Tag Archives: Jim DeSantis

Flushing Red Devils face tough opponent on road to championship


By Queens Courier Staff | editorial@queenscourier.com

red devils

BY LARRY FLEISHER

Flushing High School sophomore cornerback Kameron Walker walked off the football field toward the sideline Saturday, and said, to no one in particular, “One step closer to Yankee Stadium.”

Walker had just made a game-ending tackle and the Flushing Red Devils had advanced to the quarterfinals of the PSAL Championship conference playoffs with a 34-14 victory over South Shore.

“That’s good, because that’s got to be their goal,” coach Jim DeSantis said of Walker’s comment. “If it’s not their goal, then we’re just going through the motions. I really think that this year it’s wide open, and if we get a little bit lucky, we can be right there.”

The Red Devils are two steps away from reaching Yankee Stadium to play for their first PSAL championship. Their next step will be a week of practice and studying film in preparation for what could be their greatest obstacle − a visit to the formidable Lincoln High School in Coney Island.

Last year’s visit came a round later in the semifinals. Flushing had knocked off New Dorp and Curtis in the first two rounds when the Red Devils made the trip to Lincoln, where they lost in a 55-7 rout that saw them trail 41-0 at halftime.

That ended the deepest run of any team in the history of the program, which began in 2005 as a freshman-only team and four years later, moved from the developmental level to the Championship Division, which is the most competitive of the PSAL’s three-tiered alignment.

“That Lincoln team last year was a monster,” DeSantis said. “It was an elite team like I’ve probably never seen in the City of New York before and I’ve been doing this 20-something years. Now, I think there’s no real elite teams. I think there’s more parity.”

The skeptic would argue what else would you expect a coach to say? He’s not going to give his team no chance. But DeSantis certainly has conviction in his voice.

“I think this might be one of the better teams we’ve had,” DeSantis said.  “We were pretty good last year, but we were kind of one-dimensional in that we had just a running back. Now we can kind of spread it around. I feel good about it.”

DeSantis would have every reason to feel good if some of the things that happened Saturday were to repeat themselves next week. Among them were three touchdown passes from senior quarterback Terrence Chavis, four different players scoring touchdowns and a steady stream of receptions from Keron Hermitt, including a 77-yard TD late in the second quarter.

If the Red Devils are going to Yankee Stadium, they will have to win on the road. Based on what DeSantis witnessed with his senior-laden team, the belief is that it can happen starting next week against an opponent that has won two of the last three city championships.

“Lincoln’s a good team,” Chavis said. “We’ve got to be able to play defense well and our O-line has got to play strong to get our running game running and our passing game going. That’s basically it.”

Lincoln HS burns Flushing Red Devils in PSAL football semifinals


| lguerre@queenscourier.com

THE COURIER/Photos by Liam La Guerre

The PSAL football semifinals between the Lincoln Railsplitters and Flushing Red Devils Saturday at Lincoln High School field in Brooklyn seemed to be decided by halftime.

Leading 41-0, players on Lincoln’s sideline were dancing to Jay Z’s “Brooklyn we go hard,” featuring Santigold from a live DJ, while the fans chanted “Brooooooklllynn,” a cheer now associated with the Brooklyn Nets professional basketball team.

On Flushing’s sideline, players were more reserved, but hadn’t given up. They were yelling “don’t give up ya’ll” as their teammates returned to the field, but Flushing eventually loss 55-7 , and missed their chance to play in the championship game at Yankee Stadium.

“You guys made me proud today,” head coach Jim DeSantis told his teary-eyed team in the visitor’s locker room following the match. “Probably prouder than you have all year, because you never gave up. There were only four teams playing football today and you were one of them. You put Flushing on the map, you put Queens on the map and that’s a good thing.”

Although Flushing lost, the Red Devils seniors took pride in that it was the first time the school had ever made it to the semifinals in the championship league, the city’s top division.

All season they had made Flushing a team to fear, with a 7-2 record during the regular season. But Lincoln, which was undefeated (9-0) in the season, easily picked apart Flushing’s defense and dominated the Red Devils in every way.

Three minutes into the third quarter, Lincoln scored, inflating the score to 48-0 after the extra-point. And just a few minutes later Railsplitters junior Elias Davis capped another successful drive, with a 20-yard rush for a touchdown.

But down 55-0, Flushing finally answered Lincoln, and gave dozens of fans that made the trip from Queens to Brooklyn something to cheer about.

Flushing put together a drive in which senior DeAndre Ross Lomax rushed for 20 yards followed by an eight-yard rush by junior Terrence Chavis. The drive was extended when senior DeShawn Scott Jr. completed a 20-yard reception for a first down.

“I just felt like I had to play hard, I had to finish the game,” Scott said.

Later in the drive, Ross Lomax rushed for 14 yards, which got the Red Devils to the one yard line, and Chavis ran the ball in the end zone for the team’s only score.

After the game players were upset about the loss, but understood they had brought Flushing to another level.

“We went further than any Flushing team in history, so it’s still pretty good,” said Ross Lomax. “But I still wanted to get a chance to take my team to Yankee Stadium.”

 

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