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Hastings Takes Field as Football Practice Starts

HASTINGS-ON-HUDSON, N.Y – Hastings football coach Joe Vaccaro seemed relaxed and hopeful, sporting his signature straw hat while putting the Yellow Jackets through their afternoon session on the first day of high school football practice Friday at Reynolds Field.

“We’re down in numbers and that’s always tough, but we graduated a core group of very good players, so we have young group also,” said Vaccaro, whose team went 6-3 last fall. “The first few practices are important to get the rookie players going on basic things. The seniors have a good idea of what we’re doing."

Section 1, the local public schools organization, opened its football practice season officially Friday, with Westchester teams out on the field for the first time. Hastings had a strong season in 2010, led by a strong senior class. The Jackets defeated long-time rival neighbor Dobbs Ferry and went 6-2 into the playoffs where they were beaten by eventual Class C state champion Bronxville. Varsity football teams must practice 11 days before taking part in scrimmages with other schools.

The local high school regular season begins on Friday, Sept. 9 with a dozen games. Most of the remaining teams open on Saturday, Sept. 10.

“The kids had a very good off-season conditioning program, so I’m happy with that they are ready to go,” Vaccaro said. “We have our first scrimmage in about 10 days and we’re hosting Irvington in a scrimmage, which we haven’t done here in a while.“

Hastings opens its season at upstate Pawling on Sept. 10 at 1:30 p.m.

Will you be following the Hastings Yellow Jackets this fall? Did you play high school football?

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