Lunenburg Holds Off Devils in Homecoming Game
LUNENBURG -- Bend, but don’t break.
The Lunenburg football team had difficulties in executing at times Saturday afternoon, but the Blue Knights came up with a big fourth-down stop and then drove the length of the field to put their Homecoming game in the books as LHS downed visiting Murdock, 21-6, during Homecoming exercises at the Veterans Memorial.
Lunenburg (6-1) had entered the game in first place in the Division 8 power rankings, with Murdock (3-4) sitting third. That should remain intact heading into the final game of the regular season.
The Blue Knights will travel to face Division 6 Littleton on Friday night.
Longtime Lunenburg coach Steve Boone breathed a sigh of relief postgame.
“It’s a good win, it’s a Homecoming win,” Boone said. “I’m very happy for the seniors; it’s a big day for them and I’m glad we came out of here with a win. We stepped up and made plays when we had to. We just played inconsistent.
“We have to get better, and we have to play more consistently. Too many missed plays. It comes down to execution.”
In short, Lunenburg held a 14-0 lead at halftime, scoring on two of its four first-half possessions. Yet on Murdock’s first series of the third, the Blue Devils scored as quarterback Jack Polcari found Joe Marobella on first-and-goal from the 19.
But two missed tackles inside the 15 allowed Marobella to tip-toe into the end zone to account for Murdock’s score.
“The Polcari kid has done it all year,” Boone said. “He’s shifty, tough to tackle, and he makes plays. Coming down the sideline, we were there, but we didn’t finish those tackles.”
The Blue Knights would fumble the ball away two plays later at their own 30. Murdock then converted on fourth down at the 22, but failed on its next fourth-down attempt as Polcari threw incomplete on the first play of the fourth quarter.
Lunenburg then went 76 yards in 11 plays, as senior quarterback Chris Costich (13 of 23, 162 yards passing) grabbed his lunch pail and went to work. A 9-yard carry by Cam Mackenzie led to a 13-yard pass to Anthony Iannacci to get the hosts to the 46.
Two plays later, it was Costich to Iannacci for the second time for 3 yards, before Costich found Colby Sprague for a gain of 20 to the Blue Devil 31. And after Costich connected with Mackenzie (2 carries, 17 yards; 2 receptions, 22 yards) for a gain of 13, Lunenburg then went pretty much run-exclusive, as Iannacci (14 carries, 75 yards, 2 TDs; 5 receptions, 50 yards receiving) ran in off the right guard to cap the scoring.
“They stepped up when they had to,” Boone said.
Lunenburg jumped out to a 7-0 lead as it used a nine-play, 56-yard drive to score, with a 5-yard carry by Iannacci on fourth-and-inches to keep the drive going. Three plays later, Iannacci took the handoff on a dive and scored from 11 yards out.
Cooper Mathews’ kick was true.
It would stay that way until Costich connected with Sprague for a 25-yard scoring strike. Costich had rolled right, but with a Murdock lineman coming at him, he let the piggy fly Sprague’s way.
Lunenburg amassed 282 yards of offense to Murdock’s 124 yards.
Blue Knights 21
Blue Devils 6
Murdock (3-4) 0 0 6 0 -- 6
Lunenburg (6-1) 7 7 0 7 -- 21
L -- Anthony Iannacci 11 run (Cooper Mathews kick), 7:30
L -- Colby Sprague 25 pass from Chris Costich (Mathews kick), 4:29
M -- Joe Marobella 19 pass from Jack Polcari (run failed), 5:27
L -- Iannacci 3 run (Mathews kick), 6:44