Endicott Rolls Curry 42-27 in NEFC Opener
MILTON, Mass. – In the first week of New England Football Conference (NEFC) play, the Endicott football team went on the road and handed league opponent Curry a 42-27 defeat as the Gulls evened their 2013 overall record at 2-2 while jumping out to a 1-0 record in their NEFC schedule. Gulls junior quarterback Drew Frenette (New Bedford, Mass.) threw for over 300 yards and four touchdown passes and sophomore running back Spencer Walsh (Malden, Mass.) rushed a season-high 149 yards and two scores to lead the offensive effort.
The Gulls return to Endicott Stadium next Saturday, October 5th for a 12:00 pm kickoff with Maine Maritime on Homecoming Weekend. Endicott is 1-1 all-time versus the Mariners with their most recent meeting coming in the 2010 NEFC Championship game when the Blue and Green triumph 38-35 to win their first conference title and NCAA Tournament automatic qualifying bid in program history.
Frenette found his receivers for touchdown passes of 20, six, four, and 75 yards while Walsh put the game away in the fourth quarter with long touchdown runs of 30 and 51 yards.
On the defensive side of the ball, Endicott was led in tackles by a pair of defensive backs in senior Jason Silva (Palatine, Ill.) and junior Jake Cox (Wrentham, Mass.) who totaled 10 takedowns apiece. Silva added a fumble recovery which led to a Walsh touchdown while Cox intercepted senior quarterback Kevin Fruwirth (Agawam, Mass.) to erase an early Endicott turnover in the first quarter.
The Endicott offense worked efficiently in the first half to gain a 21-7 lead by halftime thanks to a 208 yards passing and three touchdowns Frenette. Frenette connected with junior receiver Nate Lewis (Acushnet, Mass.) for two of those touchdown passes but used timely targets to freshman Chris Lipscomb (West Springfield, Mass.) and sophomore Alex Matys (Woburn, Mass.) to help move the ball down field. Frenette's third touchdown came on a 73-yard drive that resulted in a corner of the end zone pass to senior tight end Greg Dellorco (Franklin, Mass.) with just 10 seconds remaining in the opening half.
Defensively in the first half, the Gulls managed to stop the Curry offense with big turnovers including interceptions by senior Davas Wright (Fall River, Mass.) and Cox. Cox's interception was his third of the season after picking off two passes in a week two Endicott victory over Castleton State. Wright, playing in his first game of the season, made his interception to halt a Curry drive and ignite Endicott's two-minute drill drive to a touchdown leading into halftime.
In the second half, Curry pulled to within one touchdown as senior wide out Skubie Mageza (Revere, Mass.) collected his second end zone reception of the game from Fruwirth with 7:58 to go in the third quarter. On the ensuing possession for Endicott, however, Frenette found sophomore Jamison Craft (Phillipston, Mass.) for a 75-yard route to push the Gulls lead back up by two scores.
Endicott created separation midway through the fourth quarter on Walsh's first touchdown run of the game, a 30-yard sprint up the middle of the field, untouched, to make it 35-14 game. Curry's kickoff return was run across midfield but fumbled on a force by sophomore Christian Bohn (West Hartford, Conn.) and recovered by Silva. On the very next play, Endicott's offensive line once again created space for Walsh as he dashed for 51 yards and his second touchdown to blow the game wide open, 42-14.
The run game and pass protection was fueled by strong offensive line play from sophomore Mike Minerva (Sleepy Hollow, N.Y.), junior Mike Marini (Trumbull, Conn.), senior Alec Gatzogiannis (Wells, Maine), junior Anthony Fulmine (Carver, Mass.), and sophomore Ryan Mrozek (Shelton, Conn.).
Curry would add a pair of touchdown runs late in the fourth quarter, with one extra point getting blocked by Endicott defensive lineman Marcell Cooper (Dorchester, Mass.), but Endicott ran out the clock to take the critical conference victory.
Lipscomb finished with a team-high 83 yards receiving on six catches despite coming into Friday's game with just one catch on the season. Lewis totaled seven receptions and 72 yards and Matys added 69 yards receiving.
Cooper had Endicott's lone sack of the game, but Tyler Calitri (West Hartford, Conn.), Eric Dwinell (Amherst, Mass.), Craig Anderson (Franklin, Mass.), and Kevin Pressey (Fairfield, Maine) all had tackles for a loss.