Rocketeers Rally But Can’t Catch Top Seed Duxbury

North Attleboro Football
Nick Rajotte (34) and the Rocketeers rallied with two touchdowns in the final eight minutes of the Div. 2 South title game but it was not enough to catch top seed Duxbury. (Josh Perry/HockomockSports.com)

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DUXBURY, Mass. – With 8:34 remaining in the Friday night’s Div. 2 South final, Duxbury senior wideout Ryan Reagan made one of the plays that demonstrated why he will be playing at Harvard next fall. Mario Bresko had perfect position right in front of the 6-foot-4 receiver and seemed to have both hands on the pass until Reagan leapt and stretched out to pull the ball away from the corner and come down inbounds.

“We did good on defense, held them there and then you get the back shoulder fade to the big kid who’s going to Harvard and we had him covered pretty well,” said North Attleboro coach Don Johnson. “It’s just one kid making a better play.”

The touchdown put the Dragons, who some outlets have ranked as the top team in the state this season, ahead by three scores, but North refused to lay down for the final minutes. Instead, the Rocketeers sped up the offense and rallied with touchdowns on back-to-back possessions to close the gap.

The comeback eventually fell short, as Duxbury converted a third down that allowed the Dragons to kneel down to finish off a 26-19 victory at Raymond Chandler Field and keep their unbeaten season alive.

“It’s a great group of kids,” said Johnson of his team, which had its eight-game win streak snapped by Duxbury. “There’s a whole lot of character there. Certainly not disappointed with the effort by anyone.”

The North came out firing right from the start of the game, trying to put pressure on Duxbury’s senior quarterback Bobby Maimaron. Thomas Reynolds dropped Maimaron for a seven-yard sack on the second play setting up third and long, but the Achille’s heel all game would be the Rocketeers’ struggle to get the defense off the field.

On third and 16, Maimaron (16 carries, 85 yards) took a draw 46 yards down to the North 26. After the Dragons got the ball to the one, Maimaron capped the opening drive with a one-yard keeper to make it 6-0 (the extra point was blocked).

North did make a play on third down on Duxbury’s next possession with Nick Dean breaking up a pass to force fourth and 10 at the Rocketeers 49, but the Dragons faked the punt and Maimaron (17-34, 217 yards) hit Nick Gearin for 26 yards.

“Looking at all the films and they do that all the time,” Johnson explained. “Teams hold them on first and second down and all of sudden they’ve got some kid making a play somewhere. I think it all starts with the quarterback; he’s the key to the whole thing.”

Another third down conversion put the Dragons inside the 10, but North made a defensive stand. Nick Rajotte broke up a pass and Jay Loring pressured Maimaron into an errant pass on fourth down. The Rocketeers would not be able to do the same on Duxbury’s next possession.

Bobby Mylod and Hacmoni Cuevas combined on a 14-yard sack to set up third and 24, but Maimaron connected with Reagan (seven catches, 88 yards) for a 27-yard gain. The drive ended with Maimaron hitting James Miele for a three-yard score and in the process making history with his 113th career touchdown pass breaking the statewide record set by Natick’s Troy Flutie.

The Rocketeers’ offense was stalling, particularly on the ground where Rajotte (eight carries, 23 yards) was struggling to get room. “The run has been our bread and butter and that’s been setting up the pass really.” said Johnson. “It’s been the run controlling the clock and keeping the defense off the field and that’s what we weren’t able to do today.”

Duxbury tried to put the game away before halftime, electing to go for it on fourth and six from the North 48 with fewer than 20 seconds remaining. The move backfired as Cuevas stepped up with an interception and returned it to the Dragons’ 30 with eight seconds on the clock. North quarterback Chad Peterson (19-34, 269 yards) fired a perfect strike to Kyle McCarthy (five catches, 107 yards) to get North on the board at the break.

The Rocketeers had momentum going into halftime and the ball coming out of it with a chance to try and take the lead. After moving down to the Duxbury 29, Peterson was sacked by Brad Backlund for a 13-yard loss and then intercepted by Joe Gooley.

“That was big,” Johnson admitted. “I really thought that if we were really going to make a run for it then we had to get something out of that drive and we just didn’t.”

The Dragons capitalized on the turnover with a 10-play drive that pushed the lead to 12 points. Maimaron hit Reagan on a back shoulder throw in the front corner of the end zone for a three-yard score to make it 19-7.

The teams traded punts but then Peterson was picked off for the second time, this one by Maimaron, to set Duxbury up with a short field. Maimaron converted another fourth down with a three-yard keeper and then Reagan made his highlight-reel grab and it looked like the game was over.

North came right back on its next drive to go 72 yards in seven plays and used up only three minutes off the clock. Peterson hit David Engler on the far sideline, putting just enough on it to beat the safety, and Engler ran in for a 36-yard score.

Duxbury recovered the onside kick but decided to stick with its passing game rather than try to run clock with only five minutes remaining. Reynolds’ pressure forced one incompletion and Dean broke up another pass as North forced a three and out to get the ball right back. This time it was 80 yards in nine plays capped by Peterson finding Bresko for a 25-yard score, Peterson’s third of the night, to cut the lead to 26-19.

“He’s been tough all year,” said Johnson of Peterson. “He’s been in a difficult situation sometimes. We ask a lot of him. A lot was on his shoulders tonight and he stood tall like he usually does.”

The top seed was able to convert another third down to seal the win and lift the Div. 2 South trophy; Duxbury’s second sectional title in as many years.

Friday’s Schedule & Scoreboard – 11/11/16

Today’s games are listed below.

Football
Playoffs
D1A South
#1 King Philip, 33 vs. #6 Bridgewater-Raynham, 28 – Final
1st Quarter: (KP) Brendan Lydon 5 yard rush, XP blocked.
2nd Quarter: (BR) Bryce Shaw 33 yard rush, George Lampros XP good; (KP) John DeLuca 12 yard rush, Shane Frommer 2pt rush.
3rd Quarter: (BR) Shawn Noel Jr. 62 yard rush, G. Lampros XP good; (KP) S. Frommer 5 yard rush, Cole Baker XP good; (BR) S. Noel Jr. 30 yard rush, G. Lampros XP good.
4th Quarter: (KP) S. Frommer 4 yard rush, XP blocked; (KP) B. Lydon 1 yard rush, 2pt failed; (BR) Corey Sullivan 23 yard pass to S. Noel Jr, XP good.

D2 South
#3 North Attleboro, 19 @ #1 Duxbury, 26 – Final
1st Quarter: (D) Bobby Maimaron 1-yard rush, XP blocked.
2nd Quarter: (D) B. Maimaron 3-yard pass to James Miele, 2-point conv. no good; (NA) Chad Peterson 30-yard pass to Kyle McCarthy, Geoff Wilson XP good.
3rd Quarter: (D) B. Maimaron 3-yard pass to Ryan Reagan, Liam O’Donovan XP good.
4th Quarter: (D) B. Maimaron 11-yard pass to R. Reagan, L. O’Donovan XP good; (NA) C. Peterson 36-yard pass to David Engler, XP blocked; (NA) C. Peterson 25-yard pass to Mario Bresko, XP blocked.

Non-Playoffs
Foxboro, 33 @ Oliver Ames, 15 – Final
1st Quarter: (F) Mark Clagg 25 yard pass to Trey Guerrini, XP good; (OA) Liston Funai 4 yard rush, XP good; (F) M. Clagg 22 yard pass to Jamaine Few, XP failed.
2nd Quarter: (F) Mike Luong 1 yard rush, 2pt failed; (F) M. Clagg 4 yard pass to J. Few, XP good.
3rd Quarter: No scoring.
4th Quarter: (OA) Curtis Cann 25 yard pass to Dean Pacini, Leandro Moro 2pt rush; (F) T. Guerrini 16 yard rush, XP good.

Mansfield, 35 vs. Needham, 6 – Final
1st Quarter: (M) Joe Cox 5 yard rush, Diogo DeSousa XP good; (M) Nick Graham 5 yard rush, D. DeSousa XP good.
2nd Quarter: (M) Anthony DeGirolamo 45 yard pass to Mike Shannon, D. DeSousa XP; (N) Max Sylvia 15 yard pass to John Andre, XP failed.
3rd Quarter: (M) J. Cox 81 yard rush, D. DeSousa XP good.
4th Quarter: (M) Will Garvin 5 yard rush, D. DeSousa XP good.

Stoughton, 20 vs. Dartmouth, 19 – Final (OT)
1st Quarter: No scoring.
2nd Quarter: (D) Cole Jacobsen 5 yard rush, XP failed; (S) Justin Ly 6 yard rush, 2pt failed.
3rd Quarter: No scoring.
4th Quarter: (S) Ryan Sullivan 25 yard rush, XP failed; (D) C. Jacobsen 6 yard rush, XP failed;
Overtime: (D) C. Jacobsen 10 yard pass to Liam Caulfield, L. Caulfield XP good; (S) Ryan Sullivan 6 yard rush, R. Sullivan 2pt rush.

Taunton, 7 @ Barnstable, 20 – Final

Girls Soccer
D1 South
#5 Oliver Ames, 0 vs. #1 Natick, 2 – Final

D2 South
#15 Canton, 3 vs. #6 Medfield, 7 – Final

North Attleboro Upset Win Hands Dartmouth First Loss

North Attleboro football
North Attleboro’s Hacmoni Cuevas separates from a defender on his way to a 44 yard touchdown. (Ryan Lanigan/HockomockSports.com)
ByRyanLanigan_2016FollowRyanLanigan_2016
 
 
 
DARTMOUTH, Mass. – In a back and forth battle that featured two heavyweights that featured four fourth quarter touchdowns, each side matching each other punch for counter punch, a special teams play in the second quarter may have been the biggest difference in the game.

North Attleboro emerged from the thrilling contest as 37-27 winners over Dartmouth in the D2 South Semifinal, snapping the home team’s 16-game win streak (longest in the state) and handed the Indians their first loss of the season.

While the fireworks were saved for the fourth quarter, arguably the biggest play came late in the second quarter. Dartmouth’s Liam Caulfield intercepted a tipped pass and brought it back 65 yards. A play later, QB Cole Jacobsen hit Caulfield for a 15 yard score, bringing the Indians within a point with less than two minutes to play in the first half.

Click here for a photo gallery from this game.

On the extra point, North Attleboro senior Jack Dakin came flying in untouched and blocked the kick. Two bounces later, Rocketeer senior Neal Doherty scooped the ball up and sprinted 75 yards for two points for Big Read.

Instead of a tie game at halftime, the Rocketeers held a 16-13 edge. The three point difference proved pivotal in the fourth quarter shootout.

“I thought it was huge at the time,” North Attleboro head coach Don Johnson said. “The thing is we should have blocked more. We worked on it, we were confident we could get one and we got one, but we wanted more of them.

“It was so big, it just changes the whole game because of that one point right there.”

The first half saw each team have a lead – Dartmouth striking first before North responded with two straight scores. Both teams turned it over on the opening possession and the Indians used a trick play – wide receiver Nate Ellis hitting fellow wideout Miles Linhares for a 75 yard touchdown.

North responded with a methodical 10-play drive that covered 78 yards, Nick Rajotte (16 carries, 113 yards, 3 touchdowns) capping it with a 2 yard run to tie the game 7-7.

It took less than two minutes of time in the second quarter for the Rocketeers to seize the lead. On 2nd down, North junior QB Chad Peterson (11/18, 166 yards, 2 touchdowns) delivered a perfect lofted strike down the left sidelines and senior Hacmoni Cuevas hauled it in over his shoulders and scampered in the last five yards for a 44 yard touchdown.

“I think the real key was our offense being able to move the ball,” Johnson said. I don’t know how many snaps they had compared to us, until the end there. I thought us moving the football on offense kept their offense off the field and that was a big factor.

North had a chance to add to its lead before halftime but Dartmouth’s Luke Clarke grabbed his second interception of the game, picking off Peterson in the end zone midway through the second quarter.

To start the second quarter, North not only had a 16-13 lead thanks to Dakin and Doherty, they opened with possession — and made the most of it. The Rocketeers used nearly eight minutes of the third quarter to march 61 yards on 15 plays – going 4/4 on third down – to increase the lead to double digits.

Despite a pair of holding calls early in the drive, the Rocketeers were still able to move the ball — Peterson hitting Kyle McCarthy (3 catches, 64 yards; 10 carries, 86 yard) for 13 yards over the middle to convert the first third down. Facing another third down, Peterson kept it on the option for a five yard gain for another first.

Rajotte converted the third third down of the drive, plunging for six yards. Bobby Mylod (10 carries, 51 yards; 4 catches, 29 yards) nearly got into the end zone on the fourth third down but it was enough to move the sticks. On the next play, Rajotte darted in for a touchdown; Devin Slaney (5/5 XP) split the uprights to make it 23-13 with 3:05 left in the third quarter.

Click here for a photo gallery from this game.

“You’ve got Bobby Mylod that can just pound people in there,” Johnson said of his run game. “Then all of a sudden, Rajotte has the speed and he can get out and find that seam, that’s big.”

The final quarter was completely back and forth, with Dartmouth getting within three on two occasions, but never tied the game — all tying back to Dakin’s block and Doherty’s return.

With 8:55 left in the game, Jacobsen connected with Ellis on a comeback but North’s defensive back slipped and Ellis ran his way to a 37 yard touchdown to make it 23-20.

North responded, again converting a pair of key third downs to get into the end zone. The Rocketeers were faced with 3rd and 5 from their own 49. Instead of keeping it on the ground, Big Red went play action and Peterson aired one out deep where McCarthy hauled it in for a 45 yard completion after getting a step on the defense.

Three plays later, facing third and goal, Peterson used play action again to fool the Indians and connected with a wide-open Mylod on the right side for a score and a 30-20 lead with 5:33 left.

Dartmouth used a 24 yard completion and 15 yard penalty to quickly move back up the field. On second and goal, Jacobsen tossed a perfectly timed pass to find a diving Ellis near the sideline for an 11 yard touchdown with 3:28 to go, drawing Dartmouth within 30-27.

“The message was to just never hang our heads,” Rajotte said of the message among the team after Dartmouth continued to fight back. “In the first half, I never thought they were truly beating us. They used a trick play for the first touchdown but we just had to keep our heads up and keep grinding. They weren’t pounding the ball like we were so we just had to keep our heads in it and never give up.”

The Indians elected for an onside kick on the ensuing kick off and the ball did bounce free for a moment but David Engler quickly smothered it. North Attleboro attempted to run the clock out but Dartmouth had four timeouts to burn, helping keep North in check.

Fittingly, on another third down, the Rocketeers were able to put the game away. Facing third and four from midfield, Rajotte got to the outside on the left sideline, found a seam and burst through it, racing to the end zone for a 37-27 lead with 2:50 to go.

“Going through my head, I knew I needed to get four yards,” Rajotte said. “It was 3rd and four, it was a huge spot in the game for us, we were up by a little bit. A first down at that point was going to be huge for us. During the play, I was just patient. The outside linebackers had been blitzing all game, luckily we had some great blocking on the play.

“Patience was key and there were great blocks. I was able to turn the corner, stay inbounds and score. It was such a great feeling.”

The Rocketeers defense was finally able to stop Dartmouth on its ensuing drive to end the game.

While Jacobsen was able to find success through the air, his normal game includes a lot of running – which the Rocketeers limited. Dartmouth finished with just 51 yards rushing as a team.

“We saw every one of [Dartmouth’s] games on film, and he was the difference,” Johnson said of Jacobsen. “Every game he broke big plays. So our primary goal was to stop the quarterback and not let him beat us. He actually ended up throwing the ball pretty well which we hadn’t seen. He’s a great player.”

North Attleboro football (8-1) advances to the D2 South Final to play #1 Duxbury (9-0). The Dragons used two fourth quarter touchdowns to beat Stoughton, 35-21, to reach the final. The game is currently scheduled for Friday night at Duxbury High with a 7:00PM kickoff.

Click here for a photo gallery from this game.

Rocketeers Pull Away In Second Half for Big Win

North Attleboro football
North Attleboro’s Bobby Mylod (31) runs the ball in the second half against Milford. (Ryan Lanigan/HockomockSports.com)
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NORTH ATTLEBORO, Mass. – The game was moved from Friday night to Sunday evening because of inclement weather and the atmosphere was not nearly as charged as it usually is at Community Field. The Rocketeers started sluggishly, falling behind against visiting Milford but turned it on in the second half to break open a close game and stay unbeaten in the division.

Behind 139 yards of offense from Bobby Mylod and 134 from Nick Rajotte, North Attleboro scored 35 straight points (21 unanswered after the break) and allowed only one first down in the second half to roll to a 35-7 victory.

“Especially with our field situation,” North Attleboro coach Don Johnson said of the difficulty of preparing for a Sunday game. “We get two extra days where we can practice, but we had to go in the gym because we couldn’t get a good field where we can practice. I think that explains some of the lethargic play that we saw in the first half.”

Click here for a photo gallery from this game.

Milford got a first down on its opening possession behind senior Blake Hill (19 carries, 83 yards), but a pair of incompletions under pressure from the North defense forced a Sean Lehane punt. Rajotte had it ricochet off his shoulder pads and Tony Mobiliarecovered for the Hawks at the Rocketeers 26.

Matt Curran (2-9, 24 yards) hit Jack Cappalletti for 10 yards down to the 15 and Hill followed with a 14-yard burst through the middle to get a first down at the one. Two quarterback sneaks later, Curran squeezed over the goal line to give Milford the 7-0 lead.

North bounced back on its next possession with Rajotte accounting for 43 yards on the ground and through the air to get in Milford territory. With North facing fourth and 13, Chad Peterson (10-12, 125 yards) looked down field to Mylod for a 30-yard strike to tie the game.

On its next possession, Milford had a chance to look down field, but Kayden Kelly could not haul in a pass on the sideline with Kyle McCarthy in tight coverage and the Hawks would give the ball back to the Rocketeers. Peterson hit David Engler twice and Mylod had a 26-yard gain on a sweep to get down to the Hawks 29. After Hill stuffed Rajotte for a loss, Peterson again laid out a pass for Mylod to run under and the 32-yard touchdown made it 14-7 at the break.

“We had a couple opportunities early in the game to keep it neck-and-neck,” said Milford coach Joe Todd. “Our defense played well at times, but we gave up too many big plays in critical situations.”

North received the ball to start the second half and set up about taking control of the game. The Rocketeers engineered a 10-play, 76-yard drive to go up by two scores. Rajotte had the first 35 yards of the drive and McCarthy broke a 20-yard run down to the 13. Mylod went straight up the gut to the one, where the ball popped loose. Engler followed the play and dove on it for the touchdown.

Click here for a photo gallery from this game.

“I think that was important,” said Johnson of the second half drive, “and good teams should be able to do that, come out and move the ball on the first drive and establish it. We haven’t done that all the time this year, so it was good for us to do that for once.”

Milford’s next possession ended on a sack by Jack Dakin. The Hawks would not get another first down for the remainder of the game, as the North defense locked down the running game. The Rocketeers held Hill to only 17 yards on eight carries after the break by dominating the line of scrimmage, particularly Thomas Reynolds, Thomas Kummer, and Jay Loring, who battled Milford’s big lineman Riley Burns all night.

“I think we wore them down a little bit,” said Johnson. “Nice to see us doing that to someone for once, instead of King Philip doing it to us.”

With the gap widening, the Hawks were also forced to go away from their strengths needing to score quickly. Todd explained, “Once we came out of halftime and they scored on that first drive, we really needed to score after that and we didn’t. Offensively, it’s tough for us to score fast, it’s not our style, so I think that was a big advantage for them.”

Midway through the fourth quarter, North took over at its own 27. Rajotte needed only one play to add another score, breaking tackles at the line of scrimmage and then winning a foot race against several Hawks for the 73-yard score. After Loring sniffed out a fake punt on Milford’s next possession, Jonathan Shultz tacked on a 31-yard TD.

“It was nice to see Rajotte break that long one in the second half,” Johnson said. “We haven’t had that opportunity yet where we had everyone in their in the second half. We’re going to need it.”

Todd concluded, “Our strength is obviously running the football and I think they were able to find our tendencies and offensively I thought they did a great job of attacking some things that we were trying to take away.”

North Attleboro (3-1, 2-0) will travel to Sharon next Saturday afternoon, while Milford (2-2, 1-1) will try to get back on track against Foxboro at Ahern Middle School on Friday night.

Click here for a photo gallery from this game.

Sunday’s Schedule & Scoreboard – 10/02/16

Today’s game is listed below.

Football
Milford, 7 @ North Attleboro, 35 – Final
1st Quarter: (M) Matt Curran 1 yard rush, Shane Lehane XP good; (NA) Chad Peterson 30 yard pass to Bobby Mylod, Geoff Wilson XP good.
2nd Quarter: (NA) C. Peterson 32 yard pass to B. Mylod, G. Wilson XP good.
3rd Quarter: (NA) David Engler fumble recovery in end zone, G. Wilson XP good.
4th Quarter: (NA) Nick Rajotte 73 yard rush, G. Wilson XP good; (NA) Jonathan Shultz 31 yard rush, G. Wilson XP good.

Rocketeers Score Big Davenport Win Over Stoughton

North Attleboro Football
North Attleboro senior Kyle McCarthy had over 150 yards on offense to lead the Rocketeers over Stoughton. (Ryan Lanigan/HockomockSports.com)
ByRyanLanigan_2016FollowRyanLanigan_2016
 
 
 
NORTH ATTLEBORO, Mass. – Even though it’s just Week 3 of the 2016 season and the first divisional matchups of the year, North Attleboro coach Don Johnson didn’t shy away from the importance of Friday night’s matchup with Stoughton.

The Rocketeers and the Black Knights were the two favorites for the title coming into the season, and even though it was just the first week of league games, Johnson told his players to treat it like a championship game.

Johnson’s players answered the call, jumping out to a 21-0 lead before halftime and holding off a late Stoughton charge to pick up a key 34-19 win in the first Davenport game of the year.

“You know what it’s like, you only have five league games so every game [counts], if you lose one you could be out of the hunt in our league,” Johnson said. “We really had to approach it like it had championship implications and I was happy to see the kids step up in that situation.”

Senior Kyle McCarthy emerged as the star on the night, making plays as a wide receiver, running back and even as the back up quarterback. McCarthy accounted for over 150 yards of offense, rushing for a team-high 134 yards on the ground on 16 carries while hauling five catches for 39 yards.

“Our coach told us this was a championship game and we had to approach it as a championship game,” McCarthy said. “We came out and played well so it was fun for us.”

“He’s just a playmaker for us,” Johnson said of McCarthy. “He’s on defense out there, he’s doing everything out there. He can play quarterback, he runs the ball hard. He’s kind of our jack of all trades, the heart of the team.”

The Rocketeers wasted little time getting on the board, taking the opening drive 71 yards on 10 plays, converting on third down three times – a Bobby Mylod 14 yard catch, a 21 yard run from McCarthy and a 16 yard catch from Nick Rajotte. – before junior quarterback Chad Peterson hooked up with senior Hacmoni Cuevas for a 17 yard touchdown to go up 7-0 with 6:59 left in the first.

Stoughton was forced to punt on its first drive but both teams turned it over on downs on their respective second drives. It took North just five plays to span 65 yards on its third drive with McCarthy rattling off 14 yards, Peterson hitting Rajotte for 15 yards, McCarthy scampering for 16 more yards and two plays later, Peterson hitting Cuevas over the middle in the end zone for an 18 yard strike, putting the Rocketeers up 13-0 with 5:55 left in the second quarter.

North’s offense wasn’t done, getting the ball back after forcing a three and out from the Black Knights. This time, North used seven plays to go 68 yards, highlighted a 26 yard pass from Peterson to Mylod to Stoughton’s 25, with a penalty tacked on after to bring the ball to the 12 and a half yard line. Three plays later, Rajotte darted up the middle for a 5 yard touchdown and Peterson hit Mylod in the flat for the two point conversion to make it 21-0.

“We thought it was really important for us to get our offense moving and control the ball a little bit and keep it out of their hands,” Johnson said.

The Black Knights got some momentum back, needing just 1:19 on their next drive to get into the end zone. Sophomore Evan Gibb took over at quarterback on the drive and made an immediate impact.

After a 16 yard scramble on second down, Gibb hit Izon Swain-Price on the right sideline and the senior broke a tackle and raced into the end zone, bringing the Knights within two scores at 21-6.

Stoughton punted to open the second half but forced a turnover on downs from North to get the ball back. On the second play of the drive, Gibb broke free of the pocket and raced down the sideline for a 42 yard gain. Five plays later, including two runs from Justin Ly and a completion to Ryan Sullivan, Gibb somehow broke free of a group of players to race in for a 13 yard touchdown, bringing Stoughton within striking distance at 21-12 with 2:08 left in the third.

“We hadn’t seen [the quarterback change] from them,” Johnson said. “But our primary concern stopping their run game which I think they did. We really weren’t prepared for what they would do after that, they hadn’t played [Gibb] very much and we thought [Dave Cellucci] threw the ball pretty well too. We knew they had a spread pass package and when Gibb went in, he was much quicker and they moved it and hurt us.”

North Attleboro had an answer yet again, using McCarthy at QB on the first two plays to move the sticks. Jack Connelly was able to sack Peterson on a broken play, setting up 3rd and 12 to start the fourth quarter but Peterson converted, hitting David Engler downfield for a 35 yard gain. A penalty brought North halfway to the goal, and Ryan Sullivan burst up the middle for a 4 yard touchdown, putting North up 27-12.

“Chad was a little shaken up from last week against Feehan. The coaches instituted a package for me to run the ball so Chad wouldn’t have to,” McCarthy said, who said this was by the most snaps he’s taken at quarterback in a game this season. “Chad had such a good season last year so I moved to running back but the coaches created a package with me at QB where I basically run the ball inside, or take some handoffs.”

Stoughton wasn’t done yet though as Gibb worked some magic once again. On third and 10, Gibb escaped some pressure, rolled out to his right and fired to an open Swain-Price for a 55 yard gain. After three plays netted just eight yards, Stoughton was forced to go for it on 4th and 2 from the seven yard line. Gibb rolled to his left this time, hitting Swain-Price in the flat and he raced in for a 7 yard touchdown, making it 27-19.

The Black Knights defense even forced North Attleboro into a punt as the clock ticked under five minutes, but the Rocketeers’ defense did its job, forcing a three and out. From there, North was able to move the chains – and drain the clock. Mylod converted the first third down with a four yard run, and then three plays later, rushed for six yards on fourth down to move the sticks. On the next play, McCarthy darted up the middle for a 22 yard touchdown with 1:24 left, icing the game for North.

“The offensive line got a great push up front. I was just trying to hold onto the ball,” McCarthy said. “On that touchdown, I think I was so small I got lost in the defense and I found a lane and just went through it to find the end zone.”

North Attleboro finished with a 391-297 advantage in yards, including a well balanced attack with 199 passing yards and 192 rushing yards. The Rocketeers were able to hold Stoughton’s rush game in check with the Black Knights’ running backs getting just 20 yards total (Gibb rushed for 84 from the QB spot). North also went 7-12 on third down and 2-4 on fourth down.

“That was the difference today between this game and the King Philip game, we were awful on third down conversions against King Philip,” Johnson said. “I knew it would take us a while to develop, and we still have a while to go, but we’ve gotten better every week so that’s all you can ask for at this point.

“I think this kind of game can give you that boost to give you that confidence and get on a little roll here.”

North Attleboro football (2-1, 1-0) will host Milford (2-1, 1-0) for their final league game at Community Field next Friday at 7:00. Stoughton (1-2, 0-1) will try to bounce back as they hit the road for the third time in four games with a trip to Sharon High on Saturday, October 1st.

Football: 2016 Davenport Division Preview

2016 Davenport Football Preview
North Attleboro, the defending Kelley-Rex champions, will look to make a splash in its first season in the Davenport. (Ryan Lanigan/HockomockSports.com)

By HockomockSports.com Staff

2016 Davenport Football Preview

Canton

2015 Record: 6-5
2015 Finish: Missed playoffs
Coach: Dave Bohane

Key/Returning Players: Dan Alice, Sr., HB/DB; Dennis Ross, Sr., QB; Alec Ragusa, Jr., FB/LB; Brian Smith, Sr., OL/DL; Mark Whalen, Sr., OL/DL; Joe Mulkay, Sr., HB/DB; Thomas Monagle, Sr., K/FB/LB; Dan Pierre, Sr., TE/DE; Tony Harris, Jr., WR/DB; Ben Paolillo, Sr., OL/DL; Mike Marino, Sr., HB/LB.

Outlook: After falling victim to the playoff system’s alignment and just missing out on a postseason berth, Canton will be relying on a mix of experience and youth to try and get back to the state tournament under the new alignment.

Davenport division MVP and HockomockSports.com Player of the Year Jake Ragusa is off playing at Merrimack so that will be a major void for Canton to fill. However, the Bulldogs do return some players in key spots that will help them out of the gates. Senior Anthony Ross is back under center and could see an expanded role in 2016. Dan Alice is back after suffering an injury last season and should lead a stable of running backs, led by fullback Alec Ragusa. Joe Mulkay, Dan Pierre, Tony Harris and Mike Marino should all factor into the offense as well for Canton.

Defensively, Canton has some experience on the line in Brian Smith, who also plays as a tackle on offense, as well as Mark Whalen, who saw valuable minutes last year, and Ben Paolillo. Alec Ragusa will be the anchor in the linebacking corps alongside Thomas Monagle (also the team’s kicker) and Marino. Harris, Alice and Mulkay figure to be important pieces in the Bulldogs’ secondary this year.

“The kids have a strong work ethic and had a good offseason and now a good preseason,” head coach Dave Bohane said. “I think we’ll be strong up front on both sides and we have kids in key spots with experience.”

Foxboro

2015 Record: 8-3 (Davenport Division Champions)
2015 Finish: Reached D4 South Semifinal
Coach: Jack Martinelli

Key/Returning Players: Jamaine Few, Sr., WR; Mark Clagg, Sr., QB; Joe Bartucca, Sr., OL/DL; Trey Guerrini, Sr., WR/DB; Alex Parillo, Sr., OL/DL; John Cronin, Sr., K; Matt Mullally, Sr., LB; Brandon Corey, Sr., LB; Paul Darcy, Sr., DB; Matt Pond, Jr., LB.

Outlook: Coming off the program’s first league title since 2010, the Foxboro Warriors are hoping to stay near the top of the Davenport division again this year. And with one of the top returning quarterbacks in Mark Clagg under center for another year, the Warriors will likely be in the thick of the division race.

Clagg threw for nine touchdowns last season, third most among returning quarterbacks. After splitting some time with Darren Kelly last year, it looks like it was be Clagg’s spot full time in 2016. Another positive for having Clagg back is the experienced wide receivers he will have to work with. Jamaine Few is a big, experienced target at 6’3 and will be a tough one on one matchup for defensive backs. Trey Guerrini also has experience with Clagg while Phil Dure and John Whitehouse could be viable options as well. Foxboro will have to fill the void at running back, after the stability of Ronnie Martin and Keeyon Neal in previous years. Eseosa Omuemu, Matt Mullally and Anthony Capachietti are all possible choices to start in the backfield.

Defensively, the Warriors will rely upon experience in the linebacking and defensive back corps. Junior Matt Pond and senior Brandon Corey will be key cogs among the linebackers while Paul Darcy and Guerrini will be key pieces in the Warriors’ secondary. Foxboro will look to develop solid options on both the offensive and defensive lines.

“As always, the senior leadership plays a key role in the success of the 2016 campaign,” head coach Jack Martinelli said.

Milford

2015 Record: 7-4
2015 Finish: Missed playoffs
Coach: Joe Todd

Key/Returning Players: Blake Hill, Sr., RB/LB; Ryan Gray, Sr., OL/DL; Asong Aminmentse, Sr., RB/LB; Riley Burns, Sr., OL/DL; Harrison Bliss, Sr., RB/LB; Tony Mobilia, Sr., WR/DB; Jack Cappelletti, Sr., WR/DB; Alec Salamone, Sr., RB/DB; Pat Brogioli, Jr., OL/DL; Tyler Joyce, Jr., TE/LB; Shapel Feaster, Soph., RB/DB, Matt Curran, Jr., QB.

Outlook: The Scarlet Hawks have posted back-to-back 7-4 seasons and are hoping to continue their winning ways in 2016. With 11 starters returning, Milford is on the right track to do so.

It all starts with Yale-commit Blake Hill, who will be a top player on both offense and defense this season. Offensively he can hurt you in many ways, including running with the ball or catching passes. Hill will have some space to run thanks to an experienced offensive line that includes Riley Burns, Ryan Gray and Pat Brogioli. Junior Matt Curran will take over under center for the Scarlet Hawks and will have Jack Cappelletti, Tony Mobilia and Tyler Joyce as pass catching options to work with.

Defensively, Hill is one of the top linebackers in the league. He’ll be flanked by Harrison Bliss, Asong Aminmentse and Joyce. Burns, Gray and Brogioli will all be two-way linemen for the Scarlet Hawks. Shapel Feaster, who will also see touches on offense, will be in the secondary along with Alec Salamone, Mobilia and Cappelletti.

North Attleboro

2015 Record: 9-2 (Kelley-Rex Division Champions)
2015 Finish: Reached D3 Southwest Semifinal
Coach: Don Johnson

Key/Returning Players: Thomas Reynolds, Sr., OL/DL; Bobby Mylod, Sr., RB/LB; Nick Rajotte, Sr. RB/DB; Kyle McCarthy, Sr. QB/DB; Chad Peterson, Jr., QB; Thomas Kummer, Sr., OL/DL.

Outlook: As with any defending league champion, the North Attleboro Rocketeers will have some holes they’ll have to fill this year. But Big Red also has a slew of talented, experienced players back as North Attleboro looks to make a splash in its first season in the Davenport division.

Junior Chad Peterson is back under center after a breakout sophomore season in which he tossed 13 touchdowns, second most in the Hockomock League. While Kelley-Rex MVP Nick Morrison has graduated, North Attleboro returns Bobby Mylod and Nick Rajotte, who will give the Rocketeers a variety of attacking options. Thomas Reynolds will anchor the offensive line from the center position while Peterson will look for Hacmoni Cuevas, David Engler, Mario Bresko and Nick Dean to emerge as receiving threats.

It will be a lot of the same faces making plays on the defensive side of the ball. Reynolds and senior Tom Kummer are two major pieces and will take up the center of the defensive line. Mylod emerged as one of the top linebackers in the Hockomock and in the state last season and will be complemented at the position by Ryan Kingston, Zach DeMattio and Cuevas. Rajotte and Kyle McCarthy both had solid years in the secondary last season and will be big pieces to the defensive puzzle again this season.

“It’s going to be an interesting year switching to the Davenport division,” head coach Don Johnson said. “It certainly isn’t going to be any easier.”

Sharon

2015 Record: 4-7
2015 Finish: Reached D3 Southeast Quarterfinal
Coach: Dave Morse

Key/Returning Players: Juvan Elisma, Sr., RB; Josh Rotman, Sr., WR/CB; Nate Hirsh, Sr., OL/DL; Ian Langol-Leonard, Sr., OL/DL; Wilhelm Bolt, Sr., OL/DL; Xavier Hackett, Sr., OLB; Drew Naisuler, Jr., QB; Austin Dodes, Jr., WR; Sam Spencer, Jr., RB.

Outlook: A lot of the players listed as key and returning players for Sharon this season were also on last year’s list, and that’s a good thing for the Eagles, who are looking to take the next step forward in 2016.

Junior Drew Naisuler will step into the starting role at quarterback and will have some weapons at his disposal right away. Running back Juvan Elisma had a stellar 2015 campaign as a junior, rushing for eight touchdowns – tied for fourth most in the Hockomock League and tied for second in the Davenport. Now Elisma will look to cap a strong football career at Sharon by leading an Eagles’ rushing attack that will likely include junior Sam Spencer as well. Naisuler will have an experienced receiver as Josh Rotman is back for another year while junior Austin Dodes figures to be another target this season.

“Our season will be decided by how physical we can be and if our new varsity players can step up and make an impact,” head coach Dave Morse said.

The Eagles will also bring back some experience on both sides of the line. Nate Hirsh has been a key cog of the line on both sides of the ball for the Eagles. Ian Langol-Leonard and Wilhelm Bolt also will likely be key experience pieces up front for Sharon. Defensively, Rotman also is back as a talented defensive back. Xavier Hackett is another name to keep an eye on, as the senior has been able to make plays for Sharon in the past and looks to do more of the same in 2016.

Stoughton

2015 Record: 6-5
2015 Finish: Reached D3 Southwest Semifinal
Coach: Greg Burke

Key/Returning Players: Ryan Sullivan, Sr., RB/DB; Izon Swain-Price, Sr., RB/WR/DB; Dave Cellucci, Sr., QB; Nick Hardy, Sr., RB/DB; Jack Connelly, Sr., TE/LB; Harry Kimball, Sr., OL/DL; Lino Azul, Sr., OL/DL; Andrew Iverson, Sr., OL/DL; Ryan Pierre, Sr., OL/DL; Justin Ly, Jr., FB/LB; Brendan Walsh, Sr., OL/DL.

Outlook: No matter what team, it’s always going to be difficult to replace a three year starter at quarterback. But with the talented offensive line Stoughton has back this season and senior Dave Cellucci taking over under center, the Black Knights’ offense is in good shape.

The offensive line returns starters Lino Azul, Ryan Pierre and Andrew Iverson while Harry Kimball and Brendan Walsh – who both started on the defensive line – will play on both sides of the ball now. That experience will help give Cellucci a little more time in the pocket when he’s called upon to throw. Meanwhile, Ryan Sullivan, Izon Swain-Price and Justin Ly all figure to be key pieces in the backfield. Sullivan and Swain-Price caused havoc for defenses last season with a combined 10 rushing touchdowns. Swain-Price will also be a receiving option while Jack Connelly is back for another year at tight end.

Stoughton will look to continue its tradition of having a staunch defense. The Black Knights have depth on the defensive line with Pierre, Azul and Kimball all seeing time there along with junior Jason Joseph. Iverson, Ly and Connelly will all see reps at linebacker and Sullivan and Izon Swain-Price will likely be two of the top defensive backs in the entire league.

“We hope to stay healthy and get into the playoffs,” head coach Greg Burke said. “This has been a great group in the weight room and conditioning, that will have to carry us in the league. We know it will be a tough league this year.”