Revere blanks Peabody in NEC battle

Revere's Joe Llanos leaves a group of Peabody defenders as he runs from a good gain during Friday's game.

REVERE — Behind a stellar team defensive effort and some big plays on offense, the Revere football team blanked Northeastern Conference foe Peabody 24-0 at Harry Della Russo Stadium Friday night. The Patriots’ defense has now given up a total of eight points in its first two games of the season.

“The defense has been huge for us so far this year, there’s no denying that,” said Revere coach Lou Cicatelli. “We were a little concerned about Peabody’s offense coming in because we know they have good players and we know what they did in their first game (52-0 win over Salem), so we came out attacking and made some big plays on both sides of the ball. (Defensive) Coach (Scott) Wlausk did a fantastic job scheming things up in this one.”

Revere’s offense was propelled by senior running back Joe Llanos, who rushed for 163 yards and three touchdowns while also notching an interception on defense. Junior Quarterback Calvin Boudreau completed 7-of-14 passes for 122 yards and one interception, while senior running back/receiver Jonathan Murphy had four receptions for 89 yards. 

“Joe is the real deal and he showed that out there,” said Cicatelli.

It was a tough night for the Peabody offense, which was led by senior running back Angel Paulino’s 89 rushing yards. Junior quarterback Alex DeNisco completed 8-of-21 passes for 63 yards and two interceptions.

“You’ve got to give credit to Revere, they came out and forced us out of what we wanted to do offensively,” said Peabody coach Mark Bettencourt. “Our plan was to run the ball and eat up time of possession, but they were able to get us off the field and put up some early points to force us to play from behind the entire game.”

The game was actually very evenly matched in the first half, with both teams going scoreless in the first quarter. But Revere was able to take over the momentum early in the second quarter thanks to a goal-line interception by Llanos to shut down a Peabody scoring drive. It only took the Patriots five plays to move 90 yards downfield, thanks in large part to some big plays in the passing game. Boudreau hit Billy Byrne-Ginepra on a 16-yard pass to get the drive going, then two plays later he hit Murphy for a 37-yard gain to move into Peabody territory. Then, Llanos took a handoff, burst through the line and sidestepped a defender to break off a 32-yard touchdown run to put Revere on the board 7-0. 

The score remained 7-0 into the second half, but that’s when Revere really started to pull away. Llanos scored again on a 8-yard touchdown run with just under eight minutes left in the third quarter, then a 42-yard field goal by Rayan Riazi put the Patriots up 17-0 as time expired in the third.

Revere capped off the scoring early in the fourth quarter on a two-play, 52-yard drive. Llanos did all the work, running for a 13-yard gain on first down before taking one 39 yards to the house for the final score of the game. 

Next up for Peabody (1-1) is a matchup with Gloucester at home next Friday (7).

As for Revere (2-0), the Patriots will welcome Classical to Della Russo Stadium next Friday (6:30).

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