John Giller went on to play college football in Western Connecticut State after leading Massapequa to the Nassau Conference I Championship this spring. So after two seasons as an understudy, Ryan Heidrich moved on as a senior to QB1.
“I was nervous, but I was confident in myself,” Heidrich said. “I worked hard in the offseason.”
Heidrich held his end pretty well, one of the big reasons Massapequa had a chance to repeat last Friday night at Hofstra’s Shuart Stadium. He had to fight an Oceanside team with a QB1 with the most career passing yards in Nassau’s history.
Charlie McKee did not disappoint. The senior threw 215 yards and two touchdowns and ran for 141 and two more goals. But he did not win either. Heidrich did just as he did against Oceanside in October when he shot for 224 yards and three goals and ran after 45 and a touchdown – the decisive touchdown.
His numbers were more modest this time (78 yards passing, 56 rushing). But Heidrich threw after a 16-yard TD on a fourth-and-12 and ran 6 yards for the crucial six points, taking Massapequa from 21 to 27 in a 35-26 victory. That gave his 10-1 team a ticket to the Class I Long Island Championship match against 11-0 Whitman on Friday at noon back at Hofstra.
McKee’s superb talent had cast an extra large shadow. But Heidrich had the greatest satisfaction in winning, advancing and again showing that he is also pretty good at this.
“I’ve been to university since 10th grade, but I only played my final year,” Heidrich said. “So, yeah, (being overshadowed) can happen. He’s a hell of a player. He’s committed to Stony Brook for a reason. But I think I proved myself (in the final). I think I proved what I can.”
Heidrich has proven this repeatedly. He has completed nearly 64 percent of his passes, good for 2,050 yards and 21 touchdowns. He has thrown more than 200 yards six times, including once with more than 300.
“Ryan has just been amazing,” coach Kevin Shippos said. “… he had a chance to learn from a great quarterback like John Giller. Ryan is a very cerebral quarterback, very, very smart. He makes big decisions, as we saw (last Friday). He has a great arm. He can run well. And I know he is very, very confident in himself, just as we are. “
Luke Ciolino is not surprised that his teammate at 6-3, 205 pounds has excelled.
“Ryan Heidrich worked behind John Giller last year, no one knew he was working so hard while (Giller) started,” said the senior back / defensive back. “The fact that he worked so hard in the offseason really pays off in the big moments.”
Heidrich worked to improve football. He has carried in 689 yards and 11 TDs.
“My years in 10th and 11th grade, I couldn’t really run the ball,” Heidrich said. “… I thought I was proving myself a runner this year.”
Now he plans to take his quarterbacking talents to a college campus.
“I’ve talked to a couple of Division Ice, IIs, a lot of IIIs,” Heidrich said. “So you will definitely see me play somewhere.”
Massapequa football fans are watching him play for their team one last time, throwing and running towards a Long Island title, he hopes.
“Definitely, the job is not done,” Heidrich said. “We have not won it in (27) years. So we could really write history this year, go back to back (in Nassau) and win LICs.”