HORSEHEADS, N.Y. (WETM) – The wait is almost over.

Horseheads football is back in the Section IV Class A Championship game Friday night. The Blue Raiders (7-3) look to win on the road at Vestal (7-1) with the opening kickoff set for 7 pm. If Horseheads can win, not only will they negate a regular season loss to the Golden Bears, but it would mark the first Section IV crown for the Blue Raiders since 1998.

Horseheads lost to Vestal 28-7 on October 20 in a game that saw Vestal control the tempo and pace throughout the duration. For Horseheads, this past week has been a solid build up to the championship, especially after last week’s 37-8 victory over U-E in the semis.

“We’re looking to keep that momentum going, we had a great week of practice,” Horseheads senior linebacker Josh McCawley said. “A lot of excitement and a lot of energy…possibly the last game, you want to leave it all on the table.”

Horseheads head coach Kevin Hillman and the entire staff believe this group is the one who can get it done. Win the elusive Section IV title that Horseheads truly craves.

“Obviously, U-E last week it was one of the most complete games we’ve played in a long time,” Hillman said. “I think it gives them the confidence they need going into a final. But, that said, we’re going against a heck of a team in Vestal.”

The Golden Bears haven’t won a Section IV title since 2018. Vestal’s only loss of the year dates back was to U-E back in September. Horseheads last made trips to the Section IV Championship round in 2021 and 2018. 18 Sports will have highlights of Friday night’s Class title game at 11.