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    Flying Dutchmen 2015 New York State Co-Champions
    August 20, 2015 9:49 am  
    Flying Dutchmen 2015 New York State Co-Champions

    This year’s New York State Championship Motorized Tournament, hosted by the Selden Fire Department at Firemen’s Park in Ridge on August 15, was touted as the “Quest for the Cup”. The cup, in this instance, is the coveted three-tiered trophy adorned with a foot-tall cup atop which is awarded annually to the volunteer fire department drill team that outpaces all of its competitors in an eight event, state-wide competition. The tournament lived up to the hype and then some. Nine teams were still in contention with just the last contest, Buckets, to go. At best, the West Hempstead Westerners or Copiague Yellowbirds could tie for first place tournament honors at that point and the remaining seven – the East Islip Guzzlers, West Sayville Flying Dutchmen, Islip Wolves, Port Washington Road Runners, Bay Shore Redskins, North Lindenhurst Piston Knockers or the Central Islip Hoboes – all could actually win. At that juncture the Flying Dutchmen were in sixth place with nine points and the Hoboes were clinging on to first with thirteen points just a mere one-half point ahead of North Lindenhurst. With so many teams in the mix it almost looked like the National Hockey League playoffs.

    The Westerners opened the bidding for first place in the drill with a 21.07 second run in Buckets which ultimately landed them a second place finish in the contest. The next two title contenders, North Lindenhurst and East Islip, both fell short of earning a placing time and had to settle with the points they garnered up until then. The next team to make a stab at the tournament victory was Central Islip, leading at the time, which completed the event in 22.68 seconds, well off from the team’s normal performance but good enough to claim fifth place in Buckets and adding one more point to the thirteen they held. Two teams later, North Lindenhurst, Central Islip’s closest challenger, failed to put up a quick enough time to place, dropping them out of contention for the tournament win. Islip followed shortly thereafter with a 21.99 second effort which, for the short term gave them four additional points, but in the end, bolstered their ten total points by three as their run resulted in a third place finish in the contest.

    As Buckets wound down, West Sayville, Bay Shore and Copiague still had a shot at topping the day’s leader board. The Flying Dutchmen, being the first of the three to compete, posted their season’s best effort in Buckets with a 20.89 second run giving them the fastest time of the night, a first place event finish and five additional points. Bay Shore and Copiague, as well as the few remaining teams, couldn’t post a time speedy enough to earn them points in the event and, consequently, fell out of the battle for first.

    When the last bucket of water was dumped and the contest declared complete, a tally of points picked up by each team throughout the near twelve-hour tournament was tabulated with the results showing the West Sayville Flying Dutchmen and Central Islip Hoboes both receiving fourteen points each and sharing the tournament victory. It was the first time since the inception of the New York State Championship Drill in 1946 that two teams were crowned co-champions. The Islip Wolves, with thirteen points overall, copped third place honors while the North Lindenhurst Piston Knockers finished up fourth place in the drill and the West Hempstead Westerners fifth with twelve and one-half and twelve points respectively.

    Many veterans of the firematic competitions termed the tournament bizarre in that no team seemed to want to win, at least as far as performance was concerned despite every team’s desire to win the “big one”. It was further noted the day was highlighted by a multitude of missed opportunities. When one contender failed to execute well in a contest, nearly all of others followed suit leaving the door open for a wider spreading of the points among the forty-one competitors. The low overall point totals was reminiscent of tournaments of decades prior when teams won with fewer total points and, seldom in the sixty-nine years since the first state drill, has victory been claimed with so few points. When all was said and done, the 2015 state drill was deemed a success, especially for the fans that got to witness one of the tightest finishes with the greatest number of potential winners in many years.

    For the West Sayville Flying Dutchmen, it was their first tournament victory of the 2015 season having scored in most of the prior drills in the top five but not in the number one spot. The state championship title, even though shared, is the team’s twelfth and came on the fortieth anniversary of the team’s initial state title in 1975 and ten years after winning their eighth.

    West Sayville compiled its points by placing first in the Buckets contest (20.89 seconds); second in Motor Hose Class C (12.54 seconds); tied (three-way) for second in the Three Man Ladder event (6.41 seconds); and fourth place in the Motor Hook and Ladder Class C contest (9.01 seconds).

    The Flying Dutchmen will be competing again in the upcoming weeks; first at the annual Islip Town Volunteer Firemen’s Association Drill in Central Islip on Friday, August 21 and on Saturday, September 5 at the Hagerman Fire Department’s annual Labor Day Weekend Tournament. The town drill will start at 5:30 p.m. at the training facility of the Central Islip Fire Department off Wheeler Road while the Labor Day weekend drill will be held at the host department’s training facility off Oakdale Avenue starting at 10:00 a.m.

    The 2015 New York State Co-Champion Flying Dutchmen drill team is coached by Frank R. Miller, Sr., Robert Marra and G. Scott Schrader; led by Captain Michael Marra and Lieutenant Chad Leigh-Manuell; and, comprised of David Banks, Kristy Banks, Patrick Garrett, William Hothan, Ryan Huguenin, Louis LaFountain, Casey Johnson, Frank R. Miller, Jr., Allen Newhouse, Robert Noonan, Richard Quenzer, Joseph Quenzer, Douglas Quenzer, Gary A. Schaum, Daniel Tenney and Ryan Tenney.

    The West Sayville Fire Department Flying Dutchmen celebrate their twelfth New York State Championship title after tying with the Central Islip Hoboes with a come from behind effort in the Buckets contest at the 2015 State Motorized Tournament hosted by the Selden Fire Department at Firemen’s Park in Ridge.

    Under the close observation of drill officials, West Sayville Fire Department Flying Dutchmen teammates Ryan Tenney, Michael Marra and William Hothan complete the Three Man Ladder contest at the 2015 New York State Motorized Championship Drill in 6.41 seconds putting them in a three-way tie for second place in the event with the Bay Shore Redskins and Lindenhurst Snails. The Flying Dutchmen went on to earn the team’s twelfth state championship title by tying the Central Islip Hoboes with a come from behind effort in the Buckets contest at the annual tournament hosted this year by the Selden Fire Department at Firemen’s Park in Ridge on Saturday, August 15, 2015.

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