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St. John's defeats Leominster to win Central Mass. Division 2 title

By Chris Wraight, Contributing Writer

St. John's High School quarterback Drew Smiley (#12) breaks for a long run as Leominster High School's Jarell Addo (#5) scrambles in hot pursuit.

St. John's High School quarterback Drew Smiley (#12) breaks for a long run as Leominster High School's Jarell Addo (#5) scrambles in hot pursuit.

Leominster – The St. John's High School Pioneers traveled to Leominster's Doyle Field to face the Leominster High School Blue Devils? Nov. 15 for the Central Mass. Division 2 football title game. ?In their most recent meeting in September Leominster prevailed 33-12, which continued a Leominster winning streak stretching back four prior games, including two Super Bowls.

The Blue Devils started up where they left off, with Matt Blanchs scoring on a one-yard run (James Gurley point-after kick) for a 7-0 lead after the first quarter.

In the second quarter, the game exploded with the Pioneers’ quarterback Drew Smiley scoring on a five-yard run (point-after run failed). ?Leominster's Blanchs answered right back on a two-yard run (point-after run failed). ?St. John's’ Dan Crowley then scored on an 11-yard pass from Smiley (two-point conversion by Shane Combs). ?St. John's's Jack Coveney next kicked a field goal for three points.

On the ensuing kickoff, the Blue Devils’ Mayson Williams ran the kickoff back 81 yards (point-after run failed) and it appeared they would take the momentum into the half but with less than a minute on the clock the Pioneers drove and scored on a Combs one-yard run (Coveney point-after kick) to take a 24-20 lead into the locker room.

In the second half, St. John's picked right up where it left off with Nick Calvano taking a seven-yard pass from Smiley (point-after kick by Coveney). Leominster's James Gurley scored on a nine-yard run (Neil O’Connor point-after run). ?Then St. John's Michael McGillicuddy scored on a 70-yard pass play from Smiley (point-after kick blocked). ?Leominster's Williams ran it in from one-yard out (point-after run failed) to make the score after three quarters 37-28 in St. John's’ favor.

The Pioneers’ Smiley scored on a one-yard run (point after kick by Coveney) in the fourth quarter with Leominster's Jake Allain hauling in a pass from O’Connor and running 75- yards (point-after run failed). ?St. John's answered right back with Smiley scoring again on a 69-yard run from scrimmage (point-after Coveney kick).

With the clock running out Leominster's last chance was squashed as St. John's’ Smiley made a key interception and the Pioneers won 51-42 to take the title, the first for head coach John Andreoli.

St. John's heads next to the State semi-final where they will face Springfield Central High School.

Photos/Chris Wraight

St. John's High School head coach John Andreoli, left is congratulated by MIAA official Fran Whitten on winning the Central Division 2 championship.

St. John's High School head coach John Andreoli, left is congratulated by MIAA official Fran Whitten on winning the Central Division 2 championship.

 

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Posted by on Nov 16 2013. Filed under Byline Stories, Sports, Stories With Good Photos. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. You can leave a response or trackback to this entry

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