Fenwick spoils St. Mary’s Thanksgiving with shutout win

Fenwick's Jake Miano (left) and Ian Connor, (right) celebrate a big play during Wednesday's win. (Item Photo by Owen O'Rourke)

PEABODY — This was a game the Bishop Fenwick football team was ready for. The Crusaders took advantage of every opportunity that came their way Wednesday night in a 60-0 victory over St. Mary’s at Donaldson Stadium.

Fenwick earned the Catholic Central League Large title. The victory was the most lopsided in the history of the Fenwick-St. Mary’s rivalry.

“These guys worked hard for a week and half to get ready for this game,” Fenwick coach Dave Woods said. “It meant a lot to them, it’s a league championship. These seniors won the championship when they were freshmen against St. Mary’s on Thanksgiving (2015) and they did it again as seniors.”

David Cifuentes ran wild for Fenwick, totaling 132 yards and four touchdowns on six carries. Ian Connor added two rushing touchdowns, while Angel Martinez and Tucker Destino each added one rushing touchdown.

St. Mary’s coach Sean Driscoll said the Spartans, who still have next week’s Division 7 state championship game ahead of them, were unable to play some of their starters due to injuries.

“Our intention this week was to get some of our players healthy,” St. Mary’s coach Sean Driscoll said. “We still had some players banged up from last Saturday and I wasn’t taking any chances.

Driscoll added that more time to prepare would’ve helped St. Mary’s. Wednesday’s game was originally scheduled for Thursday but was moved because of the freezing temperatures forecast for Thursday.

“We tried to do what we could and some young guys really put forward their best efforts for us,” Driscoll said. “We had 31 players dressed tonight. I never would want to play it like like that again. If there was some more time in between the games and we had more players able to dress it could have been different.”

After a stop on defense to open the game, the Crusaders offense got off to a fast start. Martinez followed up a 19-yard rush with a four-yard touchdown to put Fenwick up, 6-0, early.

Another quick stop by the Fenwick defense gave the Crusaders a short field that they were able to capitalize on with a one-yard touchdown run by Connor to go ahead, 14-0.

From there the Fenwick defense continued to dominate the first half, not allowing a single first down and forcing a turnover on an interception to help the Crusaders take a 30-0 lead into the half.

“We spent a lot of time as a staff preparing for this game,” Woods said. “The kids spent a lot of time watching film and working real hard on how to defend that offense. They read their keys and they played tough. They all played football for a whole four quarters tonight.”

The Crusaders continued to dominate in the second half, allowing five total yards and benefiting from 85 rushing yards from Destino before finishing off the 60-0 rout.

Woods said the victory was memorable for his six seniors.

“I’ll get emotional if I start talking about not getting them back,” Woods said. “(Quarterback) Cory Bright is a kid you get to coach once in your lifetime for sure. All six of them are kids that we are going to miss tremendously, but they’re part of a real special brotherhood right now as alumni. They’ll be apart of that forever which is real cool.”

The Spartans will have to regroup for their state championship matchup against Blackstone Valley next Saturday morning (11) at Gillette.

“We have to regroup on Friday and we are playing a very talented Blackstone team with a lot of toughness up front and some skill guys on the  edge,” Driscoll said. “We will lick our wounds and get right back at. We will put together a much better effort in the Super Bowl going forward.”

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