WALTHAM, Mass. -- For a minute, it appeared Boston Cathedral had won their first Super Bowl in school history.
Then, there was a flag.
Senior quarterback Matt Owens was flagged for lifting his right pointer finger toward the sky during a fourth-quarter sprint on the 24-yard line of Blue Hills. All the momentum immediately shifted to the Warriors, who escaped with a dramatic, 16-14 victory Saturday at Bentley University.
“On the game being played, we won the game, [but] I give Blue Hills a lot of credit. They’re a great football team, [and] we deserved better,” Boston Cathedral head coach Duane Sigsbury said.
As for Blue Hills head coach Ed Catabia, he appeared more relieved and overjoyed that his team was able to walk off the field with a victory.
“I’ve had these kids in class [since] their sophomore year," Catabia said. "They’re undefeated as freshman [and] we knew that they were a good team.”
Warriors’ senior quarterback John Curran jumpstarted his offense on the team’s first drive with a 45-yard strike to senior Isaiah Teixeira before senior running back Vincent Brown trotted past the Panthers defense for a one yard score on the ensuing possession.
Boston Cathedral responded after an unproductive first quarter with two touchdowns before halftime, as senior quarterback Matt Owens connected with senior teammate Carlos Bermudez on a 44-yard pass, and then ran for a three-yard score.
In the second half, Boston Cathedral produced two critical turnovers, an interception and a fumble, which Blue Hills couldn’t capitalize on. Yet, the Warriors offense did win the time of passion battle, as they finished the final two quarters with 29 plays compared to Boston Cathedral, who had 17.
“We took some time off the clock and that was one of our goals is to take some time off the clock [in the second half],” said Catabia.
“We just wanted [to get a few] first downs, [and] that’s all that mattered,” Warriors quarterback John Curran said. “We weren’t worried about milking the clock, as much as just trying to get in the end zone.”
Blue Hills offense produced Boston Cathedral’s only points of the second half, as they snapped the ball high above their quarterback late in the fourth quarter and out of the end zone before they stopped the Panthers on their final drive of the game, which was an incomplete pass from Owens to Bermudez.
Prior to kick-off, both coaches and captains met to discuss the rules for the game and in that particular meeting, the referees reminded the participants that they wouldn’t be allowed to celebrate a touchdown before it was scored.
However, Sigsbury believed that the decision to flag Owens, who did celebrate the potential go-ahead touchdown in the fourth quarter, was the wrong decision, and certainly, it seemed as if he believed the Panthers should have been crowned champions.
“[The game] got taken away from us, and what else can you do,” Sigsbury said. “If you’re going to take away from a kid being excited because he just made the play of his life, shame on you.”
When asked about the touchdown that was revoked, Blue Hills head coach Ed Catabia responded by saying, “We try to play by the rules, and the rule is that there is no celebrating. It was unfortunate for him [and]; it was a great a call. It’s just unfortunate that’s how it turned out.”
Boston Cathedral certainly had chances in the second half to score, but this particular play will certainly be in the back of their minds prior to the start of next years season.
VINCENT BURTON'S GROUND GAME
Burton recorded 150 yards on 36 carries, as well as one touchdown, but the biggest offensive series of the game came for the senior running back in the third quarter, as he recorded 13-of-19 plays from the line of scrimmage.
“It was very important [because] we had to keep control of the ball, and let the clock run out, so that we could just eventually win the game,” said Burton, when asked to describe the play call in the third quarter.
When asked to describe the play of Burton, Currant commented by saying, “[He’s] unbelievable player. He’s one of the best backs I’ve ever seen. It’s incredible watching it from after I hand the ball, it’s like watching him make the cuts and hit the defense, and it’s unbelievable.”
What it means to win a championship
After losing last year to Shawsheen Regional Technical High School, both Burton and Curran explained they were overjoyed and happy to end their final season with a championship.
“I [saw] all the hurt in everyone’s eyes when we lost last year,” Burton said. “This year, it meant a lot to us and we knew that I didn’t want to see that feeling in their eyes again, so I know it meant a lot to me to win this game.”
“It’s a dream come true to have another chance to go back to the Super Bowl,” Curran said. “We worked so hard since August [at] captain’s practice, [and] we did everything we could to get back here. We just couldn’t miss the opportunity again. We knew what we had to do.”
Blue Hills– 16-0-0-0--16
Boston Cathedral – 0-12-0-2 --14
BH – Isaiah Teixeira 45-yard pass from John Curran (Vincent Burton run)
BH – Burton one-yard run (Burton run)
BC – Carlos Bermudez 44-yard pass from Matt Owens (Owens run unsuccessful)
BC – Owens three-yard run (Pass fails)
BH – Safety