SYRACUSE - It's official. The Randolph Cardinals are No. 1.
The Cardinals (11-2), who captured the New York State Public High School Athletic Association Class D football championship nearly two weeks ago, sit atop the final rankings, which were announced Wednesday by the New York State Sportswriters Association.
Randolph, which had first attained the No. 1 spot three weeks ago, finishes ahead of No. 2 Tioga (10-2) and No. 3 Tuckahoe (8-3-1). The Cardinals, winners of 10 straight, defeated the former, 7-6, in the state semifinal and then dominated the latter, 28-7, in the title game at the Carrier Dome the day after Thanksgiving, sending their retiring coach, Pat Slater, out in style.
Maple Grove (9-1), which lost to the Cardinals in the Section 6 championship game, finishes at No. 5.
Other area teams making the final rankings are Jamestown (8-2), No. 13 in Class AA; and Fredonia (7-3), No. 15 in Class C.
Earning honorable mention among the local teams are Ellicottville (7-2) and Silver Creek (5-4) in Class D.
The other top-ranked teams, besides Randolph, are Canisius (11-0) and New Rochelle (11-1), tied in Class AA; Lawrence (11-0) and Burnt Hills-Ballston Lake (12-1), tied in Class A; Maine-Endwell (13-0) in Class B; and Hoosick Falls (13-0) in Class C.