The proverbial 1,000-pound gorilla has been banished from the Washington-Lee (Arlington, Va.)
football program following a huge 10-0 victory over arch rival Yorktown (Arlington, Va.).
teams had 6-0 records in the battle for the district championship,
which Washington-Lee had not won in 38 years. Making the odds even
bigger, Yorktown had won its last 27 district games and 30 in a row
Even though the Generals had upset
Yorktown once in the state playoffs (2010), they continued to face the
winless district stigma year after year.
Coach Josh Shapiro told
MaxPreps, "It was an extremely big win for our football team and
community. It was a good weight to be lifted off this program and
For the great effort, Shapiro has been named the Capital One Bank Washington, D.C. Coach of the Week.
Senior linebacker Aaron Patron
(5-9, 195) led a superb defensive effort with 10 tackles, while another senior, tackle Peter Griffin
(6-1, 225), contributed three sacks and five other tackles for losses. Junior Daquay Harris
(5-10, 165) paced the offense by running for 202 yards.
When the game ended, a standing-room-only crowd of close to 5,000 broke into a wild celebration.
"My quarterback sprinted off the field and I jumped into his arms and the Gatorade came after that," said Shapiro.
The next morning the players were treated to a big, hot breakfast put together by the parents.
In his seventh year as head football coach, Shapiro actually started his career in baseball.
He was a standout outfielder at Mendon (Pittsford, N.Y.)
and also played basketball before graduating in 1989. He did play
freshman football but was forced to give up that sport following a
serious leg injury. He then played four years of baseball at Cortland
State University, graduating in 1993.
Over the next seven years
he coached baseball in Boston and New York City before landing a job as
assistant baseball and football coach at Dwight-Englewood (Englewood, N.J.)
think I was a good baseball player, but football to me was a lot more
fun and intense," he said.
Shapiro came to Washington-Lee in 2003 as an assistant and his dream came true in 2007 when he was named head football coach.
24 seniors and an overall 8-2 record, Shapiro is fielding the school's
best team in many years. He has a playoff game Friday and says that
everyone connected to the program "realizes this is a good run, but it's
not over yet."