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Podcast Preview: Riverhead football heads to Longwood for playoff showdown

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News-Review sports editor Bob Liepa and editor Joe Werkmeister joined host Grant Parpan to talk about Riverhead football’s surprising season and to preview Friday night’s playoff matchup at Longwood High School in this week’s episode of Closer Look.

Riverhead has earned the No. 6 seed in the Division I football playoffs and they team will travel to face the No. 3 Lions.

Kickoff between the two 6-2 teams is set for 6 p.m. Friday night. While the forecast for the game in Middle Island says it will be played in freezing weather, the Blue Waves are fired up.

“I’m super excited,” senior running back Albert Daniels said following the team’s regular season finale Friday. “First time in playoffs after three-year drought. It’s a great feeling, especially in Division I.”

Daniels carried the ball 31 times and gained 194 yards last week. He scored on runs of 1, 35, 2 and 7.

He and his Riverhead teammates will be vying for the program’s first playoff win since defeating Deer Park in the first round in 2014.

Riverhead coach Leif Shay said heading to the playoffs brings back the spirit that Riverhead football has always been known for.

“The community backs these kids and it’s an exciting time,” he said. “They’ll ring the bell and all those traditions come back to life.”

The postseason matchup pits them against a neighboring school in Longwood that they haven’t played yet.

“It’s going to be a helluva game,” Daniels said.