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Oct 7, 2019 1:04 PMPublication: The East Hampton Press & The Southampton Press

Hampton Bays Football Defeats Southampton To Reclaim Mayor's Cup

The Baymen celebrate their 29-0 victory over Southampton with the Mayor's Cup on Friday night. DREW BUDD
Oct 7, 2019 2:47 PM

There’s something about local rivalries that brings out the best, and sometimes the worst, in teams.

The Hampton Bays football team came into Friday night’s home game against Southampton/Pierson/Bridgehampton for the Mayor’s Cup as one of the weakest teams in Division IV, at least the numbers said so. The winless Baymen had been outscored by their opponents, 139-12, and were coming off arguably their worst game of the season in a 38-0 loss at Bayport/Blue Point. On the other side was a Southampton football team that was 2-1 and, fresh off a hard-fought 16-14 victory at Wyandanch, was licking its chops at defeating its cross-town rival in Hampton Bays and retaining the Mayor’s Cup.

All of that was completely turned upside down on Friday night.

The Baymen outplayed the Mariners in almost every aspect of the game, shutting out their longtime rivals, 29-0, and bringing back the Mayor’s Cup to the west side of Shinnecock Canal. Quinn Smith was a big part of the victory for Hampton Bays, rushing for 206 yards on 30 carries and scoring all four of its touchdowns. The senior was expected to take a somewhat smaller role on the team this season, playing more tight end on offense than running back, but just as all of the players did, he circled the game against Southampton as one he couldn’t miss being able to have a large role in.

“Before the season started, I told coach, ‘When that game comes, I’m sacrificing my whole body for it,’ and that’s what I did,” he said, after the game. “I’ve been playing since freshman year. And last year, when we lost, the team was so inexperienced, we didn’t know what we were doing. And it hurt, because no one understood the magnitude of the cup, but we made sure to ingrain that right off the season, right off the bat.”

The Mayor’s Cup has been in circulation throughout the East End for well over three decades. When Southampton, Hampton Bays, Westhampton Beach and East Hampton all played regular-season games against one another, the four schools would fight for the cup, but there have been many changes along the East End football landscape since then. East Hampton has not fielded a varsity team the past few years, and Westhampton Beach moved up to the larger Division III, leaving Southampton and Hampton Bays as the sole competitors for the trophy. Hampton Bays was keeper of the cup from 2010-2017, before having to hand it over to the Mariners last year, after suffering a 21-6 loss in Southampton.

It was apparent to all of the players on Friday night that the cup meant something to them.

“We’ve been waiting for this game [since] we saw it on our schedule,” Hampton Bays senior Lucas Brown said. “That’s always been the mentality in Hampton Bays, to get the Mayor’s Cup back.”

“Once we became seniors, it was kind of just like … we couldn’t not have it before we left,” senior Jack Gilbert added.

After a tightly contested first quarter, Hampton Bays broke the ice after successive runs by senior Steven Mora and Smith put it on Southampton’s 6-yard line. Smith went untouched in the end zone and senior Kyle Rodriguez kicked his first successful extra-point of the season and the Baymen were up, 7-0, which was the score at halftime.

The two teams continued to battle to start the second half, but Pierson senior Dimitrius Barranco had to come out of the game due to severe leg cramps, and that seemed to instantly turn the tide in the Baymen’s favor. Without Barranco at the middle linebacker position on defense, Smith broke out for a 40-yard run, and with an additional 15-yard personal foul facemask penalty added to the end of the run, Hampton Bays was in a prime position to score. Smith capitalized on the short field and scored from 15 yards out, and after the extra point, led, 14-0.

Early in the fourth quarter, a similar play ran out, as Smith broke another 40-yard run, and with this time a horse collar penalty, the Baymen were once again deep in Southampton territory. A late hit on Brown as he was running out of bounds put Hampton Bays on Southampton’s 3-yard line, and Smith eventually found his way back into the end zone to make it a 22-0 game. Southampton fumbled the ensuing kickoff again, and Hampton Bays junior Alex Velasquez recovered what was the third fumble recovery of the night to put the Baymen right back in Southampton territory.

With about four and a half minutes remaining in the game, and the Baymen clearly in line for the victory, the Mariners started to get frustrated and emotions boiled over a bit. Mora was hit late out of bounds after just missing a touchdown at the goal line. A few of the players got into it on the Hampton Bays sideline. It looked as though both sidelines were going to come together, but officials, security and coaches kept all of the players at bay and kept whatever fighting there was to a minimum. One Southampton player was ejected from the game for throwing a punch and one player from each side was given personal foul penalties.

After the players shook hands, they got back to playing football and with the ball at the goal line, Smith eventually made his way back into the end zone.

Hampton Bays head coach Rich Doulos said he challenged his players leading up to its big game with Southampton.

“When you’re 0-4, what are you going to do? Are you going to run? Or are we going to stand up and continue to believe in what we said we were going to do and that’s continue to fight on? There’s four games left — we can make the playoffs, we can get Mayor’s Cup, we can win homecoming — there’s a lot of things that we can accomplish for the season, and so really I challenged the character. And I think they came out and showed it in a positive way.”

Hampton Bays also had, maybe for the first time this season, its full complement of players. Mora was back after missing the past couple of games, and his handful of counters to the outside opened up the middle for Smith to run through. Having most of its players also allowed for the Baymen to finally use its depth that it had created in the offseason. The entire offensive line did not play on defense and vice versa.

Things look a lot different now from Southampton’s perspective. A victory would have moved it to 3-1 and in the driver’s seat for its first playoff berth since 2005. The Mariners, who have three consecutive home games now, need to get back in the win column this week if they want to have a shot at making the postseason. Southampton hosts Center Moriches this Friday night at 7 p.m., and should have Pierson junior Richard Barranco back from his concussion, Southampton head coach Chris Campbell said.

“The game had a weird feel going into it,” he said of Friday night’s game. “We had a great scouting session, and we felt really confident leading up to the game. I don’t know what it was, but before game and pregame, something just felt off. Offensively, we couldn’t get anything going, we couldn’t get into a groove. There were no running lanes and I thought we missed a couple of good throws in the passing game, our receivers just dropped them. Dakoda [Smith] did his thing and pushed us as best as he could. Hats off to him again.

“We had a couple of guys in there playing their first varsity game under the lights for the Mayor’s Cup, I don’t know what it was, but we just didn’t perform as well as we thought we would. Might have been nerves, maybe some of them were not totally comfortable with their assignments. It could have been a number of things, but hats off to those guys in Hampton Bays. They did what they had to do, and they definitely deserved it.”

Hampton Bays hosts Wyandanch for its homecoming this Friday night at 7 p.m., and if it can beat the Warriors, it should put itself back into the playoff conversation.

“With how we played tonight and what we did, we can beat Wyandanch,” Doulos said. “We have to take it one game at a time. It is homecoming, so there’s going to be some distractions, but these kids got a taste of what a win feels like and now they have the energy and the momentum to roll into next week and hopefully keep it going, get back-to-back victories and keep our playoff hopes alive.”

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Is there a mayor in any of the towns involved in that battle, or is just a cup without a mayor to the winner?
By Seajay (12), East Quogue on Oct 8, 19 3:56 PM