PLATTSBURGH — It’s championship weekend for area football teams.
For the first time, AuSable Valley will play host to three Section VII title games.
Beekmantown and Peru will square off to open the day’s contests in the Class B championship at 11 a.m. The last time the two Champlain Valley foes met, a sideline altercation broke out at the Eagle’s Nest Sept. 28.
Saranac seeks its first championship in its program’s 47-year history when it takes on Saranac Lake in a Class C bout at 3 p.m. The Chiefs downed the Red Storm at Ken Wilson Field Oct. 29, 34-13.
Moriah and Ticonderoga, a rivalry that potentially rivals the Hatfield-McCoy feud, will cap the day’s gridiron action in the Class D title game at 7 p.m. The Vikings have won five of the last nine games against its archrival since 2009.
Beekmantown (4-4) versus Peru (6-1, 7-0), 11 a.m.
With Plattsburgh High disbanding after Week 3, Peru benefited from a bye during crossover week. The Indians last played Oct. 19, a 49-42 shootout defeat of Moriah at the Apple Bowl.
Peru was the lone unbeaten in Champlain Valley Athletic Conference play, outscoring its opponents 266-83 in the process. Ranked No. 17 in the latest New York State Sportswriters Association Class B poll, the Indians’ lone setback was a 42-6 nonleague loss to No. 8 Hackley at the University at Albany.
Blake Altizer, a junior signal-caller, has been the catalyst for Peru on offense. Altizer is 71-for-114 with 1,113 yards and 19 touchdowns on just four interceptions.
Altizer’s primary target is senior Zane Bazzano. The four-year player has recorded 19 catches for 495 yards and 10 touchdowns. The Indians, though, will likely be without junior wide receiver Anthony Gallo, who suffered a severe forearm injury Oct. 19.
Coach Nick Damiani has received contributions from a number of different players on the ground. Rivelino Hendricks, Mackenzie LaRocque and Bazzano have combined for 752 yards and five touchdowns.
Beekmantown has experienced a roll coaster season, totaling four losses for only the second time in the past six years.
The Eagles own a well-balanced attack on offense, accumulating 1,465 rushing yards and 921 passing yards.
Devin Fessette (86-557-7TD) and Justin Stevens (55-513-9TD) have been a deadly one-two combination in coach Jamie Lozier’s backfield, while senior quarterback Jacob Remchuk has operated the passing game.
Remchuk is 79 yards shy of becoming the second Beekmantown player to record over 1,000 passing yards in a single-season since 1998.
The Eagles maintained a 7-6 lead and held Peru to 31 yards on 17 plays from scrimmage in the first half in Week 4.
Saranac (4-4) versus Saranac Lake (4-4), 3 p.m.
Saranac Lake, the top-seeded team in Class C, is looking to shake a two-game losing streak and reach the Class C regional semifinal for the fourth consecutive season.
Sophomore Tristan Fitzgerald leads the offense, registering 989 all-purpose yards in his first full season on the varsity level.
Dylan Gunther (29-292-4TD) and Ty Marmion (13-171-2TD) have been significant contributors for coach Eric Bennett’s squad.
Saranac’s John Maye is five yards short of becoming the third Chiefs running back to amass 1,000 rushing yards in a single-season since the Press-Republican began keeping track of statistics in 1975.
Maye has also converted 13 touchdowns and four two-point conversions, good for 86 points.
Quarterback Ethan Goslin has thrown for 729 yards and four touchdowns, while fellow senior Lance Hackett has hauled in 14 catches for 387 yards and two touchdowns.
Saranac is looking to become the fifth team in program history to win five or more games in a single-season.
Moriah (4-4) versus Ticonderoga (6-2, 6-1), 7 p.m.
After starting 2-1, Moriah has dropped three of its last five games.
The Vikings are looking to avenge their 24-12 loss to their archrival, which occurred at Sentinel Field Sept. 27.
Senior quarterback Cole Gaddor has directed the offense, throwing for a league-leading 1,131 yards and 13 touchdowns.
Tyler Pratt (19-468-4TD) and Rainier Garnica (21-345-6TD) have recorded over 70 percent of the team’s receiving yards.
Troy Welch has emerged in the backfield for coach Don Tesar’s team, rushing for 577 yards and 10 touchdowns in the last four games.
Moriah won last year’s Section VII Class D championship over Ticonderoga, 16-6.
Ticonderoga enters the highly-anticipated rematch ranked No. 19 in the latest New York State Sportswriters Association Class D poll.
The Sentinels are 5-1 in their last six games played, with Fonda-Fultonville being their lone loss in Week 7.
Cameron Wright (134-657-6TD) and Jarryn Granger (89-543-6TD) have been arguable the section’s most prolific one-two rushing tandem, combining for 1,200 yards and 12 touchdowns.
Quarterback Michael Graney has tossed 562 yards on nine touchdowns, while Ty Denno has hauled in 13 catches for 286 yards and five touchdowns.
Ticonderoga is coming off a 28-27 overtime defeat of Class B Beekmantown.