Career Stats: Four conference championships in the last decade: 1998, '99, 2001, '05
For the past two seasons Cold Spring Harbor High and Roosevelt High of Long Island, N.Y., have met for the Nassau County Conference IV football championship. The makeup of each school could not be more different: The Cold Spring Harbor Seahawks come from a wealthy, predominantly white school district while the Roosevelt Rough Riders live in a working-class community of blacks and Hispanics. Despite the on-field rivalry, the two schools bonded this summer after Roosevelt administrators eliminated its interscholastic sports program because of budget cuts. Facing a schedule without its rival, Cold Spring Harbor helped save Roosevelt's sports program. Seahawks boosters donated money from concession sales, and players went to Roosevelt to pitch in with car washes.
Thanks largely to the Cold Spring Harbor efforts, Roosevelt raised more than $45,000, and football was reinstated before the season began. The teams met on Sept. 15 (left), with the Rough Riders pulling out a 7–0 win. But the score was a minor part of this story. "They're a great bunch of kids and coaches," said Seahawks co-captain Peter Ottaviano. "They definitely deserve to play."