Dutchmen survive Shark attack in 38–30 overtime squeaker

Dutchmen survive Shark attack in 38–30 overtime squeaker
Photo by Steve Solomonson

A contested 15-yard touchdown run allowed the Dutchmen to escape with a 38–30 double overtime squeaker against the Sheepshead Bay Sharks on Sunday — allowing Erasmus Hall to take the Public School Athletic League’s Championship quarterfinal match.

Running back Curtis Samuel’s run helped the Dutchmen, who were one game short of being city champions last year, take the lead and the game in the final possession. Samuel celebrated the victory by extending his arm and pointing to the sky as his teammates rushed the field — but he didn’t want to take all the credit.

“It’s an incredible feeling, but it was a tough win,” Samuel said. “It took a team effort to finish this game off.”

But the Sharks believed the play was illegal. Erasmus had five players in the backfield, instead of the legal four, said Sheepshead Bay coach Frank Snyder.

“I feel that the officials refused to call an illegal set that Erasmus had,” he said “They had five guys in the backfield and they score on that play and they don’t call it.”

Erasmus coach Danny Landberg refused to comment on Snyder’s claims, putting his focus on his players’ performances.

The Sharks had trouble stopping Samuel all afternoon. The gridiron star ran for 127 yards on the ground and four touchdowns on the day, three rushing and one on a 47-yard punt return. Like Samuel, Erasmus (10–0) was expected to roll through Sheepshead Bay (5–5), which upset Thomas Jefferson in the opening round.

But the Sharks had other ideas: Shaquon Morrow scampered in from seven yards out for a touchdown with 28 seconds remaining in the game and Jim Campbell burst in with a two-point conversion to tie up the game 30–30. The Sharks’ survival instincts weren’t lost on Landberg.

“Sheepshead Bay is an incredible team and they brought it every single play,” he said.