High schools: Bow plays tough, but still can’t solve Plymouth

  • Bow’s Steven Guerrette (35) runs through a tackle on Saturday at Plymouth. The Falcons lost to Plymouth, 19-7. It marks the fifth straight win for the Bobcats over Bow, a streak that includes the last two Division II championship games. RICH MIYARA / NH Sports Photography

  • ABOVE: Bow’s Steven Guerrette (35) fight for extra yards during Saturday’s game at Plymouth, a rematch of the last two D-II championship games. Plymouth won, 19-7. BELOW: Bow’s Sebastian Beaulieu (12) looks to tackle Plymouth’s Owen Brickley. RICH MIYARA / NH Sports Photography photos

  • Plymouth’s Owen Brickley (15) fights for extra yards RICH MIYARA / NH Sports Photography

Monitor staff
Published: 9/1/2018 11:29:34 PM

The 2018 Bow football season began the way the 2017 season ended. And the 2016 season.

The Falcons lost to Plymouth, 19-7, in a rematch of the last two Division II championship games.

“A tough loss against a perennially tough opponent,” Bow coach Paul Cohen said, “but ... I am proud of the effort displayed and feel that this bodes well for our home opener (Friday night against Kingswood).”

Another silver lining for Bow was its defense. The 19 points are the fewest the Falcons have given up to Plymouth in their last four meetings. Bow lost to the Bobcats, 27-8, in last year’s championship and allowed 42 points in a loss to Plymouth during the regular season. Plymouth narrowly won the 2016 championship, 27-24, and beat the Falcons during that regular season, 28-12.

Senior defensive end Matt Nicholls, who also scored the only touchdown for the Falcons, led a Bow defense that stood tall for two goal-line stands and gave up just one score in the first three-plus quarters of the game – a 3-yard run from Anthony Velez with 52.2 seconds left in the first quarter.

The Bobcats took that lead into halftime and then it was the Bow special teams, not defense, that gave up the next touchdown. Plymouth’s Owen Brickley returned a punt for a touchdown with 9:28 left in the third quarter, pushing the lead to 13-0.

The Falcons found some offensive footing late in the third quarter and put together a 14-play, 55-yard drive. The final play was an 8-yard touchdown run from Nichols that made it 13-7 with 1:34 left in the third.

Bow kept it a one-score game for most of the fourth and even had possession with a chance to win late, but Plymouth’s Velez came up with a critical interception with 2:27 left on the clock. Less than a minute later, Brickley broke off a 39-yard touchdown run to seal the win.

“We made several errors on both sides of the ball, but that is to be expected in game one...” Cohen said. “Though it is a disappointing Saturday, we can certainly correct the errors, and move forward, ever-striving.”


John Stark 46,
Merrimack Valley 12

Key players: John Stark – Jacob Cole (3 rush TD); MV – Brian Hazeltine (long TD run)

Highlights/key moments: The Generals fell behind early, but recovered for a decisive victory in Kevin McGinty’s first game as John Stark’s head coach.

Coach’s quote: “After an offseason with so much change, it was good to see the players come together with a strong performance at home to start the season.” – John Stark’s Kevin McGinty

Hillsboro-Deering-Hopkinton 20,
Laconia 14

Key players: H-D/H – Colby Quiet (119 rush yards, 2 rush TD on 14 carries; 17 tackles), Joe Sawitsky (54 rush yards, rush TD on 2 carries), Dylan Barrett (55 rush yards on 7 carries), Vincent Waddell (17 tackles, fumble recovery), Kevin McCaffrey (10 tackles, 2 forced fumbles, sack), Jordan Berrocales (6 tackles, safety)

Highlights/key moments: On Friday, the Redhawks and Sachems were deadlocked at halftime, 8-8, but H-D-Hopkinton outplayed Laconia in the fourth quarter to secure a season-opening win.

Coach’s quote: “Both teams played tough, physical football, however, the Redhawk players persevered and went on to dominate the fourth quarter.” – H-D/H assistant Josh Menard


White Mountains 3,Winnisquam 2

Key players: Winnisquam – Trevor Gray (2A), Sam Wood (G), Pat Welch (G), Kyle Hinds (defense), Derek DeSousa (defense)

Highlights/key moments: The Bears gave up two goals in the last two minutes of Friday’s match, one off a penalty kick and one off a set play.

Coach’s quote: “It was a tough loss but I was proud of my team coming together and playing great soccer. There are a lot of positives to take from our performance and now we turn our heads to face Franklin on Tuesday.” – Winnisquam’s Jacob Bodah

Records: White Mtns. 2-0; Winnisquam 0-2

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