmate Zachary Kenney will start. Kenney came off the bench last week against the Crusaders and threw a touchdown pass and two 2-point conversion passes.
Coach Dan Fink’s Dryden squad will face its toughest test of the young season in a Blue Devils squad eager to bounce back from a tough 7-0 loss to Tioga. In a matchup of sectional champs, the Tigers won the hard-fought game by limiting Forks to 95 total yards and five first downs.
Forks won its opener over Unatego, 54-13. Dryden is coming off victories over Oxford (32-14) and Moravia (34-12).