MARBLEHEAD – For the second straight week, Marblehead coach Jim Rudloff was less than pleased with how his team played. The Magicians didn’t get a first down until late in the first half, but they pounced on some Tanner mistakes to win the game 28-7 Friday night at Piper Field.
“Peabody played a great game, I know they had a tough week, but we should’ve been a lot better than we were,” Rudloff said. “I honestly can’t express how disappointed I am, but I should have seen it coming, we had a terrible week of practice. We might have had a good 10 minutes here or there, but we certainly came out flat tonight.”
The Magicians were fortunate that Peabody’s struggles on offense continued for the second straight game. After putting up just three points in a loss against Danvers, the Tanners finally broke through for a touchdown when Alex DeNisco hit Dylan Peluso with a 43-yard strike with 2:27 left to play. Austin Leggett’s kick made it 28-7. Denisco took over for starter Matthew Jandrisevits, who took a heavy hit on a sack by Tamelle Platt.
Marblehead (3-0) opened the scoring after Peabody (1-2) lost the ball trying to punt, the ball ending up on the Tanners’ seven. Tim Cronin scored two plays later, and Mason Poisson’s first of four PAT’s made it 7-0.
The Magicians tried to add to their lead, but Peabody’s Brendan Caniffe swatted away a couple of Chris Gally passes in the end zone, ending the first half with the Tanners down seven.
Penalties hurt Peabody in the second half, wiping out several long gains on runs by Angel Paulino and Luis Guidrys. When the Tanners were flagged on offense, it wiped out big gains, and when they were penalized on defense, it gave Marblehead excellent field position.
The Magicians took advantage of the Tanners largesse, with Gally rushing in from the nine with 6:57 left in the third quarter, making it a 14-0 game.
Even when things went wrong for Marblehead, they were ending up going right. The Magicians got the ball on a short punt, and three snaps later Gally ran to the goal line where he fumbled the ball into the end zone and Devin Romain pounced on it, upping the score to 21-0.
With 5:46 left, Cronin scored his second of the game from a yard out to seal the scoring for Marblehead.
Peabody coach Mark Bettencourt said his team is a work in progress and it’ll keep working to get better.
“Are we happy that we’re 1-2? No, we’re not, but Danvers and Marblehead are two of the best teams on our schedule, so we’ll keep working and it will come,” Bettencourt said. “We need to get some momentum, get some first downs, and get some confidence. It’s the big picture, it’s a big puzzle, and the things are still being put into place, now we get ready for our next four games, trying to get better on offense and defense.”
Peabody hosts Revere next Friday night (7). The Magicians aim to remain undefeated when they visit Beverly next Saturday (1).