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Woodlands Football Delights Greenburgh Audience

HASTINGS, N.Y. — Many Greenburgh residents traveled to Hastings Saturday to watch the Woodlands football game against the local school. Greenburgh attendees were parents of the players, school staff and administrators, or people like Paul Hines, a graduate of the high school 40 years ago and father of a Woodlands student, who said he was “just supporting the team.”

Hands crossed on his umbrella’s handle, a grey cap deep on his head, Hines stood straight on the highest bleacher, his chin slightly up, eyes wide open behind his glasses.

“Take it to the house, take it to the house,” he shouted as receiver James Cole raced to the Woodland’s first touchdown. “All right, that’s what we want, please.”

Woodlands finished the first half 18-0 and started the second in even better shape, with Malcom Downey making 24-0 in an unstoppable sprint.

“That was an 80 yard,” said Chuck Bronz amid the applause, who is a member of the C7 district’s board of education.

The cheerleaders huddled together as a chilly breeze crossed the field on that cloudy Saturday afternoon. But from time to time they would warm up and perform a number.

“What do we want, Falcons?” they repeated three times. “A touchdown.”

With the score, 30-0 and 7:42 left on the clock, the Falcons victory seemed certain over the Hastings Yellow Jackets.

But then came a moment of tension.

After a tussle for the ball, Cole lied on the grass, struggling with pain.

He left the field limping on his right leg, holding onto the shoulder of assistant coach Thomas Newkirk.

“All the pressure on the left,” Newkirk kept saying until he sat Cole on the bench. “Do me a favor. Put your leg over there. Ice is coming.”

Woodlands head coach Mike Meade stopped in front of Cole and bent forward, a worried expression on his face.

“What’s that?” Meade asked. “Are you all right?”

“He's all right, coach,” Newkirk said. “He’s skinny and he’s scared. That’s all.”

Cole remained on the bench for the rest of the game, chewing his mouth guard and watching his teammates cruise to a 32-8 win, Woodlands’ third in a row.

He said that his injury wasn't serious.

“It was just a helmet on the knee,” he said. “I’m all right. I will be able to play next time.”

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