Kane Kicks Sandwich Football To Big Win Over Marshfield
By: Dan Crowley
Marshfield was pretty sure that they had won last Sunday. With four seconds on the clock, Sandwich sat on the Rams’ 19-yard line. All afternoon the Blue Knights had gone for it on fourth down. The Rams were about to break into celebration, thinking they had won. A local radio announcer made the remark that high school kickers don’t kick what would be a 37-yard field goal and that in warm-ups, he had seen Sandwich kicker Pat Kane shanking balls all over the place. Besides that, he maintained, in the wet and rainy conditions, Zach Wagner would never be able to make the hold. Marshfield had all but put the game in the win column until Wagner took the snap and Kane made it look easy, putting the ball between the uprights for a 24-22 Sandwich win, leaving one suddenly very quiet radio announcer with his foot in his mouth.
“It feels good,” Sandwich Head Coach Bill Luette said of the win. “It’s the first time we’ve beaten Marshfield. Our kids never quit. Those are the kinds of games we have to win to take this to another level. Last year we lost these games. Winning them is what’s going to make the difference this year.”
The Knights led 15-9 entering the fourth quarter until, with 6:43 left to play, the Rams scored on a run to the right side. The extra point made it 16-15.
Less than two minutes later, the Knights answered when Wagner tucked the ball and ran 51 yards for a touchdown. The two-point conversion attempt failed, leaving SHS up 21-16. But the Rams had plenty of football left to play as Marshfield marched down the field, handing the ball to James Marzelli from 26 yards out to recapture the lead, 22-21.
The fourth quarter shootout continued when Sandwich got the ball back on their own 36-yard line. A holding penalty slowed the Knights, but a pass from Wagner to Jake Kangas gave Sandwich some breathing room with 2:20 left to play.
Then, what seemed like a disaster for the Knights came with about a minute left when Wagner got hit hard and lost the ball. When the Rams recovered the ball, with 58 seconds on the clock, they felt that they had the game in the bag.
But the Blue Knight defense wasn’t done. Sandwich stuffed the Rams, forcing them to kick the ball away with 34 seconds on the clock .Wagner then went deep to John Stanton who made a tremendous catch at the Rams’ 14-yard line. Wagner tried to put it into the end zone, but the next pass fell incomplete. With four seconds left, Coach Luette gave Kane the green light for the game-winning field goal.
Junior Pat Kane had lost his father to cancer in June.
“I asked him to help us win the game,” Kane said. “The first thing that came to my mind when the kick was good was that he came through.”
“Pat deserved that,” Coach Luette said. “He has been through a tough time. I think Pat knew he was going to make that kick.”
The game didn’t open well for the Knights. Just 3:24 into the game, they gave up a safety on a fumble in the end zone. Less than a minute later, Marshfield’s Ben Joyal raced around the left end from four yards out and Aaron Skulsky tacked on the extra point for a quick 9-0 Marshfield lead.
Sandwich answered with 3:01 to play in the first quarter when Wagner hooked up with Tim Sullivan and Kane added the extra point, making it 9-7
Marshfield picked off Wagner early in the second quarter, but Sullivan got the ball back for the Knights when he picked off a pass by MHS QB Jack Masterson. With 3:09 to play before the half, Wagner found Jake Ganley in the end zone for 6 points and then tossed a two-point conversion pass to Marc Petersen, giving the Knights a 15-9 advantage at the break.
“Jake made a huge catch for a first down,” Luette pointed out, “and then that one in the end zone for the touchdown.”
Wagner was 9-for-23 in passing in the rain Sunday for 159 yards. He also carried the ball 23 times for 145 yards for a total of 304 yards on offense. Combined, Sandwich had 533 yards of offense.
Tomorrow the Blue Knights host Plymouth South at SHS with kickoff scheduled for 1:30 PM. The Panthers (2-3, 1-0) are coming off a 31-13 victory over Falmouth (0-5) last week in which junior running back Dylan Oxsen scored four times.
The fifth Plymouth South TD came from senior quarterback Jason Lamb on a 1-yard run. Oxsen’s TDs all came on the ground with runs of one, five, 23 and 75 yards. He carried the ball 19 times for 197 yards.
South will throw the ball. Lamb was 4-for-10 against Falmouth for 77 yards. He also ran the ball five times for 10 yards. The Panthers have a big, physical defensive line but do have trouble holding onto the ball. They fumbled four times against Falmouth, recovering all but one.
Last year the Panthers finished the season with a record of 2-9 but have a core of returning starters this year that they hope will help them improve. However, the Panthers admit that they lack depth, and injuries could change their plans.
This season Plymouth South opened with a 25-22 win over East Bridgewater and then went on a three-game losing streak. But in those three games, they never lost by more than seven points. They fell to Abington in the second week by a score of 13-7, then Quincy 34-32, and in their fourth game they dropped a 7-0 decision to Hingham.
“Plymouth South is big, strong and faster than Marshfield,” Coach Luette said. “We have to tie up Oxsen. If we read our keys, I think we can shut down their running game. I think we’re good enough to control their passing game.”
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