LYNN, Mass. -- It was a battle between undefeated teams in the Div. 3A Super Bowl Saturday, and it was easy to see that being the team with the loss was not an option for either Bourne or Hamilton-Wenham.
In a tightly contested matchup — that fit the billing coming into it — the Canalmen walked off the field with their first Super Bowl championship in school history thanks to a 16-14 victory over the Generals (12-1) on an unseasonably warm afternoon at Manning Field.
Jason Moriarty finished 3-for-4 for 53 yards, and his 10-yard touchdown pass to Nick Pereira in the third quarter, followed by his two-point conversion rush, proved to be the game-winner to clinch the perfect season.
A BIT OF REDEMPTION
In a game of this magnitude, and with so many twists and turns, it was Moriarty’s efforts on that touchdown drive that helped make up for a mistake at the goal line before the whistle blew at halftime.
The Canalmen were down 14-8 and on the last play of the second quarter Moriarty had the offense at the 1-yard line looking to tie the game or take a lead. Instead, Moriarty fumbled the handoff to his fullback and the ball rolled into the end zone, only to be scooped up by the Generals’ Kevin Anthony for a touchback.
“I messed up earlier in the game,” said Moriarty. “I dropped the ball and did some things, and it was really hard to keep my composure, but this team knows how to win. We just did what we had to do.”
In the opening minutes of the third quarter, the offenses played a little bit of giveaway, as Bourne coughed up the ball only to get it right back on the very next play on a fumble recovery.
The Canalmen were set up with great field position at the 50, and preceded to march down the field in an efficient 10 plays. Jacob Achstetter picked up three yards on fourth-and-1, and Moriarty hit Pereira over the middle to get to into the red zone.
Two plays later, the duo hooked up again on a corner route and Moriarty gave the two-point lead with a conversion rush.
“I just had to deliver a good pass and I got it in there,” said Moriarty. “My man (Pereira) caught it in and it worked out.”
TOUGH BREAK FOR H-W
Trevor Lyons was a thorn in the Bourne side in the first half. He was getting it done through the air — as he was 3-for-3 for 48 yards and a 44-yard touchdown strike to Matt Putur — and he was doing it with his legs with nine carries for 39 yards, most of the work coming when the play was breaking down.
But on a run to get the Generals down to the 1-yard line, he was hit hard by two Canalmen and he initially injured his shoulder. Lyons was seen getting some treatment on the sidelines after delivering a success conversion pass to tie the game 8-8 following an Eliot Burr touchdown.
The Generals got the ball back a few plays later thanks to a turnover, and Lyons struck on the 44-yarder to Putur on the very first play of the drive. After the play, Lyons had to leave the game and was seen on the sideline with a sling on his right throwing shoulder.
“That was huge. I felt so bad for (Lyons), because he’s a hell of a football player,” Canalmen head coach John McIntyre said. “We knew that they weren’t going to be able to scramble (without Lyons). We were able to do some defensively and take a little more chances with the blitzes and stuff, knowing that their quarterback couldn’t run as much as they wanted to.”
BOURNE 16, HAMILTON-WENHAM 14
Bourne (13-0) 8 – 0 – 8 – 0 - 16
Ham.-Wenham (12-1) 0 – 14 – 0 – 0 – 14
BO — Joseph Epps 6 run (Drew Girouard pass from Jason Moriarty)
HW — Eliot Burr 1 run (Luke Wendt pass from Trevor Lyons)
HW — Matt Putur 44 pass from Lyons (rush failed)
BO — Nick Pereira 10 pass from Moriarty (Moriarty rush)