Nobody likes being mired in the doldrums.
The football team certainly elevated itself above that status Friday night, beating Bay State (Carey) Conference-foe Newton North, 23-8, and snapping a two-game losing streak in the process.
“We needed a victory,” Needham coach David Duffy said. “Two weeks in a row with losses. We played well tonight. We made some mistakes, but not as many as we made in the past. We got a big victory, putting us on track for Thanksgiving and the game against Wellesley.”
He continued, “The kids needed the win. We were getting beat up and down on ourselves a little bit. I’m glad for the seniors on their last home game at they got a victory.”
With the triumph, the Rockets improve to 7-3 while the Tigers slip to 4-6 on the season.
“Turnovers hurt us a lot,” Newton North coach Peter Capodilupo said. “Field position was pretty much terrible. Our kickoff returns were poor. Fumbled the ball at key times—snap on the first punt. A lot of little mistakes, but they pile up against a good team. And that’s pretty much what it was.”
As previously mentioned, the Tigers had a errant snap, which landed in their own end zone. Rocket Kevin Walsh was there to recover the football, and Needham took a 7-0 advantage after an Andrew Murowchick kick with 3:18 left in the first quarter.
On its next possession, Needham cushioned its lead employing a 12-play, 69-yard drive that was capped off on a Ryan Charter touchdown strike to Mark Riley. Murowchick missed the extra point, but the Rockets led 13-0.
The Rockets’ defense then stepped up smothering any attempt the Tigers made on offense and would force two fumbles and an interception. The pick arrived in Tigers’ territory, and the Rockets turned the mistake into points as Rashawn Wise scampered to pay dirt from 12 yards out. The point after put Needham up 23-0 with six minutes remaining in the contest.
“Defense played great,” Duffy said. “I think that was the linchpin.”
The Tigers' lone score came with 24 seconds left in the contest with Ryan Byrne finding Andrew Mackowski in the end zone for a four-yard score. TJ Quinn converted on the two-point run attempt.
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